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Wauwatosa ready to kick the habit
Wauwatosa - An exhausted George Glavas sits at a table in the bar at Blue Mound Gardens and surveys his handiwork.

The owner, who routinely puts in 16 hours a day at his restaurant and adjacent motel, has been toiling through the night for the last five months to construct an elaborate stained-glass wall cordoning off the bar from the dining room at 11703 W. Blue Mound Road.

The wall and separate ventilation systems will let Glavas' customers smoke in the bar only beginning Saturday, when Wauwatosa becomes the first Milwaukee County community to ban smoking in restaurants.
Six other combination restaurant-taverns, including Blue Mound Gardens, are on track to obtain exemptions that will allow smoking in their bars if they can show that they're fully closed off from the dining rooms, that they have separate ventilation systems and that patrons can get to the dining rooms without going through the smoke.

That's been costly for Glavas, who has invested about $20,000 in time and materials.

"I had to do something. I'm right next to Brookfield and West Allis," said Glavas, who estimates that 40% of the patrons at his hotel these days - many of them construction workers on the Marquette Interchange - are smokers who walk over after a long day's work for a drink and a meal.

"The ordinance says if you lose 10% of your business after a year, you get an exemption," he said. "Well, that's too late."
Too late for what? He can't handle a theoretical 10% loss over the course of a year, but can take an immediate $20,000 hit? Why do I get the feeling that when Wauwatosa goes totally smoke free, he'll complain about that $20,000 once again?

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Once again, I'm amazed at how fast the summer is going. It's already the end of June; has the UW really been out for the past month an a half? If only the winter doldrums passed this quickly.

Things are going fairly well around here. As always, I'd like for the house to be more "put together", but it isn't too bad. The current plan is to get the floors in the bedrooms refinished while we are on vacation next month. I look forward to that, although I don't look forward to moving everything out of said bedrooms. I just hope once everything is done, crap doesn't remain spread throughout the rest of the house.

For anyone interested, a few more train photos. And a little project I've been working on. I must say thus far I've been quite happy with this camera, although a bit less so with my lenses. I think part of the problem is I can easily see things at full resolution that I may have missed with a 4x6 print. They will do for now, I suppose. Whatever the case, I certainly take a lot more pictures now than I ever did with film, much to Amy's chagrin. Many of those could be considered waste, but I'd also say there's a lot more experimentation than I'd ever attempt with film. I did have significant reservations about diving in to something so expensive, but after having used this for a few months I'm quite happy with my decision.

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Ruppert and Zach, this is for you.

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We took a weekend trip down to Chicago the other day, and while it was good to get away for a little bit, I still feel like I need to relax somehow. My job generally isn't terribly stressful, but I usually don't feel very happy about it, either. I guess I'm feeling a bit lost...

Anyway, I've uploaded a bunch of photos recently. There are currently tons of cows all over the area at the moment, and we went and saw the ones in Fitchburg and Sun Prairie. The other day I took some more train photos, and finally, some shots from the Museum of Science and Industry (the frogs were pretty cool). Oh, and the Race for the Cure went down our street (I also helped a turtle cross the road).

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This is insanity:
Nearly 1,400 Iraqi civilians died in a wave of targeted killings in Baghdad last month, according to a high-ranking Iraqi Health Ministry official.

The figure does not include civilians killed in insurgent bombings, the official said. Even so, the number is the highest monthly death toll in the capital since the war began three years ago.

In May 1,398 bodies were brought to the Baghdad morgue, the official said.
As a comparison, in 2003, LA had 515 murders for the whole year. Even adjusted for the difference in population (I'm going with 5.7M for Baghdad, 3.8M for LA), that's only 775 in LA FOR THE WHOLE YEAR. And, of course, the 1,400 figure doesn't include bombings, unreported deaths, or military deaths.

A walk in the park...

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The Simpsons Archive

Vital stats:
DOB 2/16/79. I'm a web developer at the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. I like lots of old music, including The Who. I spend a lot of time working with computers. And my favorite TV show (when I actually decide to watch TV, that is), obviously, is The Simpsons.

In May 2002 I officially graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a BS in computer science. In 1997 (man that seems like a long time ago) I graduated from Washington Park HS. Yes, I know, that site isn't very impressive, and no, I haven't touched it for several years.

WFS Logo

One of the best experiences I have ever had was on a trip called Western Field Studies. This is a 33 day adventure throughout the western United States. Students travel on a school bus to national parks, monuments, forests, and places of historical interest and camp out (in tents or under the stars). I was a part of trip 25, which took place in the summer of 1996. A first for WFS was we took along a laptop computer and kept up a web site. That link will take you to the 1996 site, where there is a link to the current site.