Columns

On transitions and numbered days

So deep into August I can almost feel September’s cool breath upon my neck. Children are headed back to school where they belong, ruing the loss of summer and freedom as they gaze out classroom windows. Moms and Dads fair worse in work ruts, pondering with puppy-love fondness a recent vacation to Lovely Ouray, grieving the funeral procession of the 50 abysmal weeks that stands between them and a return to paradise. Ouranians know the days of summer are numbered when they can find a parking spot on Main Street.

Jumping clear out of his trailer

When Winifred Colby of Montrose fell ill while attending the last day of the Highgraders Holiday a few Sundays ago in Ouray, she was later most distraught about not being able to find out who won the events. She was helped to her car, she said, by Ouray resident, mining veteran and firefighter Steve Martinez and made her way home.
This week, she called me to get a copy of the paper with the results, insisting to pay for it.

A redundant river runs though it

Joe from New Jersey, one of our many subscribers who doesn't live here, comes here often and thinks about our area even more often, renewed his subscription this week.
He said to "tell Ouray hello."
I think he means in the general sense, the one that translates to, sure, there are beautiful parts of New Jersey, but then there's Ouray.

A Sixth Extinction—fair warning or fake news?

A new National Academy of Sciences study concludes the planet is facing a real threat of “biological annihilation.” The scientists who carried out the research call the decimation of the world’s large mam- mals a “global epidemic” and say the rate of decline is accelerating.
Up to 50 percent of all individual ani- mals have been lost in recent decades. Two-fifths of the 177 mammal species sur- veyed lost more than 80 percent of their range or geographic distribution between 1900 and 2016.

Kosmikophobia, or your ticker?

I was told this week a big, fat, hairy rumor. Maybe rumor is too harsh. Let's call it a belief — that there have been grizzly sightings up on Owl Creek Pass.
Not grizzled, as in older vacationers with silvery beards. We're talking the 600-lb. variety of ursus arctos horribilis, brown bear, Kodiak bear. You get the idea. Something that requires a lot of berries...and a few more vacationers...than our beloved black bear.

Filling “the holes in our hearts” with memorable experiences instead of “stuff”

One must take inspiration and relief where I find it these days. For me it’s mostly outdoors in nature, my antidote to “The Sultan” and “Sheeple” who continue to invent new ways to disappoint. I was recently heartened by an essay, “The Hole in our Hearts,” by fellow blogger and wonderer, Juliet—a millennial half my age with an “old soul” beyond her years.

Time to pack up…and go home

Summer is most assuredly in full swing. The heat around here has been a little much for me. I don’t know what you do to cool off...there are many options, I know.

Sucking mega-bits through a straw

In 2016, over 1,000 billion gigabytes of data were exchanged worldwide. That sounds like a lot.
At the same time, 35 million Americans didn't, and still don't, have access to 25 megabits per second broadband.
The upload speed at my house (and office) is 0.69 Mbps, and the download speed is 5.04 Mbps. That's not a lot.
We've all followed the efforts and roadblocks to getting high speed broadband to rural Colorado in recent years—to anywhere not off an I-25 or I-70 exit.
We're still waiting.

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad <Wolf> Bear?

Europe, the birthplace of the "Little Red Riding Hood" legend and the Big Bad Wolf, is now home to twice as many wolves as the contiguous United States, a new study finds, despite being half the size and more than twice as densely populated.
National Geographic, Dec. 19, 2014        

Living on the right side of the street

Talked to long-time Ouray resident Bud Zanett this week. He was recalling that this month marks the 99th anniversary of Rosa and John Zanett's arrival in Ouray. They were his grandparents,
John came to the states in 1910 and Rosa in 1912, and the two were married in Ohio and came to Ouray lured of mining.
The couple lived on 2nd Street, and back then options were limited as to where you could live. Those of Italian descent - not the rich folks - weren't "allowed" to live on the east side of Ouray.