post by John Hoff
I like to say Afghanistan was a blast.
Fortunately, I wasn't killed in the blast.
I spent 9 months and 11 days on foreign service, which is a pretty cool numerical coincidence, I think. Obviously my prolific neighborhood blogging paid the price, since free time was limited and when I did have free time, well, what would you do? Shop in an exotic foreign bazaar? Or blog about neighborhood doings literally on the other side of the planet?
But blog about this side of the planet I did, usually when my free time coincided with bad weather or the Muslim sabbath; during which times the bazaar was closed. Or one time when I was recovering from dental surgery. Anyway, I got some free time here and there, and sometimes the internet was working (sometimes it wasn't) and I'd manage to blog or check emails on my free time.
In Afghanistan. It's a small world after all.
Somehow, though, I missed an email forwarded by Don Allen about a Minneapolis Public Schools "Community Support Initiative" (CSI) which involved some of the money going to community activist Al Flowers. I was searching through old emails recently and, oh my goodness, what was that email from Don Allen about? The one dated December 1, 2011...
Here is the email, and it speaks for itself.
From: MPS DataRequests <MPS.DataRequests@mpls.k12.mn.
Date: Thu, Dec 1, 2011 at 9:02 AM
Subject: RE: Community Standards Initiative
To: Donald Allen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Cc: MPS DataRequests <MPS.DataRequests@mpls.k12.mn.
There is a bit more to this story. Turns out that Don Allen sought a restraining order against Al Flowers in a case called Donald Allen v. Al Flowers, 27-CV-11-13351. The case doesn't turn up in MNCIS except in the "courthouse view" of MNCIS. Luckily, I was at the courthouse recently and just happened to turn the case up by dumb luck. Or maybe somebody tipped me off. It's the same thing, really.
I will be writing more about this case later, but it happened last year and Jill Clark was the attorney for Al Flowers. I do not know if an actual restraining order was issued or what else happened in the case.
Wow. So much happens while I am away. Seems like every few days some issue will come up and friends will be all, like, "Oh, you were gone. You were in Afghanistan."
But I am trying hard to make up for lost time, and lost blogging impact.