Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Bats in the Belfry

The talking weather heads are talking about a big cool down next week and I'm not seeing it.  This GREAT weather will come to an end (we will be 20+ degrees above normal Friday) but it looks like next Monday will be the last of this air mass and we should cool down to only being 5-8 degrees above normal.  The heads are saying 30's which is below normal.  It's ON Charlie!

Zip, zero rain in any forecasts. Get your car washed

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Yesterday I made a few decisions - the first was that I would walk every street of Columbus.  My mom did that in Fort Atkinson and she was 75 when she walked Fort which is much larger the Columbus.  Well . . . . .upon further review and being a realist (and some call me pragmatic as an insult which baffles me) I knew that will never happen. Who am I kidding.  Nice idea but ain't gonna happen. HOWEVER - I WILL walk every street in my district.  I've already done that twice but never to look at roads. 

I will walk the roads being considered for reconstruction though. 

The other decision is more silly.

I've been listening to the Brewers spring training games. More for background noise actually since I have never heard of any of the people playing in these meaningless games and you can not be more meaningless then the 1st week of spring training. 

But since I have the ability to listen to all 30 MLB stations why not listen to ALL 30 MLB stations.  

I grew up listening to Minnesota Twin broadcasts with Halsy Hall and some other guy before Milwaukee got a team. Then it was all Milwaukee. 
Note - odd things you waste brain storage on - I can still remember the opening song for the very first Brewer game on the radio.  We lost 12-0.  April 7th 1970. 
Back on topic. I have listened to 3  different broadcast teams briefly which is even more of a waste of time but to be perfectly honest . . . all three sounded exactly alike EXCEPT for the few innings with Bob Ueker (who was sounding rough) and some real idiot bozo on Pittsburgh.  But seriously, every announcer sounded exactly the same.  Are they bots?  

I have never listened to Vin Scully and some of the other great announcers so why not listen to one game from each team when the season starts. You can't tell how good or bad you have it unless you hear others.    

Sort of like when I decided to try EVERY hamburger in Columbus looking for the best one (that never happened either). When I was a kid I actually had a notebook on all the restaurant hamburgers I had ever eaten. 

So - those are my two slightly useless goals.

On a side baseball note - I have two good friends (Ken Funck and Doug Ross) that are writers for the Baseball Prospectus, the foremost publication for baseball knowledge, and I was looking through the hefty book yesterday.  They are not allowed to write about "their" team but the section on the Brewers was interesting.
Note - never get into a fantasy baseball league with two writers for a major baseball publication. 
Braun - WHO KNEW - We all know that Braun had an injured thumb and my personal believe is that the steroids he took were for healing and not for strength and so forth.   

ANYWAY - he was doing fine until the thumb issue and then he was seriously horrible.  Here is what happened - pitchers learned that if he could extend his swing the thumb was not a major issue.  But inside pitches created hellish pain when the ball made contact with the bat. Thus - for 3 months Braun received nothing but inside pitches.   

A few other tidbits - Carlos Gomez - best center fielder in the Majors - or close. He will be on every teams MVP lost for votes. 

Seems the Brewers, being a small market team, can only really compete every 2 or 3 years and they are doing a great job at it.  When they have a year when they can compete they make some major deal to get a free agent by trading off some of their prospects and for the most part the prospects are a bust anyway.   The jist of the article is that Milwaukee has done a great job at filling holes  that appear when they go "all in" every 2 or 3 years andthen they sign mid-tier free agents to fill holes until the next swing for the fence.

A small market team can not compete EVERY year.    

Football - The Packers sign Cutler to the Bears for $10 million thus solidifying their 1st place for next year.   

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BATS!!   

I was at a new establishment in Columbus talking new business and how to decorate and I saw a large rag fall on the floor.  hmmmm wonder where that fell from.  Then it moved! 

WOAH!  we went and looked and it was a BIG brown bat flopping around the floor. 

Many people will say kill it which I believe is not only almost criminal but pretty much like burning a cat or killing a dog in my book. You do not kill bats! 

But what do you do???  Can't throw it outside. I had never dealt with a bat in winter.  hmmmm So I contacted Hannah, a home brew friend who is also a bat researcher for the UW. 

We captured the bat and called the bat rescue team in Sun Prairie. They have 70 bats and drove right to Columbus ASAP. 
    
I gave HER water and she drank two cap-fulls. 

This is what I learned. 

Bats in houses in winter have a problem because of temperature fluctuation. 

In caves they will wake up every so often in winter and lick the frost off their fur which hydrates them and they go back to sleep. 

But in a house when the temp fluctuates they will wake up and they will be dehydrated and look for water which is what she was doing.  The rescuer said her eyes were all puffy which was good as the water I gave her was perfect. 

They took her and would hand feed meal worms until she learned to eat them naturally (they only eat flying insects).  Then in the spring when the DOR says it's OK they will bring her back to Columbus and let her go.  

This big brown bat had a wing span of about 6-7 inches! 

Speaking of bats - a little brown bat was found in Wisconsin recently that was banded in Minnesota in 1983.  32 years old!!!  it is estimated that this one bat, in it's lifetime, has consumed 13,977,600 mosquito sized insects! 
      
The record oldest bat ever found in the U.S. was 35 years old. The common age for a little brown bat is 6-10 years although it is not uncommon for them to live 25 years.

If you ever have a bat problem contact the BAT Conservation of Wisconsin 608.837.BATS (608.837.2287)

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I was also involved with another pretty big business expansion/relocation/dream in Columbus which will have a few moving parts with one business having to find a new location but this fits perfectly with Motoclassico which opening soon downtown and will bring many tourists to downtown (many meaning "more then zero").  Beaver Dam was making a strong bid to grab this from Columbus but I think "we" wrestled it away. More on this when things solidify and papers are signed.

In fact we were talking last night about expanding after the initial expansion.  

Gotta keep the center of Columbus growing. The center is the key to success . . . . unless you love strip malls.     
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Seriously - younger people should really try to remember these amazing time in earths history when it comes to oil.  Countries like Russia, Venezuela, Iraq, Iran and Nigeria cannot slow down production because they NEED money and employment. They are hoping other countries will pull back production because their governments financial situations ares so so fragile.

Bad news for anybody or any government that rely's on oil revenue . . .great news for common American Joe on the street.     

NOTE - Dan Patrick just said - The Milwaukee Bucks will be the break out team next year in the NBA and win 50 games! 

Have a great Tuesday - it will get sunny sooner or later.

Rod