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Wide White: August 2009

Friday, August 28, 2009

Bike helmets

The latest Obama snafu is pretty silly if you ask me.
No-helmet Obama sparks ire

Barack Obama's helmetless bike ride on Martha's Vineyard on Thursday has sparked a mini-controversy for those who thought the move set a bad example.

On, a website for parents, Josh Loposer write, "Truly despicable isn't it? What kind of example is he setting for the nation’s youth?"
The Chicago Tribune wrote that one of its photo editors was outraged ("What kind of fool doesn't wear a helmet while biking?") and wrote the White House in protest.
So, Obama smokes and people hardly make a peep, yet he fails to wear a helmet while riding at the pace of a slow jog and it creates an uproar? Clearly there are a lot of people I don't understand.

This brings up a good story.

The worst bike accident I had was in high school during a 3-block ride from the bank to my dad's office. I was standing and pedaling as hard as I could in traffic, which was fairly slow downtown in a small town, but fast enough for me on a bike.

Suddenly my bike came to a screeching halt and I was promptly catapulted over my handlebars and on to the pavement. My bike landed on top of me. My handlebars were parallel with the front tire. My right pedal was shot.

I was shot. My leg (I was wearing shorts) was a skinned up mess and my arm wasn't doing much better.

As I hobbled the last half-block to my dad's office and called my mom to come get me, I pondered what could have happened to have caused my bike to stop so suddenly.

I've only ever come to one conclusion. In the sticky, 95-degree humidity, I decided I didn't need to wear my bike helmet for the 3-block ride. So, I hung it from my handlebar.

I'm fairly confident that my helmet got caught up in the brake mechanism, locking it up.

I crashed because I decided my bike helmet should protect my handlebar rather than my head.

So I think Obama came to the right conclusion: if you aren't going to wear a helmet on your head, don't wear one at all...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Confusing napkin logic

As I was ironing my wife's napkins this evening (no, I'm not making that up), I asked from the other room what she was doing.

Jamie: "Looking up different ways to fold napkins."
Me: "So once I'm done ironing them, you're going to fold them so we have to iron them again."
Jamie: "No."

I'm still confused...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Good luck Bemidji

Hopefully they don't have the same problems with VenuWorks that Burnsville has had.
The decision between the two firms that are proposed to manage the Bemidji Regional Event Center came down to personality.

VenuWorks is now the city’s preferred choice to manage the BREC. The Bemidji City Council on Monday voted 6-1, with Councilor Barb Meuers opposed, to begin negotiating with VenuWorks.
There are a few pieces in this story that should make Burnsville residents scratch their heads:
The Burnsville Performing Arts Center, according to a July article in the Pioneer Press, lost almost $280,000 in its first four months of operations.

The Burnsville City Council had commissioned a study in 2006 that estimated the center would, in a worst-case scenario, run at an annual shortfall of $300,000 for the first five years, the Pioneer Press reported.

Hellquist said VenuWorks and the general manager candidates – one of whom was the Burnsville general manager – did address the Burnsville situation.

Their explanation, Hellquist said, was that it was a combination of the facility’s structure, funding and how it was run that all contributed to the center’s current situation.
So, our PAC's general manager is applying for the Bemidji job and the big problem with the Burnsville Performing Arts Center is its structure (no idea what that's supposed to mean), funding (it's been built and we're paying for VenuWorks...what else is needed?) and how it's run (um, isn't VenuWorks running it?).

Sounds to me like VenuWorks is blaming the City of Burnsville for the problems they're having running the place. Does the city know that?

Seems to me that there's plenty of blame to go around here...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The best response I've ever heard to the comment, "I was close."

Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Flag what?

If you receive any email or video against the new health care bill, the White House wants you to forward it to them at

Here's an except from their call to arms:
Scary chain emails and videos are starting to percolate on the internet, breathlessly claiming, for example, to "uncover" the truth about the President’s health insurance reform positions.
Well, I didn't know my dissent was scary (or breathless)!

Well, I emailed I thought I'd let them know about a load of "disinformation" that I found here.

For those who didn't click the link, it will take you to a copy of the health reform bill.

Thanks Shoebox.