MORNING BUZZ: Fakes, Funding and Farewell

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Good Morning!
For whatever reason tired caught up to me before the week ended. That may explain my poor choice of wardrobe this morning. I threw on a pair of linen pants I hadn’t worn for a while. Along with being a little snug (your tired you eat more), they are a little short. A trip to the dry cleaners is in order today. Hopefully I can cobble something together for Monday morning.

I was greeted back into the newsroom by one of our Producers telling me a woman called and complained that I used the term “kids” to describe students or children. She seemed to believe that our audience is very smart and would be offended that I was referring to students as a pack of young goats (kids). Somehow I doubt it. I think our audience members also know a colloquial term when they hear it and aren’t offended.

On to the News:

So…another delay in the Grand Ave Bridge construction project. The people you feel worst for at the owners of those businesses. Jenny Hettmann spoke with the owners of a couple this morning. They’re frustrated but what can they do? Glad to see the City put penalties in place for the contractor so they have some consequence for the delay. How about a property tax rebate for the businesses around the bridge?

Would you know a fake bill if someone handed it to you? I’m not sure I would. I see retailers check $100 bills all the time but who checks a $10 bill? We showed the picture of a guy who used a couple of the bills at a gas station and at a McDonald”s. It’s important to point out the guy could be passing the bills without knowing about it.

So the Governor pointed to an interesting statistic about funding for The Iowa Juvenile Home. The state pays almost $500/kid/day at the State run facility. A private non-profit like Y.E.S.S. in Des Moines gets reimbursed $92/students/day… that’s a disparity worth talking about. The Governor says that cost is, in part, due to the high cost of Union employees.
Democrat and State Sen. Jack Hatch is going to run for Governor and he says the problem is that the State isn’t giving enough money to shelters like Y.E.S.S.
Really? Whether Union employees are being paid too much isn’t for me to debate but maybe a private Non-profit can offer its services more efficiently? I’m not sure the answer is for the State to pay MORE.

Gabby Douglas is leaving Chows Gym. All we can say is “Good Luck”.
Gabby came to Iowa a relative unknown and in two years became a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist. Her coach played a role in that but Gabby had to execute at the right time and she did. Her performances will keep her and her teammates in the history books. I’ve never heard anyone in Iowa wish her anything but the best and that’s the sentiment I’m hearing now. She’s going to be nearer to family in California and one of the Gymnastics blogs I was reading today is saying she is going to train with Jordayn Weber’s Coach. You could do worse.
What’s troubling about all of this is what’s not being said. Being in California keeps Gabby closer to some of the opportunities she has to cash in on her fame from these Olympic games..who would blame her? But why did she leave this way? Chow’s wife said the goodbye was “awkward”. They didn’t know she was leaving until she walked through the door. Chow is in China on vacation…why not wait till he gets back and talk to him face to face? As late as the weekend and the US Gymnastics Championships the AP quotes Gabby as saying , “changing coaches? As far as I know I’m still at Chow’s” But she wasn’t. Her host family talked last night about helping her pack…last week. Why wouldn’t you just sidestep the question and say, “We’re here to talk about these great upcoming US athletes…my future will take care of itself.”? There are obviously parts of this story we don’t know.
Gabby is still a teenager and still has a lot of growing up to do, but I wonder if in ten years we will be talking about her as the champion she is or if we will have largely forgotten one of the most spectacular performances by an athlete in the Olympics. I hope it’s the former. Gabby seems like a nice kid. Her teammates seem genuinely disappointed she is going to leave and that probably wouldn’t happen if she were some kind of a diva. The “awkward” nature of this transition didn’t need to happen and some of the responsibility for that has to go to the way Team Gabby handled it. She’s a kid…if she’s going to be put in a difficult position like this…at least help her out by having a plan to communicate what you’re doing with fans who will be curious.

So I have two Fantasy Football Drafts are this weekend including WHO’s Fantasy League. It’s a fun way to pass the NFL season but I can’t say I am taking any time to do any research. It’s like picking the NCAA tournament. No matter how much you think you know about any sport before a season starts…there are always surprises. That’s part of why we watch.

Finally, we were at dinner last night sitting outside at Gateway Market. We were flanked by two tables of two women which means we were telling the boys to lower their voices. They tend to be loud. Anyway, there were a couple of times we held the line with both JT and Will during the meal. No big deal but they don’t get what they want, when they want it, all the time.
So one of the women next to use stood up to go inside and stopped at our table. She complimented us on our parenting and said it was refreshing to hear parents not cave at their child’s every request. I have to say it was the highlight of my week.
I don’t tell that story to brag…ok I do a little, but I tell it because I’m sure there are a lot of you who work really hard at parenting and never get any validation. In the trenches of parenting it can feel like you are saying the same thing over and over to your kids with limited or no results. Sometimes it’s nice to hear someone (who has no idea who you are) say that your constant vigilance where your children’s manors are concerned is paying of. If you didn’t get that kind of validation today…hang in there and keep up the hard work you’re putting in with your kids.

Have a good weekend