Pima College

A few of you have mentioned all of the horrible press that Pima has gotten recently regarding the chancellor “stepping down for health reasons”, the resignation of the interim chancellor, the school being put on probation for two years, the threat that it could lose its accreditation, the board firing its search firm for a new chancellor, and the call for the resignation of most of the board.   This from the Arizona Daily Star last month:

PCC’s problems ranged from corrupt contracting practices – in which executives knowingly broke rules to approve expensive, unbid contracts – to the board’s mishandling of sexual harassment complaints against former Chancellor Roy Flores, according to the report from a fact-finding team the accreditor sent to Tucson in January.

Flores and other senior officials – many of whom still work at PCC – created a “culture of fear and retribution” that fractured the school’s workforce, the report said.

PCC’s “dysfunctional” board failed for years to detect or act upon problems, it said.1

I do know the Chair of the Board of Governors and have a hard time believing the accusations against her.  It’s horrible; I hate to read the articles.  But I do my job (I’m on a 3-year grant, not actually employed by the college) and stay away from the controversy.

Chicken Plucking

Two weeks ago slept overnight at my cousin’s as I had an early flight from Phoenix to visit my daughter and grandkids in Idaho.   The tiny chicks that I had photographed in March2 had become chickens (fast!) ready for slaughter.  Thirty of the 32.  Asked my cousin how she plucked them all and she said that they bought a chicken plucker.  Check out this video3.  She said:

I wish I had realized they were wearing gloves. I cannot tell you how many times I nailed myself with those damn rubber fingers and they hurt! Notice also, they do not include the face of the person using it… and THAT’s because they’re getting a healthy splashing in the face. haha.  Oh dear… The feathers on the ground were also something we overlooked. We’ve still got quite a reminder to clean up back there.
We raised birds for 2 other folks. We got the lion’s share of course for doing the daily care and now have a freezer full of summer meat. We could not bring ourselves to grill it up right away since we were newbies. Too emotional a day for us. So we cleaned, packaged, shared and froze the rest! 5 went to one friend, 12 to another. That left us with 13 and 2 alive in the back that we chose to keep to see how big they’ll get and how long they’ll live without the intervention. We’re a curious lot, we are.

Her web site has an interesting commentary on the fast-growing Cornish Cross chickens.4

Idaho

When I had been in Twin Falls during my spring break my daughter asked me to design a landscape plan for their “new” house, as the front and back yard were just large trees and lawn.  It was fun; I haven’t done any design work since I was laid off from Fluor four years ago.

beforeShe wanted half the grass removed for a vegetable garden, fruit trees, and play area for the kids, and a fence to keep the dogs from digging up the garden.  The back “patio” was a collection of two-foot-square concrete pavers,  sunk at different angles in the ground.  So she wanted them moved and a concrete patio with a pergola for vines to curl up (but that has changed to a ramada, for a covered eating area).

I did demo plans, hardscape and landscape plans front and back, a list of plants (after we had visited a nursery) and a cost estimate, based on numbers from the internet.  It was way over their budget.  I suggested that they do some of the work themselves.  I remember taking out one fourth of my front lawn in my first house in Tucson, to grow strawberries that the dog wouldn’t dig up.  She pointed out that she had a bad back (an occupational hazard for nurses), and her husband, Josh, was working 60-hour weeks with his new job.

patio 015But she started with the lawn and found it easy. Especially after she rented a sod cutter from Home Depot and Josh helped on the weekends.  Then she advertised free sod on some web site like Craig’s List and people took it away – no trip to the dump, no dump fees.  There had been concrete edging around non-existent flowers around the house which I suggested could be boundaries for the garden.  Luckily Josh could break it into sections at the joints.  The cute white-picket fence she wanted was too expensive, so I had recommended welded wire.  A neighbor with a wood shop helped them construct it, and a gate kit helped.

patio 014The play structure was also too much, and I mentioned that I had always thought about getting a row boat for the yard for her and her brother to play in, as a sandbox, but never got around to it.  She found a leaky metal one on Craig’s List for $1, and the neighbor across the street, who has a metal shop in his garage, drilled drainage holes before they added the sand.  The bark ground cover was the largest expense.  Wow, have they done a lot.  Next blog I’ll tell you about last month’s trip there, during my break between spring and summer sessions at Pima, and the patio pour.

Venice

Not often do I take the trips that the NY Times writes about in their travel section, but in just over a week I’ll be going to Venice for the art Biennale with the Contemporary Art Society of the Tucson Museum of Art (same group that I went to Cuba with last year.)  Will have lots to blog about after that!

Venice Biennale: This biennial exhibition, dedicated to chronicling contemporary art, opens June 1, with artists’ works showcased in pavilions divided according to country. Angola, Maldives and the Republic of Kosovo are among the 10 countries that will participate for the first time in the exhibition, which spreads across the Giardini Park and the winding galleries of the Arsenale.5

1http://azstarnet.com/news/local/education/pima-community-college-slapped-with-years-of-probation/article_c632881d-944b-53cc-9734-4e1937422c5c.html
2https://notesfromthewest.wordpress.com/2013/04/07/signs-of-spring/
3https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4BlXSxEbe8
4http://wishwehadacres.com/2013-connecting-with-our-food-source/
5http://intransit.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/10/calendar-coming-events-in-stratford-ontario-nashville-venice/

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One Response to “Pima College”

  1. Pr Says:

    Lyn: We (Sweetwater School District, San Diego) had an incident similar to what allegedly happened at Pima, only ours was on a different scale and involved just money, no sex as far as I know – tens of millions of dollars of illegally awarded construction, kickbacks, bribes (dinners, trips, gifts, tickets to local sporting events, etc). Trial still going on with claims , counterclaims, counter-counterclaims, etc Enjoy Venice – we are there 1 month after you. Regards, Price

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