RichardCory (Rebecca Valburg)

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Lawrence apartments infested with bedbugs, roaches in residents' ears, social workers say

Insecticides don't really do much anymore for bedbugs...they've developed resistance. They might move to the next room or apartment, for awhile, but they won't die...so if a maintenance crew tries to tell you that they're spraying every so often for bedbugs, they're either misinformed or lying. To kill bedbugs, you can either chemical the tar out of the living quarters and go through all the non-penetrable items (like books) and physically remove all the bugs and eggs at the same time (miss one or two, and the problem is right back, though)...or you can heat the whole area up to 140ish degrees for 6 hours or so (with remote sensors placed to make sure things like mattresses, clothing, etc are heating evenly). And like it or not, this is quickly becoming everyone's problem, not just a problem of the poor. They can cling to shoes, clothing, bags, etc...so they're easily spread to hotels, schools, clothing stores, etc. One of the exterminators I talked to had photos he had taken in Lawrence of bedrooms with bedbugs so thick that the walls were smeared in blood from them...and he gets calls from cheap and expensive apartments alike. He told stories of being sent into residences to identity bedbugs when patients were hospitalized and it was noticed that the bedbugs were literally falling off the patient onto the floor. It's up to Lawrence to decide how long the citizens want to wait to truly deal with this problem. I'm with the social worker...if only 8 apartments are being treated in Cedarwood, it's an absolute waste of everyone's time and money...when *I* got out, there were at least 15 infested apartments, and if you don't kill all of them, it's just a matter of time until they return. If there's a crack that you can slip a credit card into, it's a bedbug highway (they like traveling through the empty spaces around light sockets). Vile, vile creatures...as are those who ignore the problems that they think just apply to the poor and convicted. They're people too...and bedbugs are happy to hop from their pants to yours the next time you go to a movie.

November 24, 2014 at 3:39 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence apartments infested with bedbugs, roaches in residents' ears, social workers say

You see, the problem with this story is that there is a whole lot of lying going on. I lived in Cedarwood in 2011. A neighbor of mine died...and I reported it. The police came, and found the body covered in bedbugs (he's been dead for a couple of days). I didn't find this out until four months later, when I found some in my apartment, and called the complex...the maintenance men who were in the apartment with the police saw the bugs...and then the mess, body juice and all was left for months. The complex told me they'd steam the carpets (those are the heat treatments they mention in the article) until the bugs went away. It doesn't work like that. The complex offered to move me to another building (other people took this deal...which just spreads the problem). I called the city. I called code enforcement. They kept bouncing me back to each other (so this "not knowing" is a lie). After a good month of this, I finally ended up breaking my lease, had to threaten to sue to get my deposit back...the owner tried to argue that *I* violated the contract...hired Schendel to come in and heat treat my apartment and belongings, and had trucks and a fleet of volunteers waiting outside as soon as everything had cooled down enough to enter. It cost me the better part of $1000, but I escaped without the bugs. A lot of the families in there now can't get out. It's horrid. The city knew, code enforcement knew, the owner is VERY aware...he also owns property in KC with the exact same problem...which is where the maintenance guys that would come in to my apartment would borrow all their gear from. So. Much. Lying.

November 23, 2014 at 10:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Hallmark to offer buyouts to long-term employees, including those in Lawrence plant

Foreign labor, the economy . . . pretty sure the advent of the internet was what really made life difficult for Hallmark. I'm sure other factors don't help, but I think the glory days have been over for awhile.

April 10, 2012 at 7:48 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Developer Doug Compton hopes ‘901 Building’ will spur living, shopping downtown

I don't read where acg said that, Larry. I have heard similar reports from a lot of First Management employees (though to be fair, the last one I really talked to was a couple of years ago, and he was pretty happy). Had a really good friend that worked for him about 10 years ago . . . he loved the parties, beer at work, etc, until he noticed that the paychecks were being quietly garnished fairly regularly for company expenses (i.e. if Doug required you to carry a cell phone and you went over on your minutes, the overage charge would be deducted from your check - my friend carried a personal cell and a business cell - every single call on the business cell was from Doug, or if a tool broke while you were using it, your next check bought the replacement, etc). Everyone took it for a long time, until finally one of the quiet guys called an attorney and left forms explaining what employers could and could not legally do at work for the employees to pick up. There much yelling and harassing, and quite a few people canned while they tried to figure out who had provided everyone with the information . . . so getting fired from First Management at least didn't used to mean much. Perhaps Doug has changed - I certainly hope so. Just made me pretty sick to see him taking business expenses out of the checks of people that were already scraping by, often with young kids depending on them, that sort of thing, when he didn't seem to cut any corners on providing for himself.

October 24, 2011 at 5:42 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

District Judge Jean Shepherd presides in final adoption hearing after serving Douglas County since 1984

Well, I'll add another positive. The individual I got to deal with in court was spouting a load of crap (complete with phrases he'd learned watching court shows on TV apparently), and she totally saw right through it, called him out on it, and there were the sad puppy-dog eyes mentioned above. She certainly didn't have a tolerance for people trying to buffalo others, or trying to make a huge deal out of one tiny argument they had to divert attention from the multiple offenses that they themselves had committed. I'm sure that individual is angry to this day that what he saw on TV failed to work on her.

She's also devoted a huge portion of her career to getting the CASA program going here in Lawrence, and has fought really hard to make it function as well as it possibly can to make sure little kids in the court system have at least SOMEONE that can stick up for them. Most certainly not a requirement of her job, but pretty nice she got it established - pretty neat legacy.

I don't doubt at all that she made some mistakes - mistakes happen ALL the time in EVERY courtroom (even if the judge WERE perfect, eyewitness testimony is ridiculously flawed), but she was passionate, and I, for one, am sad she's retiring. And if you think about it, both sides generally go in convinced that they're right (otherwise, they'd settle it outside of court), so a perfect judge is bound to piss off half the people he or she deals with.

But perhaps we'll find that perfect replacement where everyone gets to leave the courthouse beaming, right? :)

January 8, 2011 at 9:13 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas student booted from nursing school over pic

Past that, I think everyone needs to calm down a bit about "professionalism" and the girls' "judgment." If anything, I think the past few decades have seen a marked increase in the amount of respect the medical profession (students included) shows for the deceased. Talk to doctors that were educated 50 years ago, and you'll hear stories of cadaver parts kept as souvenirs or used in pranks. Talk to instructors teaching today and you'll find that even a decade or two ago, these things were still commonplace. I'll be the first to say, such behavior wasn't right - and a huge effort is now made to make sure the family gets the entire body back (even fat, hair, etc) and photos aren't taken (because really, who wants to recognize grandma's hand in a cadaver photo?).

That said, as mentioned before, good luck identifying the mother, or even baby, from that placenta photo. If health information can't be tied back to an individual, it's not subject to the privacy laws. So really, I don't see where it's any different than the human skeletons that float around science classrooms, and I've seen plenty of high school and college photos floating around or in yearbooks - class photos with a skeleton included, individuals smiling with a skull, etc. Those actually WERE people (and a lot of them shipped in from overseas, likely without their families' consent), and no one would have batted an eye had a photograph surfaced of her with a skeleton. It seems to me that people are panicking because 1) there's a bit of a yuck factor to placenta - but come on, it's not identifiable, and it's a body part that's designed to be shed - would they have kicked her out for posing with a pile of toenail clippings? and 2) it's on Facebook, and it's very fashionable to be a Facebook phobe these days. Here's a newsflash - a lot of us have had personal websites since the 1990s (Angelfire, anyone?), and it's actually MUCH easier to control what others see on Facebook than it was on the older sites, despite big hullabaloo about the lack of privacy on Facebook. Besides, let's be honest - how many of us are really so interesting that many people click on our photos anyway, besides our family and close friends, who we'd show our photos to even without an account? I suspect had JCCC stayed calm about this, the photo may have motivated a friend or two of hers to consider that nursing program (how cool is it that they were giving hands on training with an actual placenta?), and as is, all sorts of people are angry (either because the school kicked the girls out, or because they allowed such behavior in the first place).

Disappointing all around. Not cool.

January 4, 2011 at 1:06 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas student booted from nursing school over pic

I find the fact that this has become such as huge issue bizarre.

If JCCC was truly concerned about the placenta's privacy, wouldn't it have made a lot more sense to come up with policies, educate their instructors on them, notify the students, and THEN begin enforcing it? By handling it the way they have, that placenta has become the most viewed placenta in America (I certainly would have never seen it on her Facebook page).

January 4, 2011 at 1:05 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Bitter pill

And the million dollar question: how would YOU suggest they lower these costs?

January 3, 2011 at 10:33 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Bitter pill

If he's calling in prescriptions without checking her file to make sure that the medication doesn't interact with what she's already taking, she's not allergic to it, it won't irritate other medical conditions that she has, etc, then he probably needs to be starting payments to his defense attorney, in addition to upping his malpractice insurance.

January 3, 2011 at 10:20 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Cart complaint

Lastly, I'm confused as to why this letter was written to the editor at all? I'm going to give the benefit of the doubt, and assume that she really was dealing with two carts that were smashed by a car, and the metal bent in such a way that they WERE jammed together. Step one would obviously be to talk to a manager (or really, even the guy pushing carts should be capable of this). No one wants to hear complaints all day on the same thing, and no one really wants to do accident paperwork, so notifying someone that the carts aren't safe is a great first step. I would venture to say that most of the time, they'd be happy to add those to the pile that need to be sent back to be refurbished (again, if they really suck - obviously if the straps are just tangled, and in your tantrum, you've managed to wedge the plastic latch into the mess, you've just made a fool of yourself, and I imagine there WILL be eye-rolling). If that doesn't work, ask for a higher member of management, and if you've actually managed to talk to the main manager of the store, go to the service desk and copy down the store's hotline. Whining to your friends, writing a letter to the editor, etc. are guaranteed to accomplish nothing, but if a store manager has to explain to his or her boss why the store has received 47 phone calls that week about one easily-fixable problem, I suspect he or she will be a bit more motivated to fix it.

December 31, 2010 at 11:42 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

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