Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mt. Holly Communications Advisory Board Item 08.30.07 - THE END OF EMAIL:

In reaction to growing sadness, loneliness and outright despair resulting from the disposable and increasingly utilitarian nature of written conversation these days, the Mayor of Mt. Holly is requesting all text-based communication be directed to his office through the U.S. Postal System. Your voice is important, so much so that it deserves to be read in the soul bearing vehicle of your handwriting.

Haeg • 305 Holmes St S • Mt. Holly, MN 55379.

End of communication.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


In From the Urban Geek Dictionary:

"MOOSYLVANIA, an island adjacent to the United States, in the Lake of the Woods somewhere between that country and Canada, near to FROSTBITE FALLS, Minnesota.

Moosylvania is an uninhabited, undeveloped land. The precise boundaries and details of the area have yet to be determined, because the soft marshy ground swallows surveyors and their equipment whole. During warm periods the temperature in Moosylvania has risen to twenty degrees below zero. Summer on the island lasts from late September to the middle of October. As a consequence, most of Moosylvania is frozen for most of the year, and is underwater during the brief summer.

All travel in Moosylvania is by birchbark canoe, though the island has a ten-thousand foot airplane runway. Only 18% of that runway is on solid ground, however, meaning that all flights to Moosylvania inevitably sink into the water.

Moosylvania has been pleading for statehood since the time of the American Revolution in 1776. Since then Moosylvania became controlled by a hereditary series of governors belonging to the Moose family. The island has been fought over by the United States and Canada, with Canada twice refusing to accept the territory as a gift, even with Lake Superior thrown into the bargain. Most recently, in 1962 a petition for statehood was delivered to Washington, D.C. by the governor, Bullwinkle J. Moose. Moosylvania remains an unincorporated territory. The would-be state's motto is Don't Tread On Me, and the state flower is the Moosylvanian flytrap, the only plant known to belch. On one occassion Moosylvania nearly sank into the sea, but it was saved by throwing ballast off the island.

Aside from the Moosylvanian flytrap, the only life native to the island are gigantic mosquitoes that terrorize the island during its brief summer.

The Moose Call, the territory's only newspaper, was published in 1962, consisting mainly of comic strips. Milton Fugg of Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, is the Moosylvanian ambassador to the United States, a position he was granted when he mailed a self-addressed stamped envelope to Governor Moose.

The Moosylvania Territory is asking for 18 billion dollars and 4 cents in American aid, the four cents for the postage of the check. This would be for industrial development and the numerous planned civic improvements, and to build a highway that would enable people to drive through Moosylvania without stopping.

Moosylvania has no extradition treaties, taxes, traffic or laws. Travellers are advised that there are no other compelling reasons to visit to Moosylvania."

More on the struggle for Moosylvania statehood straight from Rocky & Bullwinkle creator, Bill Ward's mouth, here.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

World's Smallest Park

From the blog Futility Closet

"The smallest park in the world is Mill Ends Park in Portland, Oregon. You're looking at it: 452 square inches, barely two feet across. The nearby Forest Park is 60 million times as big.

Mill Ends started in 1948, when Oregon Journal journalist Dick Fagan noticed a forgotten hole outside his office on Front Street. He planted flowers and began to write a weekly column about goings-on there, including "the only leprechaun colony west of Ireland."

When Fagan died in 1969, Portland took up the tradition, dedicating Mill Ends as an official city park in 1976. Today it has a swimming pool for butterflies (with diving board), a miniature Ferris wheel, and statues, and it hosts snail races, weddings, and regular rose plantings.

Just goes to show, you don't need a large lot if the location's good."

Thank you Linda.

Via Via Via

NEW! Boing Boing Personal Technology Blog

From - "While Boing Boing has always covered personal technology, the four of us (Cory, Davis, Xeni, and I) believed a critical, intelligent, optimistic, and selective blog about personal technology and consumer electronics would be a fine addition to Boing Boing. But who could we trust to oversee a tech blog that the four of us would want to read? Actually, it wasn't hard to find that person. We went straight to Joel Johnson, a former Gizmodo editor and founder of Dethroner. Joel is smart, funny, knowledgeable, and curious about technology. He was our first, and unanimous, choice to run And we're grateful he agreed to come on board."

Hells Yes!

The Principality of Sealand clip from the 1960's

The Principality of Sealand was founded in 1967 upon an abandoned wartime gun tower 7 miles off the coast of out into the North Atlantic. Ray Essex (Prince Ray) has run radio and tv stations; issued passports, coinage and postage stamps from his principality while holding his ground amidst storms, coup attempts, a 2006 fire and failed data haven venture.

My Favorite Test Patterns

Monday, August 27, 2007

The US Needs More Maps!

Thank you, Miss South Carolina!

On the Road: The Original Scroll

"Here I made and attempt to settle down those I love in a more or less permanent homestead from which all human operations could be conducted to the satisfaction of all parties concerned. I believe in a good home, in sane and sound living, in good food, good times, work, faith and hope. I have always believed in these things. It was with some amazement that I realized I was one of the few people in the world who really believed in these things without going around making a middleclass philosophy out of it."

I've flipped through the 1957 publication of Kerouac's On the Road and haven't come across this passage. Maybe I've overlooked it. However, in reading that passage from the original scroll, published this last week by Viking Press, it hit me like a blunt object. Perhaps, it seems super-relevant because of where I'm at in my life – sick, tired, lonely, Mayor of Mt. Holly. Or perhaps its relevancy stems from the context.

The original scroll is a documentary of loneliness (where Kerouac exists even more detached from his saints and churns with a deeper longing for an inclusive answer to life). The relationships between husbands and wives are cold and selfish on a Bukowskian par. Intimacy is always fleeting, sometimes brutal. Life is suffering and selfish. Thieving is justified. The road is less glamorous, more a last ditch attempt at uncovering how far Kerouac, and each of us is from a life where our ideals make sense, nonetheless work. Lonely.

For those who've read On the Road before, put aside any academic or novelty preconceptions of this book. It is a whole new shitstorm of life, harder to take, forcing the realization that life is purest at it's worst. (FYI: For those looking to roll around and romanticize a beat lifestyle with the earnestness (and pocketbook) of mothers shopping at Target once a week, go ahead, it's your life, fuck it up. Forget about the meth-heads, neglected children, abused wives, and ever-lonely adulterous husbands who have for more to do with the essence of this book than your or my full-wallet-on-barstool-and-study-full-of-books ever will.)

For those who have not read On the Road before and are looking to pick it up in light of all of the 50th anniversary fanfare, read this version, but don't read it lightly. Don't look to this book as a beat novel. It was written before John Clellon Holmes' Go (considered the first beat novel) was published. It is raw and very human. The lyric of this book comes from a very pure and human experiment, unconcerned with fitting into a genre or to wax poetic. It is as urgent a novel as one will ever get the chance to read – and you should.

Shakopee Mayor on Mt. Holly Mayor (+ softcore porn)

From The August 13th edition of The Naughty American.

"Shakopee Mayor John Schmitt also doesn’t recognize Mount Holly as a real city, even though he has driven by Mike Haeg’s house numerous times on the way to his own City Hall.

But, for him, a sign out front reading, "Welcome to Mount Holly, pop. 4" does not a city make, and he describes Mount Holly as an imaginary city. "It really exists in the minds of those in the Haeg household," he said.

However, he doesn’t have a problem with Mount Holly’s existence. He noted, "It doesn’t affect [Shakopee] at all. There are no conflicts." . . .

Schmitt, who represents about 34,000 constituents, even offers a little neighborly advice for Haeg, saying, "As mayor, you’ve got a lot of people to deal with. You have to be flexible."

He also said not to get bogged down by negative feedback; to "take it with a grain of salt."

Proof: Nothing exciting ever happens in Winnipeg

Todd MacNamerra spent the entirety of his 10 block trip on Winnipeg's Provincial Transit Bus Route 17 shouting, "Holy Shit. This is unfucking believable! Oh my God, Oh my God!"

It is still unknown what MacNamerra found most amazing:

1. It only costs a twoonie to get from his house to the Tim Horton's!

2. Bright colors of fiberglass seating!

3. 23 people in one car! 23 people in one car!

In other news, The White Stripes play on Winnepeg bus while MacNamerra loses his shit over the fact that his transfer also includes his trip home from Tim Horton's.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Hot Girls with Douchebags

Oh, sweet justice!
Douchebags beware!
You're being called out

Thanks Metafilter.

7 Nights in the Entry

Last night was the debut of a killer documentary shining the spotlight on one week's worth of shows at Minneapolis's legendary 7th Street Entry, First Avenue's ugly kid brother. Early footage of Husker Du, The Replacements, Fine Art, The Dads, Things That Fall Down, Hypstrz, The Neglectors, Rusty Jones & The Generals, The Situation, Wilma & The Wilburs, Stagger Lee, Peer Group straight from the camera of Twin/Tone records founder Paul Stark. I missed Minneapolis in the early 80's and damnit if I didn't miss the premiere, last night. That;s why I went to look for some stuff to share today.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Dave Zadra and Karl Bilda: Freak bikes

Any of you living in the Mt. Holly area are sure to recognize theses two garage goofs. The photos shown here are taken from a shoot for the Monster Nation program on the Discovery Channel. Dave on his Steam Bike and Karl on his Track Bike raced against The Rocketman's Rocket Bike for this episode. Karl passed away a few years back. I'm hoping to track down some of his amazing vehicles and to interview Dave in the upcoming weeks. Anyone reading this who can help with photos or the episode of Monster Nation these two were on. It would be much appreciated.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Urban Folklore from the Paperwork Empire

After reading this post on BoingBoing, I had to dig this book out of the Mt. Holly Public Library. Written and collected by Alan Dundes and Carl R. Pager, Urban Folklore from the Paperwork Empire is the definitive archive of chain letters, fuck-the-system mimeograph masterpieces, and off-color social commentary from the 20's through the mid 60's.

Faux "my-husband-is-a-sex-maniac" letters to Ann Landers, The Italian Bomb Shelter, Charlie Brown's Allergy - they're all here. If YouTube videos are today's social collateral, this is a veritable Fort Knox of the pass-a-long gold from the days of yore, some of it, amazingly pertinent today. For example, the Rush Job Calendar, Perspectives on the Design of a Tree Swing, and the fold up Government Computer Cost Diagram. Click here for a high-res PDF.

New Foundlands: micro-nations, model countries, ephemeral states

Call them micro-nations, model countries, ephemeral states, or new country projects, the world is surprisingly full of entities that display all the trappings of established independent states, yet garner none of the respect. The Republic of Counani, Furstentum Castellania, Palmyra, the Hutt River Province, and the Empire of Randania may sound fantastical, but they are a far cry from authorial inventions, like C.S. Lewis’s Narnia or Swift’s Laputa. For while uncertain territories like the Realm of Redonda might not be locatable in your atlas, they do claim a very genuine existence in reality, maintaining geographical boundaries, flaunting governmental structures, and displaying the ultimate necessity for any new nation: flags. Admittedly they may be little more than loose threads on the patchwork of nations, but these micro-nations offer their founders a much sought-after prize—sovereignty.

From the article New Foundlands by George Pendle. Cabinet Magazine Issue 18 Summer 2005. Read the entire article here.

Dick Proenneke, take me away.

As these days get fuller and fuller of "important business" I find myself returning to this video to sooth my overtaxed soul. Hard work, sure. Gratifying, I can only imagine.

"To live in a pristine land unchanged by man...
to roam a wilderness through which few other humans have passed...
to choose an idyllic site, cut trees and build a log cabin...
to be a self-sufficient craftsman, making what is needed from materials available...
to be not at odds with the world, but content with one's own thoughts and company...
Thousands have had such dreams, but Dick Proenneke lived them. He found a place, built a cabin, and stayed to become part of the country. This video "Alone in the Wilderness" is a simple account of the day-to-day explorations and activities he carried out alone, and the constant chain of nature's events that kept him company."
- Sam Keith

Monday, August 20, 2007

For Sale: Jersey Devil, Squirrel Scrotums, Cursed Rooster Head

Sarina Brewer is cleaning house and unloading her clutter on ebay. Only when a rogue taxidermist throws a garage sale, your bound to find more than discolored tupperware and baby clothes. Whether you are a Voodoo priestess, sideshow huckster, or cryptozoologist, your sure to find something you can't live without. Check out her auctions here.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Before Dead Moon there were The Rats

Check out this video: The Rats "Kids Are Kids" 1984

Add to My Profile | More Videos

The Burma Shave Signs- 80th Anniversary.

It's been 80 years since the Burma Shave Company erected the first Burma Shave signs along a stretch of Highway 61, here in Minnesota. The campaign grew to over 7000 signs during its 26 year life span.

From the first pretty-straight-forward, non-rhyming slogan:

Shave the modern way
No brush
No lather
No rub-in
Big tube 35 cents drug stores

To the last in 1963:

Our fortune
Is your
Shaven face
It's our best
Advertising space

Burma Shave captured the American travelers attention and whim. Consumers flooded the company with their own submissions. Songs have been written and performed about these signs.

Read a bunch of them here.

Minnesota Rest Stop Safari

Back in the late 80's, Minnesota's man on the street took a ragtag crew on a quest to visit America's finest Highway Rest Area System. A champion of the clean, orderly and industrial, Dr. Sphincter, gives us a glimpse into janitorial engineering and the people and landmarks of our great Northwoods.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Tight Bros From Way Back When

As long as I'm loving music right now, here's some more. Become a tight bro here!

URGENT! Calling all Cream O' Mushroom soups!

I find it unfathomable that the Guinness Book of World Records Largest Potluck resides outside the borders of the great state of Minnesota. Apparently, I'm not the only one.

On Saturday, August 25th in Montevideo Minnesota, The folks at the Stonebrook Jamboree will attempt to break the existing record by holding the worlds largest potluck.

Consider this an All Points Bulletin! MINNESOTANS! Fire up that crockpot! Garnish that Jello mold with carrots and call it a salad! Don't call it a casserole - IT'S A HOTDISH, GODDAMNIT! Most important, bring a little and eat a lot! For the sake of all lutheran church ladies, let's bring the honor to Minnesota soil!

Mt. Holly will be representing. We will also be collecting the best recipes for a celebratory cookbook. Hope to see you there!

The Mummies Attack!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Who is BNE?

It's been almost exactly a year since leaving my stint in SF. I miss the city for more than just the aesthetic, diversity and food. I miss it for the pure fucking chaos of it all. You never know what your going to walk into.

Case in point. Leaving work at 2:00am. Walking home through Chinatown. Returning to work at 7:00 a.m. In that 5 hours, every possible taggable space in Chinatown has been plastered with stickers that say BNE. Thousands of stickers. It was like it had snowed.

Brought up the subject of BNE with some of my "more publicly creative" friends. Nothing. Nobody knows who BNE is. I stumbled across this article today that compounds the mystery. Japan, India, NYC. Could Mt. Holly be next?

Got any theories? I'd love to hear them.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Man uses lifesize cutouts of his kids to slow down neighborhood traffic.

My buddy Matt Pruett sent me this article as a potential solution to Mt. Holly's growing speeding problem.

An Ohio man, fed up with people speeding through his neighborhood, propped up lifesize cutouts of his kids along the curb in his front yard to cause drivers to pay attention and slow down.

This little slice of home-brewed ingenuity and initiative has made my morning.

Watch the slideshow here.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Strap on your leather chaps!

Can't make it to the 2007 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally? Well, hopefully we can get you closer. This year, instead of running electronic banners for Sturgis, Harley-Davidson is running live video of an actual physical banner from Sturgis. Keep your eyes open or Click Here to see examples.

If that's not enough for you, you can get exclusive content served up via the H–D Google Gadget.

And if that's still not enough for you, you can check out live flickr updates. Cerdo of the poster collective Squad 19 has set up a flickr account and is distributing it's log-in to the masses at Sturgis. That means, anyone can post anonymously! Sure to get interesting.

One things for sure, with video streaming, video blogging and flickr mobbing, this ain't your Grampa's Sturgis anymore.