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July 4 in Brookfield

The City of Brookfield will be holding the 4th of July parade and festivities on (ahem) Monday, the 5th of July. The 4th falls on a Sunday this year. Since the parade staging area includes the parking lots for two churches, as well as possibly interfering with Sunday morning services, the parade date was moved. That’s been the practice for years and is consistent with the federal employee (postal service, etc.) holiday practice of using the following Monday. The event was planned and implemented by the city Park and Recreation staff under the guidance of the city's Independence Day Activities Committee.  This group of residents are very hands on and do a lot of hard work for all of us to enjoy.

You may read about the city events, including the parade, ice cream social and fireworks, planned at the city web site: Independence Day Activities  Please note the rules for staking out your parade watching spot. There have been problems in the past with people setting up lawn chairs, etc. days in advance and having them stolen or moved. From the city's web site:

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Simple questions stump Kagan: That's a dumb law, Which memo?, I don't know, Huh?, Book ban OK....

Constitution, Government / Bureaucracy, President Obama, The Courts, Truth, United States

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan finished her Senate committee questioning yesterday. She answered question after question and was able to regurgitate names and statutes regarding past cases.

But it was the very simple questions that were most revealing. They stumped her. She really didn't have an answer to them and they were not difficult questions. Anyone who believes the Constitution, as it was written, is our guiding document, could have answered in a heartbeat. But she could not.

Here is a sampling of Kagan stumpers and vague answers. Some are video clips so you can see for yourself:

  • Sen. Tom Coburn asked something like this: If I sponsored a bill that made Americans eat 3 fruits and 3 veggies a day, and it passed, does that law violate the Commerce Clause? Kagan replies something like this: "It sounds like a dumb law..." um, but I think the question of whether its a dumb law is different from if it is Constitutional. I think the courts would be wrong to strike down laws that they think are, er, ah, senseless just because they are senseless. Coburn says, Do we have the power to tell people what to eat every day? What is the extent of the Commerce Clause? We have this wide embrace of it, but [Founders didn't] ... She really doesn't have an answer because she knows the real question is about ObamaCare and if she is confirmed, she knows she will have to rule on that decision.
  • Sen. Orin Hatch asks her about a memo on partial birth abortion that evidently led to the conclusion that the procedure was medically necessary to save the life of the mother.

    “Did you write that memo?”

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"STATUS"...of Stopping to Smell the Flowers


To provide fresh, daily entertainment on the Perk and Pleasantry blog site, I have decided to mix in some of my original "status-style" reports.  I hope you enjoy this new and diversified format.

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"STATUS" Of Aspiring Hobby Farmer



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A call to prayer for America on July 4th

History, Holidays, Religion, United States

Happy Birthday

When the Declaration of Independence was signed, John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail his thoughts on how this special day should be remembered:

"I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.
It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.
It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward for evermore."


Today we think of the 4th as a day for parades, picnics, and fireworks. This year, Family Research Council is calling for Christians to pray, more specifically, to fall on their knees in prayer:

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"STATUS" of Sports CART Driver



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The Fourth

We recently returned from a tremendous trip to the Rocky Mountains, the subject of which might prove fodder for a subsequent submission.   We drove there and back, taking us across a great breadth of this Country, and as the miles clicked away, I thought about our Country, its history, and given the season of the Fourth, its founding.

A friend of mine lent me a tremendous book last winter entitled Vindicating the Founders - Race, Sex, Class, and Justice in the Origins of America.  Written by Thomas G. West, a professor of politics at the University of Dallas, it is a scholarly and penetrating analysis.  As its title suggests, his work is a vindication of The Founders with respect to their reasoning, rationale, and ultimately their work in laying the legal, political, and social foundations of our Country.  Specifically, Mr. West serves as an erudite and articulate apologist for the work of the Founders in the areas identified by his book's title: race, sex, class, and justice; a dynamic which has probably rendered him as "persona non grata" in much of his peer group.   

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Poise on Parade


How I loved that grand parade:

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"STATUS" of Exercising in the Heat



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"STATUS' of Polka Dots



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"STATUS' of Travelling Tennis Champion


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"STATUS" of Stamina



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To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee's timeless book,  To Kill A Mockingbird turns fifty this month.   It is a cornerstone of American letters; firmly ensconced on my short list of "greatest novels".   And in the broader culture and media, it stands tied with Gone With the Wind as the greatest book/movie combination of all time.  

Lee's winsome and lyrical prose drips off the pages of Mockingbird like so much honey from a comb.   It is a masterpiece of American literature, a coming of age story, set against the backdrop of racism and the drama of the human spirit in a small southern town.  

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"STATUS" of the Farmers' Market



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Target Store at Plan Commission tonight, 4K Tuesday, Bike Race Friday

Education, City of Brookfield, Elmbrook, 4-K, Development, Special events, TAXES, Just for fun!

Alderman Lisa Mellone sent me the notice on the Target Store and Bike Race. A reader alerted me to the discussion of 4K at Elmbrook's School Board meeting.

Quebecor Target Store Project, Brookfield Plan Commission, 6pm tonight

"A concept review of the proposed Target Store development on the old Quebecor site is scheduled for this Monday, July 12th, 6pm in Council Chambers at City Hall. At this point the applicant is seeking feedback from the Plan Commission on the proposal at their meeting. "

This project has changed considerably from the former mixed use project, of housing and smaller retail, that fell through for the Quebecor site in 2007.

Even the original Ryan Cos proposal had a senior housing possibility, but that has changed too--at least from Ryan's perspective. JSOnline: Plan for new Brookfield Target on Blue Mound Road advance: "Ryan executives considered including senior apartments as part of the development. But that was dropped in favor of doing just retail, along with some expanded green space along the portions of the site that border N. Columbia Blvd. and Krueger Park... ...The green space would likely be donated to the city, the plan said."

Since Ryan Cos'. plan calls for a Target Store with grocery and a few other retail stores-- no housing--the City will have to revisit the plan to approve of the site being solely retail to move it forward.

Elmbrook School Board Meeting
, Tuesday, July 13, 6pm at Central Administrative Offices

The Enrollment Management Study Team will give a report on their findings. (Item 3A on Agenda) Suggestions include ADDING 4K, closing a school and ADDING 4K, and more. With the new school funding changes (not favorable to Elmbrook), I am sure we want to keep an eye on these suggestions!

School Funding Plan Could Hurt

State Schools Chief Proposes Revamp of Funding System

Cycling Classic Bike Race, July 16th, City of Brookfield Civic Center

This looks like fun. On Friday, July 16th, Brookfield's Civic Center roads will be closed to serve as the track for several bike races during the day! Events start at 9:30am and the last race begins at 5:45pm.

The Convention and Visitors Bureau was looking for volunteers to serve as race marshals. If you are interested in helping, contact Nancy Justman at 262-789-0220 or

Additional information can be found at International Cycling Classic

Well, it is back to the grindstone for me, or more specifically, sanding Spackle in my kitchen.


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National Pet Fire Safety Day is July 15

Fire Safety, Pet, Elmbrook Humane Society, National Volunteer Fire Council, NVFC, FEMA, Fire, July

Promote pet fire safety in your community

An estimated 500,000 pets are affected annually by home fires, and a new data analysis by the National Fire Protection Association shows that nearly 1,000 house fires each year are accidentally started by the homeowners’ pets. The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) is joining ADT Security Services and the American Kennel Club® (AKC) for the third annual National Pet Fire Safety Day on July 15 to spread awareness about how to prevent pets from starting home fires and keep pets safe in the event of an emergency. 

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What Dogs Mean to Me.

Sark 91, Elmbrook Humane Society, EBHS, dogs, leash, animals

What Dogs Mean to Me

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Kitten, Kittens Everywhere

Kittens, Summer, Elmbrook Humane Society, EBHS, cats


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Harley Davidson and the Deployment of Capital

The United States Congress is woefully ignorant on this topic.  That's not a shot at the Democrats, for I would levy the same criticism of the Republican suits that once lounged in the sunshine of a strong majority.  Just as Nancy Pelosi might glower imperially at the camera if faced with a question on this topic, so too would the moribund figure of Denny Hastert have balefully blundered his way through a response to the same query.  It's not so much that they would resent the question - they simply wouldn't understand it.       

Washington's ignorance of the laws of economics has been pandemic for decades, and has flourished on both sides of the political aisle.  The formation and deployment of capital is the Sine Qua Non of economic development, and it is time to give this matter consideration as the Badger State approaches an election season.  There are business leaders and entrepreneurs out there sitting on capital, one of the big reasons for the stalled "recovery".  They are waiting................waiting to see what happens to the environment for deployed capital.  And it is certainly what the managers of Harley Davidson are pondering.  It is going to take more than rhetoric to keep Harley here.  It is going to take an environment that both fosters and rewards the deployment of capital. 

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Meet Your Match - who's right for you?

Cats, Kittens, Elmbrook Humane Society, EBHS, MYM, Meet Your Match, Adoptions, adopter, animal

Hello again animal lovers!  Today I want to talk about cat personalities.  I think that this is the most important thing that a potential adopter should consider when looking at cats. It is important to adopt a cat that is compatible with your lifestyle and personality.

What personality traits do you find desirable?  Do you want a cat that enjoys being petted, cuddled and held?  Do you want a playful and talkative cat, or a quiet and mellow kitty?  Do you want a cat that is outgoing and friendly?  To answer these questions EBHS uses the MYM (Meet Your Match) Adoption Program.

The MYM program works by having both human and feline complete personality assessments. For the humans they take a 19 question assessment.  The cat’s “Feline-ality” is determined by: their enjoyment if being petted and held, their activity level/how talkative they are, response to new people and things.  After completing the test each cat and person is placed into one of three “color” groups: orange, purple and green.

A cat in the "green" color range is outgoing, savvy, and adventurous. An “orange” cat is good company and steady companions.  Cat's in the "purple" color range seek affection, are quiet and tend to stay out of trouble.  A person who is a “green” adoptor is most successful with cats who can adapt quickly to new situations and people.  People in the “purple” range are a good match for cats who need time to adjust to their new surroundings.  Adoptors in the “orange” color range are a good fit for the cat that is looking for a steady companion.  Within each of the three color groups: orange, green and purple are three specific personality types.  To learn more about the MYM personality types feel free to visit

Having been involved with cats and cat adoptions for a few years, I feel that the most important quality to look for in a cat is their personality.  Some people adopt a cat because they like the color.  Others adopt a kitten because they look “cute.”  Only later do some of these people find out that the cat they adopted doesn’t fit their lifestyle or personality.  For example, we got Mittens because we loved his color but we didn’t know he would be this needy.  Or I loved Spot when he was a kitten because she was so cute, but 4 years later she just isn’t cute anymore we don’t want her anymore.  Those are just a couple of the scenarios that can happen. However if you keep the cat’s “Feline-ality” in mind when adopting a cat, both human and feline can have many happy years together.

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