Maine: The Week in Review Blog Archive 2010
It’s easy to forget exactly how long you’ve been married. Or to how many people. Or whether there were divorces in between.
It’s tricky remembering important dates, such as dental checkups, dog grooming appointments and the birthday of the current spouse.
Last winter, a U.S. Census worker showed up in my isolated neighborhood with plastic bags full of fun facts and even funner forms. I had just finished shoveling my front porch, so I walked down to meet her.
“Are there more houses up there?” she asked, pointing toward the part of our road that doesn’t get plowed. “My map shows two more places.”
“Yes,” I said, “but there’s nobody there in the winter.”
Many years ago, my friend Elizabeth Peavey and I convinced a reluctant editor at Casco Bay Weekly to let us do a story on Portland’s best and worst bar bathrooms. We even talked him into giving us an expense account.
“A lot of these places won’t let you use the rest rooms unless you buy something,” Peavey explained.
“How much do you think you’ll need?” the editor asked, nearly concealing his inherent skepticism.
In my many, many years as a college undergraduate, I sat through a lot of excruciatingly dull classes. In part, this was because I selected my courses each semester based not on some vague goal of graduating and getting a job, but on when and where classes were held.
My rules were simple: nothing before 10 a.m., nothing after 2 p.m., and nothing above the second floor in buildings with no elevator.
If I was the sort of person who liked old progressive rock of the sort that numbed the brain into a state of extreme stupidity even without the use of illegal mind-altering substances, I’d have pulled out my scratchy LP copy of whatever Pink Floyd album contained the seemingly endless space opera titled “Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun,” one of the few songs ever recorded that’s actually longer than this sentence.
For any sensible journalist, the one topic that seems to cause warning signals to start flashing is a discussion of the differences among the various races. I’ve never understood this timidity.
Perhaps, that’s because, living in Maine as I do, I’ve had somewhat less experience dealing with different races than writers in other states. But I reject the idea that Maine is so uniformly of one mind about races that there’s no room for diversity.
When I was a kid growing up in Maine, my family lived in a cave. When I was twelve, somebody invented fire, and we had heat and didn’t have to eat raw meat. A few years later, we got a TV, which showed us fuzzy black-and-white pictures of the luxurious lives led by the residents of such exotic locations as Los Angeles, New York, and Bedrock.
I don’t pretend to be an expert in matters concerning pregnancy. I understand how it happens, having studied all the relevant aspects, both in high school biology and extra-curricularly.
Thank goodness that’s finally over.
The ridiculous statements.
The endless advertising.
The fierce competition and the bitter recriminations once the results were final.
Yes, the World Series is done for another year.
Wait, what did you think I meant?
The election? There was an election?
Stay indoors at all times.
If you have a gun, make sure it’s cleaned and loaded. Keep it with you wherever you go, including the shower.
If you see movement in your yard, call the police.
Come to think of it, call the police even if you don’t see movement. I mean, what are you paying taxes for, anyway?
You need to take all these precautions because Maine is under siege.
Here are the grim facts, as I have freely interpreted them.