Roses for Salem graphic design artist Rustin Rapp. His colorful downtown mural adorns the wooden barricade in front of an East State Street building being renovated. It shows skill and imagination.?Beats looking at blank sheets of plywood. It's good to see some good graffiti in town. As opposed to the bad. Let's hope the word "GRIM" doesn't get spray painted over it by one our town's many punks. The idea of other murals sounds good too.
Thorns to the ongoing petty thefts. Salem has its share as does Salem Township. Most likely drug freaks. Of course the thefts prompt a question to some of the victims: what would compel you not to lock your vehicle after getting robbed once? It happens more than you would ever believe around here and it's almost laughable. Trust in leaving a vehicle unlocked only goes so far before stupidity moves in. Those who don't lock their vehicles are asking for it. They also occupy the time of cops whose time could be better spent helping diligent citizens who do look their cars.
Thorns to the plight of professional sports in Cleveland. The Indians and their Venus de Milo - as in no arms - pitching staff are already firmly entrenched in last place. Memo to current disabled list resident Michael Bourn: if sliding headfirst gets you there faster, wouldn't track sprinters being doing it when nearing finishing lines??Then there's the Browns. The biggest news coming out of Berea is that their new owner is in apparent big trouble. The business for which he is CEO got raided by the feds this past week. Maybe the Browns can draft a blue chip defense lawyer in the draft. Very serious fraud charges loom. Then there's the lovable Cavs. They just whacked their coach - making it three-for-three in the past year for fired coaches and a manager in Cleveland. The Cavs have been one of the worst franchises in the league since you-know-who left. And a top candidate to be the next coach is the defensive-minded Mike Brown who got fired by the same Cavs after consecutive seasons of 66 and 61 wins. By contrast, the Cavaliers won a total of only 64 games the past three years combined.
Roses for the tree blossoms adorning roadways, especially along East State Street. Roses for people who pick up the litter of others. Thorns to those who litter in our parks with complete disregard for fellow residents and nature itself as pointed out by a reader. These include people who eat lunch in the parks and discard the waste anywhere but in a trash container. We are always amazed by the litter on bike, hiking and walking trails. Sometimes it's deep into the trail which means whoever does it is presumably a biker, hiker or walker because punks wouldn't bother walking that far into a trail to litter. Those people are usually the most environmentally-conscious among us.
Roses to kind-hearted and well-grounded young people. We are fortunate to have many throughout our communities. Reflects a solid support system from parents, grandparents, teachers, coaches and/or other solid adult role models. We like to point out special deeds done by special children. Such as Western Reserve Elementary School students who collected spare change. Fourth-graders Hannah Rowbottom, Alaina Fitch, Sabra Nicopolis and Reese Snyder came up with an idea to collect loose change. A lot of loose change. Their effort, "Change for Change," resulted in over $1,000 being collected by students from all classes at the school. The above mentioned young ladies spent their recess time over two weeks counting and rolling the change. The money was used to purchase hats, gloves and blankets for the homeless. Also $925 was donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank. That organization was able to buy nearly $14,000 worth of food. "Change for Change" was a culminating activity to bullying/empathy lessons delivered to all Western Reserve elementary students. They were encouraged to develop an understanding of standing in someone else's shoes. It worked.