Will the Real Gonzalo Run?A few weeks ago, I received a phone call from a gentleman by the name of “Gonzalo” which, I assumed, I misunderstood and that perhaps he had said “Mr. Gonzalez,” or, maybe he just calls himself “Gonzolo.” In any case, Mr. G. proceeded to chat about South Miami politics, seeming right up-todate on a lot of what is going on at City Hall. He claimed discord is just about to bubble over between Commissioner Gabriel Edmond, Vice Mayor Walter Harris (not in my backyard) and the ever-so diligent and self-assured Mayor Phil Stoddard.
While Mr. “Gonzalo” wouldn’t give me any contact information, he says he knows 10 or so vigilant naysayers who are “just noise makers and can’t even get out of their own way.’’ He even added he’d heard rumors that former Mayor Horace Feliu, instead of running for office himself, might be part of a diverse group that wants to serve the citizens of South Miami by helping elect young and energetic “never have run for office before” candidates. After chatting for 10 minutes or so, he would not say if he would be part of that group but indi- cated he planned to run for one of three commission seats coming up for election in February. When I asked which of the three he would challenge: Josh, “the marathoner,” Bob Welsh, or Hizzonor, he said: “I just haven’t decided yet.” Pushing for some commitment of any kind, I asked when he planned to announce his candidacy against any of incumbent trio, even offering to write a story about his budding political career.
But the best he could offer was that he’d “be back in touch.” Then he was gone. No contact phone number or email address. Nada. Nothing. So as the saying goes: “Will the real Gonzalo please stand up?” Meanwhile, Josh and the boys on the commission should get busy doing what they do best – stirring up the political pot!
Looks like the old Casa Lario’s is almost ready to open. Lots of work being done from the kitchen through the dining and bar areas, including floors, walls and just about anywhere something could be improved. The work crew is there without let-up and is all over the place, but no one would hazard an opening date other than predicting the premises would be open by Christmas (usually followed by a knowing chuckle).
I see that attorney Alex Almazan made a move the other day. Not to worry — he didn’t move out of town — just relocated his office from the east side of South Miami on SW 57th Ave., west to the corner of SW 67th Ave. and 80th St. It’s just a few minutes away from his old stomping’ grounds but rest assured, he had a whole bunch of reasons to “move on up.”
For starters, the new office is now more than twice the size of the old one, on a ground floor and just a two-minute walk from the Big Cheese.
Many good wishes to Alex and his team in their new digs.
With “45 kids” killed since Alberto Carvalho became the superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools on September 2008, the educator told Jackie Nespral, from NBC6, “One of the problems is that the community has a “code of silence,” and it is “killing our kids.”
Carvalho also said that while his teachers are ready for the challenge of a new school year, the 400 schools are ready to go, buses will have GPS and all the schools will have WiFi connectivity, plus the district is adding 500 new magnet programs and more choice programs, including robotic coding, a hot new field for students. The chemistry teacher said parents have a major role in raising students and teaching them “respect, responsibility, and restraint,” the veteran educator intoned on the news program.
The superintendent said when it came to state student testing that was implemented far too fast, and included stop and go failures. He was skeptical because it was not an ideal process and trusting the results, were dubious. (Back in 2000 I did my first television interview with Nespral, Rev. Curry and Victor Diaz.) I appreciated that early opportunity to calmly discuss community tensions (where she expected “fireworks” but did not occur) after Elian Gonzalez was extracted by the federal government and Miami erupted in anger and protests.
(The last item was provided by watchdog.net).
Got any tips? Contact me at 305-669- 7355, ext. 249, or send emails to Michael@communitynewspapers.com.