Tales From Normal, Mn.--FICTION

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Tales from Normal, Mn. Headline News---FICTION

Monday, February 23, 2009

Dateline Normal, Mn.: Energy Team Meets--Vows to do less ....to save energy"-----FICTION

Well it has been a strange week---an entire nation has been discussing how to save energy---and some very creative ideas have surfaced. I have been on location all week working on a series of stories of how walkable neighborhoods look when they become foreclosed----and the assignment has been a wonderful look of how the concept of community has been developed, developed, and developed as a branding concept and has reinforced the notion that if it is an empty bucket with nothing more---bad things happen.

It was sunny, warm, and I was strolling the beach as all of southern Florida was on pins and needles waiting for those wild and crazy spring break college students to appear with all their depravity.....and money.....and to begin puking their guts out....getting cited for all sorts of violations that could fill local law enforcement coffers to the top----the question was would they come. What if they decided not to drink this year? WOW. It was a very tense time on the beach.

In times like these, I always pick up the phone and consult with my old friend Herman, the countryboy lawyer from Normal, Mn.; after all, Herman was a lawyer. He should have some thoughts on this issue.

"Herman, what is the deal? All of Florida is hoping booze will save them from the economic downturn---they call it "tough times." In fact---there are laws on the books that prohibit owners from putting "for sale" signs up. It might ruin the atmosphere of prosperity......

Herman laughed with a huge bellylaugh.

"Shucks wolfman( that's what he always called me)-----folks have a lot of crazy ideas on how to save money. Down in the South they are hoping that the booze in spring break will save them. Up here in the north, in God's country, the consensus is that if our leaders do less, expend less energy, more will be accomplished. After all, freedom is what results when government is minimized---and doin less qualifies----so every level of government has vowed to do less, drive slower, read with smaller light bulbs, shuffle more and run less----so far we are on target. "

""WOW"", I gasped.

"There really is a big difference between North and South. Real crazy..but different. Thanks Herman. "

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dateline Normal, Mn.: "Cost of shovels skyrockets in Normal, Mn."----FICTION

Well the pace of the news has really picked up. I just heard that there was a panic buying episode up in Normal, Mn. for shovels----seems that when all the folks heard that our President has called for "shovel ready" projects----every man, woman, and child who owned a shovel thought that the leader of our fair country was speaking directly of them----and wanting to be responsive, thought they would stock up on shovels in case that the entire stimulus program of 700 Billion or so would be directed to filling potholes----

Wanting to clarify---I just picked up the phone and called my old friend, Herman, the country boy lawyer in Normal.

"Herman---what is the deal with the panic buying of shovels?"

Herman let out a huge bellylaugh.

"Shucks Wolfman---the shovel play is simply perfect. In times of crisis, folks want to dig, dig, and dig just like little kids would when they were young, and in the converse up in the Northern tundra, we have a deep need to fill pot holes---a year round project. We are always "shovel ready". Thus the folks in Normal, Mn. thought Pres Obama was talking to them directly. \'

"Do you mean to say that digging and filling up potholes is the total national recovery program?"

"YUP", Herman chortled. "If the FILLIN don't cure the problem.....the DIGGIN might. It is a compete circle of life program----or circle of Federal debt program. We sure are excited. We patterned the program as a 7 step program after AAAA. First ya recover and then ya relapse. First ya dig and then ya fill. It sure works neat. "

Wow. Who wudda thunk a national recovery program could have been so simple.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Dateline Normal, Mn.: "For Fish and for Felons---It's Catch and Release"---FICTION

I was reading lately that many local jurisdictions have eliminated the jail confinement fee as a way of cutting municipal waste and creating a more efficient government process---I just wondered about that. Should we simply eliminate jail altogether as a cost cutting move?

When I wonder such things, I always call my old friend Herman from Normal, Mn.. He is a lawyer. He should know.

"Herman, what is the deal with eliminating any municipal fees for confining felons?"

Herman let out a huge bellylaugh'

"Shucks Wolfman, (that's what always called me.) You are just too old fashioned. Nowadays, life is just too fast paced for anyone to be confined for anything. It's just like the fish regulations up here. It is all "Catch and Release." It makes things real simple......Besides....all the fish have so much mercury that we cannot consume them anyway. It would be a safety hazard."

"Catch and release seems to be the real natural way in God's country."

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Dateline Normal, Mn.: "How to Spend in Good times; And How to Spend LOTS more in CRISIS times in order to serve the people"---the Play----FICTION

Well it has been a real long stretch of gloomy news----and in honor of the weather warming up from below zero, I have made a special exception to my normal rule of never going to Minnesota during the period from November to March, and have accepted the generous invitation of the Ladies Civic League of Normal to attend the grand opening of the Normal Community Theare 2009 Season which is featuring the legendary comedy, "How to spend in Good Times and How to spend LOTS more in CRISIS times in order to better serve the people."

Relax. I will bring you a full report when I return.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Dateline Normal: "Generalized Hope is not an ACTION plan"-----FICTION

Recently, about a month ago, an international religious figure mentioned that as a practical and existential matter when faith is gone....everything else is pretty much toast. Faith is the building block.

In his religious garb, the concept was riduculed a bit--however....when bankers have ratios of 20 or 30 or 100 to ONE as a ratio of capital to debt....faith is surely important, even if it is deluded hope=====

I just wondered whether hope could be a total action plan---and I knew just who to call---Herman in Normal, Mn.. He was a lawyer. He should know. About despair. About lawsuits. and of course--about the inverse....hope.

"Herman, what is the deal. We are being told that "HOPE is a total action plan. Just send the money and everything will be better. What is your read up in Normal, Mn?"

Herman let out a huge belly laugh-----"Shucks Wolfman. FAITH, HOPE and LOVE make the world go around---but to make sure that those three items work properly---REGULATION is important. Up here in Normal, Mn. , we know that PROFESSIONALS are called to be more than PREDATORS---and that just as back in the 60"s they were servants of the public trust---THAT is precisely what the current crisis is calling them to be once again. The only problem is that they are USING the crisis to be SUPER predators. They just do not get it. HOPE is not an effective plan. It needs a BIG STICK----like the one Harry Truman wielded in the aftermath of WWII in prosecuting the war profiteers---we now need the fear of GOD to prosecute the war profiteers over the past 8 years. "

Well. I was just stunned.

"Thanks Herman."