Monthly Archives: May 2009

Happy Towel Day!

A belated Happy Towel Day to everyone!

Dont Panic!

Don't Panic!

From Wikipedia (which, I remind all students, is NOT a source!):

Towel Day is celebrated every May 25 as a tribute by fans of the late author Douglas Adams. On this day, fans carry a towel with them to demonstrate their love for the books and the author. The commemoration was first held in 2001, two weeks after Adams’ death on May 11, 2001.

a suburb without cars is like a day without coughing

Vauban street sceneBrent pointed out this article in the New York Times about a carfree German suburb:

Street parking, driveways and home garages are generally forbidden in this experimental new district on the outskirts of Freiburg, near the French and Swiss borders. Vauban’s streets are completely “car-free” — except the main thoroughfare, where the tram to downtown Freiburg runs, and a few streets on one edge of the community. Car ownership is allowed, but there are only two places to park — large garages at the edge of the development, where a car-owner buys a space, for $40,000, along with a home.

Sound familiar? It’s the “car-lite” mode suggested by my favorite urban design manual, Carfree Cities. I’m glad to see communities implementing these principles in the real world; hopefully we can learn more about how to make places like this more common.

The city also looks well-placed as a destination for my upcoming (someday) architectural tour of Europe. Now if we could just get this silly dollar back up to its former value…

gettin’ hitched all over the place

So Maine now, huh? Sayeth the BBC:

Gay marriage is to be permitted in the US state of Maine after a bill was passed by both houses of the state’s legislature and signed by the governor.

Maine will be the fifth US state to allow gay marriage, after Connecticut, Masschusetes, Iowa and Vermont.

A number of other states, including New Hampshire and New York, are also due to consider proposals to legalise it.

Well done, New Englanders! Um, and Iowa. (Still having a hard time coming to grips with that one.) Oh, and Prop 8? Your days are numbered.

UPDATE: John notes that for those keeping score, there’s a nice map of marriage and civil union status in all US states over at Wikipedia.