Daily Archives: 04/20/2009

Apr 30 Jump from Swine Flu IIr

(Community Matters) Jump from Swine Flu II

AISD Superintendent Forgoine’s email

Dear Friend of Austin ISD,

The health and well being of our Austin ISD students and staff is first and foremost. We recognize that there has been substantial media attention directed at the North American H1N1 influenza (also known as swine flu) in Texas and so we want to take this opportunity to update you regarding the Austin school district response to the present situation.

AISD staff has learned of a probable case of North American flu associated with a child attending Lucy Read Pre-Kindergarten Demonstration School located at 2608 Richcreek Road. As a result, the District, in coordination with the Office of Emergency Management and in accordance with – and at the recommendation of – Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services, will close the campus until classes resume on Monday, May 11. The parents of Lucy Read students have been directed to keep only their Lucy Read children at home until that date.

At this time, this is the only AISD campus that has been closed. All other schools are open, and students should attend classes as scheduled.

Information on any school closings will be updated on the AISD website and Channel 22, and in other media.

Please keep in mind, that due to the heightened awareness of influenza and flu-like symptoms, a number of flu Type A positive cases (which have not been confirmed as swine flu) have been reported in Austin/Travis County. We are closely following these cases and are continuing to monitor for the development of this flu in Central Texas.

Notwithstanding, per recommendations from the Austin / Travis County Health Department and the Texas Department of State Health Services, those individuals with fever and flu-like symptoms and/or those testing positive for influenza Type A are asked to remain at home until their fever and symptoms have resolved, as is recommended for all people suffering from the flu.

The potential identification of influenza Type A and North American flu in Austin continues to be a developing situation. We will continue to monitor it. We will issue further updates and make additional recommendations regarding appropriate precautions for Austin ISD students and staff as new information becomes available.

We continue to recommend the following precautionary measures to avoid exposure to and development of viral illnesses including the influenza virus:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you get sick with flu-like symptoms, the Centers for Disease Control recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
  • Call the school if your children become ill with flu-like symptoms, contact your health care provider or your school nurse.
  • Fever may be treated with acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen (Motrin) do not use aspirin.

Gardens, Flip Happy Crepes and Taste Select

(Community Matters) Jill McRae and I decided to meet, hang out and go for crepes. I beat Jill to her house but Stephen Yelenosky (as in State District Court Judge and her husband of soon to be 20 years) was tending the gardens.

They live on one of the most magical pieces of property in the City – overlooks auditorium shores and downtown, exquisite, extensive gardens, terraced on a knoll.

Can’t believe the colors and depth I saw didn’t translate in these pictures – my inexperience with depth and light.










Didn’t realize Flip Happy Crepes was closed on Sundays – too bad, was definitely in the mood. Savory crepes are served with a side salad. Of course yummy dessert crepes as well. Picture on right from my visit on Saturday 🙂


Instead, we went to Taste Select on Ceasar Chavez, overlooking Townlake, and sat outside. Kala Philo & Scott Collier introduced me to the place. Jolynn Free treated me to lunch there a couple of weeks ago. Both previous times I’d been impressed. It was super sitting on the sidewalk, watching the traffic, people and hearing the reggae fest music. However, the food was way off, especially the charcuterie plate which was served with a piece of grease dripping, undercooked bacon as some strange garnish. Nevertheless, I suspect their brilliant chef was missing and someone missfired. Will give it another go. Also, would recommend a Bordeaux Sauvignon Blanc on the menu, maybe even a Chateau Carbonnieux 🙂


Sunday Drives

(Community Matters) I was antsy yesterday afternoon. Debated flying somewhere for a night – tried NYC but too darn expensive for last minute. Thought about Dallas but Charles was in Houston on way back to Dallas. Wish had a close friend with a Texas beach house or that Janet & Kent would have been at the ranch in Llano (they were in Las Vegas), either would have been perfect. Friends on Facebook suggested checking into the San Jose. That definitely intrigued me but Steven couldn’t be interrupted and others’ weren’t enthused. Just as well, loved driving around S. Austin, by Auditorium Shores on Riverside and through the Bouldin neighborhood.


Driving by the Reggae concert with the windows down. Oh my. If would have pulled over and taken deep breaths – not sure people weren’t getting stoned simply from the breathing the same air.



(Community Matters) We are getting so close to completing the reconstruction of our retaining wall with Wheatsville, the tree well and repairing the wall with our neighbor. Might sound trite or superficial but these projects have been under negotiation, planning and construction since we purchased this property in 2004.

Martin & wife

This wall is between ourselves and our neighbor to the immediate north. Originally constructed nearly 100 years ago, the far west portion collapsed several years ago due to shifts in the retaining wall on the west end of the property. We looked hard for a craftsman/artists who would finish off the wall repair – we had the reconstructed portion poured, reinforced with rebar and tied into the retaining wall – in a style that seemed seamless with the original wall. Well, not seamless, but in 10 to 20 years, it’ll appear as if originally constructed this way. I think the stairs and gate into Wheatsville parking lot are to be installed this week – talk about a fantastic pantry!


I love that we have so much rock left over (about 30 feet of 6′ wall, double sided). Talking with Martin about the construction of an outdoor fireplace (maybe inside pool house too) with features for a bbq. And/or, may have him create raised beds from stone. Appears we are experimenting with Wheatsville and that Resolution Gardens will install and maintain, on our property behind the pool house, garden beds for fresh produce to be sold at the Co-Op. hmm, it is NOT a community garden and I’m restricting time and access. The pool house, courtyard and property are our sanctuary but this means a lot to Steven.

Mayor Bill White for US Senate

(Community Matters) Sunday morning Suzanne & Marc Winkelman hosted an informal breakfast to introduce Houston Mayor Bill White to friends. The mayor’s staff had been nice enough to include me in invites to many previous gatherings, though I haven’t been eager to engage in another race (nothing personal, just bandwidth – time & money).

Wish I wouldn’t have attended yesterday. Good gosh, now I’m smitten.

The son of two San Antonio teachers, Mayor White is a successful business entrepreneur, served as Deputy Secretary of Energy under Clinton, has been elected three times as Houston’s mayor (his reelections with exceptionally high margins) and has served as Chairman of the Texas Democratic Party.

Mayor Bill White & Kirk Rudy

We spoke privately at pretty good length about his record as Mayor, his perspective on President Obama’s economic policies, his viability in the race, fundraising, LGBT issues, his faith and his love for bike riding – first year in a long time he didn’t ride in the MS 150. He’s definitely a progressive. Couldn’t ask for any better on LGBT issues.

Suzanne Winkelman & Scott Atlas, chair of Bill’s finance committee

Marc Winkelman introducing Mayor White

Wow, a tough row to hoe, and probaby the best shot we’ve had in a very long time. I haven’t spoken with John Sharp this cycle. Don’t know what I think about his viability.