Monday, December 31, 2007

Bob Dylan: Dont Look Back Original Theatrical Trailer

Thank you Dana Dugan and the Mt. Express for this long looked-for article/ expose with comments.

As a frequent scanner listener / ambulance chaser – call me what you may – it has been clear that something is amiss with the current urgent care system in Hailey, ever since the first St. Lukes shift.

Dozens of times, patients have limped into the Hailey clinic with life-threatening injuries, only to find out in the harshest manner that the clinic is ill equipped / short staffed to handle the crisis.

Once I remember hearing an emergency worker, heroically chasing across the ball field with first aid kit aside, calling into the radio that it would be quicker for him to run over there and then meet up with the 3rd Ave. ambulance crew, to assist a heart attack victim. It sounded like that patient might have been better off, by hobbling into the fire station in the first place.

Reoccurring incidents like these would be unnecessary, had the promised south valley emergency services been in place, as we were repeatedly assured of in so many pre-St. Luke’s meetings.

Remember a few years back, when the south valley urgent care facility placed an oxymoronic ad in the papers, proclaiming, “Now open for minor Emergencies”?

It is only a minor emergency if it happens to the other person, right?

Injured patients who hobble into the south clinic are sometimes in for a greater shock, when they find they still need transport to St. Lukes. This up-til-now- underreported information is life and death level newsworthy. I was unclear from the article that the county-owned Blaine Manor building is slated for sale. Thank for elaborating on this in your Dec. 28 follow up article:

Since the building is for sale, are we to presume that this facility will close down after the new one opens? After all the 12/28 article states:

“The new St. Luke's facility will employ 22 people, the same number now employed at Wood River Family Medicine. That includes nine doctors, "mid-levels" such as physicians' assistants, nurses and support staff. The building will have new equipment as well as X-ray and MRI equipment.”

Yet this article says, “When two new doctors join Wood River Family Medicine in 2008 it should help ease the current situation, Barbee said.”

If the same amount of staff is being retained with two new doctors coming aboard, does that that mean there will be some other staff shift occurring? It would be nice if someone associated with the medical facility would jump into this discussion board to elaborate on further, what their intentions are.

I would like to think that no part of the new facility would be short staffed. Perish the thought of physicians trying to offer their best care, when something serious happens like a drunken New Years Eve driver, clipping someone into a minor emergency, only to have the staff find they are once again short-handed and trying to rush their best urgent care. Because as we all know, when you try to rush things, quality often suffers and sometimes with dire consequences.

It hardly seems like there is enough business to support two medical facilities in Hailey. Especially when you consider, it never lasted long here with two music stores, two toy stores, two bookstores, as it is doubtful we will thrive in the South Valley ten years hence, with two airports.

I guess the next question should be, when the new clinic goes in, should they advertise what hours they are open with a large QUALITY URGENT CARE sign on Main St. to drive in injured tourists. Or would that be considered disingenuous? Moreover, if so, what level of emergency care service should they be permitted to claim that they are providing. And who, if anybody, is accountable for overseeing these claims?

Thanks for your comments Brad. To answer Malibuhaze further, yes, I have looked into obtaining a satellite phone, several times. The last I checked, the prices were too exorbitant, though I have heard the cost has dropped in some areas. At first, satellite phones seemed like a great idea, filling in the gaps, where cell phones do not work. The big problem they ran into though, was they that they were targeting sparsely populated areas, thus resulting in little user traffic and limited profits. I would be interested in hearing of other satellite phone experiences from local people. E.g., about costs, how well they work in out of the way valleys, how long the batteries last in cold weather and things of that nature.

Meanwhile, analog cellular phone systems are slated to shut down February 18, which will render many old cell phones useless.
This will even affect many Onstar car safety systems, even some recent ones. See this Washington Post extract:

"We're not just talking about 10-year-old vehicles--Lexus kept selling analog-only versions of its Lexus Link system until 2004, GM was building analog-only OnStar hardware as late as 2005, and some Mercedes-Benz cars--even the $300,000-and-way-up Maybach--shipped with analog-only TeleAid systems last year."

Full story is here:

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Thank you for your comments Malibuhaze and everyone else.

When the cell tower is installed at Galena, it will then become drivers choices to use their potentially lifesaving phones in responsible ways - just as is in ranges where cell phones already work. Drivers will have the option to ignore their phones if they ring on dangerous curves, or even turn them off, until there is a real emergency.

Cell phones can be utilized as lifesaving tools, even on dangerous icy roads. I have worked an abundance of nighttime delivery jobs, where my co-workers and I would sometimes fight the sleepies driving on mostly barren roads into the wee hours, without much in the way of stimulation besides the radio. My colleagues and I soon discovered that if we simply called each other to check in and converse for a few minutes over our hands-free sets, then it would usually stimulate us enough to stay safely awake for the remainder of the night.

All-night-working snow groomers could use the same method to check in on each others welfare occasionally. Why it was only a few years back, one groomer became briefly trapped in a small avalanche up Owl Creek or thereabouts.

Will drivers use their phones responsible most of the time? Perhaps not. It is easy to envision some drivers who will pay less than full attention on hairpin turns, while yammering away on a stupid cell phone. Often these are the same types of individuals who might munch on a messy pickle sandwich, sip a cold pop, apply an emergency splotch of eye shadow, and listen to the radio too loud to hear an ambulance blaring, or let a cat crawl around under the front seat, or even read a related Wifi story about cell phone safety, while distractedly chugging along.

Years ago, my sister had a housemate who once was hit in his car by a bicycle randomly thrown off a bridge! He had to swerve hard to pull off in heavy traffic and later stated that, had he not happened to have both hands on the steering wheel, he certainly would have crashed! I took a cue from his lesson and hope others would do the same, regarding large mammals crossing the highway, or some slippery feller spinning right at you in the ice. With tens times as many people killed in car crashes every year than were killed on 9-11, would you not want to travel fully prepared with two hands clenched to the steering wheel and with a cell phone coverage area that does not have forty miles gaps on major Idaho highways, whereupon sometimes even the police have trouble communicating with their only backup?

NFL continues fumbling with whispered slurs

Kudos to Dan Popkey for his meticulous research, which he transformed into this sockdolager of an article. I bet there is much more from where this came from. Perhaps Mr. Popkey can turn this saga into a best-selling book, splitting proceeds with The Statesman. However, even if this is the last that we’ll hear from Mr. Popkey, regarding the Larry Craig saga, it is impressive enough.

For readers who don’t see how the story’s pertinence fits in with the Craig chronicle, please look again where Mr. Popkey writes. “Finally, understanding what Larry Craig saw happen to his contemporaries helps explain how he responded to any hint he was gay.”
I find it interesting, how Sonny Jurgensen and the Redskins did not respond to requests from the Idaho Statesman for comment on this story. I grew up in sports-enthusiastic Washington D.C. as an innocent kid caught amidst the infectious rooting for our hallowed Redskins. Rooting for the team was a refreshing break from hearing the ceaseless cacophony of politicians’ bloated airs, which was sometimes considered a contributing element to the team’s popularity. Even Richard Nixon once had enough ‘football soul’ to send in a suggested play to Coach Allen- an optional play, which they ran in the playoffs, for a thirteen-yard loss!

Imagine my shock, as a ten-year-old dedicated sports fan, when I heard that some Native Americans thought that the term “Redskins” was not honoring Indian’s, but rather
Then my further dismay when a potential local baseball team started a contest actively searching for new names. I called up to suggest ‘The Washington Crackers’, which mom promptly informed me was also a racist term, this one meant for whites.
Years later, a friend, who knew that I grew up a fan of the team, bought me for Christmas, a Redskins jersey from NFL shops. To the jersey, you could attach any desired name. As a light joke, the order he made, was for XFL star Rod Smart’s nickname ‘He Hate Me’ to be emblazoned on the back. When the order arrived, he inspected the box, in three-inch block letters stood out surprisingly, ‘He Help Me.’
So, he called up NFL stores to complain. They told him that is their official position is to never promote hate-oriented products. Yet right on, the front of the same jersey in ½-inch letters- smaller letters than you would ordinarily expect- there it was the derogatory ‘Redskins’
After replacing my Redskins skullcap with a thinking cap, it looks like NFL shops is whispering racial epithets from behind a dirty alley, meanwhile with fans paradoxically hurling in perfect harmony, uncivil songs in allegiance of their cursed team.

This reminds me; the much-at-stake Dallas / Washington game is now underway. Perhaps today a little more will be revealed about the Redskins curse when the Cowboys come in there galloping upon their Pale Horse. Moreover, how finally changing their name might lift the team’s spirit and place a proper He Help Me guardian upon their quarterback’s shoulder, much as the fans have been praying for.
Few sports fans remember an actual ceremony performed on the team’s hallowed ground by a highly regarded Native American Shaman. This curse, conducted shortly after Coach Gibbs and his team, won the Super XXVI championship, promises to keep the Washington Team apart from another Super Bowl victory, until they decide to improve their disparaging name. This particular curse is very difficult to find on the Internet, because it occurred before most search engines and is greatly hidden among the abundant other curses the redskin’s team and their ticket scalpers have since palely faced.
I wonder how Sonny Jurgensen would comment on this.

Plug now available to rid the world of the term "Boy Howdie!"

Plug now available to rid world of the term "Boy Howdie!"

Howdy, how′di, n. (Scot.) a midwife. [Webster ingeniously at least suggests a derivation in 'How d'ye?' the midwife's first question.]

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Fearless leaders guide our human race

Bush 2000

aging face.

Bush 2007

Has Sali apologized yet in person?


You might recall that Sali merely e-mailed his apology to Keith Ellison. Since then, with the dozens of the important congressional hearings they have both attended, they must have by now, closely intersected paths with each other. I wonder what happened on that first occasion. Did Rep. Bill Sali go out of his way to offer a more heartfelt in-person apology? And then did Rep. Ellison graciously accept the earnest apology? Perhaps I missed the rest of this story in our leading news.

Friday, December 28, 2007

let the mystery be

Supporting Triple Taxations

Sadly, you are right on the mark David G. Sutliff; though many of us don’t want to yet admit it, we are in the midst of a slow crash, which could teeter us into a bottomless debit pit. And the season has come for our pricey payment. Very few intuitions thrive for a thousand years. It looks like our good old US of A is going to have to struggle hard, to make it even a quarter of that way, without first becoming morally and financially bankrupt. History’s script often repeats itself, from the same primordial grounds.

It should be interesting to see what happens, with our deplorably under funded public lands. Will we eventually have to resort to selling some of them off – to essentially fund shortsighted wars? Our Christmas party is over with CIEDRA ripe for yet another Boxing Day revising.

Unhappily, double taxation is already a fact of daily Idaho life. You get taxed on payday and then you get taxed again when you spend that same money at the store. So these user fees could be construed as TRIPLE TAXATION, for those who receive an honest paycheck. So now we’re caught once coming and twice going, what should we do? We had a revolutionary tea party, when the last King George in a somewhat similar situation tried to snare us. This tea seems to spill from a dissimilar cup - one with far reaching radioactive vibrations. If the lesser of the only two evils to choose from, is to start reimplementing user fees, to prevent the selling off of these public lands, then perhaps it is our only logical short-term answer.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Questioning Special Abilities

Some answers for Idaho Spirit Seekers

Idaho Spriit Seekers. That's an interesting question that you pose and I’m in the process of trying to determine some answers. My first inclination is to say that interesting uncanny experiences and I have frequently intersected with each other, but it has been only recently that I’ve become capable of recognizing this.

For instance, when I was seven years old, back in Arlington Forest, Virginia, we went out as a group of eleven, trick-or-treating for Halloween. Midway through our autumnal adventure, we came upon a house that had jellybeans in a jar and if you could guess the correct amount, then you would win a special prize. Nobody guessed the amount, which was thirty, but the next year the same people pulled out the same jar onto their screen porch. I immediately knew it was again 30 and so yelled out the magic number. Back then, I remember thinking that it was strange no one else in the group, including the homeowners, who I intensely stared at for some sort of clue or wink to their easy joke, could remember that the thirty in the jar was the same as the previous year.


I seemed to be gifted from an early age with an ability to wildly pull information from wide ranges and then somehow quickly bolt them together for an interpretation woven into some impossibly farfetched tale, yet which still seemed to hold some element of truth. This facility ratcheted further, after a head injury I experienced a few years ago, which I will elaborate on here shortly.


The first time I ever got a hold of a computer, the following tale discovered itself through me: and was given as a magic 30th birthday tribute for my two-meter tall childhood friend, Tiss. Here, Tiss is pictured sitting on a Giant’s chair in the front yard of Hailey’s old Ezra Pound house.

Somehow, I always knew that I would come to Idaho too. My first attempt in ’83 failed, when I sold my cherished ancient coin collection to cobble together money for the intended trip. At the last minute, after dropping off some Jimi Hendrix albums at a friend’s for safekeeping, I reflected deeply inside and figured it was not enough cash, nor were my skills yet well developed enough to try to make it out here on my own. So, for the better part of the next decade, I worked as a meter reader for a water company, which presented me with plenty of time and space for healthy contemplation. Then in early ‘93, a friend and I migrated out here together.

Soonafter, I fell into a part-time delivery job at the paper, which I worked alongside an abundance of other jobs along the way to gaining a broader life perspective. One of the more interesting jobs was nighttime irrigation, at the Warm Spring Golf Course, where it felt as though I was being paid to become better attuned with nature, working on the edge of the wilderness every evening, til after midnight. Here I remember gaining some sort of predilection towards knowing whom I would next see on the highway or shortly run into, during the day. Part of me said; that living in a small valley could certainly explain for this, but then it started happening much too often to be considered mere coincidence. I remember expressing this to the girl who I was chasing after at the time. She had been working as a meter reader here in Idaho and I asked her if she felt similar connections, regarding more clarity in premonitions of people who she might run into, and if so, did she attribute that capability to having a job better spiritually connected with the great outdoors? She, too, believed that there was a positive ring of truth to this.

One bright summer morning, in the mid-1990’s, while on the windy back-way return from delivering news wraps over to Silver Creek Convenience store, some powerful rhyming phrases began to surface from within and without. I started scribbling down these tantalizing predictions and turned them into a poem called “Local Auguries” I felt it was an item interesting enough to show to the editor. She said that she enjoyed it, when she handed it back after a few weeks. However, it was not yet meant for publication.

Idaho Auguries (1995)

Adapted from the Spirit of William Blake’s Auguries of Innocence

For every light, which flicketh on, another salmon cease to spawn,
The hunter without spiritual prayer, teaches his young great despair,
Fisherman never giving thanks; discards plastic on river banks,
Each piece dropped by river oak, a rainbow doth fade and choke,

One who has stopped reading books, is out poaching royal Chinooks,
He who harms creatures with no need, shall nevr know love of woman indeed,
She who hurts a little sage hen, shall not become true love of man,
An animal knows when you fear it, and can read the good your spirit,

Humans not built apart from nature, but tangled now with Techno-future,
Can we learn living side by side, with sunny spots complexed in pride?
One could read tracks to a day, until ego seemed to shade his way,
Her stickers urged “Visualize World Peace!” yet friendship with her neighbor ceased,

Save the lion, wolf and bear, but what about the kids you care?
High schools parking lot’s a mess, projecting acts of generation next,
Each delay of children’s center, a young lad loses a valuable mentor,
Drinking and speeding up and down, such hobbies paint your face a clown,

Son’s military service brings law and order,

Wild man discovers new psychic borders,
Every hungry truck engine left while idling,

A Persian Gulf soldier drowns in oil fighting,

A day spent within forced mechanical shields,

Distances one’s touch from beauties fields,
each radioactive bomb a dud,

Gain we anew one field of spud,
Each spilled barrel of in-toxic-crated waste,

A song filled meadow churns slow to paste,

Following a daily ritual too close, whittles mans marrow into the ghost,
Too much time on highway lately? Pirsig’s advice: think laterally,
The crooked road you’ll find much more, the cup of time fulfilled will pour,
With Faster, Hurry! Go! Go! Go! You might just zip, past desir'd show,

Airport paves a runway long, cooks gridlock in a country song,
Each tailgate to a bumper, forces a body to become a jumper,
Too much fame, So much luck, into Private Idaho you duck,
Inner city pressure forced you here, wolverine medicine revealed over beer,

Hamp man dressed down, furtively glancing; try soft deceit for excellent dancing,
Social help lacking amidst this wealth, we’re forty-ninth in mental health,
Each resort by glamour lighted, another criminal is invited,
With synthetic chemicals excessive high, dark questionable characters draw a nigh,

A pot of gold will drive some crazy; our morals line becomes quite hazy,
My last letter to Dad & mother, “Valley’s brimmed with small potatoes smashing gainst one another,”
Each new shelter built on field, mountain lion blazes new trail to yield,
Tree roots cut with sewage hookup, Great horned cloak above is shook up,

A house that’s built with intent of wrath, Man himself loses access path,
A truth that’s told with ill intent beats any lie you can invent,
Should I do a good job replacing this grate? Hey, it’s a low
liability State!
Many friendly waves not acknowledged; snared upon wrong books in college?

Shiny idea gems from the mind were taken, when the Indian’s land was forsaken,
Not returning to swim in lake and ocean, begins to bring gesture without motion,
Fearless leaders guide the human race, but look how quick their aged face,
Think ye the mental storm hard to handle, try finding an honest man with one candle,
Purify yourself often in Gaia forest; help marriage of Earth & Man not be divorced.

~ ~ ~

Another related event of interest occurred in 2004, while I was rushing to winterize my tumble down shack, before going on a trip back east. I was pulling the tarp over my yard tent, when suddenly I felt a piercing pain and warm fluid flowing from the left side of my head. Turns out that a tree branch, which I had sharply pruned to affix a suet feeder better, had now sharply pierced into my skull, via my left ear. Being alone, I grabbed two towels, pressed them against my head, and left the concerned dog inside. I knew from a previous head injury on the other side, that blood rushing out at such a high rate was normal, so somehow kept enough cool to drive to the emergency room.

In the suet feeder from this tree’s branches, I discovered only weeks before that a black bird had sadly become trapped within the feeder and perished. I felt that this was too much of a bad omen to tell my housemate, so intentionally neglected to mention it. Now here I was, painfully experiencing the portent from that powerful omen.

The head injury instantly forced me to slow down. Several other circumstances converged around the same time and suddenly I found myself writing all of the time, hardly able to contain the flow.

On Tuesday, May 31, 2005 I witnessed an owl injured by a storytelling of crows. Although there was much rush involved in this day following a 3 day weekend, I had learned to slow down enough in important situations like these, to gain some observations and (as previously mentioned in this thread) wrote what I saw.

I worked on this tale for a long while, but determined that it was probably too over-the-top for the newspaper, and figured I would never submit it. However, I soon conferred with a shaman-priest in South America over the telephone, during a special trance state session he provided, where his translator stated, “the owl was a gift.” Reflecting on this eventually changed my mind about not submitting it. One reason I did not want to put it forward, was that I believed this could put me in bad karma with the local police, joking in such a way about the TSA in our small community. Then, precisely when that particular paper was going to press, a TSA agent was arrested, suspected in a child enticement case, giving my commentary its needed credence.

However, when I tried to point this out to a few friends, going as far as diagramming it out, nobody could see the connection! There were several other instances where items I had forecast came to be spot on, but I tired of trying to explain it. One time I even blurted out in bright sunlight in front of several colleagues that I predicted a small plane would land at the closed for construction Hailey Airport, but that nobody would be hurt. Several weeks later, this came to happen in much the manner I mentioned. However, I’m uncertain as to whether anybody was paying attention to what I had said.

Soonafter, I found a book on animal totems and when I got to the end, there was a request by the author for readers to relay the authors any interesting animal stories we might have. I conveyed the owl encounter, which led me into a long correspondence between two well-established authors. The woman is a highly regarded astrologist and kindly read my chart. This is the type of stuff; I scoffed at for thirty years, but now totally buy.

Another thing that happened after running the owl story in the newspaper, is that I felt it was time to share a closely regarding secret with my best friend in Hailey. The secret is about a severe cloaked trauma I experienced in 1978 and have only relayed a portion of it to a handful of friends. Some day soon, I may discover myself writing about what happened in full detail, but that time is not yet arisen. Anyhow, I went on for about two hours telling my friend about my stigmatized experience. It was very cathartic and released a tremendous amount of energy. Around 2 a.m., after we shared the story, we stepped outside and witnessed a full boar aurora borealis twinkling high in the sky. We drove up Indian Creek to a spot where we had watched two wolverines playfully dancing together on our way back from the movies one night. We continued gazing at the remarkable illumination for an eternally memorable spell. It seemed as if they were there especially for us, as no other cars were about.


Marie, I suppose this has been an especially long answer to your simple question. Again, thanks for asking it! When you have the opportunity, I would be interested in learning more about what you do with Idaho Spirit Seekers and how you first came to be involved with this interesting pursuit. Tonight I think I will take another gander at your website and that may fulfill some of my curiosity, but if there’s more you would like to share than what I may find on your website, I would be interested in hearing it.

I think it’s great what your Idaho Spirit Seekers is seeking to do and would like to give you additional feedback, once I learn more.

Best regards,

Jim Banholzer

Monday, December 24, 2007

News to Digest in the Year 2025

MMXXV was supposed to be the year for me to retire. However, President Jenna Blush’s impeccably developed scientific task force has shown that we industrious ape-evolvers thrive longer by not retiring. So now, for our own good, social security biscuits start at age 75.

Robbie is my reliable robot helper for delivering underground newspapers. Readers still prefer actual newspapers –now that they’re edible. It’s just that the soy ink doesn’t stick as well to the readers stomach when it’s bad news. The sidewalks stay clear of snow for our distribution Segways, since the city elders were wise enough in the 20-teens to invest in a new maintenance-free radiant heat invention. One can of “depleted” plutonium mixed in cement goes a long way. Even the wolves feel safe warming their bellies on these sidewalks, knowing that every bullet has a number on it and will be traced back to the owner via RFID tracking.

Last week we rode up the Baldy Gondola for the price of a Cheney dollar. Robbie and I looked down at the new buildings on the hill. I never thought that the definition of what a “hillside” is could be so easily amended. Well, it doesn’t look nearly as bad from the top as it does from downtown. Just hope we don’t get another avalanche like the Borah quake of ’09 when that slab of rock closed Trail Creek all summer.

Riding down the Greenhorn YMCA gondola, we intersect the airport tram that transfers to the Mackay area. Ten years ago, that town came alive to embrace the Chilly Slough airport /spaceport, where your tax dollars are shipped to astronomical places. Deicing’s no environmental problem for the reservoir downstream either. Microwaves do it all now. The reservoir is being transformed into a holding pond for the ILL (Idaho Lunar Lab). It makes perfect horse sense too, since farmers get all the rain they need from designer storms –seeded from that old slough naturally. These storms on demand are great backup systems for Baldy’s snowmaking and you even know when they’re scheduled -unless you’ve already munched on that section of the newspaper for lunch.

Think we’ll zip over on the tram to the Sacagawea Superdome this evening and catch the Frisbee Golf tournament. It’s retro day and players will be tossing discs the old-fashioned way –savages without remote controls. One back alley geezer, who resembles yours truly, tosses an Aerobie up into the ozone and lands it around the neck of an emerald dinosaur statue on his first try. Robbie enjoys this. I nudge him with my elbow pad, joking that his frothing mouth will rust his lips. But, he just stares entranced at the game and takes another bite out of the program.

We head over to the Salmon Interpretive Museum. Some kids are learning about what Salmon were. One whippersnapper holding a duzz-all device mentions he’s amazed that enough humans didn’t want to blast those darn dams. The HDTV on his wrist buzzes out a news report that the AFLAC duck has succumbed to avian flu. Well enough of this. At least the museum doesn’t have to display photos yet, to remind visitors of what a tamarack looked like. That’s only on the other side of the cypress pond, where out of necessity, sharp inventors developed underwater chainsaws.

It’s time for the bus to take us back to our affordable cell. We insert our marked wrists into the holographic security harness to come aboard. Confirming we’re disarmed, it releases us through. Our driver dons an appropriate clown suit. Perhaps he’s the only unchanged thing in the valley! Even the elevation of the entire valley floor has risen five feet on account of all the garden mulch and earthly possessions hauled up from Twin over the years.

FEMA finally fixed that housing problem. The Timmerman Trapezoidal Manage-Mental camp rolls a dash- train up valley for the minimum wage workers. When Jeb Blush declared Martial law back in ’11, anyone suspected to have spoken too fancy-free became netted into a new workforce-housing program. There’s even a store on the train. Good thing since most of Ketchum’s old shops are now vacuous second homes.

So in the spirit of Maxwell Smart memorize these words under a cone of silence before quickly swallowing them. Back in 2005, the United States was rated 44th in freedoms of the press. (See: Reporters sans frontières - Annual Worldwide Press Freedom Index - 2005 ) We’ve been spiraling down a slippery Timmerman slope ever since. We’ll print all the news that fits until Allen & Company week, when a high and mighty authority pops out from his protected penthouse, picks up a nutritious news wrap, deciphers what’s going on and then immediately tries to extinguish these blindingly brilliant underground points of light with all his force.

My doppelganger submerges to meet the Mermaid of the Bigwood

When I started preparing Supernatural as the appropriate gift for Tony, I decided to use for wrapping paper, an old copy of the Mt. Express with me on the cover leaping into the Bigwood to celebrate the 1st New Year after 9-11. On the wrap, I handwrote the message, “Tony, submerging into bodies of water can be symbolic – Jim” For a fitting bookmark, I included a rumination about truth spewing out from the Mermaid of the Bigwood, which was in the WR Journal last Mayday.

As I began my rough wrap job, I noticed that one of the accompanying headlines proclaimed, “Valley Man to Challenge Craig”. This struck a nerve, and seemed prescient, since only this summer I had confronted Senator Craig about his ignoring the suggestion I had submitted to him about feasibility study over transforming Friedman airport into an innovative healing center for our patriotic war veterans.

My doppelganger submerges to meet the Mermaid of the Bigwood

When I started preparing Supernatural as the appropriate gift for Tony, I decided to use for wrapping paper, an old copy of the Mt. Express with me on the cover leaping into the Bigwood to celebrate the 1st New Year after 9-11. On the wrap, I handwrote the message, “Tony, submerging into bodies of water can be symbolic – Jim” For a fitting bookmark, I included a rumination about truth spewing out from the Mermaid of the Bigwood, which was in the WR Journal last Mayday.

As I began my rough wrap job, I noticed that one of the accompanying headlines proclaimed, “Valley Man to Challenge Craig”. This struck a nerve, and seemed prescient, since only this summer I had confronted Senator Craig about his ignoring the suggestion I had submitted to him about feasibility study over transforming Friedman airport into an innovative healing center for our patriotic war veterans.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Legendary Excuses

When I was a kid in Virginia, there was a civil war museum I visited that purported that an ancient bullet had penetrated through one of General Custer’s Union Soldier’s scrotum and then impregnated a Southern Belle.

Years later, I met a Southern Belle from Tennessee and relayed this story to her. She exclaimed that in Nashville there was another Civil War museum that claimed the opposite – that a battlefield bullet pierced through one of Robert E. Lee’s, wounded warriors, thus impregnating a virgin northern woman.

At this point I finally realized that this was probably a battlefield legend and concocted as an excuse for unwanted pregnancies. Perhaps it’s something for Snopes to sniff out after the day comes when DNA evidence can be easily lifted from ancient musket balls.

A further spiraling solstice

Tiss was supposed to get married. I need to call him to check in.

For the first time in a year and a half, I submitted some commentary to the Mt. Express. I noticed that when I e-mailed it in, the message said it was sent right at 12:44 p.m. – or high celestial noon on the solstice. This came exactly eighteen months, after in 2006; I left the paper on that majestically shadowless solstice summer noon. Synchronisticaly, I was an official columnist for the Express for precisely eighteen months, being hired forty moons ago, during the winter 2004 solstice, the announcement being made during a non-harmonic Christmas Eve afternoon, when, in what should have been one of the proudest moments of my life, the Publisher hemmed and hawed about even anteing up some nominal fee for my hard work, fully forgetting that my beloved dog Maddie had recently passed into the great beyond and that I also became homeless mere weeks before. Interestingly, the commentary, I sent in for the Dec. 26, 2007 paper, regards installing lifesaving cell phones in the SNRA and is a much-modified version of the first significant letter of public interest that I ever submitted to the paper. I thought it an important enough subject to warrant this emergence.

So, now I’ve come full circle.


J.W. invited me to watch her children perform at The Mountainous solstice ceremony. It commenced at sunset. There was a beautiful spiral wreath set up to walk into, which was so large that some children became momentarily bewildered while attempting to navigate their way out of it, after lighting their formal candle. Although I was standing in a corner by myself, I was greatly impressed with the kind natural way K Woodlands orchestrated things. Whenever a child had trouble lighting their candle from the centerpiece, she was right there coaching them as a shining paragon of kindness.

K sent the eldest child in to light the first candle. Each youngster seemed to have slight difficulty lighting up and there was some speculation that the wicks were too long. I wondered if perhaps one child would light a candle without a hitch and then the crowd might subconsciously mull over the characteristics of that child to see if he or she fit the archetype of a special “chosen one.” But mostly the parents laughed politely a handful of times and the atmosphere remained genuinely polite.

After K’s announcement of the eldest child going first, I began seeking out other symbolisms. I examined the line and saw that the youngest-appearing children were sitting towards the end of the small chairs. Sure enough, when it came for the youngest boys turn; he placed his lit candle at the innermost point of the grand spiral. I took this to be a symbol signifying rebirth for us all, through the relit season.

I left the ceremony towards twilight’s closing stages. Picked up M. G. from her house and headed down icily moonlit Broadford Rd. towards the Bellevue bowling alley. East Magic Reservoir was having a get together and I was going to bowl for the first time this millennia. Funny thing is I had just packed away my old bowling shoes with all my summer stuff into the crawl space.

Anyhow, M. and I joined a team with our new friends April and Jim. April had splashed on her the perfume of an old girlfriend of mine. They tagged the scoreboard with my alter-moniker “Bam Bam” so there wouldn’t be two Jim’s. We were all given velvety antlers to don, while bowling for the festive occasion. After the 4th frame, M. introduced me to the woman that runs the small “East Magic” General Store and who had paid for the gathering. As we met, she started going into a spiel about how closely I resembled another local man. I immediately thought Wow! Here we go again! And then I whipped out the small musing pad I keep handy for just such occasions.

She started in on how this man who looked like me was a really good guy. About my age and with the same build and saunter. “His name is Mr. D. and he works out at the Courthouse. Takes care of everything, regarding the meticulous maintenance of things and stuff.” She thought his wife’s name was "V" and that she ran a tutoring or mentoring service for children. I thought that I had heard about this before. Then she said that Mr. D. was the former head of Hailey’s Street Department. That is until he got burned out on all the politics involved with the job!

As I was fastidiously scribbling all of this down, the question began niggling in the back of my head, “Why were these plain facts of my Doppelganger’s existence being handed to me in such a crystal clear manner?” I had recently been writing about how elusive their nature normally is. And I started wondering about the unusual surname, "D." Were the Idaho D's any relation to Phillip D?

I figured that I would get home to investigate this doppleganger info in a timely fashion, with the abundant time I have in the quiet reflective lifestyle I’ve chosen. Especially since all the pertinent info was practically dished to me on a fresh silver platter.

~ ~

But then investigation was put on delay, as M. and I decided to go see “Idaho Burning Woman.” I just had e-mailed Rob M. that evening about how I doubted my ability to “tri-locate” towards three separate solstice celebrations and how such activity would likely wear me down. Nonetheless we headed out Croy. The main effigy scorching ritual was complete, but the night was still relatively young. The half-mile icy walk was a perfect warm-up to make visitors want to greet the pallet-fire. I believed that I already knew by sight, about half of the burning woman aficionados in attendance. There was Minna, who had invited me the night before, when we ran into each other at Albertson’s and I mentioned the horse concerns.

I talked with and met some new people. It was an extraordinary group out there on the edge of the Idaho Wilderness. One beautiful woman, Shauna, seemed to gain an uncanny ability to intuitively peer into my soul during this extended ceremony, saw some good things, and offered the kindest of words. She said that she was practically freaking herself out when she suddenly gained this piercing ability to dissect the spiraling intentions I’ve been whirling with.

Then. Two Skies and I conversed for a while. As we went off into talking about trance states and indecipherable petroglyph’s around the blazing fire, I clearly realized that the Christmas gift I should give him is a copy of Graham Hancock’s anthropology tome, Supernatural. It covers in wide magnitude, trance states, ancient cave questions and owl medicine.

Two Skies girlfriend Lauren and I also caught up on items of interest –mainly dreams. I mentioned a reoccurring one I have about being a meter reader again and walking past a tremendous house full of secrets on the edge of Arlington Forest. The ancient house appears extremely cloistered. It has three hundred year old emerald glass skylights and a bunch of other mysterious things, but there is no excuse for me to walk up through the vast surrounding oak trees, because they are still being served by a well and have no water meter.

Then I ask Lauren about how she flies in her dreams and she goes on to described how it’s all done with her mind –the whooshing take-off.

Finally, I caught up with K Woodlands at the Idaho Burning Woman. I give her my interpretation of the evening events at her school and thanked her for being her true self. When I relayed my interpretation of the windless candle trouble, I also said that this is one of those things to ruminate over for a few months, before deciding what it means to you.

K embraced this wisdom with a slight startle and I start reflecting about how maybe now I have officially entered the era of becoming a true elder. After all, I've been reading in the barren wilderness of books for over forty years. When Melissa asked me I felt when my best friend in Hailey and my Grandmother’s both left the face of this earth, thirty moons ago, I immediately replied, “It brings us one step closer to becoming elders.”

At midnight, as we walked down the majestic loop to our vehicles, I pointed up to the sky to a cloud shaped like a funny bird. I told our immediate group that this looked like a strange owl gazing down upon us and they all seemed to enjoy this. Nobody denied that there was an owl swirling in the clouds above us at Idaho Burning Woman’s midnight.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

I originally titled my letter of public interest to the Times-News as “Humane Slaughterhouse ban creates new dilemmas,” until it was edited into the better fitting “Horses need our protection”. Naturally, such a touchy subject could be easily misconstrued as my meaning, "it's awful to send an old crippled horse to a packing plant.”

Sure, there’s nothing wrong with people who eat horsemeat. As far as I can remember, the same thing goes for robust ham & buffalo-burger munchers - hidden connection between Mad Cow and misdiagnosed Alzheimer’s disease notwithstanding.

I’ve been called a carnivore before. If it was offered, I might test a tiny bite of horsemeat in my mouth “to sate my academic curiosity,” (kind of like in the spirit of Commander Tibbets inspecting dark Nagasaki this time of year, back in ‘45). On the other hand, I might change my mind at the last second and turn away disgusted from the Christmas Dinner table. Afraid I can’t say for sure, til it actually happens to me.

People from PETA poles apart (People Eating Tasty Animals and People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) might agree; that if there is something more awful than wasting perfectly good meat, it’s the unnecessary harsh treatment some of these animals are stricken with on their way to the slaughterhouses.

Spark Zebarth, I hope that you are correct when you say that those beyond border butchering plants are inspected the same as others. I would like to see some facts to back up your statement, and then would embrace them if they can be proven true.

Even with all the mad cow burgers I’ve probably consumed over the years, I still remember the chapter from FAST FOOD NATION that revealed how the plant in Greeley, Colorado slowed production down to a safer level, on days that meat was being shipped to Europe, because they had to meet higher standards. So perhaps you are right. Maybe the Mexican and Canadian plants even exceed our standards!

Maybe I had better hold my earlier statement at the starting gate, until we can determine exactly which horse slaughterhouses pale in comparison.

Meanwhile our once-beloved horses are still overburdened with the longer transport problem and humane treatment inspection exemption.

Moreover, Spark, we are working on another care center for horses. The eve of my letter’s publication, an equestrian called to inform me about a synchronistic article called “Saving an American horse for Christmas” by Dennis Higman in the December 19 Idaho Mountain Express. Mr. Higman had pastured seven of his cowboy neighbor Frank’s horses, but as winter approached and the cost of diesel and hay skyrocketed he said, that something had to give and to their surprise that something was those horses going to auction. After a heart-rending story, where the horses ended up selling for fifty bucks each and headed for the slaughterhouse, they decided to look into seeing if they could find some other place where future unwanted horses might be welcomed besides the slaughterhouse. They found a viable place called Orphan Acres, a non-profit near Moscow run by a man named Brent Glover. Now the Higman’s are looking to utilize their own ranchland in the Twin Creeks area north of Sun Valley, as a satellite-summertime-sanctuary for unwanted horses, providing them with “good food and vet care in the hope they will regain their health and be adopted.”

In addition, there has been some buzz, that the Illinois horse slaughterhouse is attempting to reopen, by appealing the newly passed law, but so far, I have been unable to substantiate the details on this. Whether or not this plant opens, the news is a mixed black and white paint, no matter who is inspecting the horse’s mouth.

Thanks to all for this dialogue opportunity.

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