The 2/15 story, "Could TCOs Get KOed?" incorrectly attributed a quote in the sixth paragraph, regarding the origins of limiting the number of TCOs. It should have been attributed to Ben Hemson, not Joshua Romero. We regret the error.
In response to Stuff We Learned From Jim in 2017
Here is my answer to the free ranging cat problem that a recent letter writer complained about:
If we can afford a half-dozen dog parks here in Bend, then why not establish several cat parks? They could have scratchy posts, fresh running water, extra-large sand boxes and cat toys hanging from tree branches. Perhaps our wealthy Parks Department might consider buying any one of the local financially failing golf courses and converting that to a cat park!
What an ideal place for cats. All those wonderful sand traps, fresh water, plenty of trees and branches galore to hang cat toys from. For those who insist that cats be locked up and kept from ranging free, why not at least furnish a few cat parks?
Or do the dog folks insist on discrimination against free ranging felines?
BTW, a recent Public Broadcasting program focused on a British study on free ranging cats that proved they kill far fewer birds than previously believed. Don't forget that cats do kill rodents and have often helped control the various threats attributed to free ranging rats and other rodents.
We live in the land of the free (to carry assault weapons) and the home of the brave (to show up to school).
The following story may be apocryphal, but it is nevertheless instructive. An 18th century psychiatrist invented a test for lunacy. He turned on the taps in one corner of a room, and placed a mop and bucket in the other corner. Those who grabbed the mop and bucket to frantically keep pace with the mess were deemed insane. Those who simply turned off the tap earned a clean bill of health.
If the U.S. had a national implement it would have to be the AR-15 assault rifle. But the mop and bucket would be a close second. Today I received in my email a list of mop and bucket solutions from the Bend-La Pine school district, describing how it is dealing with the threat of school shootings. The approaches it listed are turning our schools into an increasingly credible replicate of a militarized zone.
Were some ethereal psychiatrist in the sky to peer upon our beleaguered planet, she (or he) would have to notice that Australia simply turned off the tap after its last school shooting 22 years ago. It has not had one since.
No doubt the Bend-La Pine school district, and many like it across our country, are doing their best to keep our children safe. But as long as the NRA controls our politicians, the fight will never be fair: AR-15s versus mops and buckets.
Missing from the school district's list was a pledge to support—and even encourage—the sane students who plan to participate in a nation-wide school walkout in March that will advocate for turning off the tap. I very much hope that the district will support and even celebrate the walkout. On this issue, our kids—our future—have something to teach us.
In response to, Breaking: Cops Arrest Teen Suspect After School Shooting Threat, via bendsource.com
I wonder what kind of help—if any—this child is getting. He's a kid after all. If there's a way the community can come together to help this boy, I think events like this can be used for healing and unification. Hope we can somehow create an atmosphere of support for the safety of everyone.
—Selin Sevinc, via Facebook
Every parent grab your kids tonight. Tell them that this is not the thing to do.
Tell them that their problems aren't worth all of the untold suffering this can cause. Tell them they can get past the troubles they're having right now. If they don't believe you, show them. Impress it upon them.
Do your best.
—Tim Tigersblood Vester, via Facebook
In response to, Don't Tie TCOs to a Random "Magic Number," 2/21
I voiced my opinion, so did a lot of others. And the council and mayor did what they were going to do anyway. Unresponsive elected officials get the hook come election time in my book. You work for us.
Open Mics Rule! In response to Choose Your Own Open Mic, 2/14
Thanks for your long overdue article on open mics. There are far too many potential performers in C.O. who prefer not to go kenetic and I for one wish they would. My first open mic 17 years ago was a horrible disaster. It was at the famous open mic at Connor O'Neil's in Boulder. It was so popular you were prohibited from playing two weeks in a row, and there I was, first time singing/playing acoustic ever and in front of 20 or so very talented musicians/friends as well as a few dozen onlookers. I forgot the words, the chords, and my already "Canada Goose in Pain" voice was worsened by the sheer fear that nearly put me in a coma. Embarrassed beyond what's considered normal, I hid in shame.
A sympathetic voice kindly mentioned that people only remember your last performance and I hopped right on that idea by signing up for vocal lessons, doubling down on my practice and signing up again a month later. You know where this story is going. And yes, people only remember your last performance. So get out there and just do it!
— Ken Czepelka
Letter of the Week
Thanks to the many who weighed in on the asinine continued existence of mass shootings in the U.S.; however, Ken gets the Letter of the Week for shedding some shine on a valuable part of Bend culture—one as raw and unpolished as it is entertaining and inspiring. Come on in for your gift card to Palate, Ken!
— Nicole Vulcan, Editor