Tis the Season
My Speedhumps

August 16, 1999

Tonight we went to my mother in law's house to celebrate the first two in a rapid fire series of birthday's. First come Chuck's brothers (the twins). Next week is his sister. Two weeks later is his mom's birthday.

As usual, this comes on as a huge surprise to me. You'd think after this long together I'd finally remember.

But no. There we were yesterday, shopping for something, anything, for the twins (as they're affectionately referred to). They're really hard to buy for. I decided those fleece, zippered vests from the Gap would be perfect. Well, no such luck.

We were in Pasadena and the Gap there only had one large. The Sherman Oaks store had one so I was going to go after work today.

This is all well and good except that making a trip back to Sherman Oaks only to drive back out to by my office to go to Chuck's mom's house seemed ridiculous so I went to Old Navy at lunch and got their version. Same thing as the Gap for $10.00 less each.

I'm always running around at the last second getting gifts for Chuck's relatives. OK, it's not like I'm any better about my relatives but at least their my family. The curse of being married. I did manage to get Chuck's sister's gift yesterday so I won't be running around all day next Saturday trying to find something for her in time for her party on Sunday.

Anyway, we were celebrating and frolicking at my mother in law's house. As we were getting ready to leave Zoe informed us that she wanted to sleep over at grandma's. Imagine our surprise. She's had sleep-overs there before. Usually though there's lots of discussion beforehand. We pack all her favorite stuff. Talk about it a lot, and then it happens. She sometimes gets a bit teary but then snaps out of it.

We were all surprised when she asked to stay at grandma's. So we left her there. I was sitting here, about to start my entry and was really missing her. I said so to Chuck. He asked if he should go get her. I said no. We must have felt the psychic energy because not two seconds later the phone rings. It's my mother in law. Zoe is crying. She wants to come home.

So it's 10:30 at night. Chuck is about to go make a 30 minute drive (each way) to collect his princess so she can sleep in her own home (probably in my bed).

Well, grandma's house will always be there.

I received my Citywide Speed Hump Program General Information packet today.

With all the money they spend putting together these packets you could maybe get a grande latte at Starbucks. This is the cheesiest thing I've seen in a looooong time.

While the packet is eminently cheesy, there is no shortage of rules and regulations. Some of the pithier information:

--once you've completely your application, submitted the petition (which is signed by 75% of the people on the street affected by the potential speed humps) it will take approximately 6 months to complete the "comprehensive engineering study" conducted by the Department of Transportation.

--only two locations per council district will get speed humps funded by the City Council Office.

As for the evaluation criteria, who knew? For example, you cannot have speed humps on streets less than 26 feet wide or greater than 44 feet wide. Furthermore, if your block is less than 600 feet long you cannot have speed humps.

Also, requests for speed humps submitted after June 1 are not considered until the next year.

So, where does this leave me? My request probably won't be even put up for review until next June (if I'm lucky). Then, it will take another (at least) 6 months for the DoT to do their "comprehensive engineering study". Then, it's pot luck as to whether or not my street will be one of the lucky two in this Council District to even get funding.

I think I'm just going to have Chuck build me a huge tack strip and lay that out in front of my house. That'll slow 'em down.

Until next time. . .