is older than it's ever been and now it's even older


Adventures in Duluth

I have now spent three weeks in Duluth. Duluth is an extremely interesting city, and one that barely registers a blip on the consciousness of people in the U.S. (and none outside it, I would wager). As this site explains:
In 1869-1870 Duluth was the fastest growing city in the country and was expected to surpass Chicago in size in only a few short years. When Jay Cooke, the wealthy Philadelphia land speculator, picked Duluth as the terminus of the Northern Pacific Railroad and the Lake Superior and Mississippi Railroad, Duluth's Future appeared very prosperous. Unfortunately, Jay Cooke's empire crumbled and the stock market crashed in 1873 and Duluth almost disappeared from the map.

Duluth survived based on lumber and ore shipping, and it is now a gorgeous little metropolis of about 100,000 nestled on a steep hill that plunges down to Lake Superior. It is a town where you still hear the ore boats' horns as they leave port, and the lighthouse is always on at night. The architecture is impressive, the people are nice, and the traffic is so much better than the Twin Cities. But let's not kid ourselves. Duluth is also the coldest major city in the US (this site says it's second, but International Falls has a population of around 16,000 while Duluth and its sister city of Superior together have a population of around 250,000); while Maggie is sweating in the Twin Cities in temperatures around 90, Duluth is struggling to get into the 70s. Most days I go home and put on a sweater and the winters are, understandably, brutal.

So, without my dog and wife, I have been working long hours and doing some exploration. I've found a few places to do some trout fishing, I've gone to some parks, and I've located some interesting food (including a Thai place, Thai Krathong, that is surprisingly outstanding, if a little shy with the spiciness). I'll try to keep that angle updated throughout the summer.

And I've been working at Hanft Fride, a law firm, that is treating me very well and getting me interesting work. It's been a great experience so far, even if I am a little homesick. So write, call, whatever.


If there is justice, the business about Bush's lies to America and the world will not go forgotten. Tony Blair is certainly not getting a free ride, so let's hope that our administration doesn't either. I was once impressed by Colin Powell but his true colors were revealed, I'm afraid, by the way he was willing to be Bush's hatchet man at the UN despite the fact that he knew he was peddling lies and half-truths. Bush's latest line is that the missing weapons of mass destruction were looted, which might be laughable except that it's not. But enough about politics...

Roger Ebert was involved in a very funny spat with a writer-director over an entry in the Cannes film festival. This is Ebert's response to the brouhaha. It's funny.

And finally, the slug that changed tort law forever.

Tomorrow: my take on the recent Supreme Court affirmative action rulings.


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