Happy Thoughts

Oh, it’s just a few cranky neighbors. Most people here support good infrastructure projects like this.

So it’s a happy thought that this is pretty much a done deal.

1 Like

Sounds like you live in a decent town.

People are allergic to any infrastructure improvements around here. The amount of challenges from older, retired people to basic roadworks is incredible (they are all public).

I’d say most of the people who grumble about our projects are boomers and NIMBYs, every town has them. Most of the people here think things like pedestrian/biking infrastructure are pretty important. It’s a college town, so guess what, a decent number of people walking and biking. Public transit is truly public, anyone can hop on a city bus anywhere, any time, without paying a fare.

This thread is making me want that e-bike even more now, lol.

Everybody knows how Jesse Owens went to the Olympics in Berlin and put on a show, making a mockery of Aryan superiority in front of Hitler. I either hadn’t heard or didn’t remember the story of Luz Long, the man who came in second to Jesse Owens in the long jump, and their friendship.


Carl (sometimes spelled Karl) Ludwig “Luz” Long was born April 27, 1913, in Leipzig, Germany. He practiced law in Hamburg, Germany, after graduating from the University of Leipzig. In 1936 he held the European long jump record.

Jesse had fouled twice while attempting to qualify for the long jump event. He had only one attempt left. Luz shared a technique with Jesse that helped him to qualify on his last jump. In the finals of the long jump competition Jesse jumped 8.06 meters to win; Luz finished second with a jump of 7.87 meters. Luz was the first to congratulate him. After the award ceremony, Jesse and Luz walked arm in arm through the Berlin Olympic Stadium. Luz Long was sternly spoken to by Nazi Party officials after his time spent with Jesse.

Jesse and Luz became friends at the Olympics and corresponded for years after that. Jesse would say of his Olympic friendship with Luz, “It took a lot of courage for him to befriend me in front of Hitler… You can melt down all the medals and cups I have and they wouldn’t be a plating for the twenty-four karat friendship that I felt for Luz Long at that moment.”

Luz’s last letter to Jesse in 1942 or 1943, probably written from North Africa where Luz was in the German Wehrmacht, spoke to the friendship they had:

I am here, Jesse, where it seems there is only the dry sand and the wet blood. I do not fear so much for myself, my friend Jesse, I fear for my woman who is home, and my young son Karl, who has never really known his father.

My heart tells me, if I be honest with you, that this is the last letter I shall ever write. If it is so, I ask you something. It is a something so very important to me. It is you go to Germany when this war done, someday find my Karl, and tell him about his father. Tell him, Jesse, what times were like when we not separated by war. I am saying—tell him how things can be between men on this earth.

If you do this something for me, this thing that I need the most to know will be done, I do something for you, now. I tell you something I know you want to hear. And it is true.

That hour in Berlin when I first spoke to you, when you had your knee upon the ground, I knew that you were in prayer. Then I not know how I know. Now I do. I know it is never by chance that we come together. I come to you that hour in 1936 for purpose more than der Berliner Olympiade.

And you, I believe, will read this letter, while it should not be possible to reach you ever, for purpose more even than our friendship.I believe this shall come about because I think now that God will make it come about. This is what I have to tell you, Jesse.

I think I might believe in God. And I pray to him that, even while it should not be possible for this to reach you ever, these words I write will still be read by you.

Your brother,

Carl “Luz” Long was wounded in Sicily on July 10,1943, during the Allied invasion of Sicily in Operation Husky (July 9 – August 17, 1943). He died on July 14 in a British military hospital there. Luz was buried in Motta St. Anastasia German War Cemetery in Sicily. He was 30 years old.

In 1951 Jesse Owens returned to Germany and was able to find Luz’s son, Karl (called Kai). They would stay in contact, and when Kai got married Jesse was the best man.

Jesse Owens died on March 31,1980, in Tucson, Arizona.

But the story of the friendship between Jesse and Luz has continued on with a friendship built between their families. From August 15 – 23, 2009, the 12th International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championship in Athletics was held in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium where the 1936 Olympics took place. Jesse Owens’ granddaughter Marlene (Owens) Dortch, Luz’s son Karl (Kai), and Luz’s granddaughter Julia represented the Owens and Long families at the August 22 awards presentation to the winner of the long jump.

Jesse and Luz would be proud.

Took the excerpt above from here, after seeing the story elsewhere: The Friendship of American Jesse Owens and German Carl “Luz” Long: And the 1936 Berlin XI Olympic Games – World War 2 History Short Stories


What would be a real kick in the (pants) is if that was Wisconsin and the city said to everyone getting the sidewalk, “congrats, here’s your sidewalk - here’s a bill for us putting it down, we’ll be gracious and give you 5 years to pay at (current prime +3-5%).”

My understanding is this will not be billed to homeowners. However, if and when they repair the sidewalk in front of my house, I have to pay for that. Despite the sidewalk being on city property, my property line stops about 5’ short of the sidewalk.

So going forward they are creating a new liability for some homeowners, because I think they will pay for future repairs.

1 Like

Do you know the story of Marty Glickman and Sam Stoller - The Jews who were not allowed to compete by the US, as not to insult Hitler?

Yes. It’s mentioned in that link from where I pulled that excerpt.


That’s amazing… a vaccine against a parasite. WOW!!!

Having visited sub-Saharan Africa (and taken daily malaria pills that cost over $6 a day … in a place where the average daily wage was around $2) this is a really incredible development. Women have fewer babies when the ones they do have are reasonably likely to survive to adulthood. And then they are expending far less resources on children that they don’t have (that would have died) leaving more for the ones that they DO still have.

Super cool.

1 Like

I have also taken anti-malarial medication multiple times when visiting malaria endemic countries.

For residents of those countries, I think the issue with anti-malarial medication is much bigger than cost. My sister is in the US now, but lived in malaria endemic countries in Africa for many years. She was told that people shouldn’t take anti-malarial medications long term, so she went without. Strangely she never caught it. Her husband did though, and my sister caught it when visiting her.

Having a vaccine now is huge.

1 Like

I suspect it depends on the particular drug. Gin and Tonic became a thing when the British who’d settled in Africa were taking quinine for malaria. I think you can take that long term. But the malaria in much of Africa is now resistant to it. It’s still effective in several other places. And much cheaper than Malarone! And yes… it’s still in tonic water, so drinking a gin and tonic will actually help.

Mefloquine has psychological side effects, so is not a good long-term choice. I think Doxycycline depends on how your body tolerates antibiotics. Malarone is expensive, and potent and I think not meant to be taken indefinitely. It both prevents and treats malaria.

1 Like

Payday is tomorrow, and I just remembered that our benefits like health insurance are set up so we pay twice per month. So when we have these odd months with three checks, the third one is a little fatter.



The pandas will be back at the National Zoo at the end of the year. Yay!


I hadn’t balanced my checkbook since before 04/22. There are always a number of transactions that I don’t get into the ledger right away for various reasons. They’re usually not a problem because there’s only one or two of them & I can easily figure out what they are. This time, of course, there was 1+ month’s worth of them, so I was quite concerned I’d miss one (or more!) and would have a heck of a time tracking it (them!) down.

Well, my methodical ways paid dividends (not literally!) and after clearing the last transaction quicken showed me this:



Our robotics team awards night was last night. Lots of fun, and the school district came out to announce they were giving us a couple grand to upgrade the robot this year! Plus the team gave the mentors each a $50 gift card, which was super nice.


Today I bought a watermelon at the supermarket . It’s delicious.

apropos of nothing

…at least a show about nothing…
JERRY: I don’t return fruit. Fruit is a gamble. I know that going in.


Screenshot 2024-06-10 at 2.28.59 PM


just found out i get an extra week of vacation starting this year