A Future Without Mercedes Benz?

Well, not really. It’s unlikely the Mercedes Benz marque will disappear from the streets anytime soon. But Daimler AG, maker of Mercedes, Smart Car and Freightliner and Western Star trucks isn’t taking chances. The German-based company recently purchased GlobeSherpa, a company that built the ticket-purchasing app for Tri-Met, Portland’s bus and light-rail operator. Daimler folded GlobeSherpa into Moovel, its company that also develops related apps for public transportation providers. Blame it on urban millennials, who aren’t buying cars like they’re supposed to.

Continue reading A Future Without Mercedes Benz?

What You Don’t Know Can’t Hurt You.

The day of our peaceful transfer of power, one of the first changes was the disappearance of the Climate Change page on whitehouse.gov. (Also disappearing: LGBT, Civil Rights. Oh, and the button for users with disabilities including a White House video tour in sign language, an explanation of links on the site for viewers to access audible screen readers, closed captioning and other services.)

  • Wildfires in the West are worse, much worse
  • Artic ice is melting; sea levels are rising
  • Oceans are becoming more acidic
  • Plants and animals are migrating
  • It’s getting hotter (yes, blizzards fit into the scientific model)

If we pretend it’s not there, it will go away.

How To Pack – without regret

During my recently ended traveling-for-work days I made many passages through the Charles M. Schulz – Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa. Alaska/Horizon Airlines offers once-a-day flights to Seattle, Portland, Orange County, San Diego and twice a day to Los Angeles. Now that I no longer need to go to Scottsdale Arizona, American Airlines is soon to begin service to Phoenix.

Alaska operates prop aircraft from Santa Rosa. A high percentage of travelers passing through security are clueless about the procedure. That’s not a problem, though. With six flights a day, a couple more in summer, and 76 passengers per flight, there’s not much anxiety and TSA people are very patient and accommodating. There is also a 100% chance your checked luggage will be inspected.


Condé Nast recently published a baggage handler’s tips for improving the chances of your belongings arriving in the same condition as when you packed them.

And just for fun: a musician’s paean to the “Worst Airline Ever.”

Engineered Grass and rBST

The damage done by the Bundy clowns wasn’t enough suffering for Malheur County. Now they’re dealing with longer-term damage caused by Scotts Miracle-Gro. Oregon’s billion-dollar grass seed industry is in peril. Who’s the villain? Besides Scotts, you can blame golfers, Japan, and Monsanto.

Continue reading Engineered Grass and rBST

Life After Rock ‘n’ Roll

Rob Leonard was an undergraduate at Columbia University in 1968 when he and his brother George transformed the school’s a-cappella group by having them dress and style their hair like 1950s punks from Brooklyn. They sang doo-wop hits from that early rock ‘n’ roll era. They added instruments and became a nationwide success as Sha Na Na. (The name is from the The Silhouettes’ hit song, “Get A Job.”) The high point for Leonard came when Jimi Hendrix asked the band to open for him at Woodstock. Rob Leonard sang the lead on “Teen Angel” prior to Hendrix electrifying the world with his “Star Spangled Banner.”

Continue reading Life After Rock ‘n’ Roll

Why Libraries Smell Funny

Even in our high-tech Internet age, libraries are still operating. Maybe not as many hours per week as a couple decades ago, maybe not as meeting places for teenagers on school nights, but they still serve a function beyond providing rest rooms for homeless people.

Just for fun, librarians responded to a survey asking what unusual things have they found inside library books. It is probably no surprise that people apparently eat while reading. Some edible surprises found inside library books:

  • Bologna
  • Pop Tart
  • Bologna
  • Uncooked bacon
  • A taco
  • French fries
  • Bologna
  • Marijuana leaf
  • Kraft Singles cheese slice
  • Pickle slices

For more, including non-food items, click here.