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104 YEARS

Page A6 - May 16, 2013 - Teton Valley News

Reporter’s Notebook

At A Glance

by Ken Lev y

Press release 101: Helpful hints for getting in print A pompous peek at presentation, punctuation

with my ASMP membership after I joined the IPC. • There is no such thing as a “first annual” event since it’s running for the first time. • Don’t add the “:00” after the hour of the day, or the “.00” after a whole dollar amount. It always gets removed. • Don’t repeat information. I repeat, don’t repeat information. • Don’t double space between sentences. • Regarding its publication, it’s not necessary to add an apostrophe to “its” unless it’s referring to “it is.” It’s easy to tell by the content of its sentences.

We get press releases. We get announcements. We get emails. We get handwritten notes. And we get to clean them up for proper grammar, spelling and newspaper style. Although Managing Editor Rachael Horne gets the vast bulk of these pieces clamoring for ink, we all get a shot at some of those that cross our desks. Needless to say, this is a time-consuming and often tedious task. And, while I’m not asking everyone to learn Associated Press newspaper style, you can help reduce the tedium with a few helpful hints that will save time for everyone. Here are some things you should Including you. include in your press release: So let’s have some fun with this. • Always, Always, Always include conIn the name of consistency, we tact information so we can follow adhere to some particular story eleup if there are questions. We won’t ments, and eschew others, such as steerpublish that information unless it’s ing clear of words like “eschew.” Some directly related to who should be folks think the word is associated with contacted for more information. fine dining, but it actually means “steer• If it’s an upcoming event, always ing clear of.” include the date and time, location, Here are some things to eschew cost if any, a web site, email and/or phone number for more information. in a press release: All the things you’d want to know if • We don’t use exclamation points!! you were reading it. • The ampersand (&) always gets replaced by “and,” & we always • Get to the point right away. “This event is happening on this date at avoid it. this time at this location....” for • We like dates, times and placements example. Then add details. of winners in articles, but we don’t use the “st” after 1st, the “rd” after • Double-check name spellings, days of week matching dates, and run 3rd or the “th” after 4th, 5th, 6th, spell check if you have it. etc. Words are best. • Send your pieces via email, whenever • Only Government Agencies Capitalpossible (editor@tetonvalleynews. ize Every Word They Possibly Can net). No sense typing the piece twice. • It’s not that we’re rude, but we rarely Back in the buggy days, I used to get if ever say “please” or “thank you” hammered by reporters who thought in stories unless a source is being quoted. It’s always best to get straight I was a grammar snob. I was a stickler to your call for action. Thank you. for AP style and the “proper” way to say things in print. • Don’t be too wordy. For example, But inflexibility infringes on indisaying “people who want more vidual style, making everyone follow information should...” I mean, who grammatical lockstep. I finally loosened else but people would want more up a little bit, and learned readers more information? Their horses? Same often than not prefer conversational thing with “those who are interested should call...” Would anyone who’s style as long as we stick with the facts. Now I’m the one breaking the rules a not interested make that call? lot, justifying it behind “poetic license,” • Avoid acronyms without saying who which essentially means it’s ok to say they are in first reference. I learned things however you want, as long as this from the SPJ, which helped me you say it right.

$249,000

Bedrooms: 3 Baths: 2

This home overlooks open space on two sides in River Meadows, an exclusive, paved, completed development with community water & sewer. 2.5 miles to Victor, and 30 minutes to Jackson Hole, this is a great commuter home with all the benefits of living in Teton Valley, Idaho. The manicured yard is fenced for privacy in the back, and complete with an fully automated irrigation system. Inside, the modern, open floor plan boasts a large living/ kitchen area, private dining room, separate laundry, and a strategic bedroom layout.

$65,000

3.4 Acres

SELLER WANTS OFFER - Wooded and elevated lot WITH TETON VIEW after clearing trees for homesite placement. 3.4 ac Galloway Hills lot, great road frontage, located in north Teton Valley and offers serenity, substantial habitat, easy access to BLM and National Forest via either County Road, as well as multiple Forest accesses located within the development. Ideally suited for the upscale recreational home or small cabin, privacy yet reasonable proximity to neighbors in the community.

Meeting notes

Teton School District May 13 District amends 2013-14 budget

The Teton School District will spend almost $4.3 million by the end of its current fiscal year, which ends June 30. The school board Monday approved amendments to its current-year budget, with estimated actual general funds at about $11.5 million, up from about $10.8 million originally estimated. Kimber Lundquist, TSD business manager, said the district will spend an estimated $804,813 from its fund balance, up from a budgeted $798,900. The district will have about $656,000 left in its contingency for the general fund, and should avoid using its fund balance next year, she advised. “We won’t have it. We’re spending more than we’re taking in,” said Doug Petersen, board president. State-based funding support — which accounts for 50 percent of the budget — is estimated at about $6.7 million. Teacher salaries, including one-time payouts for the now-defunct Students Come First pay for performance program, account for $6.12 million. The death of SCF at the hands of voters led the state to withhold more than $36,000 from the district’s technology budget. Lundquist said she transferred $10,000 from plant facility funds to that budget so it would not be hit so hard. The district was required this year, for the first time, to set aside just over $47,000 to its plant facility funds for a new school bus, Lundquist said. Superintendent Monte Woolstenhulme said projected state numbers for next year’s budget are “sounding good, and they’re backfilling cuts from the past three years.” He didn’t have those exact numbers yet. Anything the district can generate in savings should go into reserves, he said. District reserves were about $1.5 million - $1.8 million a few years ago, and “we’re at a critical level right now.”

$249,000

13.74 acres

Parents split on special-ed proposal

Ken Levy TVN staff

33.64 gross acres fronting on Teton River for approx 3,836 lineal feet, situated approx 2+ miles due north of Newdale & SE of St Anthony, Idaho: Lot 1, being 13.74 Acres fronting on the Teton River for approx 1,836 lineal feet - $249,000. This acreage fronts on Hog Hollow County Road which is maintained for year round access. financing negotiable.

A proposal to establish an extended resource room at Driggs Elementary School for children with high special education needs is meeting some resistance from parents of those children. Under the proposal, the resource room would be set up for high needs special-education students in grades kindergarten-three. The concept would create a sustainable program for the district. That program is not sustainable now, said Jenna Beck, federal programs coordinator. High-needs students who move into the district don’t have a system or a process to support their needs, Beck said. The district needs a classroom where services can be indivdualized to each child’s needs. In discussing the proposal with parents, about half of them are “not very psyched or happy,” said Beck, “but some of them are very excited about this. It’s a wash” so far. She still needs to share the concept with more parents. The main problem for those who have issues, she said, is the concern that their students would be stuck in one room all day with other special-needs students and won’t get the exposure they need among role models and peers. Under the proposal, special-education students would get general education classroom support and use the ERR if they need extra help with concepts. Students would get a teacher with a smaller special-ed caseload who could better serve higherneeds kids, she said. Kids would move up as they get older and have better communication skills as they transition to grades 4-5. Higher-needs students will still get one-on-one support. The district has 178 students in special education, with 12 needing one-on-one help. Beck will share more details with the district as she completes conversations with parents and fine-tunes the concept. Parents are welcome to contact her at (208) 354-2207.

$555,000

Bedrooms: 4 Baths: 3

You won’t believe the extras this home has to offer! Custom work shines throughout. Foam block foundation. Quality log work, fir plank and mahogany flooring with in-floor heat.


104 YEARS

Teton Valley News - July 18, 2013 - Page A7

Getting older: The skin tag that wasn’t

W

e old guys got problems. I got issues I didn’t even know could be issues. Body parts I wasn’t even aware of start to ache. Memory fades. Getting by Ken Lev y a haircut involves the ears as much as the rest of my head. My butt is wrinkling up. But I let it be. One morning I did my And we geezers get stupid things acrobatic twist in front of the mirror growing on us, like skin tags. You know, to get a better gander at it. It seemed, those little, floppy pieces of skin that unaccountably, to have grown. show up under the armpits, on the neck But, stubborn as the proverbial old and elsewhere. They serve no purpose mule, I was determined to wait it out. I except to make us uglier refused to go to the doctor. and cause pain if rubbed The thing would work itself the wrong way. off and I’d be fine. After two I had a couple that got Another week, and the really irritated and were weeks, it hurt pain redoubled. I couldn’t very sensitive and painful like hell. It got sleep. until they wore off on their I took another peek in so I couldn’t own. I saw the doctor, the mirror and, to my alarm, thinking the worst. But he even sleep on discovered a circular, red, only chuckled and offered that side, and blotchy, bumpy circle around to remove them surgically the “tag.” A two-inch-long that’s where I if they really bothered me. line ran out the bottom of sleep most of They didn’t bother the circle, like a little kid’s me that much. But other the time. drawing of a lollipop. things can disguise themScared again of what this selves with similar sympevil might portend, I gave toms and appearance. in reluctantly and went to They hide well, especially when you have to awkwardly twist your back just the clinic. But no emergency room this time. Just a friendly visit to my doctor. to see them in the mirror. The nurse who prepped me asked me This is the story of a skin tag that to take off my shirt, after assuring me my wasn’t. The damn thing hurt like heck, tucked vitals were acceptable. She looked at my in on the inside of my left shoulder. Col- back. She looked at me with a frowning, ored like my skin, it flopped around like quizzical expression, then looked at my one of those tags when I touched it. I back and gave me that look again. She figured it was just one more sign that did this like three times, back and forth. Then she hurriedly left the room, not I’m past my prime. After two weeks, it hurt like hell. It saying a word. Fear set in. got so I couldn’t even sleep on that side, and that’s where I sleep most of the time. My doctor came in, a grave but

Food truck

Reporter’s Notebook friendly smile on his face, and examined my back. He, too, gave me a peculiar look, and said he’d be “right back.” OK, now I’m really scared. He was gone quite awhile. Was he seeking a second opinion? Another doctor? A specialist in deadly diseases who would pronounce my doom? No. He came back with a small covered container of what I assumed was alcohol, a pair of tweezers, a magnifying glass, some gauze and a grim look on his face. “Hold still,” he said. I felt him grasp the tag and slowly, slowly pull and pull some more. It stung, but not unbearably so, and finally he had it in his tweezers. He showed it to me before dropping it into the clear container. It was a tick. The evil-looking thing was a quarterinch long and fairly thick. I thought ticks were tiny, almost invisible. Then it hit me. A few weeks ago, it might have been. The little bloodsucker had been feeding on me for weeks, bloating its filthy little body as it burrowed into my skin. Showering hadn’t removed him, since I had treated the area gingerly due to the pain. Doc reassured me the little bugger wasn’t a Lyme disease carrier, and I’ve had no symptoms from being lunch. But being food is not my first choice in life. In fact, it ticks me off.

Matt Faupel

Jenn Dawes

Mack Mendenhall

Consider Building on One of These Perfect Building Sites

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continued from A1______________________________________________________________

the council’s denial in June of the same application for the food truck Thiadaho Asian Treats. Davidson and Coffey argued both that their business was not temporary and the city’s code did not address mobile businesses. While Thaidaho had proposed to operate on an empty lot on Main Street four to five months a year, Coffey and Davidson planned to run Taste Buds year-round in collaboration with established businesses Grand Teton Brewing Company and Fitzgerald’s Bicycles. “Taste Buds is not in Victor on a temporary basis,” Davidson said. Coffey and Davidson already had the cooperation of the owners of both businesses who also spoke in favor of Taste Buds at the city council meeting. They planned to offer food service through lunch and dinner at Grand Teton Brewing Company four to five days a week and at Fitzgerald’s Bicycles on weekends. The city denied Taste Buds a permanent business license because it did not meet the design standards for permanent business, which includes a floor plan. Though state health licensing requires a floor layout for food trucks, the city argued that from a building perspective, trailers do not have floor plans. This led to the heart of Davidson and Coffey’s disagreement with the city. “The city is trying to create a link between a permanent business and permanent structure,” Davidson said. “We are not trying to be a permanent structure.” Davidson and Coffey also argued that Victor’s code does not specifically address mobile business and offered to work with the city to develop a new ordinance. Currently, she said, “the city’s code did not contemplate” their business model. Scott Fitzgerald, owner of Fitzgerald’s bicycles in Victor, agreed and spoke in support of Taste Buds. “You guys have a difficult decision for sure,” he started his address to the council and then referred to his days as mayor of the city when the code in use became official regulation.

“The ordinance’s intention was to avoid flight by night businesses,” he said. Fitzgerald said the city didn’t think through the possibility of a stable, permanent mobile business such as Taste Buds. However, he saw room for their kind of business and told the council this was an opportunity to write a code that would protect established, invested restaurants while allowing for a new model. In their appeal, Davidson and Coffey presented research showing the growing revenue and popularity of the mobile food industry. They cited statics from the National Restaurant Association and Emergent Research that mobile food service grew fourfold from a $615 million business to $2.7 billion business in five years and was projected to generate $2.7 billion in revenue by 2017. At the same time, Davidson and Coffey argued that the city’s current regulations could permit the situation it wanted to avoid. “Some food trucks that travel the country doing events could see that Teton Valley is a hot spot in the summer for all kinds of events. They find out the events are full, but know that there are thousands of people descending on the area. They contact an empty lot owner on Main Street, strike a deal, and get their 14-day license for only $15. They tell their food truck friends and before you know it we have a food truck court in the middle of Victor every weekend of the summer,” Coffey wrote in her appeal. Ellen Furbacher, owner of Grand Teton Brewing Company, followed Fitzgerald in support of Taste Buds. Furbacher said the partnership with Taste Buds would allow the popular brewery to offer the food service they currently did not because their capital investments have focused on brewing and distributing. Furbacher said an increasing amount of out-of-state tourists visit their brewery and their tasting room remains a popular après ski hangout for those coming down from Teton Pass. Furbacher said she was looking forward to the partnership with Taste Buds to be able to offer food with their high-alcohol

content beer. “One thing lacking for us is food on the property,” Furbacher said. The brewery sits in the city’s service commercial zone and is also permitted for temporary structures. Outside food vendors often bring their cuisine to special events hosted at the brewery. However, councilman Jeff Potter argued that the city could not give a permanent business license for an operation located on a property permitted for temporary structures. Ric Harmon, owner of Wildlife Brewing, a brewpub and restaurant also at the south end of Victor, sent an email to the city in support of Taste Buds citing their year-round operation and partnerships with local businesses as beneficial to the city. Their menu emphasizes gluten free and vegetarian cuisine. They have been experimenting with fish tacos, baked tacos and grilled sandwiches. Their specialties include a build-your-grilled cheese sandwich and fried pickles and rice balls made in a gluten free fryer. They are also equipped for catering. The couple has lived in Victor for 13 years and worked in the restaurant industry in Jackson for 20 years. Presently, Taste Buds can operate with a temporary license that allows 14 days of food sales. The P&Z discussed ordinances concerning permanent business licenses at its meeting July 16. TVN ne Español El Ayuntamiento de Victor derribó la operación de otro camión de la comida móvil, al menos por el momento. Carolyn Coffey y Kristi Davidson apelaron la decisión de la Comisión de Planificación que negó su aplicación por una licencia de negocio permanente para su camión de comida, Taste Buds, antes la Junta de la Ciudad el día 10 de julio. A pesar del apoyo que la comunidad demostró para Taste Buds, la junta decidió que el código de la ciudad no permitió una licencia comercial permanente para un camión de comida. Pero, la junta está pensando en cambiar el código para acomodar negocios como tal Taste Buds. Coffey y Davidso proponen vender comida en el parking de Grand Teotn Brewery y Fitzgerald’s Bicycles. Los dueños de ambos negocios testificaron antes la junta que quieren colaborar con Taste Buds. La comida gluten free y vegetariana se destaca en el menú.

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104 YEARS

Page A4 - January 17, 2013 - Teton Valley News

Opinion

Anvils hurt, so take good care of yourself An anvil dropped on my head. Several times. That’s how it felt when a massive headache ripped into me as I was putting in a few night hours at the Teton Valley News recently. Aspirin usually does the trick when headaches strike, but there was no cure for this one. The tears were rolling down my cheeks and the throbbing wouldn’t quit. I don’t get sick very often, but when I do, I get it bad, and then I become a crybaby. I have to be dragged kicking and screaming to go see a doctor, and I’ve only been to an emergency room once before. That was in the mid-1980s, when a guy helping me carry a 4x8-foot sheet of ¾- inch particleboard decided to let go of his end. Those suckers are heavy. It landed edgewise across my left foot, blackening the toes from tip to arch. As Bill Cosby once said, “The pain was tremendous.” But that’s another story. This one started when I recently had a bout with what the folks at the clinic referred to as a “cold.” It seemed like so much more, since my chest felt like I’d chain-smoked a carton of Camels while breathing in razor blades, I couldn’t catch my breath and the cough was relentless. Stubborn me, I waited too long before going in for relief, and ended up with bronchitis. I was only three days past finishing a Z-Pak, that five-day prescription dose of azithromycin practically guaranteed to destroy every nasty germ in your body from your head down to your knees. The headaches that came with my cold were controllable, until the other night, when the anvil dropped. I took myself to the emergency room for some relief and kind treatment — both of which I got in spades — and promptly got an education on how difficult it can be to diagnose what headaches can portend.

Mercifully, they dimmed the lights and provided a soft pillow to lie on while I waited for the parade of inquisitors to run their course. “On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the worst pain you’ve ever experienced, how do you feel now?” Not meaning to sound like a wimp, I blurted out “six!” even though I was pushing a 19. The questions were as relentless as the pain, although I knew they were necessary. They were repeated, in variations and different orders, by four different people, including the advanced EMT who first interviewed me, a nurse, a physician’s assistant and finally the head nurse practitioner. The PA, who is essentially a trainee, explained that multiple questioning allows health care providers to compare notes on what I told them. I also think they were looking for consistency in my answers. Good luck with that. I’m not all that consistent even when I’m not sick. They tested my cranial nerve functions, touching my cheeks, having me follow their fingers with my eyes only, in an H pattern, until it hurt to strain my eyes that far. I had to shrug my shoulders one at a time, turn my head from side to side and submit to a gag response test which — you guessed it — always makes me gag. They checked every orifice in my head, and I was a bit self-conscious, having forgotten my Tic-Tacs. I had to stare off into the distance, which is something I do pretty easily, while light was shined in my eyes. Who ever knew a tiny spot of light could hurt like needles?

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I think they checked me for stroke, since they asked me to smile an awful lot. Anyone who knows me knows that’s a real chore. I had to raise my arms above my head. No problems with anything. Except the anvils kept coming. The nurse practitioner, the last of those to poke, prod, question, measure and otherwise examine, finally left, to confer with her comrades in medicine. I laid back on the gurney, hands over eyes, and wondered what the verdict would be. And what relief would eventually come. She returned with a slight frown and solemn eyes, and I felt like a condemned man. The diagnosis: migraine headaches exacerbated by sinusitis. So THAT’S what that shiny sparkly aura is around my eyes every once in awhile. It gets pretty miserable, but I didn’t bother to investigate what it meant. I had a choice between taking my medication intravenously and a shot. I took the shot. Right into the muscle. “You’re going to feel a little pressure from this,” I was warned. Pressure, heck. It got all sore and achy on me. The headache soon abated somewhat, but now my arm hurt. Other meds were prescribed and I was told, despite my vast intake of water every day, to make it much vaster amounts. The one thing I learned from this experience is to treat my body like I treat my vehicle: plenty of preventive maintenance and regular tune-ups. And to pay more attention to things like not sleeping well, wearing out too soon and the rest of my crybaby aches and pains. Old age is definitely setting in.

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TVN Clarification On Jan. 10, on page A12, the article “Legislator, restaurant owners talk liquor” should not have said that Anne Callison is a member of the Economic Development Steering Committee. In the same issue, on page A3, the article “Heli skiing takes off, but some not satisfied” stated that Diane Murphy suffers form mercury poisoning. She does not. Teton Springs resident Cyndy Englehart had testified at the public hearing that she has had mercury poisoning.

“To err is human, to forgive divine.”

Alexander Pope, An Essay on Criticism

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General Column Ken Levy