Paul From Minneapolis

Thursday, March 23, 2006

It's not a hoax!!

It's weird, though. The guys who snagged her are acting, given the whole situation, with some wisdom, it seems to me. (They're not gonna submit her for a record.)

More during the day.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Is this a hoax!!??!


25.1 pounds, supposedly. Caught, weighed - released!

This is so much bigger - almost 3 pounds more - than the current ancient record, which has long been the Holy Grail of fishing records; I’ll write more about it later. But this is like Bob Beamon at the '68 Olympics. It's completely absurd. If it’s true, this fellow “Mac Weakley” is rich. (That's not him holding the fish; it's his pal.)

Is it any kind of clue at all that the angler's name is so strikingly similar to the name of the newspaper at my alma mater? Seems a little odd. Although it would also be odd for my Minnesota college newspaper to be somehow involved.

The guy in the photo may be engaged that age-old trick of holding the fish close to the camera. Still, it's one hell of a bass.

Update: Weird story. She came from a tiny lake. (Monster bass are always “she.”) A select few have been aware of this specific bass for years. She's been caught twice, weighing more than 20 pounds both times. Now, she was spotted on her nest in mating season, meaning probably bloated further with eggs, and a couple different teams spent hours over two days casting to her specifically.

I would guess the average bass nesting spot is maybe three feet across: meaning we have here a fish lazing about in an area defined just about exactly by the diameter of your typical barrel.

Then, when caught, she was foul-hooked, which I think is illegal if done intentionally but which happens. (Foul-hooked means hooked other than in the mouth, like in the back or tail. It usually happens when a fish swipes and is missed, but the hook sets on the fish anyway. It's just considered less real, less sporting, although when you think about it, why? It’s just creepy somehow.)

Purposeful foul-hooking definitely disqualifies a fish from record consideration but it's unclear about accidental, which this definitely was.

It seems the fishermen made the right decision: let's release her and see what the reaction is. They may not actively pursue the record. I think they can fairly reliably verify the weight, by the way.

Of course now everyone in the world knows of this one bass. On a tiny lake. Weird.

Friday, March 17, 2006

"Crazy arms..."

"...that reach to hold... somebody new..."

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Do you we believe we should legalize polygamy?

So far today I've asked two co-workers that question, and the responses started with "Of course not" and moved on to "Good God no!"

If you fall into that instinctual range somewhere, then much-hated conservative Strib columnist Katherine Kersten says something worth listening to today. Katherine’s offerings often are not shall we say impregnably well-argued, but this one isn’t too bad.

It concerns gay marriage. It relates to the derided conservative perspective that legalizing gay marriage may lead to other societal changes.

Did you catch HBO's new prime-time series, "Big Love," which premiered Sunday? It's about a Utah man married to three wives.
The creators of "Big Love" are a gay couple, Mark Olsen and Will Scheffer, who say that the same-sex marriage debate spurred their interest in the topic.
They seek to normalize polygamy by treating it in a "non-judgmental" way.
"It's everything that every family faces, just times three," Olsen told Newsweek. "We'd like them to be America's next great family," Scheffer told the New York Times.

There are legal implications she touches on, too. Mr. and Mr. Olsen-Scheffer's series is not the only topic.

How many liberals upon reading this and considering the argument will decide hey – maybe polygamy isn’t so bad after all? When you think about it, it does offer a chance for their favorite indulgence. In fact it’s a moral imperative: when in doubt, tolerate.

I'm betting reader Steve will have something to say on this.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

I didn't take this picture.

Wish I had, though. (Jonah G at the Corner found it somewhere; he doesn't say where.)

Quick update: I think this is simply a fake picture; I think this may be the original source, which seems to be a site specializing in fake pictures, going by some of the others in the same slide show. Perhaps Goldberg thought that was obvious, that it was a joke. If I'm any kind of guide to normal human reactions, maybe it isn't so obvious? I mean this is Howard Dean we're talking about. I can envision a situation where he might be handed a kitten on stage, and that is his normal facial expression. Seems plausible.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Grain and Railroads

(I should get a tripod, although those look okay small.)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Have I ever mentioned Joe Soucheray?

We're lucky to have him, here in the Twin Cities. Used to be a sports columnist; now he's a generalist. Knows what it means to write a column.

Patrick Reusse at the Strib is another one.

You can make an argument that Minnesota has been the best place to be a baseball fan, for some time now. One reason has been these guys, who have always written across the river from each other, but at one point traded papers. That was weird. In fact I think it was 1988, right after the first Series win. Combined with the chowder-headed Brunansky-Tommy Herr trade, it made for a lot of talk.

We'll see you tomorrow night.

(Update/instructions: Click to enlarge; then if you left-click the enlarged version a little box with arrows appears in the lower right, and if you click that the picture gets bigger yet. Allowing for reading of letters, if you want.)

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Fort Snelling

The Marching Grounds today.

That's the Highland Park water tower in St. Paul in the distance.


Friday, March 03, 2006

One problem with discussion board dialog... that nearly everybody thinks they're smarter than everyone else. (Which gets to be a particularly frustrating problem for those who actually are.)

A Trip to Milles Lacs

Late afternoon on the lake: the famous ice-fishing scene at Milles Lacs.
Many trucks.
From the casino hotel window.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

“Death before dhimmitude.”

That’s expressed in a comment below this post, one of many you'll see concerning a new "intellectuals’ Manifesto against Islamism."

They're mostly Muslim intellectuals, or at least semi-Muslim, so that's good. The Manifesto's not long yet it’s complex: there are turns of phrase that could point back at the US, for instance. But essentially, it’s all about pointing clearly at the modern Great Enemy of the morally serious. (Other than me, that is.)

“Death before dhimmitude," though: that’s interesting. I imagine I know people who won’t sign up for that.