The Case of the Disappearing Diamond

He rode a rusty cruiser in a fixed-gear kinda town

The cold case heated up fast, like spare ribs in a dirty microwave.  Sgt Lindeke pressed Full Power on this one, his twitter feed tossing out pithy clues at a mile a minute, just daring you to keep up.

I’d met the dame in the mushy month of March.  She had a date with the wrecking ball, due to be replaced by a flashy new overpass, all turn lanes and extra bridges.  The dame called herself Diamond, and she wasn’t long for this world.

It didn’t make sense – Diamond didn’t carry much traffic, and less every day.  She was relatively pedestrian friendly, and best of all for these troubled times, she was a real workhorse.  The papers ignored the story at the time, it was just another shady murder, stinking of corruption and hopeless junkies.  But who was behind it?

I’d always suspected St. Jude.  He put on a holy show, but I could always smell the greed just under his scrubbed-clean skin.  Now Lindeke pulled back the antiseptic curtain, linking to an article in the local rag about the new park-and-ride the bus company’s building next to Diamond’s old haunt:

Metro Transit wanted to put a lot at the busy interchange five years ago, but Little Canada, Maplewood, Roseville and Ramsey County Public Works denied the request, citing concern from St. Jude’s, Little Canada’s largest employer, that such a lot would compound traffic problems. Now, with a reconfigured interchange and better traffic flow, they’re on board.

These cities hold a thousand stories.  And even worse, they hold a thousand governmental bodies, all overlapping each other and rubbing shoulders and sharing drinks and sometimes exchanging words, and you know it’s only a matter of time before they’re exchanging blows.  It’s all too easy for a medical device company to worm their way in and play city against county against state, feeding their auto-addiction and pushing bikes, peds and transit to the floor.  Poor Diamond never had a chance.

St. Jude's prevented the construction of this $2m park-and-ride until the state first built a $35m interchange. Meanwhile, the sidewalk still ends 200 feet away from nearby Harambee Elementary School.

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