Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Rightouslature

I snuck into my local tobacconist yesterday and heard a funny thing.

After I parked several stores away, looked like I was confused about where I was going and appeared to stumble into the Tinder Box across from Fashion Place Mall, I was safely inside. Luckily they have dark windows and lots of kitch in front so no one can see you.

I headed directly to the room sized humidor in the back to fondle some cigars. I mumbled "hi" to the clerk and spotted the door of the giant cigar keeper, when I was stopped by a stupid looking railing.

The railing barred entry to the humidor with the ominous warning "No One Under 19 Allowed". It was about three feet high with swinging gates strategically located about 5 feet from the door of the humidor so if you bolted for the entrance to cigar heaven you would probably be tackled by the elderly lady clerk before you were able to brake the plane of the "adults only" area.

I felt less embarrassed heading for the back room at the Blue Boutique (just kidding honey, I have never been there).

I confidently (after all I was 19 when Jimmy Carter was in office) strode thru the barrier and asked out loud, "what the heck is this?"

The kindly lady behind the counter said "That's the work of the Utah Rightouslature". I congratulated her on this keen observation and asked if I could use this name, after all it applies to so many more instances than just tobacco tax. She gladly granted me a lifetime, royalty free license to use this wonderful name for our esteemed law makers.

So I sit here, in the privacy of my back patio, smoking one of the last cigars in Utah unencumbered by the huge increase in taxes. I salute you mighty men and women of our law making body. If it weren't for you ,we, the poor humble populous, wouldn't know it wasn't right to be doing this. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, or the heart of my bottom.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Global Warming is For Sissys

The Flat Earth Society, Utah chapter, has finally found someone willing to risk their reputation to say that there is no scientific evidence that humans are causing global warming. Really.

In a half page colour advert (you will see my reason for the English spelling) on page A20 of this past Sunday's "The Best Newspaper Ever" the Viscount Monckton (or is that Mockn') of Brenchley (a small town 100 miles SE and 100 million years away from London in the UK ) will amaze and dazzle us with his expertise in the area of the science, economics and politics of global warming (whom Al Gore refuses to debate - so the article says).

The article goes on to say - and I am quoting here - "'Global Warming' is No Global Crisis. Is there really an apocalyptic threat to the planet requiring a complete transformation of the US government? Does Congress really need to shut down five-sixths of the US economy and impose on you a 19th century standard of living?"

First notice the inner set of quotation marks around the words "Global Warming" like it is a false label. What is he talking about with the governmental transformation and 5/6 economic elimination? Sounds like someone was stuck with a lot of buggy whips when that thing the automobile came along. Will he produce his Jules Verne time machine also.

As as scientist (I got my BS in geology) I know the earth is a living organism. I also can intuitively deduce that 6 billion people burning fossil fuels will have an impact on that organism. I know science can take many forms and with something this complex it is reasonable to think there will be conflicting results from studies done, but I don't want to risk my future on something that looks inevitable to me.

If nothing else, we will some day soon run out of fossil fuel and will need an alternative. Why not do something proactive and beneficial for the living organism we call home now, rather than react when things get really bad?

We already see the effects of something. The water shortages, the polluted rivers, shrinking glaciers, weather extremes and natural disasters. Wouldn't it be best to do something to improve our lot as a whole civilization and make our stay here more sustainable for us and our descendants than come to the end of the road, stair off a cliff and wish we had read the map?

It only makes sense to think of this planet as a finite resource and one that will need our management to be sustainable. We do it with forests, game, birds and water, why not see the whole planet as something we need to preserve.

Back to Lord Crackpoton. On Tuesday March 23rd you can choose to listen to a ney-sayer and feel good that the sky isn't falling and that you don't have to cut back consuming, or you can choose to do something to preserve this earth.

I recommend we do some act of service for the earth on March 23rd to counteract the effects this "Major Utah Forum" will have on the state. Let's hope it doesn't convince too many people and maybe it will get some to thinking about preservation of resources.

As a side note this Utah Event is being held in Utah valley. I'm surprised it isn't being held in conjunction with a certain university down there. For those who care, that isn't a religious barb, it is borne out of pure guile from many decades of rivalry with that university. You see, I got my degree from THE University of Utah.

Monday, March 8, 2010


In a fit of disgust over my present condition (I am about 25 lbs overweight) and in talking to my son and daughter in law who have both run several marathons, I think I committed myself to running the St. George Marathon.

I have been running for several years and have participated in a number of 5Ks and a few 10Ks. I am feeling like recently I have not gotten the exercise I wanted so when the topic came up I put my chips in and said "call".

The good thing about the St. George Marathon is that it is about 27 weeks away. That gives me a lot of time to prepare. The even better thing is that so many people want to run this Marathon that places are given out by lottery. That means I could not get picked.

Really I have always wanted to run a marathon, I just didn't have the patience when I was younger. With the help of some online coaching, schedules and prayer for a more relaxed temperment, I will start the process. There are several 5Ks this summer and my wife has expressed an interest in a Triathalon (we did a few several years ago). Even if I don't draw out on the St. George Marathon I can put my training regimen to work on these other events.

So here is to a healthy and injury free summer. Wish me luck.