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Get Me Sacagawea

Poor Zebulon Pike. His life had as many ups and downs as the Rocky Mountains he was sent to explore. He and his team of 20 soldiers left St. Louis in July of 1806, just a few months before Lewis and Clark returned to that city. Lewis and Clark have always been a big deal since their two year trek to the Pacific and back. They didn’t find a water route to the sea, but they brought back something just as valuable: knowledge of the new American territory.
   Lieutenant Pike, was on his own when he was sent to explore the more southerly potion of the Louisiana Purchase. Lewis and Clark has each other for support. Plus they had the native woman Sacagawea who had compass in her head.
   The previous year, Pike had been sent up the Mississippi to find its headwaters, to make peace between the Dakota and the Ojibwa tribes, and to inform British fur trappers that this was now American territory. He reached Minnesota in September and by the time he finished building a fort there, the Mississip…
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Thursday November 14, 2019 Another No Accident in 1983.

I had to be in Thief River Falls, before the unemployment office closed; I had just got laid off from the toy factory and needed to sign up for unemployment compensation that I hoped would see me through the winter. It didn’t make sense to have to drive 130 miles round trip to sign-up for unemployment--when I hardly had the gas money, but this was northwest Minnesota in 1983, and living in this ‘remote’ region of Minnesota had an Alaskan ring to it with the severity of its winters, many of its same wild animals, and the similarity to its rugged population, including bush pilot-types that, in the winter, regularly landed on skis in small rural farm fields, then took off, sometimes barely above the trees, lakes and rivers to gain altitude, whose small planes have crashed, and few pilots and passengers survived as two Minnesotans did near here on November 7, 1983.

It had been quite the week, an unbelievable series of terror, mind-numbing pain and successful deceit of which, at one point, …

Word-Wednesday for November 13, 2019

And here is the Wannaskan Almanac for Word-Wednesday, November 13, 2019, the 46th Wednesday of the year,  the 317th day of the year, with 48 days remaining.

Nordhem Lunch: Hot Ham Sandwich w/Potatoes & Gravy

Earth/Moon Almanac for November 13, 2019
Sunrise: 7:29am; Sunset: 4:47pm; 2 minutes, 49 seconds less daylight today
Moonrise: 5:47pm; Moonset: 8:25am, waning gibbous

Temperature Almanac for November 13, 2019
                Average           Record          Today
High             35                   65                  21
Low              20                 -23                   8

November 13 Celebrations from National Day Calendar
National Indian Pudding DayWorld Kindness DayName Your PC DayNational Day of Listening

November 13 Riddle
How many poets does it take to change a lamp wick?*

November 13 Pun
I wanted to be a monk, but I never got the chants.

November 13 Notable Historic Events, Literary or Otherwise, from On This Day
1789 Ben Franklin writes, "Our new Constitution is now est…

November 12, 1955...Avoiding the Wrinkles in the Space Time Continuum

November 12, 1955 is quite possibly the most important date in human history.  The events of that day could have changed history and doomed us all.  Thankfully a hero arose who managed to foil the plans that could have destroyed Earth as we know it!
This unusual day is when Dr. Emmett Brown developed a device that could have extreme consequences.  The product, which is now available at O'Reilly Auto Parts, is what makes time travel possible.  I sounds like the plot of some ridiculous movie, but I have seen the documentary and it is true.  The flux capacitor was designed by Dr. Brown and it enabled Special Agent Marty McFly to travel back in time.  Strangely enough it took Dr. Brown many years to build the time machine, and then through some unfortunate events he ended up sending McFly back to the same date that he had invented the flux capacitor.
McFly had to find Dr. Brown in the past and then convince him to help him travel back to the future.  Unfortunately power sy…

11 November 2019 – Guest Poets: Japanese and Chinese

This month’s guest poet(s) are from Japan and China. I’ve been reading a great book of poetry titled The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy, edited by John Brehm (Wisdom Publications 2017). The book is a treasure of spiritual inspiration on the three subjects of the title. Today, and in coming months, I will share some of the pieces that spoke to me the most. 
Today’s post focuses on “impermanence,” a key Buddhist tenet that is just common sense: nothing stays the same; everything changes; what arises, departs; that which has a beginning also has an end. Pretty straightforward stuff; however, many people don’t care to think about losing what is most dear, including their own lives. Heady stuff.
Editor, John Brehm, begins his “Introduction” with the statement, “No poem can last for long unless it speaks, even if obliquely, to some essential human concern. Impermanence is a fact of living, so that makes it and “essential concern.” Brehm also reminds us that impermanence may b…

Sunday Squibs

I realize happiness is only one side of the coin, sorrow being the other.
But I’m always trying to game the system.

The old are not stupid. But we do get comfy in our deep ruts.
New ways look like shallow tracks leading into the wilderness.

Being a genius is tough enough. Be a genius ahead of your time and you'll be thought mad.

By sharing my anxieties, others can feel braver than me.
It also distracts them from their own anxieties.

 Winter, winter, stay away.
Keep your snow in layaway.

My brain on Spotify is an empty ballroom echoing to the hits of the fifties, sixties, and very early seventies.

Sugar's the culprit, it's killing us all.
It's making our nation as wide as it's tall.
But pull all our sweet teeth? How bad is that?
We'd only be good then for chewing the fat.

Chairman Joe

Camping MEA

Hello and welcome to a happy, happy Saturday here at the Wannaskan Almanac. Today is November 9th and I am in Grand Marais attending the North Shore Readers & Writers Festival.

On a serious note, today marks the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. This is especially important to my family. Had the Wall not fallen, my husband and I would have never met. This life we've spent twenty years building, would not exist.

A section of the original Berlin Wall can be viewed at the Mennonite Village in Steinbach, Manitoba, about a 90-minute drive northwest of Wannaska.

According to, "This portion was purchased in Germany by Mr. Martin Bergen of Winnipeg, after the wall came down, and donated to the museum. It recalls the story of thousands of Mennonites who fled the Soviet Union after WWII and sought then to get to West Germany and other countries in the search for new homes. Henry’s Red Sea is the book many people have read, telling the story of thi…