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Fri October 1, 2010
Richard Crowson: Wichita: The Land That Time Forgot
Greetings from The Land That Time Forgot, also known as Wichita, Kansas. We’ve been a little slow to accept some of them new-fangled things that other towns have had for years. Take bicycles, for instance. We weren’t too sure they’d catch on so we waited a while. Then the other day I noticed an actual bike lane on First Street in the College Hill area. Right there against the curb was the white outline of a bicycle indicating a bike lane. At first I thought it was a crime scene. Like on TV where the police draw a chalk outline around the victim, in this case a bicycle. We’ve been known to have trouble sharing our roads with bicycles and I was afraid another one may have been hit. But the frequency of the images soon made it obvious even to my snail-paced mind that this was no accident. We actually have a bike lane in College Hill!
Meanwhile, across town in Planeview, a neighborhood of “temporary housing” built for World War II-era aircraft workers, time stands as still as Benny Goodman’s clarinet. Hundreds of families continue to live in those modest “temporary” homes 65 years after they were built.
Time hasn’t progressed so much when it comes to Wichitans’ dental health either. Fluoridated water? What are you, some kind of socialist??? Let’s just leave public medication practices like that to communist towns like Newton and El Dorado.
And sadly, on the economic front, time has once again forgotten the Air Capital. While economist-shamans have been declaring the end of the recession, another 1,050 of our aircraft workers were laid off last week.
Memo to Father Time: That string you have tied around your finger? It’s to remind you of Wichita. So catch us up already! And thanks for the bike lanes.