Tenth Anniversary: SOS ordinance

Yesterday was the 10th anniversary of the SOS ordinance, which was originally passed to protect Barton Springs, often considered the spiritual heart of Austin, and a damn fine swimming hole if nothing else. Admission to the Springs was free, and there was pretty good live music playing all day.

The great irony is that, a few days before this anniversary, the city essentially caved in to development pressure and nullified the ordinance.

This also gave me a moment of reflection: I moved back to Austin ten years ago, right around the time the ordinance passed. At the time, I was already dismayed at the growth in Austin, and predicted the town had another 10-15 good years left in it, after which I would probably leave. And here I am, ten years later. I’m still dismayed at the growth, but still here. I live in an idyllic part of town, I don’t need to wrestle with the traffic on a regular basis, and so I am insulated from the worst of it. But sometimes I think of the frog-in-boiling-water metaphor, and wonder if that applies to me.