Archive - Jun 2006

June 10th

Happy 90th!

A happy 90th birthday to weblog reader Gladys Pederson of Minot! I met her in Minot this spring when I performed before the Credit Union meeting there. You have to hand it to 90-year-olds who learn computers! Keep on truckin, Gladys!

June 8th

Duluth

Spent part of the past two days in Duluth at a meeting of all six of the Minnesota Initiative Foundations. These are foundations started in 1986 by the heirs of the 3M fortune to assist rural Minnesota. I am on the board of the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, our area's version.

The idea was that each region is different and that having six foundations staffed by people who live in the region would be a better way to distribute money than to have urbanites in an office in Minneapolis bequeath cash to the hicks.

June 6th

Management

One of the frustrations of being in management is that I never get any work done. If I go start a project of some sort, say planting a flower bed, there inevitably will come a phone call that needs my attention, after which there will be a customer who needs my attention, followed by some employees who need direction--so, it is pretty useless for me to start planting a flower bed.

But that makes me feel lazy and a bit frustrated. When I worked at the nursery by the hour, I could go out and cultivate for hours on end without worry. Now I can't.

Performing

Saturday evening, I performed at a talent show in Erskine at their Water Carnival festivities. I wasn't in the talent show--my job was to entertain while the votes were being counted.

There were nine acts. Most were quite good. One was painful. The show was structured like the TV show American Idol, which I have never watched. So, they had the snotty judges their making remarks after each performance while the hapless performer had to stand their and say, "I understand," or "Thank you very much."

Kids



A busload of 48 children showed up from Mahnomen yesterday morning. They had called ahead, but of course, what can you do to prepare for 48 little kids?

June 3rd

Santana soars

What a wonderful ballgame last night. Thanks to the late start on the West Coast, I was able to watch almost every pitch. Santana was on. With the exception of one hanging fastball to Frank Thomas, which was launched out of the park, he was perfect, retiring the last 19 batters he faced without allowing a runner. Santana now leads the major leagues in strikeouts--and he really hasn't warmed up yet. No matter how the Twins fare, and it doesn't look like they'll be competing for a title, watching Santana and Liriano will be a twice-per-week treat.

More neotony



These grotesquely inflated bluebirds--which look like they pigged out on the rice from a wedding recessional--are also big sellers. If you want to sell fake animals, it's best to fatten 'em up good.

Thunderhead



One of the great pleasures of a Minnesota summer is seeing the massive thunderclouds pass to the east at sunset.

Marketing neotony

Somewhere, sometime I read about a study about neotony, which could be described as cuteness. It is the collection of characteristics in infant humans and animals which triggers the nurturing impulse. Features such as oversized eyes and fat cheeks seem to make us want to care for the person or animal with oversized eyes and fat cheeks.

June 1st

Landing



Looks kind of fun, if you ask me.