July 29, 2019
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And now, live from an undisclosed location, which usually doubles as our family room, it’s Week Number 408 of Life’s Journey Through Things That You Might Need to Know Some Day, brought to you in part this week by a generous grant from the I Never Knew That I Needed To Know That Foundation.
I don’t know if you heard, but not only are water levels rising on the coasts, they’re also coming up fast on the Great Lakes. I take a special interest in the latter, of course, having grown up on the shores of beautiful Lake Michigan. Which is now creeping up inch by inch. This condition is causing alarm among city and state officials and a lot of property owners, as well.
We haven’t gone up there so far this year, (maybe, with luck, in time for a Packer preseason game) but last year when we arrived we were shocked to see how much beach had disappeared in front of our favorite old hotel . We used to be able to walk out maybe a hundred feet and set up our beach chairs in the sand. That beach is now under water. The hotel has brought in huge boulders (called ‘riprap’ up in those parts) to protect itself from the lake getting any closer, but on windy days the spray will top the rocks. Guests dining in the ground floor restaurant twenty feet away from the water enjoy the show, but I’m sure management is nervous.
Up and down the shore you can see higher levels also, with some small beaches having disappeared completely, and others still holding their own. Just a mile or so north of our old hotel the most popular beach in the area seems pretty much unchanged.
These high water levels have also made pleasure boating more hazardous for the not-too-alert. Low-lying concrete piers are less visible from a boat on the water and there have been several instances of boats running right up onto and even over the piers, leading to damage and injuries in some cases. Authorities say “alcohol may have been a factor”. (No, surely not.) You can even see some of these pictures on the web. Just Google ‘speedboats running into piers on Great Lakes.’
So, is all this climate change or what? The scientists think it is, but other folks say, oh it’s just a cycle. Even it is a cycle, it doesen’t show any sign of stopping soon. Throughout the Great Lakes region they have had record rain and snow events for about three years now, and no one can say with any certainty what the future holds.
Even with all the changes, the Great Inland Seas, as the tourist folks like to call them, remain one of the best scenic wonderlands of this country and have tons of fascinating history, and even shipwrecks to explore. (I’m starting to sound like a tourism writer.)
And hey, you can even go to a Packers game. Last I heard the parking lot was not under water.
Well, in matter of Trivia, we have a first! Not ONE question was answered from last week. Re: the Royals question, Terry guessed Willie Wilson. No, sorry.
Roger guessed ‘We Five’ as the Australian pop group that Dusty Springfield’s brother wrote hits for. Not quite.
Roger also guessed Warren Beatty as the not-as-famous-as-his sister actor who was in a huge hit movie released in July of ’69. Try, try again.
Okay, let me repeat the questions: What other businesses were in the large second floor of the Blake’s/Wagaman’s building on the SW corner of Main and Lakin? I don’t know myself, but I figured someone else might.
The name of the ‘50s Presidential candidate whose grandfather had been VP under a late 19th century President? Hint: he was a Democrat and his first name begins with ‘A.’
Name of the musician who worked extensively with the Beatles in the late ‘60s, then went on to his own big career.
Name of the actor who was in a big ‘counterculture’ movie of ’69. His sister, also an actor, was a much bigger star. As was their Dad. (Oops, was that a hint?)
Three big ‘difference makers’ joined the Royals in ’73: George Brett, Frank White and…who? Hint: he excelled playing a new position in the AL.
What Australian group had two big hits written by Dusty Springfield’s brother? One of the hits was also a movie title.
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Have a peachy week. See you next Monday.