Pictures: Wacky Wheel On Willy Street Wows Youngsters

First you need one kid.

Then you need a second kid…and even a third.

(If you know these kids let them know they are posted here…I was only able to give my business card to one of them, but I know they all will want to see these photos.)


Bring in the Wacky Wheel.

A Driver……

Some forward motion…..

You can hear the giggles from the kids even in these pictures.

And when all is done three kids are going to have one heck of  a story to tell their buddies tomorrow at school.

Willy Street Parade Is A Real Neighborhood Event

There is no other parade that can compare in simplicity to the Willy Street Parade.  Each year as the warm summer memories fade and the cool breezes start to blow off Lake Monona a random group of local neighbors take to the streets for a parade.  The event celebrates both the diversity of the neighborhood, and also the ever-popular Willy Street Fair.

While many come out to parade in the streets there are still more that follow another ritual each year.  With cups of hot coffee homeowners and friends gather on lawns and front stoops to wave and applaud.   With temperatures especially chilly today many were wearing sweaters and clasping the coffee mug to keep hands warm.

The nice thing about this small parade is that everyone knows everyone.   It is just one big community.  So when Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin walks to cheers and genuine support from friends and neighbors it is not surprising to hear the same greeting for the guy dressed like Elvis.  Or the man who has converted a car into a ‘bubble-mobile.’  If you took the time to get into the parade and march down the streets you were certain to get applause.  Though in a few cases today I think the participants would have settled for a cup of hot coffee instead of a hand-clap.

This neighborhood is the kind where you not only know who your immediate neighbors are, but also know and talk with folks who live two or three blocks down.  As it is a walking neighborhood it is not uncommon any time of the year to start out for an  evening stroll only to find 30 minutes later you only made it to the next block as you ran into someone you know.  In time one gets to know just about everyone in the area.  That is the charm of a real neighborhood.

It is that true sense of community that makes days such as this so pleasurable.    After all a parade is great.  But a parade made up of folks we know and care about is even better.

All parades, as we know, have one thing in common.  That is young boys looking for candy.  I thought these two were the best examples of many that I saw today.

Everyone loves the ‘bubble-mobile’!

In the end the Willy Street Fair and Parade is all about folks coming together. I think the next pictures make that point.

Will Middle East Peace Talks Continue?

With over 430,000 Jews living on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem, and the Israeli government not certain if they will continue a moratorium on new housing in the occupied territories, it is easy to see why Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is upset.

But according to press reports early today Abbas is also trying to keep his understandably upset Arab League forum united for continued efforts at the negotiating table.   In addition, those who elected Abbas are upset, and rightfully so.  Palestinians should not accept further building on their lands.

Asked in an interview with the pan-Arab newspaper al-Hayat whether he would declare an end to the negotiations if the freeze did not continue, Abbas said: “No, we will go back to the Palestinian institutions, to the Arab follow-up committee.”

He was referring to an Arab League forum that gave him the go-ahead to pursue U.S.-brokered direct peace talks with Israel that began in Washington on September 2.

Nabil Abu Radainah, an Abbas spokesman, told the Palestinian newspaper al-Ayyam that Abbas had called for a meeting of the follow-up committee “within days” in Cairo.

Fifty Years Ago Today Presidential Campaign History Was Made

On 26 September 1960, 70 million U.S. viewers tuned in to watch Senator John Kennedy of Massachusetts and Vice President Richard Nixon in the first-ever televised presidential debate. It was the first of four televised “Great Debates” between Kennedy and Nixon. The first debate centered on domestic issues.  Perhaps as no other single event, the Great Debates forced us to ponder the role of television in democratic life.

Sunday Echoes: Debbie Reynolds And Eddie Fisher

This was an easy selection for this week.