Along the lines of the previous post I turned in an unusual back-to back Not Eudora column to the Reader about the Coronavirus and the Trump Administration. Forever, I’ve been a once every two weeks contributor. I begged to have the Reader note that last week’s column Arizona Highways (though complete on the website) chopped off the last paragraph in the published paper.
This week’s coming title will be: Our Season of Anne Frank
It didn’t take me long on my recent travels to Arizona’s sunshine to realize it would be the topic of my next Reader column in Not Eudora. I jotted down a dozen ideas the night before we left and pulled them into a column on a flight between Phoenix and Chicago. I wasn’t sure I’d get it to the Reader but things worked out. They even got four of three edits I asked for in one last hasty email I sent them. The first three were mistakes I caught after sending the column as an attachment to them. The fourth was a correction I hadn’t asked for. I wrote that actor, Jack Palance, was the bad guy in the story. When I read my column just now I saw that the Reader had made a terrible fourth correction. My column now read that the gunslinger was played by actor Lee Marvin. Lee Marvin!!!!! How could they do that to me?
I owe the Readers a little more love. They were right. Jack Palance made a great bad guy but that was in some other movies. I shouldn’t be surprised. The folks behind the Reader are old movie buffs having restored Duluth’s “original art deco theater, The West.” And Marvin did play heavies. He was a great heavy in The Ballad of Cat Ballou. He was even better as the hero in that movie. The last time my late father-in-law visited us in Duluth I suggested he might enjoy the movie. He never watched movies but for my sake he watched this one. He had a lot of good laughs. Someday I’ll add it to the oldie movies I’ll have my grandsons watch.
“The Duke” with sidekick, “The Three Ears Kid”, photo by Claudia Welty
When I was a Cold War kid I paged through a lot of Arizona Highways. It was a popular magazine in dentist offices. The eye-popping colors were dismissed by drab Soviet critics as unrealistic American propaganda. That was high praise indeed but entirely false. My cell phone is crammed full of similar pictures. Read the rest
and my Not Eudora column accompanying the image
Making America Two Again
A fretful sleepless me awoke in a drier version of night sweats. I got up and wrote my next Reader Column. You will only get to peak at its still unedited beginning.
I told Claudia tonight that I thought the reason I’ve been sleeping well for the first time since God knows when, the beginning of my fight for a vote on the Red Plan maybe or, more likely, the emergence of Donald Trump a year before his election, and I thought it was because the Impeachment process had begun and now there was not just hope but the likelihood that America would come of of this new national nightmare with just some scratches and bruises. Or words to that affect.
Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I have been studying French copiously, and with some success, because its my sophisticate’s version of hiding my head in the sand. Maybe, just like Trump’s first emergence when I sculpted him in his finger pointing fury, I sense that he’s about to pull off a second win. Its a win that the eminently reasonable pundit David Brooks said recently we had little to fear from. Too many Americans don’t want him to be president for four more years despite the economy which a majority of Americans give him credit for. In fact, ………………….
Sorry, no more for now.
Everything about Down Under appealed to me. Aussies were like a second version of Americans, open, unpretentious and they loved America. We snookered them in to fighting with us in Vietnam.
To continue to my Dad’s steamed up car click here.
If my eight loyal readers (of the blog) are not readers of my Not Eudora columns I recommend taking a look at them. I’m averse to writing titles that are too literal regarding the content of my columns. That way readers can’t draw any firm conclusions until they’ve read a couple of paragraphs worth. Among the items I’ll be researching for my book I’ll be going through all my columns, about 200 of them, to see which ones have education related passages that might illuminate my book.
I only have one more serious writing project in mind now – A fundraising letter. I had hoped to have it ready before I left but, after two unsatisfactory attempts at it, I’ll work on it next week in Florida. However, you don’t need to wait for or worry about my sending you a letter. I am delighted to tell you that my old online donation button still seems to work. Its on my 2017 campaign webpage WeltyforSchoolBoard website.
Here’s the deal. After getting a ball park price for publishing 500 books I will be asking for contributions of $15 to assure my supporters that they can have a copy of the book. I’ll be happy to accept larger contributions to pay for costs beyond publishing but fifteen dollars will take care of the printers. I’m aiming at sending them out twenty days before the Nov. 6th election.
I haven’t designed a front cover yet but my new lawnsign will look something like this:
So far this month through the solstice my average blog reader has visited about six times and there have been over 2,000 occasions when readers have spent at least 30 minutes looking at it. I ought to sell a couple hundred books over the course of the summer. I know people were itching to get the book I never wrote about the Red Plan. In fact I sent back over $1,000 dollars to disappointed wannabe purchasers of the book when I didn’t get it written.
I rather like this page on the Duluth Reader. Its the list of my contributions and it includes everything for a little over a year. Starting in April of last year I began searching for pictures to accompany each column. This week I made a piece of artwork myself that pleased me. It represented naked people doing cartwheels down Superior Street. I was especially pleased when Loren Martell called and told me he liked the article and really liked the picture that the Reader staff had designed for it. Since I was the artist I was flattered. It was only after I sent it in that it occurred to me that I should have initialed it as I did with my cartoon of King Trump the previous week.
. . . my first farewell to readers of Not Eudora in 2006. I’ll be writing another such column for next week’s Duluth Reader.
“. . . Always tell the truth like Mark Twain did.
“Twain, who was not always right, is nonetheless the most celebrated truth teller in American literature. Not just any author can, a hundred years after committing his words to paper, make a high school junior burst out laughing during study hall and earn the dirty look of his school’s most feared teacher. After this happened to me it’s no wonder that I’ve been a Twain fan for life.
“Culled from his voluminous writings are more witty and wise aphorisms than you can shake a dead cat at. I’ve contemplated two of them in particular for years. The first is undeniably true: “Always tell the truth. This will gratify most people and astonish the rest.” I have tried to follow this advice for years as it echoes another great moralist, Jesus of Nazareth, who said the same thing somewhat less flippantly: “the truth will set you free.”
“And like Jesus who used the shorthand fiction of parables to tell his truths so too did Twain use fiction to tell the truth. Those who doubted that black slaves were the equal of their white masters would certainly have been chagrined at the depiction of Miss Watson’s slave, Jim, risking his life to gather up the family that his kind masters had sold away from him. The readers who were annoyed with Twain’s depiction of Jim’s nobility were just like the Pharisees who could not see holiness in the much despised and heretical “good Samaritan.”
“But then there is this contradiction from Twain: “Never let the truth get in the way of a good story.”
“I’ll let the people who live in black and white and who war with the dangers of “relativism” wrestle with this advice but I adore it. Our best truth tellers often lie with their fiction to tell truths that ten truckloads of Fox News couldn’t convey
“I wrote a while back that I was taking another giant of the nineteenth century, Abe Lincoln, with me to an unexpected place. Let me add that I’m also planning to take Twain with me to the same destination. And here’s a little sample: I’m going to win this race for Congress.”
My artistry is modest but I had some fun today. I always like to find a fun picture to go with my text and as with today’s Trump cartoon I’ve got something put together for next week …. my last Not Eudora before the campaign is over in November. I haven’t filed for office yet. I’m in no hurry. I’ll send my column in after I file which still gives me the chance to reconsider. I’m not likely to change my plans….especially after reading Loren Martel’s column today.
It turns my stomach:
Six of seven members of the school board are DFL/union endorsed, including the current Chair, Rosie Loeffler-Kemp and former Chair, Dave Kirby.
Recently John Schwetman announced he is seeking DFL endorsement to make a run at dislodging Alanna Oswald from her at-large Board seat. Mr. Schwetman is a friend of Loeffler-Kemp, and both Loeffler-Kemp and Kirby are on his campaign committee. In effect, DFL-endorsed allies are ganging up to throw Oswald (who is DFL, but not endorsed by the machine,) off the school board.
Alanna Oswald missed only one meeting I can remember in four years, when she was out of town for an MDE meeting. For a while, suffering from an infected gall bladder, she sat uncomplainingly through several meetings, running a high fever. She has been amazingly dedicated to the school district-—a very intelligent and competent public representative who always does her homework, and is often out in the schools and always accessible to the public.
I’m not suggesting board member Oswald shouldn’t have to get out there and convince her constituents she is still representing their interests, or that Mr. Schwetman doesn’t have a right to challenge her. I am unequivocally stating, however, that the political party that dominates our town has no legitimate criticism of Alanna Oswald’s record, and that she does not deserve to lose her job.
Alanna will try to secure DFL endorsement in her bid for reelection, but Mr. Schwetman (a union man with a lot of connections, who plans on being in Europe during the endorsement convention) has a strong chance at coming out on top, meaning all the big money from the machine‘s apparatus would flow into his campaign.
I also was defeated for the DFL endorsement by a candidate who couldn’t bother appearing at the DFL endorsement convention two years ago. David Kirby served on that Endorsements Committee. It was a bit of a shock to me to find him when I went in for my interview. The local DFL channels Donald Trump and his gutless Republican Congress far too often.
Robert Sumner Mars May 21, 1926 – July 10, 2016
I’m the odd Republican on a largely Democrat Inspired Facebook page where I’ve been watching the intergenerational tug-o-war between Biden and Bernie supporters and everybody else. There’s nothing new in this. John Kennedy heralded a changing of the guard when he became the second youngest President in 1960 giving the parents of baby boomers their moon shot to remake America. Now in 2019 its the Baby Boomers turn to stand in the way.
I had my own tug-o-war with a representative of JFK’s generation. It came to an end when Bob Mars died in 2016.
“I spent last night polishing a family heirloom to send to my son. It’s was set aside for him years ago before college. Back then it wasn’t the sort of artifact he had any use for. It still isn’t. But one hundred and forty-five years ago, filled with ice chopped from a frozen Smokey Hill River, it kept the Robb family’s butter cold on the supper table.”
Read it all on the Duluth Reader website.
Here’s today’s Not Eudora column in the Duluth Reader.
I have a grudging respect for Juan Percent. Unlike the majority of strangers who have anonymously faulted my writing Juan has taken part in an honest tit for tat with me. You can find several such chats on the Duluth Reader Pages of my Not Eudora columns.
My last column on Republican Socialists is one such example: Juan’s latest swipe at me was angry and heartfelt. I loved its candor:
JPFriday Apr. 5, 2019
Central planning for a war should be short term, and one would expect that money to be paid back. The central planning the USA has done since FDR has left us 20 Trillion in debt with no way to pay it back. I acknowledge that your generation doesn’t give a shit about leaving your children and grand children an impossible debt load and no way to pay it back (as long as you got yours!)
The boomers have been making terrible decisions since they crawled out. But then your generation has always had a terrible nihilist streak, maybe it’s been your intention to destroy the USA the entire time. As for the rest of us, we can’t afford more short sighted, feel good decisions that will leave us saddled with even more debt and have no guaranteed benefit. Let me ask you this. Why in God’s name should we listen to you?
Maybe we’ll find a technological solution to capture carbon that doesn’t involve the creation of more waste in the form if lithium batteries and whatever other high tech waste the “green” new deal spews out. Is it better to replace baggies with toxic waste?
As I said before, the green new deal has never been about controlling carbon, it’s always been about command and control of the economy. Maybe it’s time to step aside, and take Nancy and Chuck with you. Haven’t the boomers caused enough damage already?
I could ask you to go to the Reader link above to see my reply or the whole preceding dialogue. I’ll save your clicking finger.
This is my reply:
Thank you Juan,
That’s the most honest thing you have ever written. And I agree with you to a shocking degree. Continue reading
. . . is online and on the newsstands.
I spent the late afternoon finishing a Not Eudora column sharing the same title as this post.
Sorry, you will have to wait till the Reader is out before I share more than the title with you.
The devil tested Jesus as he fasted in the wilderness for 40 days. The devil told him that if he jumped from the highest pinnacle of Jerusalem’s temple the angels would catch him and bear him away to safety. That would certainly have been a lot more impressive for Israel than one more Roman crucifixion.
Read the rest.
The Reader took my latest submission Galaxies and Glaciers. Cool!
I don’t even mind that it (the Reader’s version) begins “ast week…”
. . . now on your website. Please put it in the next paper issue in its entirety.