Dear Rookie Action Line: Wait, you again? – A. Ego
Dear A.: Well, yeah. What do you mean by that?
We thought you skedaddled about a decade ago. You’re still in town? You still exist?
I left the Herald in 2015. I haven’t gone anywhere.
So you think you can just waltz back in here and pull this off like it’s no big deal? You’re following not only Tom Sluis, who practically invented the modern snarky Action Line style about 20 years ago, but also the legendary and beloved Mike Smedley. Not to mention Megan Graham, who crushed this thing back when you were still writing sports.
Right. The bar is high. I get it. What’s wrong with writing sports though? And thanks for giving me this opportunity to congratulate the Durango High School football team on its state championship. Yes, I was a sports editor. I can even remember covering the Demons’ state semifinal back in 1997 with Jerry McBride when he was a photographer at the Herald.
He’s still a photographer here.
What?! Still?! Is that true?
Yes. And who’s asking the questions here?
Oh, I was joshing. I knew the amazing and talented McBride was still there. And as to who’s asking the questions, well, I guess it’s ... Hang on a second. That’s me asking those questions. I’m having an inner monologue. How messed up is that? That’s not even legal. Smedley went decades without ever making up a question, and here I’ve done it multiple times in the first column.
Tricked you, didn’t I? Look, this column isn’t about you (me), it’s about trying to find real answers for real people. Just get on with it, OK? Here’s one I know you’ll like:
Dear Action Line: I live on a dead-end street with no turning circle. Drivers need to turn around, so many use a private driveway at the end of the street. Others perform a three- or 15-point turn to avoid the driveway. Tell me, is it legal to use a private driveway in order to turn around? – All Turned Around
Dear Turned: Just so happens Action Line has firsthand experience with this first-world problem. But let’s hear from the experts. Local real estate agent and all-around good guy Max Hutcheson says this is often an issue for him as he travels La Plata County, and has used many driveways.
“Guilty as charged!” Hutcheson admitted.
One problem, he noted, is that vehicle and phone apps aren’t always up to date for local roads. Sometimes, apps errantly tell you a dead end continues. (And sometimes, Action Line will add, they tell you the quickest way from Silverton to Lake City during a January snowstorm is over Cinnamon Pass.)
However, the law won’t be tracking down Hutcheson or any other driveway poachers, said Durango Police Chief Bob Brammer.
“A driveway which is open and not restricted in any way would not be considered trespass,” Brammer wrote. “The common areas of a residence open to the public and restricted by gates or fences are considered common ground. It allows the UPS or milkman to come to the door.”
Milkman. How quaint.
Both the chief and the real estate agent suggested using a traffic cone if you really want to discourage turnarounds. Action Line wonders if people are pilfering these orange cones from one of the many road projects around the county, but you can buy them at Kroegers, or elsewhere. The cone, Brammer said, “could signal the owner’s intent to restrict the access much like a sign.” Just don’t block the public sidewalk, which could be considered obstruction, Brammer said.
Hutcheson offered one more thought. He was probably joking, but Rookie Action Line was all-in on his idea of charging a toll to use your driveway. Seems fair, because all those errant tire tracks on the grass and the prematurely cracking concrete come with a cost.
Dear Action Line: We were headed west Friday (Dec. 4) on Highway 160 at about 10:30 a.m. when we pulled over as about four sheriffs’ cars and four state police cars went by – lights flashing, no sirens and under the speed limit. Amid this cavalcade was an unmarked bus. We figured someone very important or a dire criminal must be in the bus. – Not Speeding, for once
Dear Speeding (Not): That was Rookie Action Line being whisked to Action Line headquarters in a secret hideout in the HD Mountains. ... Not buying that?
OK, it was actually the Durango football team bus heading for Pueblo. They got a nice send-off, an escort as you saw, and then they won 21-14, and the whole town is buzzing about it. But everyone’s still driving at or near the speed limit. Of course.
Email questions and suggestions to [email protected] or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. You’ll get extra special consideration if you can tell me what the names Brian Hester and Steve Thyfault have to do with today’s column.
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