Thursday, January 22, 2009

More shenanigans in Alamo Heights

If you want to make a point at a city council meeting, a different approach might get the attention you are seeking. But, it also might get you some unintended consequences.
During the Jan. 12 Alamo Heights City Council meeting, residents living along Mary D Avenue urged city leaders to exert parking restrictions along the street, amidst commercial property owners' requests for more areas along Mary D to be designated for two-hour parking. The street begins at the 4900 block of Broadway and ends at Encino.

Homeowners share street frontage along the artery with commercial property owners, including the popular Cappy's restaurant. With no parking restrictions, the south end of the street is the point of contention, while the north side of the street has both two-hour parking zones and “No Parking Anytime” areas fronting residences.


Commercial property owners George Geis and restaurateur Cappy Lawton denied their garbage collection began at dawn, as residents suggested. Instead, Geis said his trash collector makes rounds at 7 a.m. while Lawton said his service operates between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

Resident Tom Hall of the 100 block of Mary D insisted garbage collection for Cappy's starts at 3 a.m.

Prefacing his commentary by noting his penchant for visual aids, he distributed condoms to council members to illustrate part of refuse accumulating on his yard from the increased motorist traffic. He then unfurled a plastic garbage bag, strategically placing it at the podium to further illustrate impromptu garbage collection on his lawn.


After Lawton's remarks, Hall asked to re-address the council. Ambling slowly to the podium, he paused for a moment while Lawton found his seat in the audience. He then loudly slammed the podium at full strength, startling both audience and council members.

His non-verbal illustrative tool did not go over well.

Councilwoman Susan Harwell was particularly stunned: “City council people have been shot at, sir!” she said, alluding to the huge, unexpected sound made by the podium pounding.

(from the Express-News)

I don't think Hall won the city council over to his side, especially the lady who has apparently been on the wrong end of a firearm. But he does seem to have a knack for presentation.

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