At Coach Clyde Hart’s retirement dinner last month celebrating his 56-year tenure, it was obvious as I listened to track and field teammates talk about their Baylor University experience under Coach that he is a living testament to the university’s foundational pillars. These pillars of transformational undergraduate education; Christian environment; research and scholarship; and arts and athletics were recently reaffirmed as the university launched its $1 billion Illuminate campaign.

On May 17, 1954, 7-year-old Linda Brown became the successful plaintiff in perhaps the most significant civil rights ruling in Supreme Court history — Brown v. Topeka Board of Education. It was a decision that would desegregate schools. But instead of simply commemorating the 65th anniversary of Brown this month, we should measure our progress to an equal society today.

When contemplating where we’re going in life during the massive and intricate improvement and expansion of Interstate 35 through Waco, it’s best to internalize that line from “The Outer Limits,” the 1960s sci-fi anthology: “You are about to participate in a great adventure.” Indeed. Before all is dusted and done, you’ll see all streams of traffic temporarily occupy one snarling side of the interstate. You’ll see lanes both ways increase from three to four. You’ll see the familiar 11th/12th Street overpass one day become an underpass. You’ll see the Eighth Street pedestrian bridge so popular with Baylor University students hoofing it to Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers and Panera Bread disappear overnight, certainly by the time students reassemble in August. You’ll see continuous frontage roads. And you’ll spend part of your time in traffic, possibly backed up, if you don’t find alternate routes and stay updated via daily email alerts from the Texas Department of Transportation’s Waco District. Yes, indeed.

We were sorely tempted to suggest voting out your state legislators if the Texas Legislature didn’t take steps this session to address the one state-run snafu many of us personally encounter now and then: getting your driver’s license renewed in person. However, the optimist in us prevailed in January, given the seeming resolve of legislators to take action. Now, with the session’s May 27 deadline looming, there’s dwindling reason for such optimism.

Flashback

What were we talking about one year ago? Take a look back.

Scene: recent hearings in two different state district courtrooms to schedule long-delayed trials of dozens of bikers from motorcycle groups swept up in the wildly indiscriminate 2015 Twin Peaks dragnet. Mood: something between Christmas and the Second Coming. Yes, this was deadly serious business, given nine motorcyclists were left dead after a brawl outside a “breastaurant” in a Waco shopping center. But there was now a nervous glee, even optimism among the defense attorneys assembled.