This and That

Beta came home last night with a scary tale of an incident suffered by one of her schoolmates: a young man she knows (an ORHS senior), went outside to bring in his cat, and a coyote jumped him, scratching his shoulder and chest in an attempt to take the cat from him.

If true (this came via my teenager and I haven’t confirmed it anywhere), this pokes a big ol’ hole in the argument that coyotes are no danger to humans, as presented by one side of a publicized neighborhood discussion about the coyote problem in Country Club Estates a couple of months ago. This incident was nearby, but on the north side of the turnpike.

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The Tennessean has a very interesting piece of black history from yesterday (hat tip: VolunteerVoters). I’d have never guessed; I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that in the various black history month things from school.

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Another Ford made the news (again). Funny, just yesterday, I told a couple of friends at lunch that my primary discomfort with Harold Jr. is his family. I know he says he’s different — I even want to believe that he is — but it’s not just a case of one rogue relative. There are so many.

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Terry Frank has been doing some homework; although there are plenty of areas where Terry and I disagree, this is a story that needs to be heard.

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The Oak Ridger covered an informational meeting about the proposed Crestpoint shopping center project on Wednesday morning, and some of the comments were very enlightening as to why this development would bring the revenues shown in the City’s estimates:

For example, Heather Tang, an Oak Ridge mother of three, said she spends at least $200 a week at the Turkey Creek Target, buying a variety of items including clothes, food, and diapers.

“I would much rather spend it in Oak Ridge than drive over to Knoxville,” Tang said.

Some of the critics have challenged the revenue estimates on the basis that Oak Ridgers can’t spend that much more, but the quote above precisely illustrates the counter-argument: it’s not that we will spend more, but that we will spend more here instead of elsewhere.

I don’t doubt that Wal-Mart will lose a little business with competition in town after my own experience yesterday. In a hurry, needing to pick up just two pizzas and some orange juice, I got in the shortest of the quick checkout lanes on the grocery end of the store — with only one woman ahead of me. Unfortunately, she was buying a pet fish (which appeared to me to be already dead). She told the checkout clerk that she needed a fishbowl, but couldn’t reach them, so… yes. The clerk left her cash register to go all the way to the other end of the store and get a fishbowl…

I changed lanes, getting behind an elderly lady with more than 20 items, but figured it would still be faster than waiting for the fishbowl. It wasn’t — I don’t think this lady has anyone to talk to, so she chatted and chatted with the polite 20-something young man at the register (about her tractor, how last year’s drought affected her greens, that it’s time to plant this year’s greens but they need rain at a certain stage, and on and on). It was apparent that he didn’t know her personally, but had spoken just enough to get her started. Even when her order was finished and she had her receipt in hand, she stood and continued chatting. Even when MY four items were rung up and totaled, she stayed and kept chatting — keeping me from reaching the card reader so I could pay for my stuff and get out of there.

If Target has a self-checkout, it will be well worth driving the extra three blocks.

3 Responses to “This and That”

  1. on 23 Feb 2007 at 9:11 pm Jacket

    NM,

    I find Frank rather incredible. She is such a rabid wing nut, and I have found some of her information to be well… inaccurate and what she writes is laughable.

    Please don’t fall into her trap and for sure don’t turn into her clone.

    The only foreign “yellow cake” in Oak Ridge is from Libya. Don’t you think if there was evidence of this substance in Iraq with all the flack the administration has gotten over WMD’s they would be parading it around, not classifying the info? Their major justification for the war and it is kept a secret? To what end?

    I doubt very seriously that a rabid blogger would break a WMD story of such magnitude. Her goal is 15 minutes of fame, to defend this administration and the extreme right wing of the Republican Party to the end. Hopefully we can all see through this charade.

  2. on 24 Feb 2007 at 8:26 am Joel

    The Terry Frank post is hilarious! I had no idea there were still such primitives out in the country who continued to recycle this sort of long-debunked propaganda. There is so much silliness in her post, I won’t waste bandwidth fisking her every distortion. Here are just a few:

    “Also, Saddam had tried to import enforced aluminum tubing which some think could be used to build centrifuge enrichment process—the modern method of enriching uranium.”

    Uh, no. No informed American thinks that the aluminum tubing could have been used to build centrifuges. That was an administration lie that was debunked long ago. The tubes were for Nasser-81 ground-to-ground conventional rockets.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/library/report/2004/isg-final-report/isg-final-report_vol2_nuclear-05.htm

    It should tell you something that Terry Franks continues to recycle this lie.

    “In other words, why have no major media outlets, Congress, the Republican Party, or even the President, given the American public the information to make their own decisions regarding the intentions of Saddam Hussein and his storage of over 1 million pounds of uranium?”

    Uh, they were. This story has been around for years. Sorry you couldn’t read.

    http://www.mahablog.com/oldsite/id13.html
    http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/003502.php
    http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2005/7/17/171214.shtml

    The reason most intelligent and informed people didn’t wet their pants over this the way Terry (belatedly) is, is because yellowcake uranium is useless to make a bomb. Yellowcake is not a WMD. Saddam had no weapons-grade uranium. Saddam had no nuclear weapons program. No amount of hyperventilating over old news is gonna change that, Terry.

    “Providing the information on what Saddam did possess is a necessary step in allowing the American public the ability to make their own determination of what Saddam Hussein’s intentions were or were not.”

    Uh, no. Intentions cannot be deduced from possessions. In my lab, for instance, I have chemicals that could kill hundreds and give cancer to thousands more. What are my intentions?

    “In the meantime, printing a news story like this one is often the opportunity to see who doesn’t mind making a fool of themselves.”

    In this case, the fool is Terry Frank. I’m not surprised.

    Netmom, Terry Frank is an ignorant rube. Why do you link to her?

  3. on 01 Mar 2007 at 10:24 am Ellen Smith

    Coyotes

    Your daughter’s friend’s story about the coyote incident is credible. (Although teenage boys have been known to fabricate to impress girls, there’s no reason to think that’s what’s happening here.)

    The Oak Ridger’s disjointed coverage of the meeting in Country Club Estates notwithstanding, the speaker at that meeting (which I attended) did not completely dismiss the potential risks from these animals. They do kill cats and they have been known to attack people. (Come to think of it, I’ve had a few similar experiences with domestic dogs.)

    The Environmental Quality Advisory Board is planning to disseminate some public information on living with coyotes. Reality lies somewhere between the fearmongering about these critters that was decried at that meeting (“Oh my God, the coyotes are coming to carry off grandma!”) and the fantasy that they are cute and harmless.

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