Monday, February 29, 2016

Happy Leap Day 

It will be busy with errands. The foot-plus of snow we got last week is almost a memory. The high temps of the last two days have reduced it considerably. We may get some rain/snow mix over night tonight but nothing like the last dump.

Here in Northern Indiana and in Chicago not too far away, spring is usually pothole season. We had a set of three by our parking spots that made getting in or out a tricky proposition. The city finally got around to throwing some asphalt into them last fall but I expect they will start growing again soon. Every year the pothole situation makes the local news in Chicago as the street crews struggle to make repairs faster than citizens have to take their cars in for repairs from running over the, often, unavoidable holes. Evidently, the problem is world wide as this article shows and people are finding some humorous, at least to the non-politicians among us, to draw attention to the failings governments to keep up.

Michael Hirsh at Politico has an interesting analysis on "Why Trump and Sanders Were Inevitable?" His description of our current political environment reminds me of what I read of the Populist era of the late 19th century. I also had a bit of a tickle in the back of my mind recalling, vaguely because it has been a long time since I read the book, Todd Gitlin's Twilight of Common Dreams. That one was about the unrest of the 1060s.

I had a fascinating little exploration on the internet today which came about because of a strange experience while shopping.. We did our normal grocery shopping and looked a small canned ham for beans tomorrow. We have a full half spiral-cut ham in the freezer but aren't going to cook it till Easter and we used the ham slices and chunks we bought late last fall. But the only canned ham in the grocery store was one that had to be refrigerated before and after opening. I remember shelves of canned hams in the sections with spam, corned beef hash and other such products but not a thing today. We found a canned pork shank product in the international section of the store and picked up one to try out. We did find a small canned ham at the local dollar store and got one of those as well. Why are the stores not carrying this item which once was ubiquitous? How did the internet enter in here? Well, I went on line at Walmart, Kmart, Target and other sites but they either don't carry anything in that line or it isn't available within 50 miles. Times have changed and we didn't realize it.

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