At 6:35 p.m. December 5, Tuesday night. It was cold out. Real cold. One of those winter Coral Springs days, where the chill just runs through your body. Not even the crickets that I was accustomed to hearing outside of the city hall commission chambers were chirping. That’s how cold it was….60 degrees. I wasn’t used to this weather. I said to myself, Howard, (that’s me) you’ll survive this one. That’s because inside the building it was always nice and warm. Inside city hall , the one thing you could count on is a warm seat, and a lot of hot air.
I knew something was wrong. I got a parking space right in front of the building. No other cars were around…just mine. The Coralsprings.com mobile, as my friends like to call it…..The Dot Com guy, as they would chuckle. I approached the building. A car was parked in front. It was a red car. It could have been green. I wasn’t sure. T’was dark out and I’m color blind. It was definitely a small Chrysler. In it was the City Attorney. It had to be a Chrysler. He was on his way out of Dodge.
“Hay! ” he said
“Hi!…. Going in?” I replied. Here is where it really became eerie!
“No. Meeting was last night”
“Ha! Ya, sure.” (I always wondered if Ya was a word you could use in Scrabble). I thought it was a joke.
“No, really. The commission meeting was last night. You didn’t know? We complied 100% with the city and state ordinances governing the advertisement of City Commission Meetings and any notification there of. Pursuant to article blah, blah blah blah, sub section blah blah, paragraph blah blah, notification is received by the public when we publish it in the proper newspapers. It was in the Sun Sentinel….” GIggling, he hopped by in his car. I could see the smirk on his face, like he just scored a goal. He looked very satisfied with himself, as he drove away. I could hear the music in his car blazing away….The Partridge Family!
“What? But. When? Hay!” I remarked as he sped by me. He wasn’t really speeding. This is just an expression. He is the City Attorney and I wouldn’t want to get him in trouble. Besides, he was driving a Chrysler. Chrysler’s don’t speed. Only drivers do.
That was strange. A simple “Meeting Last Night” would have sufficed. Why all the other stuff concerning city ordinances…legal jargon…..the smirk….the bad music? ” It all sounded suspicious. I know the law. There is no subsection blah blah. No one actually listens to the Partridge Family!
This was not a good evening. I could have done something else. I was looking forward to listening to the city proclamations. Not tonight. No. Instead, I was outside city hall…cold…no place to go. My camera was freezing. Somehow I new it was going to get even more strange.
I felt this big slap on my back. I figured it was a knife. I figured that OJ Simpson was in town (I saw him at Club Deco Drive in Hollywood). I figured…..wrong. I turned around. I looked down. There was Sally James of the Sun Sentinel. Standing there. Pencil, Paper, Purse. The 3 P’s. I felt like one P…Putz”
“Hay! ” She said. (Obviously Hay! is a common expression down here in South Florida. I believe it’s because most of the people that move here have origins in Sweden. Hay! is a common expression in Swedish as it means, hello, how’s it going, or more commonly….wuz up!)
“Hi!” I said. (I’m not from Sweden)
“Going in?” she remarked
“No” I said annoyingly, not wanting to look like a complete idiot….but then it struck me. Why was she here? Maybe the meeting was really going on inside. Maybe that guy in Dodge was only joking! Warm seat! Hot Air! Maybe….
“It was last night…as if you didn’t know!” I was really annoyed. Maybe she was only here to make me look like a fool. Self Centered Egotistical people like myself really feel that the world is revolving around them.
“Your joking right?” she said.
It turns out, she was not aware either. We examined all the clues. The Sun Sentinel was not informed. They, like most of us, don’t read their City advertisements either. They are too boring. She was upset. Normally, they would receive a phone call from the city letting them know of the change. Sally didn’t know. I didn’t know. They knew. Boy are they smart. Maybe next time they’ll move it ahead one day…or maybe they’ll change the time, starting the meeting at midnight! They might even change the venue by moving it to Denny’s on University. At least there we can get a nice hot cup of coffee. I would strongly recommend that they do a City Commission Meeting Cruise to the Bahamas. Only if, of course, they tell me.
That’s the game they are playing. I just found out the rules. The City Commissioners won this night, where one journalist and one dot com stood in front of City Hall. Cold. Wind blowing. No warm seat. No hot air. No commission meeting. There goes my entertainment for the evening. Score: City Commissioners 5 , Coralsprings.com 0. A shutout!