So we’re not moving.

It was just something my wife mentioned before she headed out to vote, speculating on the results. Of course, where? Edina? A lady over in that placid burb got carjacked in her driveway at 9 AM the other morning, at gunpoint.

I voted in person on the day of election, as God and George Washington intended, and afterwards was invited to take a sticker that said I VOTED! I declined, because they always seem a tad precious. Yeah that’s great but for what and for whom? Being proud of voting is like wearing a sticker that said I DID NOT DEFECATE ON A PUBLIC SIDEWALK, which is also something you shouldn’t get applause for proclaiming. It’s the bare minimum.

As I write this, the “reimagine public safety” initiative - and I should note that we have been doing that for the last year, all right - is down 13, and that seems decisive. I may wander over to Reddit to hear the renting of teeth and wailing of garments and gnashing of loins. There’s a contingent on r/Minneapolis intent on downplaying crime, usually accompanied by an explanation of why people do bad things, and the things we must do to stop it, which are akin to whittling down Gibraltar with an emory board. The criminals, of course, have no agency, mere leaves buffeted about by a malevolent wind.

Ah: local twitter is saying this will lead to more burnings of police stations. I didn’t hear that persuasive argument before the election.

The ballot initiative that allows the City Council to pass a rent-control ordinance passed, so stop back in ten years to see how that solved homelessness and increased the quantity of low- and middle-income housing stock.

The Park Board elections will be interesting. In most years this would be an absurd statement, but last year the Park Board allowed people to live in the parks, leading to various encampments that had all the usual problems. The parks are one of the points of pride for Minneapolis, and the idea that people could now live there, in a tent, and crap in the grass - well. It was another one of those moments of strange impotence: this is wrong. Why is it permitted? Why is it encouraged? Is this the way it’s always going to be?

We’ll see. Minneapolis has been safe and prosperous for a long time, microwaving the seed corn without consequences. Because there was a lot of seed corn. The last year was the inevitable apotheosis. Turns out people want safety, clean parks, and punishment for people who shoot other people or steal cars at gunpoint. Half a million of Open Society money didn’t change their minds? Well, the lesson is obvious.  Spend twice as much next time! People got a glossy flier every other day? Should have hit them twice as often.

Maybe once everyone's been carjacked, we'll agree that the Current System just isn't working for all, and get rid of the Current System.

Really, it's so obvious, you wonder why people balk.


I’ve no idea why I paid a dollar for four Coca-Cola checks, but I did. Let us examine the style of the various eras:

1940s, Opelika AL. It’s an ABC Check, which apparently was a company you could count on. Watermarks. Hold it to the light. Your guarantee of the real deal.

1950s: a check cut to the Tenth Avenue Garage and Body Shop for sales, in the round amount of $3.00.


1960s: cleaner design, but somehow missing something. It’s unbalanced.

Let’s head back to the 30s for a closer look.

That’s a classic check.

Never heard that term.

They put this on the check, as if they had to push their advantages at every opportunity:

The official stamp. Not valid without it.

The machine could change the amount, if you rolled the little tumblers:

This, it seems, is the way they could surely cancel the check. It had this, it was dead:

Mr. Robert Taylor:

The Taylors had the bottler until 1977, and their descendants are still in Ottumwa, giving interviews to the town paper about Dad and Grandpa’s days in the trade.



It’s 1918. The culture’s quite different than it was four years ago, for some strange reason I can’t quite put my finger on . . . oh! Right! War and the total mobilization of the culture at the behest of the central government. It changed them more than the flu would.

What’s the big thing in the middle?

Let’s bring the boys chocolate and cigarettes.



The Talk of the Town! The graphics seem a bit off. Maybe ten years out of style.

When the schools shall reopen? Right! Flu.

Good for good ol’ Bert Clow. Sam’s out with the grippe, probably. Mrs. Wood, same.



If you went back in time and said to the RAF lads “This will be excellent practice for the next time Jerry really gets you on the back foot.”

Ha ha yes indeed, and - hold on, what? Next time?

It’s total, I tell you. HOUSEWIVES CAN WIN THE WAR.

Fruit stones. They were fighting poison gas with fruit stones.



  Of interest to the housewife, but maybe not the husband. What, cauliflower stalks and egg-free dessert again?

Uncle Sam, going over the top for the YMCA and other morale-making orgs.


Finally: you, Mr. Patriotic American. Ever thought of leaving the country for good?

The amount of work required . . . was remarkable. But of course, they did it. One had to work, and one had to eat. Canada it is, then!



  That will  have to do. Head back to the 50s now, if you like.




blog comments powered by Disqus