Moments to cherish in a small town, the little war on the prairie, too few gin joints on the Oil Patch, what is lupus, and about that Mauer kid.
The Monday Morning Rouser...
If you play football, you really want to play in a small town in Minnesota. Every 90 years, for example, a team from Clinton, Beardsley, or Graceville wins a state title in something.
That's Kathryn Draeger's video of the return of the kids from CBG after they won the state's 9-man football tournament on Friday.
She writes on her Resettling Big Stone County blog...
There was a fair amount of pain that came with the necessity of closing down schools and busing kids across what is now a 50 mile wide school district. Not a choice any of these towns wanted to make. But this win- this collective win- is possible because we brought all of our children together into this one CGB school district not by choice, but by necessity. And after all these years, the old alums of their respective villages are now excited, happy and know the 'new' school colors. "Go Wolverines!!" They all shouted together. All 1,000 of them. A lot of healing took place on Friday. Healing that was decades in the coming. A good thing.
But oh! the breathe taking fun that was to follow the game. We drove the four hours back to our small town. It was night now and the prairie was dark. There were cars and people lined up waiting to wave on the team starting many many miles from home. People from Cyrus (40 miles east), Morris, Chokio, Alberta--wearing parkas and waving at the cars. The Morris, Chokio and Graceville fire departments had their trucks out and were waiting to escort the team the last miles to their hometown. And in Graceville, MN the Case tractor dealership had turned all the blinking lights onto all the tractors in the lot. It was a treat to the senses and to the heart.
Then everyone went to the high school gym, to hear the senior leader of the team quote the bus driver...
Some things you can't find in the big city.
What we've learned in this anniversary year of the Dakota Conflict is how few people -- even in Minnesota -- have ever heard of it. Nationwide, it's a given that almost nobody knows that President Lincoln ordered the largest mass execution in the history of the States. Over the weekend, former MPR newsie John Biewen provided an outstanding report of his return to Minnesota to figure out what really happened 150 years ago. It aired on this week's This American Life.
It's also a story about how dishonest history can be.
If only Dickinson, North Dakota had more bars, there wouldn't be so many bar fights in the city. "Part of the problem is that there are a limited number of facilities of bars for people to frequent, so we're getting larger crowds in the bars than we have, which is causing some of the disorderly conduct cases that we're seeing," the city's police chief tells the Dickinson Press
Sasha McHale, one of five children of Kevin and Lynn McHale, died over the weekend from complications from lupus. She was only 23.
Lupus, described as a "mystery" by the Lupus Foundation, creates autoantibodies that attack a body's healthy tissue. There is no cure.
Related: A father's loss (Boston Globe)
The American League Central Division's general purpose in Major League Baseball is as the developmental league for the American League East. This weekend, the Boston's Globe's baseball writer speculates that that Joe Mauer kid might be ready to move up to the bigs in Boston...
Mauer has six years remaining on his contract, which calls for salaries of $23 million per season until he's 35. The Twins could eat some of that if the Red Sox offered good players in return. If Mauer had not signed that deal, Boston would have been a likely destination for him in free agency. He lives in Fort Myers, Fla., and has always been enamored with the Red Sox.
Bonus I: Are we getting dumber?
Bonus II: What happens if you send Christmas cards to total strangers? Many people send cards back. It's the rule of reciprocation and it rules more of our lives than we realize.
Bonus III: OK, people, let's get on with the future...
NASA says it is preparing to announce a history-making discovery on Mars. Today's Question: If Mars is found to have supported life, how would the discovery affect you?
WHAT WE'RE DOING
Daily Circuit (9-12 p.m.) - First hour: Young men and bodybuilding.
Second hour: How hospitals are planning for the new health care law.
Third hour: Author Sherman Alexie.
MPR News Presents (12-1 pm): Historian Ronald White on President Lincoln's second inaugural address.
Talk of the Nation (1-2 p.m.) - The winners, and losers, after the latest Middle East conflict. In the end, Israel and Hamas signed on to a cease fire. But the winners and losers in the latest Middle East conflict stretch from Cairo to Ankara to Tehran and Washington. Plus, the weekly read of the Opinion Page.
All Things Considered (3-6:30 p.m.) - Singer Meshell Ndegeocello pays tribute to the late, great Nina Simone. She says the jazz pianist and singer was one of the people, but seemed like royalty. NPR reviews an album dedicated to the "sovereign soul" of Nina Simone.
Do you know of someone we all should meet? Who's the most interesting person you know? Submit their name and tell me why.
Very difficult to be back at my desk this Monday morning.
Thank you for the perspective with today's 5x8, Bob.
No more complaints from me.