RonHolzwarth (Ron Holzwarth)


Comment history

100 years past: Photos depict building of second Kansas River Bridge in 1916

I remember the bridge constructed in 1917 very well, having worked only about one block away from it. The concrete road surface and the side barriers were beginning to crumble, so the top part at least needed extensive repairs. But, that would have been much less expensive than a whole new bridge.

From a viewpoint on the bridge or near it, it was not attractive at all. Its beauty could only be appreciated from below, like from a boat on the river.

Two of the really big problems with it were that there was only an unsafe sidewalk provided for pedestrians or bicyclists, and the bridge was very narrow. Much too narrow for what we would consider acceptable for a two lane bridge today. Plus, the side barriers were of the old unsafe type with columns and spans between them. Something serious would have had to be done about that.

Only the support structure of the bridge was in good condition. The rest of it really did need to be demolished.

May 30, 2016 at 5:34 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

100 years past: Photos depict building of second Kansas River Bridge in 1916

This is a repeat of a comment I made about this subject on March 23, 2012, in the <br>'40 years ago' column:

Oh yes, they did complain about that old 1917 bridge so much, claiming it was unsafe, but there was a big surprise coming that I remember very well. Quite a few people got a good laugh about it at the time!

The contractor began to demolish the old bridge, and very quickly a big problem became very obvious. It was a whole lot stronger than anyone had thought, and withstood the wrecking ball so well, refusing to collapse, that there was a significant delay in removing it. The contractor had to ask for an extension in the time allowed to complete the project, because that old bridge was a whole lot stronger than anyone had dreamed.

While they were determinedly slamming that old bridge with the wrecking ball a lot of people commented that it should have been refurbished and used for the northbound bridge, instead of removing it and building a whole new one.

I'm not really convinced that the one there now is as strong as that old one was.

May 30, 2016 at 5:22 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Kansas authorizes sale of bioscience agency

This is what I had to say about one of Kansas Bioscience's investments in a series of comments following an article on December 14, 2011. I don't think I'd change a singe word today, other than to say it sure does look like I was right.

May 13, 2016 at 1:51 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

100 years ago: Lawrence man trades commonly-used name for rarer variety

Mr. Kunkel didn't choose a name that's all that unusual. Google has about 5,880,000 results for that name. In contrast, my last name, also German, has only about 499,000 results. But Kunkel has the advantage of being easily spelled and pronounced by an English speaker.

I just had to look: Miller has about 612,000,000 results.

April 25, 2016 at 12:58 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Family, mental health system couldn’t help Kansas woman

2) Then, she told me that her guardian angel, standing right there, had just told her that I'm going to get married to my sister's friend, and did I know who that was? Then she asked me, referring to the reunion, "Can you give me a ride there?" Oh, man.

What had I done? And now, she knows where I live. Bad news.

Anyway, she wanted to use my phone, she had locked herself out of her apartment. Heavy cigarette smoker, and I really hate that smell. Then she tells me that I have a guardian angel that she can see right there, and it's my mother's mother. Did I know that?


After that, she gets on the phone to maintenance, no answer, she calls various places, no luck. Then, I asked her how she had managed to lock herself out, because you have to use the key from the outside in order to lock the door. Well, she had left it at her mother's house.

One way or another, she got the key sent here, I guess. So then, she's about to leave, but then hesitates, and asks if I'm on AOL. She told me, "I want to look something up." Gets on the computer, can't read the screen to type in the site address because she doesn't have her glasses. So, I used google to find the site for her. I go there, and guess what. She wanted me to register with the site, so she could go into a chat room under my name.


"The Realm of Being" is the chat she wanted to get into. Reason she wanted to use my name? "They don't like me in there," she said. Yeah, for good reasons, I'm sure. So she makes up a name, registers, gets in the chat, and suggests that I turn on the television.


Anyway, after a while, even she can take a hint, and she left.

So, maybe three hours later, I'm just about ready for a friend to show up to drive me somewhere, and knock, knock, knock.


So, here's the new problem: she thinks she left a pill case or something in my place, she's gotta look for it. I look at the clock, and DAMN! I only had what, about 30 minutes, and my friend is going to be here to pick me up!

Well, she looks and looks, and can't find her pills, of course. Then I have to start looking up the pharmacy phone number for her so she could have a new pill case sent over (she apparently had still not found her glasses), and I just couldn't believe how much worse the cigarette stench was. I look at her, and DAMN, she had a lit cigarette! So I hollered at her, "Don't be smoking in here!"

And she goes, "Oh, I'm sorry," and tosses it out in the yard.

So she gets on the phone for a bit, and a new one is on the way real quick. I guess they know all about her. Then, she looked at me and told me, "Your place has really good vibes."

Good to know, I guess.

April 24, 2016 at 5:58 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Family, mental health system couldn’t help Kansas woman

1) This is an edited copy of part of an email I wrote in 2010, which illustrates how difficult it can be to interact with a schizophrenic person. But, I also have known at least two people with that disorder that cannot be distinguished from an ordinary person. In many cases, it can be well controlled with medication.

One day there was a knock on my door, from another resident in the apartments here.

Oh no.

It was a woman I knew years ago, in the '80s, and I just cannot imagine why I had reminded her a month or so before that I knew her from way back when, before she got so bad. There was a reunion of old Lawrence townies coming up, and I had stupidly went to her apartment to let her know about it. I should have known better, considering that the apartment manager here had already told me that this tenant saw gremlins all around her.

(You really have to wonder though, what gremlins really look like. How often can you get a first hand description from someone watching them? They're about a foot tall, green, and have big yellow eyes.)

We swapped email addresses, she looked at my email, and asked if I want to get married.

I told her, "No."

April 24, 2016 at 5:58 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Plans filed for nearly 2,000 new apartments near South Lawrence Trafficway; several hundred single-family homes may follow

Federal and state income taxes do not go directly to the community where the workers live. But the property and sales taxes stay in the community or county where they were collected.

So, it won't make much difference where the residents work, if they do most of their shopping locally.

April 17, 2016 at 10:07 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Plans filed for nearly 2,000 new apartments near South Lawrence Trafficway; several hundred single-family homes may follow

If you consider the rate of increase in rents, and consider the inflation rate, it is possible that in some apartment complexes, the rent in inflation adjusted dollars is actually going down.

Too many people think in real dollar terms, without considering the fact that the dollar is worth less just about every year.

April 17, 2016 at 10 a.m. ( | suggest removal )