Tuesday, May 30, 2017


Purchased a new mower last week as our mower seems to be permanently at Prairie Power Supply with no time frame getting it back. (I'll get to THAT when I get my lawn mower back) ANYWAY the new mower oddly hums is F sharp minor  - not unlike Symphony No. 45 (Haydn) "Farewell" Symphony*(see below).

I purchased it at True Value as I didn't want to give any big box store my money. Awesome Toro and I literally have never mowed my yard so short.  I actually mow less often with longer grass AND the the grass is a LOT softer when it's long.  But it's a little too short this time.  Gotta keep it long for a "new family addition**(see below the below) .

 *The story of Hayden's Farewell Symphony is interesting.   In 1772 Hayden and all his groupie musicians were in Hungry doing performances. The patron Prince Nikolaus Esterházy was resident and he kept all the musicians performing nightly even though they all wanted to get back to their wives's after an extended stay.

They appealed to Hayden to please "let us go home".  Well, Hayden always a diplomat, decided the best way was not to confront Nikolaus Esterházy but instead he wrote a symphony (which is how everyone fixes problems isn't it?).

During the final adagio (slow and stately) each musician, on que, stopped playing, snuffed out his candle and left leaving only Hayden and the concertmaster at the end. Esterházy got the message and all the musicians returned to their home and wives the following day.

My lawn mower does not sound as good as the "Farewell" Symphony but it seems to be in the same key.  F sharp minor.  I will write a great song while mowing.  Stay tuned.

I believe the next time there is a snowmobile route controversy in Columbus I will write a symphony.


**Yes - we're getting a new member of the family. It's been almost 5 years since Blake passed away and it's time (we're not getting any younger you know) so we decided to pull the trigger and purchase a Golden Doodle.

We can't get the little guy until late June but he is probably one of these.  We are 9th in line out of 16 puppies but the 5 females are called for so that cuts down the line a bit.  Two very proud mommies and a proud daddy and 16 pups.  We drove up and cuddled all of them last week.


Seems conservative media is really taking a Trump-hit.  With FOX fake news now 3rd among the networks in news viewership and now Breitbart which was the 29th most trafficked site on the web is now in 281st place.


Big Pharm - the group that is VERY anti-cannabis because cannabis is a great pain reliever and States with legal cannabis have seen a tremendous drop in pain prescriptions has 1,100 lobbyists in Washington - up 14% compared to last year.


From the Columbus Journal

Melotte: Trees would make downtown Columbus more inviting

Every forty or fifty years the DOT hands communities like Columbus a gift. A complete downtown highway reconstruction. Of course this “gift” is not really appreciated by many for very good reasons but if you are in need of a silver lining there is one. 

One of the problems facing all communities in America is the shrinking of the relevance of their downtown's.  In the past a downtown was a meeting place where people would buy goods needed for everyday living and at the same time meet and talk with others doing the same. 

With the advent of big box stores with huge parking lots those goods and services have moved away from downtown's to the outer limits leaving the heart, the most important part of our cities virtually abandoned. Times have changed for all cities that have an actual “downtown”.  This is not just a Columbus problem. 

This “gift” from the DOT that I mentioned is giving Columbus a chance to make our downtown a more inviting, pedestrian friendly streetscape. 

In the past few decades there have been many case studies for large and small towns on how to create a more friendly environment for pedestrians and with more pedestrians mingling longer come more businesses.      

If you have ever walked in our downtown it’s a hard, non-inviting, loud area where sounds bounce off the sides of our beautiful brick buildings and large trucks drive through belching emissions that collect on our bricks. The only friendly shade comes from . . . .well, there is no friendly shade. At the moment there is no catalyst to slow down and casually and look around. Get in get out.   

We can and are fixing this. Trees will make downtown Columbus a place where pedestrians feel more comfortable. Trees will organically (no pun intended) make the area more attractive for business. 
Now to be honest, we are only talking 8 trees so this will not have a huge impact but with the addition of trees and a few other small amenities such as bike racks, benches and so forth it’s a start. 

The city has located 8 spots where in-ground trees can be planted with no preexisting infrastructure to worry about.  These trees will be salt tolerant, love CO2 emissions and grow conically, up instead of out.

As with anything new there are issues such as watering, trimming, roots and so forth that need to be addressed and meetings with the Columbus DPW have been positive. Columbus is very lucky as Davis Clark, the head of our DPW, was an arborist in the past and knows a thing or two about trees. We are not walking into this blind. 

Columbus is not reinventing the wheel. Many communities have trees in their downtown's including Sun Prairie, Waterloo, Deforest, Waunakee, Waupun, Hartford and I have talked to business owners in Sturgeon Bay who added trees to their downtown a decade or so ago about the benefits and issues with trees. 

For Columbus trees will add a much needed softness to the hard streetscape, they will add shade to the sidewalks which in turn increase the lifespan of concrete. They will not only absorb all sorts of fine particulates and airborne toxins but a small to medium downtown tree can absorb 200 pounds of CO2 a year.  Trees in downtown settings lower blood pressure and stress and make people linger longer which is what you want when shopping. Trees not only absorb noise but also give off a the soothing sound of leaves rustling in the breeze masking vehicle noise.  Studies have shown that trees increase business traffic which obviously will attract more business.

The DOT has given Columbus an opportunity to make a real change in our downtown.  It’s a slow, tough process but we only have this opportunity perhaps once every half century.  It’s not a huge change but an important one going forward in my view.        
---Rod Melotte 

Going to be a good week weather-wise- cool today with a chance of rain later this afternoon. Warming to 80 by Friday but rain and thunderstorms Friday into Saturday but warm. Sunday it seems the talking heads and I disagree.  I say cool and cloudy on Sunday and they are saying WONDERFUL Sunday.

We shall see.

OH - I see Gov Walker is all over the Instagram/National news this morning.  He tweeted a photo of his shish kabob yesterday and people around the world are going NUTS.   "Norovirus waiting to happen",  "No sauce", "Onions grilling the same amount of time as the steak".  And these are not eve from Wisconsin LOL


Eight new homes have been built in Columbus this year - on track with the last few years as Columbus continues to grow.  This growth will blow the last 100 years growth rate out of the water.


The Indian Prime Minister called Trump a criminal and Countries around the world are dissing America and our "values". Germany said they can no longer count on America being a team player and wishes us luck in the future.  Pretty much standard talk in Europe now. Now Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni mirrored the same sentiments and agrees, don't count on America and leave them out of the conversation.

Well, it's what Trump supporters wanted.  It's all about US, screw the rest of the world.