Siegel names his ‘winners’ for 2012

Sometimes, year-end awards make perfect sense:

• To Mayor Vision: The Party Like it’s 1999 award. Because he certainly doesn’t act — or believe — that it’s 2012, and that the world is a far different place than it was then — no federal dollars, no friends in Washington or the Legislature, and no inflated real values.

• To the city staff — The Franz Kafka Knew What He was Writing About award. Because only bureaucrats in the finest Kafkaesque sense of the word can keep plunging ahead on projects like the Trinity toll road, for which there is neither money nor public support. Meanwhile, we have to float a bond project, with interest payments, to fill potholes. (And yes, I’m willing to bet that most of the staff will need to look Kafka up on the Internet.)

• To the City Council — The Good Government? What’s Good Government? award. – I grew up in Chicago, where the city council was best described as 50 party hacks trying not to fall asleep. They make most of our city council look like Roman orators.

• To Dallas’ Only Daily Newspaper — The Scandals, What Scandals? award. In the past couple of years, Dallas has had major scandals in animal services, in sanitation and in 911. In any other city, that’s enough to win the newspaper at least one Pulitzer Prize. Here, it allows the Morning News to hunker down behind its pay wall and write glowing front page odes to the new deck park.

• To the Klyde Warren Deck Park — The Summer in North Texas Can Get a Little Toasty award. I hope the park is a huge success and brings hordes of people to Downtown. But for some reason, I don’t think that will happen, given that the average high temperature in July and August is 96 degrees. And that those months have been a couple of degrees warmer the past couple of years.

• To Trader Joe’s — The Hurry Up and Build the Damned Thing Already award. Because, frankly, I’m getting tired of answering questions from people about when the Trader Joe’s on Lower Greenville is supposed to open. Or, better yet, being told that someone’s sister-in-law knows a guy who talked to a woman who said the deal was off.

• To Walmart — The So Now You Love Us award. Why did it take Trader Joe’s opening down the street for the world’s largest retailer to decide East Dallas would be a good location for a store? Because after the Minyard’s at Abrams and Gaston closed in 2007, there were no grocery stores south of Mockingbird, save for the Whole Foods. Which just happens to be one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in Dallas.

• To Lincoln Properties — The That’s Why They’re Called Real Estate Developers award. Aboretum Boulevard? You’re kidding, right? And weren’t you supposed to start building an HEB grocery store at Gaston, Garland and Grand in October?

• To Matt’s Rancho Martinez — The Better Late Than Never award. Yes, it was worth the wait. And I’m glad you brought the mural with you.

• To The State Fair of Texas — The You’d Better do Right by Big Tex award. Because if you don’t, there are going to be a lot of angry fair-goers, particularly on Texas-OU weekend. What happens if there is no Big Tex for people to meet by?

• To our neighborhood’s small businesses — The Hang in There, Things will be Better Soon award. They’ve endured the recession and as well as city policies that favor big developers (witness Timbercreek), and some of them are hurting. Never fear, though, you’re the future, and one day, we’ll be able to laugh about this.


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