Category Archives: Alaska

Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

We’re still digging out up here.  It was a pretty good snowstorm, even for Alaska, but we’re used to such things and boy howdy, do the summers ever make up for it.

We woke up Monday morning to about fourteen inches of new snow.  The roads were still closed.  I cleared paths to the woodshed, to the propane tank and to the office.  Plowing the driveway proved to be more than our little utility tractor could handle, so I had our snowplow guy come in.

Down Anchorage way, they’re calling the last week or so “Snowmageddon.”  Granted they got hit worse than we did.

Now it looks like we’ll get another three to five inches before Friday, and then we should have a breather, possibly until the New Year.

That’s Alaska for you.  And, yes, totally worth it.

Now then…

On To the Links!

“Tough shit.”  That’s a quote.  Haw haw haw!

“This is not leadership, it’s cowardice.”  Another quote!

Prediction:  Nothing will come of this.

All of these women have one thing in common.

What happened with President Trump and Twitter.

This won’t amount to a hill of beans.

The Left, justifying censorship.

Elon Musk keeps kicking ’em and taking ’em.

This is actually racist.

Why Democrats lost rural America – because they’re utterly clueless as to what rural folks value?

Well, that didn’t take long.

Good – now hang the asshole.

Lauren Boebert dials it back.  Probably not the worst idea, considering the squeaker of an election she just won.

This mother should tell CPS to fuck off.  Geeze, when I was twelve I would disappear into the woods for two or three days with a .22 rifle and a couple of sandwiches.  When I was sixteen I tied my canoe on top of my old car and went up to the Boundary Waters for a couple of weeks.  Whenever my Mom expressed any concern about my absences, the Old Man always reassured her that “…he’ll come home when he gets hungry.”  I always did.  And somehow I survived it all without interference from busybodies.

Japan continues dialing their military in.

About time they fired this asshole.

This Week’s Idiots:

Jennifer Lawrence is an idiot.

Randi Weingarten is an idiot.

Van Jones is an idiot.

Adam Schiff (D-Shit for Brains) is an idiot.

The Nations’ David Zirin is an idiot.  Brittney Griner was likewise an idiot, was rightfully detained, and should not have been exchanged for a notorious arms dealer.

The Nations’ Jeet Heer (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

The New York Times’ editorial board is staffed with idiots.

Donna Brazile (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

MSNBC’s Hayes Brown (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

We’re all laughing, Juan.  We all are.

Robert Reich (Repeat Offender Alert) remains a sawed-off little runt, and an idiot.

Hypocrites gonna hypocrite.

Paul Krugman (Repeat Offender Alert) is still a cheap partisan hack, and an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

I can neither confirm nor deny being the inspiration for this song.  ‘Nuff said.  Have a watch.

Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

Back in the Great Land, and the state has gone full-on into winter, with overnight temps frequently in the teens – below – and almost a foot of snow in the last couple of days.  But up until a week ago we were in the relatively balmy environs of eastern Iowa, getting some quality grand-parenting in.

I’ve warned our kids – at least, the two that have already reproduced – that as time goes on, Grandpa is going to do his best to convince grandkids to move north.  We’d love to have the kids move up sooner, of course, but all four of them are pretty settled in place for now.  So I’ll be working on the next generation.  Having my stout grandsons around to help pack moose meat out of the bush as I get older and more crotchety would be a help, among other benefits.

Now then…

On To the Links!

If you really wanted to destroy the US, how would you go about it?

The bloodletting at CNN continues apace.

Granted, Elon Musk has gotten pretty good at telling people to bugger off.  That’s one of the things I like best about him.

Now they’re killing bats.

One of the richest countries on the planet, planning to spend the winter cold, bored and hungry.

Indiana Jones 5 is going to be a huge pile of suck.  Lucas should have stopped after The Last Crusade, but his ever-increasing neck has taken over all his creative processes.  He’s more monster than man, twisted and evil.

They know you’ll surrender freedom of movement after they make it unaffordable.  Feature, not bug.


Elon Musk is my new hero.  And more.

This is known as belaboring the obvious.

I can see reasons for moving to Florida, although I’ll stick with Alaska.

From John Lott:  The ‘Crazy, Right-wing Shooter Myth.’

Philly gas station hires armed security to protect against thugs.

This Week’s Idiots:

Donna Brazile (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

Jen “Peppermint Patty” Psaki is an idiot.

This is a damnably stupid idea, and this entire “committee” should be run out of the state on a rail.

Liar, liar, pants on fire – and an idiot.

MSNBC’s Hayes Brown (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

Joy Reid (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

The stupidity is just staggering.

The Nation’s John Nichols (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

Back in the day, one of the off-the-wall bands I was interested in was Traffic.  Formed as a “psychedelic rock” band in 1967, Traffic originally included lead singer/keyboards/guitarist Steve Winwood (formerly of the Spencer Davis Group), drummer/singer/writer Jim Capaldi, guitarist Dave Mason and woodwind player Chris Wood.

Traffic is probably best known for tunes like Dear Mr. Fantasy and The Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys, I’ve always been fond of one of their lesser-known pieces.  Shanghai Noodle Factory was originally released in 1969, on the album Last Exit, and then later re-released on the 2007 compilation album Feelin’ Alright:  The Very Best of Traffic.  Here, then, is that wonderful, off-beat tune.  Enjoy.


Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

At this time of year, the only flights to the 48 out of Anchorage are red-eyes.  At least, on our airline.

There’s supposedly a reason for this, and the reason supposedly is that there are fewer people traveling from the Great Land to Outside and vice versa this time of year (in the summer there are daytime flights) and the overnight flight to wherever you’re going, be it Frisco, Chicago or Denver, allows you to have plenty of leeway to catch any connecting flights.  Tonight, we’ll be taking one of those red-eyes and connecting in Denver for a flight to Des Moines, where we will spend the holiday with our kids and grandkids.  So, as previously mentioned, look for some placeholder posts next week.

I get the reason for the red-eye.  Doesn’t mean I have to like it.

</gripe>  And now:

On To the Links!

When you dine at the devil’s table, you don’t get to choose the menu.

Good.  It’s a dirty business.

No, it won’t.

Trump welcomed back to Twitter.  It was as if millions of pearl-clutchers suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.  And, yes, I have a funny feeling Elon Musk gives not even one single fuck.

The PA GOP blew it.  What can they do better next time?  How about picking a Senate candidate that’s actually from the state?

Yes, natural gas is the solution to Africa’s energy woes, if idiots from the developed nations will just leave them alone.

Life finds a way.

Key Democrats losing their committee seats.  About time the GOP started playing hardball; the Dems have been doing it for years.

Cruz 2024?  Maybe.

This piece expresses concern about Joe Biden’s age, but let’s be real – Biden isn’t in charge of anything.  He’s a maundering, senile figurehead.  It doesn’t matter how old he is, as long as he can be propped upright.

Well, that’s disconcerting.

This Week’s Idiots:

Salon’s Amanda Marcotte (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

The Nation’s Robert Borosage is an idiot.

If by “political star,” you mean “deeply and fundamentally corrupt, petty and childish,” then, sure.

Maureen Dowd is an idiot.  I used to enjoy reading her stuff; I almost never agreed with her but she seemed to usually be well-spoken and reasonable.  Nowadays, though?  Full blown Trump Derangement Syndrome.

MSNBC’s Hayes Brown (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

The LA Times’ Harry Litman is an idiot.

This is one of the most idiotic pieces of public policy I’ve seen in years.  Maybe decades.

CNN’s Seth Fiegerman is an idiot.

The New York Times’ Anand Giridharadas is an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

I’ve mentioned my fondness for the immortal Frank Zappa here before.  He produced many, many albums and was an inveterate concert act, but the first exposure I had to this genius of rock was when my cousin picked up a copy of his 1972 album Over-Nite Sensation.   One of the tunes on that track was Montana, which told the tale of a protagonist’s plan to move to that state to grow dental floss:

I might be movin’ to Montana soon
Just to raise me up a crop of
Dental Floss

Raisin’ it up
Waxen it down
In a little white box
That I can sell uptown

By myself I wouldn’t
Have no boss,
But I’d be raisin’ my lonely
Dental Floss

The backup vocals, by the way, on this studio recording?  Uncredited, but widely known and acknowledged later by all parties to be Tina Turner and the Ikettes.  Here, then, is that tune; enjoy.

Goodbye, Blue Monday

Goodbye, Blue Monday!

Thanks once again to Pirate’s Cove, Whores and Ale, The Daley Gator, The Other McCain and Bacon Time for the Rule Five links.  As always, if I’ve overlooked your linkback, let me know in the comments and I’ll get you added to the weekly callout.

Now then:  I’m fed up with politics and public affairs at the moment, so I’m going to talk about the weather instead.

Winter is showing up on the horizon most places in the United States (and indeed, the northern hemisphere) but here in the Great Land, it’s already here and has settled in for a long stay.  Our recreation is still a bit hampered here as we have not yet found a good snow machine that suits our needs (for you folks in the 48, that’s a snowmobile; in Canada, it’s a sled.)  But I do have a good set of snowshoes, so I’ll get out some, and who knows, maybe I’ll get a few big-bodied snowshoe hares.  They’re good eating, and Mrs. Animal would like to have a few dazzling white winter hare pelts for some various crafting purposes.

Lots of folks still today living in places like Florida and Arizona haven’t really experienced a northern winter.  Here, from the Hulu show Letterkenny, is a humorous take on the northern winter.

Canada, not Alaska, but the winter weather is similar.  If you haven’t checked out Letterkenny, I recommend it.  It’s comedy as it used to be; they poke fun at pretty much everything, while still being a good-natured take on what life in a small town is like.  I enjoy that bit because I grew up in a small town, and after almost forty years of living in cities, I’m finally back in a small community again, and really enjoying it.

Yr. obdt. moving some snow.

Back to the weather:  We have between six and eight inches of snow on the ground right now.  Temps have already dipped below zero a few times.  The snow will be here until May.  And it will remain as it is, pristine, white and beautiful.

Winters here are long and cold.  But that’s OK.  It’s Alaska, not Miami.  We’re prepared, with plenty of firewood, a utility tractor to move snow, and a well-stocked freezer.  As I’ve always said, the thing we enjoy most about winter is feeling proofed against it.  And here in Alaska, we have a long time every year to enjoy that feeling.

Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

It’s coming down to the nitty gritty now, isn’t it?  In a little less than a week we’ll know whether we as a nation have been given a little breathing room or whether the OMG MUH DEMOCRACY crowd has more license to keep running us over a fiscal cliff.

It’s going to be interesting.  I expect by a week from today, we’ll have a pretty good bead on things, although it may be some time before us Alaskans have an idea who will be representing us in the Imperial City, thanks to the ranked-choice voting stupidity.  Maybe now that this election-season mess is over, we can look to getting shut of that stupid idea.

Now then…

On To the Links!

The Mighty Oz has spoken.

With good reason.

No shit, Sherlock.

EVs are not “zero emissions.”  Anyone who understands the Second Law of Thermodynamics knows this.

Less than a week to go now.

Wealthy African-American takes the helm at Twitter.

I love a happy ending.


I’m in favor of this, of course.

In this matter, “Dems and media” should go fuck themselves.

I suspect this won’t work out like they’re hoping it will.

Welcome to three weeks ago.

One week left.

Oh, fuck off.

Kari Lake is awesome.  That is all.

Nothing should stop the Supreme Court from ending affirmative action.

This Week’s Idiots:

The Guardian’s Ross Barkan is an idiot.

Paul Krugman (Repeat Offender Alert) remains a cheap partisan hack, and an idiot.

MSNBC’s Emma Gray is an idiot.

The Guardian’s Jill Filipovic is an idiot.

Juan Williams (Repeat Offender Alert) continues his descent into idiocy.

The Atlantic’s Lee Bollinger is an idiot.

CNN’s Dean Obeidallah (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

Vox’s Nicole Naria is an idiot.

The New Republic’s Michael Tomasky is an idiot.

The GOP’s attacks on the Left on crimes are working because they are accurate, you idiot.

The Guardian’s Arwa Mahdawi is an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

Boy howdy, if this ain’t all that far off from Saturday nights when I was a teenager.  Brooks & Dunn  have produced some great old country music, but I confess Hillbilly Deluxe is one of my favorites.  While it’s fun to get some boot-scootin’ boogie going on over the course of a small-town weekend, you just plain can’t beat slick pick’em up trucks.  Here, then, is the official video for that tune.  Enjoy.

Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

There’s a lot to love about Alaska, but here’s one of the ones people from outside the Great Land associate with our home:

This photo was taken last Saturday, by me, from our bedroom window, at about 6:30AM.

The auroras are always amazing, but last Saturday’s were a bit above the ordinary.  From what I understand the first really good displays generally start in October (they happen in summer, but it’s too light to see them) and continue on through the dark, dark nights of winter.

Saturday morning, Mrs. Animal and I stood for half an hour, enthralled, watching as these streamers of light danced, whipped and flickered overhead.  What an amazing show.  Every day we find new reasons to be happy we are finally here in the Great Land.

Now then…

On To the Links!

Here come the tantrums.

The Sin Eater.

Now the Skwerl Mafia is sending in suicide skwerlz to disrupt the grid.  It’s nuts!

Haw haw haw!

No, Alaska is not “swinging towards the Dems.”

In a few more years, China may not even be a nation.

This is cool – first photos of a black lynx.  We have lynx around here; one got into our neighbor’s chicken coop last winter and ate a couple of prime laying hens.  No black ones, though.

Eric Swalwell (Fang Fang – CA) was unavailable for comment.

This is how you define “delusional.”

Bawk bawk.

How out-of-staters prevent Alaska drilling.

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.  I have very little sympathy for someone who knowingly smuggles a controlled substance into another country, especially when the other country is a totalitarian state like Russia.

This Week’s Idiots:

Slate’s Ben Mathis-Lilley is an idiot.

A leftist idiot predicts what a GOP majority in Congress will do.  Self-awareness rating:  Zero.

NY Mag’s Ed Kilgore is an idiot.

The New Republic’s Melissa Grant is an idiot.

MSNBC’s Ryan Cooper is an idiot.

Chicago Mayor Beetlejuice (Repeat Offender Alert) is still an idiot.

Robert Reich (Repeat Offender Alert) is still a sawed-off, annoying little runt, and an idiot.

Stacy Abrams continues to beclown herself.

Mother Jones’ Pema Levy is an idiot.

Her Imperial Majesty Hillary I, First of That Name, Dowager-Empress of Chappaqua, is losing it.

The Nation’s Elie Mystal (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

Robert Plant is best known (deservedly) for being lead singer for Led Zeppelin, but he did release some solo work as well.  In his solo work as with Zep, he put his distinctive voice to good work.  His second album, 1983’s The Principle of Moments, included the song Big Log.

It’s a different sort of tune, which in spite of featuring Plant’s distinctive vocals, didn’t carry a lot of Led Zeppelin influence.  Here, then, is the official video for that song.  Enjoy.


Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

As we move further into fall, we’re getting the usual change-up of summer birds for winter birds.  While the redpolls and boreal chickadees aren’t around yet, we have had a trio of Gray Jays coming to the suet feeder.

One of our actual by-gosh gray jays.

Grays are neat birds.  Unlike most jays, they are quiet, mild-mannered, and actually pretty tame.  They’ll come around several times a day, and frequently sit right at the feeder while Mrs. Animal and yr. obdt. stand just inside the glass door, watching from four feet away.

Like most of our birds, we like having them around.  We have some of their magpie cousins around as well, but they seldom come to the feeders, and they’re a tad noisy and boisterous.  We like the quiet grays.

Now then…

On To the Links!

2022 will be bad for Dems.  2024 will be worse.

OPEC tells President Biden(‘s handlers) to fuck off.

No.  We just need nuclear.  Nukes don’t kill eagles.

No.  It won’t.

This demented old fool keeps trying to mumble and stumble us into WWIII.

Yes, Hunter Biden will probably only get a wrist slap.  If that.

This could be the beginning of the end of what we know as Europe.

Philly Democrat endorses Dr. Oz.

Yeah, we should back away from Ukraine.  I don’t see where we have a dog in this fight.

Seven days of mayhem.  Our cities are melting down.

More on this:  Tyson is bailing out of Chicago.

So, why are so many Democrat candidates refusing to debate their Republican opponents?  I could offer a few guesses…

The correct answer is “who gives a shit?”

Tulsi Gabbard bails on “cowardly” Democratic party.

This Week’s Idiots:

New Yorker’s John Cassidy is an idiot.

MSNBC’s Chris Geidner is an idiot.

Prospect’s David Dayen is an idiot.

Given NYC’s long-standing “sanctuary” status, that idiot Mayor Adams should STFU.  You’re getting what you said you wanted, New York, good and hard.

MSNBC’s Barbara McQuade is an idiot.

The NY Times’ Charles Blow is an idiot.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

When I was in high school in the late Seventies, the rock band Foghat was riding pretty tall in the saddle.  I had several of their albums on LP (in fact they’re still around here someplace) and cassettes with their tunes were always on hand in my and my friend’s cars and trucks when we were out riding around on Friday and Saturday nights.

In 1978 they released their eighth album Stone Blue, which quickly got added to the obligatory cruising collection of Midwestern teenagers.  One of the fun tunes from that album was a tune written by lead singer and rhythm guitarist Lonesome Dave Peverett, also titled Stone Blue.  It’s a fun, rollicking piece, even if it lacked some of the technical complexity of bands like Led Zeppelin or the bizarre genius of Frank Zappa.  It’s nevertheless a good example of late Seventies rock.  Here it is, then; enjoy.

Animal’s Daily Hand-Count News

Our own Matanuska-Susitna Borough is dumping their automated ballot machines in favor of hand-counts.  Excerpt:

Matanuska-Susitna Borough residents have made it clear by speaking during the public testimony portion of recent assembly meetings that they want election voting machines out of their precincts. An ordinance sponsored by Assemblymember Ron Bernier would do just that — requiring ballots to be counted by hand instead of run through voting machines.

Ordinance 22-119 would require ballots to be counted by hand only and has passed by a vote of 6-1, with only Assembly Member Stephanie Nowers opposing.

The assembly also passed a motion to have a special meeting on January 17, 2023, at 3 p.m. about elections.

The legislation would amend Title 25 of the Mat-Su Borough Code which focuses on elections, and is being discussed at Tuesday’s regular assembly meeting.


The ordinance comes after the assembly already passed a resolution directing the clerk to perform a hand recount of the upcoming Nov. 8 elections. Assemblymember Stephanie Nowers — who was in favor of the resolution — thinks the borough might be getting ahead of itself by introducing the new ordinance before the recount takes place.

“The assembly, including myself, just approved doing a full hand recount for this election to double-check the machines,” Nowers stated. “I think it would be good to sit down after this election, look at how it went, and decide the best way forward for next year’s election.”

The measure is expected to pass, and Borough Mayor DeVries is expected to approve it.

Could the Mat-Su be showing the path forward for lots of different regions?  In Alaska, I’d say… maybe?  In other places?

With a tad over 107,000 residents in the Mat-Su, we’re not looking at a huge number of ballots – in the 2021 election for Mayor (the only Borough-wide election) we had 15,652 votes cast.  That’s not an enormous number, election-wise.  Easily countable.  But as has been famously said, over and over, what matters is who is doing the counting.

Here in our Borough, I’m reasonably confident in the results.  Were I in Philadelphia, or Chicago, or Pittsburgh, or Atlanta?  Not so much.

Part of the Mat-Su – about two miles from the Casa de Animal.

While I’m glad to see the ImageCast machines going away here in the Mat-Su, the nation’s problems with election shenanigans are larger than just the method used to tally ballots.  And while in a small community like ours, one can be reasonably confident in the tally, in plenty of places, you can’t.

So what would help?  Well, we have to show ID to vote in Alaska.  That would be helpful.  Having poll watchers from both parties would help.  Calling “bullshit” on crap like “water leaks” that leave no trace behind would help, too.

Voter fraud goes as far back as the Greeks.  We’ll probably never be able to eliminate it.  The best we can hope for, probably, is to keep it to a minimum.  Here, in the Mat-Su, this move to return to hand-counting is a good start.

Animal’s Hump Day News

Happy Hump Day!

Food just keeps getting more expensive.  Here’s a tidbit from this story:

We asked CNN readers how inflation has impacted their eating habits, and many mentioned dining out less often, buying less meat and giving up splurges. Some said they are very worried about the future.

Food prices have spiked 11.4% over the past year, the largest annual increase since May 1979, according to data released in mid-September by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Grocery prices jumped 13.5% and restaurant menu prices increased 8% in that period.

Even burgers cost more these days.

Mrs. Animal and I are, through dint of hard work, still liquid enough to enjoy our traditional Saturday afternoon luncheon at a lodge up north of here.  But their prices have increased as well, maybe even more so, as everything here that can’t be grown locally has to come up by ship or rail.  Plenty of Alaskans grow much of their own food, supplemented with local fish and game.  But most urban Americans don’t have that option.

This is something that the GOP, if they aren’t stupid, should be hammering home until November.  But note that qualifier; you’ll rarely see a group of people so adept at seizing defeat from the jaws of victory.

With that said…

On To the Links!

People keep correcting President Biden because he’s senile and doesn’t know what he’s doing from one moment to the next.

What happens when Dems abandon a city to crime.

I’m just going to leave this here:

The economy was booming until Democrats took over.

If so, I predict massive non-compliance.

This guy gets it.

Honestly, California has been the butt of America’s jokes for a while now.

Who is really in charge in the Imperial City?

Probably not.

Could climate lockdowns be a thing?

The red wave may be a thing in Europe, too.

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, Liz.

Yeah, we’ve known this for some time.

Mother Jones finds an acorn.

Probably because pollsters are blowing it again in 2022.

This Week’s Idiots:

The Nation’s Herman Schwartz is an idiot.

What’s left unsaid here is that these idiots are lying to their employers, which is grounds for immediate termination.

MSNBC’s “host and super-sleuth” Mehdi Hasan is an idiot.

MSNBC’s Dean Obeidallah (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.

MSNBC’s Hayes Brown (Repeat Offender Alert) is an idiot.  And this makes it twice, in one week.  Clearly Hayes Brown is setting the standard for stupid.

MSNBC’s Joy Reid is an idiot.  (I’m sensing a pattern here.)

CNN’s Fredreka Schouten is an idiot.

Robert Reich (Repeat Offender Alert) is still a sawed-off runt, and an idiot.

Donna Brazile is an idiot.

Time’s Andrew Whitehead is an idiot.

Stupid NY vs. stupid NJ.

This Week’s Cultural Edification:

Thomas Dolby had a few interesting tunes in the early Eighties, and managed to make some fun music videos to go along with them.  My favorite bit of his work was She Blinded Me With Science, from the 1982 album The Golden Age of Wireless.  Interestingly, the video features one Magnus Alfred Pyke, OBE FRSE FRIC, as the “scientist” in the piece – and Mr. Pyke was actually a nutritional scientist and advisor to the UK government.  Pyke was criticized by some for ‘trivializing’ science by playing this role, but did it anyway.

It’s a fun song and a fun vid, anyway.  Enjoy.

Goodbye, Blue Monday

Goodbye, Blue Monday!

Thanks as always to The Other McCain, Pirate’s Cove, and Bacon Time for the Rule Five links!

No news stories today, just a little bit of omphaloskepsis.  Last Friday evening, our oldest daughter and her husband wrapped up a week-long visit to the Great Land when they boarded a red-eye flight back to their home in the upper Midwest.  It’s gotten awfully quiet around here already.

Yr. obdt. (left) and our son-in-law, overlooking the Matanuska River near Chickaloon.

Just about the only drawback of living up here in the Great Land is that all of our kids and grandkids are down in the 48.  Not that it isn’t worth it, mind, as long as we’re able to fly down there or they, up here, on occasion.  But it’s mid-September now.  The tourist season is wrapping up as big-game seasons end, and our guest room will be empty now until spring.  In a month or snow it will start to snow, and about then I’ll start the wood stove up and we’ll start making our way through the roughly two and a half cord of firewood I have stacked up.

Winter has its compensation.  Our favorite eating spots are less crowded on Saturdays.  The whole area goes kind of quiet, but the locals – a group we can now count ourselves among, after all those years of planning and saving – take a bit of enjoyment in having Alaska to ourselves, at least until the Iditarod shows up and kicks off another year of visitors.  And winter is kind of fun, as Mrs. Animal and I do our daily routines here in our rural Alaska home, just the two of us.  Sometimes we go a week or ten days in winter without seeing another person, and that suits us just fine; we really do have a remarkably happy and stable marriage.

Life is like the drive-through lane.  You just need to keep moving forward.  Right now, it’s forward into another winter.  And that’s just fine.

Deep thoughts, news of the day, totty and the Manly Arts.