Showing posts from March, 2011

Slow and snow

It seems like the flood has taken backseat to Japan and Libya probably because it is a "slow flood flood a coming" as former Fargo dweller Robert Zimmerman might exclaim. I guess that is all right since Japan is in much worse condition than us at the moment. So since the last update, sand bag filling operations stopped in Fargo due to new estimates for needed bags. So somewhere between 2.5 and 3 million sand bags were made. Moorhead stopped last week and Cass County did as well. In 2009 the flood was already here by this time. I think the 2010 flood crest already arrived by this time. But the crest in 2011 is taking its time. Winter continues to exert itself upon the region with weekly snow. I think the precipitation this year is higher than 2009. But it is slowly melting. More snow came this morning. A large community prayer meeting also was held a few weeks ago. For prayer meetings, it was pretty good. It was held in a huge church in SW Fargo. Fargo had planned to lay sand ba…

Par Ki Revisted- chapter 1

I had the distinction of attending Park High in my fledgling days. And it was one of those schools people would mistaken for the half dozen or so other schools which had a Park in its name: Como Park, Champlin Park, Spring Lake Park, Brooklyn Park, Park Center, Highland Park, Park Rapids. And let us not forget Darth Maul- Ray Park. But that was later. My Park was in the south east suburbs- a kind of forgotten collection of bedroom communities which is now home to 4 high schools since East-Ridge was added recently. Well back in the day it was just Park and Woodbury and that private high school and Hastings if you want to stretch it. Now these burgs usually get overshadowed by their southern neighbors Eagan and Apple Valley and Lakeville. But back in the day we held our own.
There is so little about Park history out there on the web I thought I'd add what I recollect (and discover) from those days when Park was still the Indians. Park had been the Indians since the beginning- which …

Curse of the Ugly Online Ad

They are back at it again. The ad men (and gals) are using redirection to grab your attention. It must be the greatest discovery made in all online advertising- make it ugly or weird or outlandish and you will get clicks. Since I know their game I refuse to give him the satisfaction of getting a few cents more for a click.
But let's dig into our set for today. The one on our left I call "surprised by the mortgage." It is an animated one but I captured the terror of model at the height of mortgage discover. Quite a few online ads are using the animation/vid style but mostly the rocking head guys or the gal running. But this one rocks. After a few cycles through, you too could be haunted by low mortgage rates.

 Ever since the Simpsonize me app came out years ago- must be 3- a ton of clones followed with terrorizing results. Well, they need to advertise too. Remember the economy is hard on us all- even in the cartoonizing apps market. This sample from an app that makes you …

The feast of St. Patrick

He allegedly drove the snakes out of Ireland. He taught a lesson on the tri-unity of God using a clover. He defied the High King of Tara. He sat atop of a mountain in County Mayo and prayed for 40 days for the Irish. He won the adoration of the entirety of Ireland despite not being Irish himself. Numerous wells, geological features, churches and towns the world over are named for him. Not bad for a religious fellow who lived over a millennium ago.

And today we usually use it the possible day of his death to drink and parade and celebrate all things Irish. And let us not forget- wear green.
The parading started with Irish immigrants to America and only recently was added to the mostly religious activities of the day in Ireland.
The parade in town was pretty short. So short that I missed it. I got there almost 1/2 hour after the start and alas, the last float went by and it was done. It was rather chilly that day so I suspect a hasty parade was made.
I did not make it to the Celtic Fair…

Sandbag it

I spent part of Wednesday last week making sandbags in preparation for flood season. It appears we are in for another major flood by all forecasts.
Sandbag central was bustling. Mostly full of the younger folks but there were some older ones there too.
Operations were in full swing. It looked as if there were about 4 spider devices running.
I jumped right in and it all came back to me- how to get the bag open and quickly get it under the chute to get the sand. It was a real fun atmosphere. They gave incoming volunteers Hawaiian lais and stickers if they so wished to wear them. Organization was spit spot.
My friends and I were only there for a little over an hour then the operations stopped for the evening. Approximately 115K sandbags were made. Just a few hundred thousand more until they reach 2 million total. There was a record volunteer turnout the day before.
I was hoping to do more on Friday or the weekend, but sandbagging seemed to be meeting their goals and they closed operat…

At the movies

Took the morning session of the Fargo Film Fest today. It featured 8 films- most were short. Here's the run down and what I thought of each.
An Affair with Dolls- Confusing at first but then you realize it is a the meta-narrative of the story we don't see. So it's a meta story acted out with the dolls that in the end you feel sadness for the protagonist- the lady trapped in this odd relationship who is acting out the story with dolls. And this was a foreign film- in Swedish I believe.
The Cleaning Lady- A period piece, looking at how the time following the assassination of  MLK- specifically in Baltimore, MD. The film was made in Moorhead. It was a good story. 1968 was believable, but 2 things bothered me a little - I thought the protagonist - the cleaning lady - had way too short of hair for 1968- and trying to create the Mad Men feel with insertion of references to martinis. Otherwise it was pretty good.
Dragon's Breath- Feng Shui becomes a super power. Film seemed to…

Let us begin to fight

It would have been heroic if the Mayor gave a stirring speech and urged us to volunteer by concluding with those lines- "Let us begin to fight."
The pre-emptive strike on the waters of the Red River of the North began on Valentine's Day with the opening of sandbagging operations. The river is mostly frozen solid now. There was a week of warmer weather after that week. But then winter re-asserted its position and put us back into the freezer. As March approached it looked like a warming trend would return. However, it again was upended by winter and powerful winds.
Yesterday, there was a record volunteer turn out at sandbag central in Fargo: a little over 800. Moorhead did not fare as well. The city on the east bank just started sandbagging, but only a handful of volunteers turned up.
Forecasters have predicted a major flood based on the amount of moisture in the snowpack. It has been a rather snowy winter. 8 foot snow banks were common along the boulevards and avenues an…