This week, especially for those of us that live in Fayetteville and commute to Bentonville for work, is a complete nightmare.
It's the annual Wal-Mart Cult Gathering Shareholder's Meeting. 18,000 people descend upon Northwest Arkansas for a week of picnics, cow-pie tossing, lame celebrity watching and, of course, wearing very silly clothes. Unfortunately, as the local governments have not seen fit to improve the infrastructure around here enough to even come close to support the massive growth we've experienced, the influx of Wal-Martians pretty much brings everything to a grinding halt. It's the proverbial two pounds of sausage in a one pound wrapper.
As to the celebrities, being Wal-Mart, everything has to be completely inoffensive to every possible demographic group. Here's the line-up:
Kenny Chesney, Jeff Foxworthy, 3 Doors Down, Hanson, Buddy Jewell and Juanes (whatever the hell that is).
Sounds terribly exciting, no? Hanson? Hold me back.
Thankfully, it will be over around noon on Friday and traffic will go back to its normal horribleness.
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
Today our neighbors to the north in Springdale are voting on whether to allow the city to build a baseball stadium by taking a little more money out of their pockets.
I have to say that I lean a little more towards the position of Freeman Hunt than that of Greg and Andy. Baseball, while it can bring some economic benefits to a town, is a private commercial enterprise. If there is a group of investors willing to take a chance on it being successful, then they should dig deeep into their own pockets and go for it. Arkansas already ranks in the top ten in the nation for average sales taxes, and adding to that just doesn't seem like a great idea.
So, I guess my official position, were I allowed to vote on it, would be to vote no. I would, however, fully support anyone who believes, "if you build it they will come", as long as they're using their own money and not doing it on the backs of the residents.
Full disclosure: I'm also a little peeved that they're trying to steal the Double A team from my hometown.