Archive for September 18th, 2008

RIP James Crumley

by Rebecca Schmitz

A few years ago at the Montana Festival of the Book a friend and I attended a panel discussion at the Wilma about mystery writing. It featured C.J. Box, Neil McMahon, James Lee Burke and James Crumley.  Near the end, the moderator announced that the authors would sign books in the lobby after the session. I had my copy of The Last Good Kiss; my friend clutched The Mexican Tree Duck. After a short delay, Burke, Box and McMahon were sitting under the shabby gilded lights and red flocked wallpaper (this was before that hideous pastel paint job) in the lobby. James Crumley was nowhere to be found. I remember a few people were having a heated discussion in a corner. One of them broke away and ran out the main doors. He reappeared five minutes later, out of breath. “Crumley headed straight for the bar”, he panted. “Someone’s bringing him back right now.”  

When I got to the head of Crumley’s line about twenty minutes later, he took The Last Good Kiss from my hands. “What the fuck did you buy this for?” he growled.

The death notice in today’s Missoulian includes an observation from one of his friends: James Crumley had “a real hard-nosed exterior”. Maybe so, but I definitely saw a twinkle in his eyes that night.

by jhwygirl

I mean, just look at today’s Board of County Commissioner (BCC) Agenda.

Now, compare that to the City Council agenda.

One has links to staff reports, maps, committee reports, etc. The other just tells me that they are considering a 69 lot subdivision next to the Clark Fork River.

Which do you prefer?

A county with 2,598 square miles of land, one of the fastest growing counties in the state, and an $83.9 million budget, and they can’t see fit to provide the taxpayers with sufficient public information?

Of course, we know how they’ve enjoyed the possibility of public comment in the past. Or you could always try this post for 2 more examples of the BCC’s approach to public comment.

Maybe it’s about time they instituted a new policy – one that keeps the public informed, 21st century style?

Consider writing a letter to the editor of either The Missoulian or the Missoula Independent, and call on the BCC to let the public know more about their doings in a more informative modern way. Citizens should not have to call the office and hope someone is available to fax you a staff report or talk to you when they should be providing this stuff on their website.

Whatever materials they have to decide the matter should be available to you and I. They aren’t getting that stuff on Wednesday mornings.

Please – go ahead and write that letter – because, obviously, they appear to be internet-challenged.

And then, maybe, just maybe, news reporter Chelsie Moy might actually have something worthwhile to praise the BCC about.

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