Richard Skorman for mayor

While we were gone, there was an important announcement here in Colorado Springs: Richard Skorman will run for mayor.

This is excellent news. The field so far, aside from Skorman, is not terribly impressive. We’re doing something new in the COS with our mayoral system. Previously, we’ve gotten by with a “weak mayor” system, in which a city manager runs the show and the mayor is merely a part-time, low-paying job. Problem with this system is that the city manager isn’t an elected position. The City Council appoints him or her, and at least since I’ve lived here, it’s not gone well.

Now, though, we’re switching to a “strong mayor” system. The mayor will be an elected position. A difficult and well-compensated full-time position with broad new authority. Here’s a decent discussion of the difference between the systems.

We believe Richard Skorman will be outstanding as Colorado Springs’ first strong mayor. He has the support of this local blog, anyway, and we’ll try to post campaign news and information as often as we can. Here’s more info about his experience and qualifications.

Oinkety’s arch-enemy and third-place rival John Hazlehurst makes some good points about the race so far.

We hope Skorman’s campaign gets his updated website up and running soon. Tick-tock, people, tick-tock!

Richard Skorman is running for Colorado Springs mayor

Richard Skorman is running for Colorado Springs mayor.

Green River, Utah

Poor Utah. There’s something kind of sad about Utah. Especially its beer.

But the terrible fact about Utah is that you sometimes have to drive through it to get somewhere else.

We consoled ourselves with wonderful (but expensive) cheeseburgers at Ray’s Tavern.

Ray's Tavern, Green River, Utah

If you're in Green River, Utah, and you need some food, you might end up here.

Ray's Tavern, Green River, Utah.

Ray's Tavern is ready for Christmas.

Ray's Tavern, Green River, Utah.

At over $8, the burgers at Ray's are a little pricey. But they're very tasty. The beer, though, is only OK. It's kind of cute that Utah even bothers to sell beer. Poor Utah.

Ray's Tavern, Green River, Utah

The girfriend says Ray's gets extra points for offering mayonnaise with the burgers without asking. I don't understand mayonnaise.

Ray's Tavern on Urbanspoon

Cucuru Old Colorado City

So, as you may have noticed, Colorado Springs has finally discovered tapas, or as I like to call it, “small food.”

I like Tapateria and Motif a lot, but my new fave is Cucuru in Old Colorado City on 23rd and Colorado, next door to Front Range BBQ.

It doesn’t look like all that much from the street but it’s really cute inside. Not fancy but more like a hippie cafe vibe. It must be an old house because there are a bunch of different rooms. Lots of seating options, very colorful, and tons of art on the walls.  You have to go allllll the way to the back to order from the counter, then they bring it to your table, cafe-like. In the summer there are patios in front and back.

The night we were there they had live music and it was crowded and lively but not so crowded that we couldn’t get a seat or anything.

We started with a couple drinks. Mike had a bottle of Modelo and I had a Cabernet (I’m back into Cabernet now, hello 1989)  from their interesting wine list.

Modelo and cabernet at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Modelo and cabernet at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

The food is really really good. Like awesome. First of all, altho it’s “tapas” it’s not tiny. It’s normal sized and very well-priced.

The Shrimp Diablo was deliciously spicy and served with avocado, salsa and lime. It came with six pieces for just 8 bucks.

Shrimp Diablo at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Shrimp Diablo at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

We also had chicken quesadillas which were yummy and also large for their price of $6.75.

Chicken quesadilla at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Chicken quesadilla at Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Ok, so when we ordered, we were pretty hungry and thought that these tapas would be really small like other tapas we’ve had so we also ordered a Cuban sandwich. I don’t usually eat pork but I wanted to taste it for purposes of this review (heh) and it was really good. In addition to marinated pork, it also has ham, Swiss cheese, and a pickle on it. Also very well-priced at $7.50.

Cuban sandwich, Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Cuban sandwich, Cucuru, Old Colorado City, Colorado Springs

Overall, this place is great. Very lively with delicious, affordable food and drinks, and live music and art!

Starting to think I might need to move to Old Colorado City! So many mixed feelings about the OCC.

Cucuru Gallery & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Christmas light displays and free parking downtown

So I read in the Gazette about a couple of neat Christmas light displays so I thought we’d go out and see them and see if we could find some other noteworthy displays to tell you about. I had to drag Mike along but in the end he enjoyed it too. Since we’re downtowners, we stuck to downtown, except for one special display southeast of us.

We went all thru the Old North End between Uintah and Caramillo and Wood and Wahsatch. That whole area  has a lot of pretty lights and since they’re on pretty old houses, it’s even better. Very oldey timey and festive.

You’ve probably read about Margot and her trees, which are definitely worth seeing in the Old North End. You have to go this year because she’s moving in the spring and won’t be doing it again.

There’s also a small stretch of Caramillo between Weber and Wahsatch where every house is majorly lit up and they string lights over the street itself. Also worth a look. Very pretty and magical.

The Knull family at 1017 E. Dale Street is another one we read about. It’s very retro with animatronic dolls dressed as elves, miniatures carnival rides, and tons of lights. Super cute.

Finally, we went over to 2570 Nadine Drive to see The Pickett’s synchronized light display. You can tune your car radio to 97.5 and watch the lights move with the music. You’ve seen these kind of displays on the internet but if you haven’t seen one in person you should go to this one. It’s awesome! Be sure to stay until you see Carol Of The Bells and Trans Siberian Orchestra’s Wizards of Winter, which are the two most famous songs to synch lights to.

Please let us know in the comments about any other really great light displays we should see.

Also, if you haven’t finished your gift shopping, head on downtown. You can find lots of unique gifts and local products. Plus there are not the kinds of crowds you’ll encounter at the mall. AND you can get a coffee or a snack or an adult beverage at one of the many restaurants, bars, and cafes on the street before, during and after the shopping. Personally I like to do my shopping with a little bit of a buzz on. It’s very festive! Plus, this weekend and next there’s free parking at all the meters all day. Tejon is a very walkable street and the weather has been perfect. There are lots of little lights in the trees and it’s just really nice.

Mike vs. yarn: The war has begun

As it turns out, crocheting is really hard. I said to myself: Hey, boss, let’s make a blanket. So I got myself some yarn and a couple of crochet hooks, and went to work. Crochet is just a series of knots, right? How hard can it be?

Well, I’ve learned a little something about the craft world today: Crafts, yarn in particular, are a bitch.

But I’m not going to let a pile of dumb yarn bully me. I’m going to figure this shit out and make a blanket. It’s going to happen, people. There will be a yarn blanket, and it will be glorious and warm. Somehow.

Because I’m a fighter. I will not be conquered by yarn.

I'm making a blanket

This is what my blanket looks like now: Just a pile of tangled yarn.

My afghan when I'm finished

This is what's going to happen. That's right. This tangled-up pile of yarn will become a beautiful afghan.

I am ready for battle.

I am a rhino, charging into battle against insurgent yarn. Of course rhinos don't need blankets, but you get the point.