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Showing posts from November, 2005

Mainer maps fate of Louisiana coast

Today's Portland Press Herald features Joe Kelley, a Maine geologist who is serving on a National Research Council (National Academies) panel advising federal and local officials on restoring and protecting coastal Louisiana . Their work was completed this summer, but they reconvened in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Kelley has had considerable positive influence on the management of Maine beaches, and I have found him to be straightforward and enviably objective. So, having made statements here and here about addressing the devastation, I now wish to share excerpts that will further refine my position... In an interview this week, Kelley said federal and local officials have unrealistic expectations. ... Kelley believes officials should abandon some areas of the delta with a policy of "managed retreat" and focus on projects that are more important to the nation's economic interests. This fits my view well. I will need to alter my mindset, though, to accept an

Why Supporting Feral Cat Colonies is Wrong

On the front page of its latest newsletter, Another Chance Animal Rescue proudly described its activities supporting a feral cat colony in southern Maine. While those involved must be good-hearted people, their actions can have severe negative consequences for wild birds and other animals. Cats hunt small mammals like mice, voles, shrews, moles, and chipmunks. Cats hunt birds like warblers, wrens, chickadees, sparrows, and cardinals. By killing small animals, cats are reducing biodiversity, sometimes virtually eliminating native species. By removing small animals from natural environments, they are also removing a prey base for naturally occurring predators like hawks, owls, and foxes. Domestic felines should be just that: house cats. Incidentally, the Another Chance Animal Rescue Mission Statement suggests that supporting feral cat colonies is outside their intended purpose. The organization's board ought to examine this activity and withdraw its support.

one red paperclip

Watching what it might be worth one day :

Thanksgiving Snowman

Our Thanksgiving Snowman, bridging fall and winter, thanks to C & A, who proved an inch of snow can be enough.

Liz Carroll and John Doyle set lists

A warm, relaxed, highly satisfactory evening at the Center for Cultural Exchange in Portland, Maine, with Liz Carroll (fiddle) and John Doyle (guitar and vocals). It would seem we benefited by being the last date on their tour, and of 2005 -- they were loose and congenial, though perhaps that is normal for them. Thankful to be there, right up front, absorbing. The following is likely riddled with errors, but is based on notes taken during the performance. Corrections appreciated. Fremont Center The "Vornado" Minutemen Dennehy Dancers McSweeney's Side A Pound of Rye Ronan Boys Ralph's 2-3-5 Hanley's House of Happiness The Apprentice Boy 2 unidentified reels Kieran's Polka County Cahill [magical hare] unidentified John Doyle jig, jig, reel Jack Dolan (Wild Colonial Boy) Old Bush Expect the Unexpected The Island of Woods Bitter the Parting unidentified 2 with Ellen Gawler The Tractor Driver A Tune for the Girls I Know My Love 3 unident

The Standoff

Originally posted to MAINE-BIRDS... This morning: "Our pheasant is back!" Fifteen seconds later: "There's another one!" And within a minute we were watching five of them, two cocks and three hens, from the dining room window. They gathered under the burning bush and wandered a bit. They were unfazed by cars passing 20 feet away. Getting ready for work took precedence over pheasant watching, but during one pass by the window I noticed they were looking pretty skittish. A neighbor across the street? No. Nothing out of the ordinary until... "Hey, Scott, there's a hawk out there." Indeed there was. Perched in the burning bush, less than a meter away from the five prospective breakfasts, was a large accipiter. For the next ten minutes, I watched a fascinating game of cat and mouse, as the hawk tried to catch one of the pheasants. The accipiter flew around the bush, but the pheasants kept moving to the opposite side. The hawk tried catching them on

Systems test results

GuppY's out. Too-frequent updates, language barrier, some question about branding, uncertainty about strength and flexibility. Joomla's out. Too difficult. Too much rigidity in templates. Overkill? WordPress sidelined. Blogger holding its own, despite its shortcomings. For "personal" effort, it will do. Plenty of learning to do elsewhere. Textpattern building steam. Highly approachable. Textcentricity appeals. Static is still straightforward. And familiar. Jury's still out.