Few of you may recognize the terms "Borscht Belt," "Jewish Alps" or "city improvements." That's because most of you are too young, not from Back East, not Jewish, or all three. I am old enough, from Back East, and a quarter Jewish.
What do you do when you have nobody to talk to, no cell phone or computer or even paper and pencil, no musical instrument, no radio or TV, just your personal resources? It is too hot, cold, wet, or windy out. There's just you and the furniture. If anyone else is there, they're doing their own thing, and would just as soon you do yours.
Since late May, on nice days (above 70 degrees with little wind), I've often eaten outside on the postage-stamp patio. It's furnished with one of two beige plastic outdoor chairs and a black expanded steel outdoor collapsible card table. The other beige chair, with a thin cushion, is inside where I can tote it around for this or that use.
The Encyclopedia Britannica has published its last print edition. Instead, you can now consult it, plus oodles of other info sources, online. However, I'm old enough that my first impulse is to go for a book, and sometimes that's better.
Made a cup of tea after a nap Saturday, April 7, then sat here to check the email. Hmm: email from Adela Elwell. Hope everyone is OK. So did she: “Evan: ... please phone me ... I have a question or two about coyotes, the first being: would a coyote play with a dog? We hope all is well with you and your family. Regards, Laddie.”
We're doing something new at Bemidji United Methodist: a 9 a.m. service. It's not that the 10:30 a.m. service was overcrowded, but that we wanted to experiment, everyone participating. We meet downstairs in the Sunday School area for just a half hour. Many stay around for the later service, but this also gives people with a planned trip or other obligation a chance to do church and still manage their day on time.
Four friends graduated from Peter Stuyvesant High School in New York City (in Carnegie Hall, no less) in June, 1947: Bob, Bruno, Johnny and Evan. Two are now gone, and Janet, Bruno's widow, has asked Johnny and me for memorabilia for a celebration of Bruno's life, an excuse here for some informal autobiography.
As noted last month, the column I'd started to write got sidetracked by a visit to Sanford Health Bemidji's excellent ER (Emergency “Room”: actually, department). Turned out my blood potassium (K) was a bit low. Remedy: daily banana plus frequent use of spinach or other high-K greens.
What do milk snakes, goatsuckers, and fairy diddles have in common? All are vertebrates (reptiles, birds, and mammals, respectively), and all occur in Minnesota. Milk snakes (Lampropeltis triangulum) inhabit only Minnesota's southern counties, mostly in the St. Croix, Mississippi and Minnesota river valley woodlands. They are harmless constrictors, happy to eat the mice around houses and barns.
(This account is partly fiction.) At "Red Owl" some time ago, I was talking to an alert young father whom I'd never met before, and it came up in that I was from Manhattan, Greenwich Village no less. "Cool!" (He hadn't spotted what remains of my New York accent.) My name also caught his fancy (likewise cool), and it was even cooler that I wrote for the Pioneer.