Saturday, August 09, 2003


I drove up to New Hampshire this afternoon to get my monthly ration of carcinogens. Old Golds are half price and it's a lovely ride on Route 63. Took the River Road shortcut, a straight shot through the wide fields on either side of the road. Only passed one tractor but drove through three miles of kamikaze barn swallows. They always get so close I wonder why their dead bodies are not littering the road. I think they must have radar like bats. Hard to tell the difference sometimes in the failing light.

Stopped in for my evening beer at the 63 Roadhouse in Millers Falls. Tell you the truth, I've always found Millers creepy and the only reason I stop there is that my ex-next door neighbor Jamie, is running this bar. Jamie was the best neighbor I ever had. We went through a lot together in 3 or 4 years and transited from strangers, to lovers, to ex-lovers, to best friends. It appears I can add ex-best friend to the list. I ended the affair long before he hooked up with the woman who bought this bar but he promised me she wouldn't come between us. He was wrong.

I've been there maybe four times since he left last December. If she's there, he's not really allowed to talk to me. I was glad they were both absent today. I find it vaguely disturbing to see him in this milleu. He used to look so good in a white shirt. I work hard not to judge the choice.

Ultimately it turned out to be an interesting stop. One of the five people at the bar asked a question that I had not only never thought to ask, but didn't know the answer to. How do clams make babies? The question captured my imagination so much I took a short tour through the hood and made a survey before I googled. As it unfolded, I found I had more questions. Never mind sex, how do they bury themselves at all without feet? No one knew for sure but there were a lot of theories. The best guesses came from Ron Sarazin and Iron Mike. Paul claimed to have seen two clams having intercourse with their necks but quote of the day comes from John who countered my expressions of disbelief to that theory with:

Haven't you ever heard of a clam bed?

It turns out that clams actually do have a foot that allows them to dig into the sand. They reproduce externally however the female gestates the eggs internally and expells larva that attaches to the gills and tail of passing fish. When they get big enough they fall off the fish and live the rest of their little mollusk lives in the sand. By the way, the rings on their shells do correspond to their age and the expression happy as a clam actually derives from a longer saying, happy as a clam at high tide, which makes much more sense. That's the only time they can't get raked out of their sandy beds...



Drug Sense and DRC Net both have great newsletters this week and worth reading in full if you have the time. Best story of the week is about the teacher who received a settlement on a wrongful termination suit. She was fired for teaching about the ecological benefits of industrial hemp, grown legally almost everywhere else in the world, and not a drug in any sense of the word.


CNN is running a new poll tonight on decrim. Current results:

Do you believe marijuana should be decriminalized?

Yes 91% 7661 votes

No 9% 730 votes
Total: 8391 votes

Seeing a trend here? What I don't get is how they can keep ignoring these kind of numbers inside the beltway.


Speaking of the beltway, DRC Net reminds us that even though the legislature is on August recess, there is still work to be done. Your Congress critters are home for the summer. Good time to say hello and mention the upcoming amendments that still need to be passed.


Oddly, the last word of the day goes to the Sauk County Board chair. The indefatigable Ben Masel is staring down prohibitionist Paul Endres, who has only a couple of more weeks to appeal a good decision striking down a ridiculously unconstitutional ordinance created specifically to shut out the Wisconsin Weedfest. In response to Ben's relentless fight to uphold the First Amendment and our right to enjoy a beneficial plant, Endres says:

"At this point we have not decided to do anything."



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