As of Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Good ol’ days
Right now you’re probably asking yourself, “Self? Why does tinsel town like to raise malaise these days?” Well, if you were around in the late ‘60s, you might recall that’s when a slow and subtle moral deterioration began to infiltrate the American entertainment industry. And as the years crept by, TV and movies shrewdly and rudely increased more and more dreadful, deplorable depravity … replacing thought-provoking conversation with “low as you can go gutter mutter.” All this numbskull “plot free” nonsense has caused an increase of gratuitous explosions and flaming gun barrels to make sure the film is long enough. In the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s, we were treated to superb writing, acting and directing with both drama and comedy plots dreamed up by clever, clear minds and remarkable imaginations. And America loved it! (Even without the “must hear” obscene language.) Who is to blame for all the shame? “Hollywood be thy name.”
We used to go to Laurance Lake for family picnics, boating, fishing or just driving through to enjoy the beauty. A few times, we took out-of-town company just to brag and show what surrounds us every day.
Recently, we drove to Laurance Lake. We were stunned to see what greeted us right at the entrance.
First was the smell that took our breath away. A foul, dirty bathroom smell. Second was the three huge garbage containers overflowing with stacks of garbage, piled high and spilled over. A disappointing first impression.
Then, to top it off, we’re expected to pay to get in? It really was a sad sight. It made me feel bad.
My question is, who is, or who should be, taking care of this once peaceful getaway?
Drink it in
Oregon could be in for a long term and serious drought like California. If Nestle has a bottling plant in Cascade Locks, they could drain scarce water from the Cascades like they’re doing in the parched San Bernadine National Forest of California.
I don’t see a problem here. I’m sure if you and your family were dying of thirst they’d be happy to sell you back a few bottles your water.
Aviary poetic injustice
I read with interest the story in the July 25 edition, about the gallant rescue of a nest of house swallows. The picture that accompanied the story showed a bird that looked like a house sparrow. I could, in fact, find no information online about house swallows, but there is plenty on house sparrows. While I am impressed by the lengths the contractors went to, to spare the lives of the nestlings, I found it rather ironic. House sparrows decimate native species. Often by evicting them from their nests!
Being a bird lover, but certainly no expert, before I dared to pen my thoughts, I consulted several recognized authorities. Some readers may be interested to know the house sparrow is an invasive import to North America, introduced on the east coast in the 1850s, by immigrants (human ones) with the romantic inclination to have the company of these creatures from their former homes in Europe. Since then, the population of these birds (some call them vermin) has spread all across North America.
These birds are aggressive, clever and adaptable. Fearless of humans, they live freely among us, exploiting the excess and debris of our haste and negligence. They have become some of the most widespread species on the planet. But then, so have we. Thanks to Google, Wikipedia, Audubon and the Humane Society, I have learned that house sparrows and European starlings (another romantic import) are responsible for a drastic decline of native species. Of note is Eugene Schieffelin’s introduction of House sparrows and European starlings, among others, in New York’s Central Park in the 1890s. It seems Mr. Schieffelin had a great love of Shakespeare and birds. So much so that he sponsored the immigration of many species. By importing these birds into the new world, you might say he perpetuated a case of poetic injustice.