Wednesday, 10 August 2011

My Neighborhood

Sometimes, there are stories locally that someone from outside of the DC region simply will not believe....even if I tell the story.  This is one of those.

Across the river....in the Capital Heights region of DC....there was this guy mowing his yard.  Amongst the normal tools he had out in this effort....was a broom.  The broom at some point ended out near the street (probably even on the pavement, but that part of the story isn't absolutely clear).

Then a local cab pulls up....Michael Ricardo Cruz was the driver....55 years old.  Cruz gets out of his car and picks up the broom (apparently to take it in his car).  The mower guy.....Norm Wood (the III) got all testy about this effort of taking the broom.  So this evolved from a verbal thing, into a fistfight, and then finally....Cruz (the taxi guy) pulled out a pistol and shot Norm Wood dead on the streets of Capital Heights, DC.

Cops are still investigating the episode.  I'm guessing that they'd like to think there is more to the story....like drugs or alcohol involved....or just anything beyond a fight over a broom.

You can imagine the eventual court case coming.....full-up murder trial.  There's exhibit "A"....the pistol.  And there's exhibit "B"....the broom.  The jury will sit there for this and mostly wonder if there is something else to the story, but there isn't.  It's hard to even envision this trial lasting more than two days because there really isn't much else to cover.  A guy is dead over an attempted broom robbery.....nothing more.

The odds of something like this in Alabama?  I'm calculating that maybe in a 100-year span....there might have been an episode like this.  The sad thing is that this kind of oddball murder thing occurs about every week or two in DC.  And that....is my neighborhood....sadly.

The New Reality

There are folks from forty-nine states captivated tonight....by live action reporting in Wisconsin....over a state-level senator recall election for six Republican state senators.  MSNBC is covering this live analysis and fairly thrilled over reports coming in.

I sat there and pondered over this.  Thirty years ago....it simply wasn't news about state-level senators from another state.  So the news media has slipped enough that folks watch this type election like a NASCAR race.  Apparently, there is some kind of thrill involved.....even if there is no level of common sense over the situation.

In a decade, I could see city elections in Oshkosh being hyped up via MSNBC and watched by folks in Knoxville, Tennessee.  Perhaps we'd sit down on a Tuesday night in August and observe county elections in Idaho for entertainment.  Maybe we'd even have city council elections from Reno that would get us all peppered up in September as the NFL season started up.   

What I see in the future is a channel or two that specializes in city and state elections....mostly from places that none of us really know anything about.  Eventually, we'll add foreign elections....from Tonga, Peru, and El Salvador.  It'll end up like the History Channel....mostly reality TV and some think-tank guy talking local Tonga politics and getting both opposition parties on the island really hostile and acting mischievous. My name for the channel?  Democracy TV.....live and in full rich color, with mostly all corrupt and diabolical politicians as your actors.

Kind of sad how far some Greek form of government has fallen.