Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s Friday and I’m very much looking forward to the weekend. The weather isn’t supposed to be particularly nice and other than the start of BIG 10 football, there’s isn’t anything in particular that’s getting me excited. All the same, fall weekend have a particular vibe. The fall light feels just perfect for napping or reading something that I probably could allow to sit on my bookshelf for a few more months until the urge passes.

I hope that all my readers have escaped the recent uptick in COVID cases and are surviving the bumpy road to the election next week. 

Please be safe, stay sane, and enjoy this little gaggle of quick hits and varia:

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Friday Quick Hits and Varia

It’s a fall Friday here in North Dakotaland, but we’ve been warned … snow is in the air! We’ve tested the furnace, fired up our (gas powered) fireplace, and even had the preliminary discussion about putting the snow tires on the car. It is officially late autumn.

The late autumn does bring certain advantages though. Flurry filled cook outs, pots of chili, and the annual countdown to when the Eagles are officially eliminated from the playoffs. The summer cricket season is under way in Australia, the NASCAR guys have entered the home stretch, and an invariably asterisked baseball season is getting closer to the World Series. (The Big 10 football season starts next week, which is too bizarre for comment). None of this really matters, though, because Saturday night is Lomachenko-Lopez, the first great fight of 2020. 

This gives me the daytime to wrap up some proofs, do some yard work and finally get back to reading the books moldering on my “must read” pile.

In the meantime, here are some quick hits and varia:

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Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s a fall Friday here in North Dakotaland and despite the COVID inflected atmosphere, the mid semester chaos has descended upon us with exams, papers, fall deadlines, and seasonal distractions in full effect.

We’re still a week away from the start of the Big 10 football season, but the mighty Eagles will be on TV out here this weekend, the Formula 1 guys are negotiating rain, fog, and cold in Germany, the NASCAR kids are looking at a chance of rain at Charlotte Roval, and one of my favorite boxers, Emmanual Navarrete is looking to be a 2-division champion tonight. In other words, what deadlines?

Hope your weekend is full of seasonal distraction as well and maybe there are one or two in this pile of quick hits and varia:

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Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s a fall Friday with all that entails here in North Dakotaland despite the looming specter of the COVID and the absence of football and the typical homecoming festivities.

Despite the strangely abrupt cancelation of the entire Philadelphia Eagles season, there will still be plenty to distract me over the weekend including the NASCAR guys at  Talladega and there’s some decent boxing on tap Saturday night as the hype begins to build for the mid-month Lomachenko-Lopez magafight on October 17th. The Indian Premier League continues as well for those in need of an international sporting fix.

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Other than that, there are papers to grade, books to read, and articles to revise.

And, of course, some quick hits and varia:

IMG 5435The Bargepole in Autumn

Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s the first fall Friday here in North Dakotaland and people are greeting each other with the phrase “Fall has sprung!”

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The sports calendar is as exciting as ever with NBA, NFL, MLB, and NASCAR. The Formula 1 circus is in Russia, the IPL is going full tilt, and there are a gaggle of significant fights this weekend as well headlined by the fighting Charlo brothers.

Of course, there is always work to be done with an NDQ deadline on October 1, a book review languishing as a blog post, and a field manual to pretty up. I’m also keen to get to work on my next book chapter. But life is like that, I suppose: there are always more thing that we want to do than we have time to get done.

For now, I’ll satisfy myself with a little gaggle of quick hits and varia:

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BillCaraher 2020 Sep 20

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Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It feels like Fall here in North Dakotaland with the temperatures slipping into the mid-30s at night and the trees starting to change. Even without the traditional bustle of the college campus, there’s something unmistakably collegiate about UND right now as our COVID numbers decline and an unmistakable sense of accomplishment in the air.

Like most Fall weekends, there is bustle as the semester continues to gather steam and the excuses not to be writing again pass into the background. There’s also baseball, football, and basketball all vying for my attention and the boxing on its traditional Mexican Independence Day date.

And, of course, as always, a little gaggle of quick hits and varia:

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Friday Varia and Quick Hits

Fall has sprung here on the Northern Plains with temperatures in the mid-60s and the trees just starting to show their autumnal plumage. The dogs love the mild temperature and are ready for longer walks and more vigorous games of ram- and rope-ball (Milo is the undisputed world champion in both disciplines, and also the only one who knows the rules). 

Yesterday was also a rare “North American Sports Equinox” when the MLB, NBA, Professional Ice Hockeying League (PIHL?), NFL, and even college football as well as tennis, golf, and even Major League Soccering having games on the same day. This weekend, this continues with NASCAR, F1, and England-Australia one-day cricket. 

I have more important things to announce this week, though. Our friends at The Digital Press are very happy to announce that Midtown Scholars Books in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania is now carrying One Hundred Voices: Harrisburg’s Historic African American Community, 1850-1920 and the proceeds from these sales will go to support the upkeep of the new Commonwealth Monument in Harrisburg. The book is $10. Go buy a copy and support a great cause.

With all this going on, we all might be too busy for quick hits and varia, but here’s a little list: 

Friday Quick Hits and Varia

Yesterday, I started to feel like the semester was getting into a kind of rhythm. It’s a new rhythm, but a rhythm nonetheless. It gives me hope that I can start being productive again despite the stress associated with COVID and the anxiety about the November elections, the national and local economy, and life in the 21st century in general.

Fortunately, there’s a good bit to distract me. The F1 guys are at Monza, the Tour de France has flirted with the Alps and will hit the Pyrenees this weekend, the NASCARlers are in Darlington, the Phillies are hot, and Australia plays England in a T20 game. 

More than that, my pile of books continues to grow, my to-do list remains daunting, and I feel like I should be enjoying the outside a bit more before the long-cold winter commences. 

In case you missed it, do check out Kyle Conway’s new edited volume fresh off the presses at The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota: Sixty Years of Boom and Bust: The Impact of Oil in North Dakota, 1958-2018. Here’s the press release on the volume, and here are my thoughts on my contribution.  

And, here’s a little gaggles of quick hits and varia:

IMG 5348Have a Great Labrador Day Weekend!

Friday Varia and Quick Hits

It’s the first Friday of the small semester and the edge has finally come off the frog days of summer. Low clouds, easy rain, and cooler temperatures mark the arrival of fall. There’s also a change in the daily and weekly rhythm as the casual days of summer give way to the more formal and structured days and weeks of the fall semester. 

To be honest, I needed the change as I had lost whatever momentum I had gained over the COVID-inflected summer and was struggling to get things done in a consistent way. It’s also nice to be back in the classroom, even if it means contending with masks, hurricanes, protests, and stresses of a very unusual fall semester. 

Before I offer a very modest list of quick hits and varia, I’d like to very quietly announce the regular readers of this blog that The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota will release its 20th book next Tuesday. Kyle Conway’s Sixty Years of Boom and Bust: The Impact of Oil in North Dakota 1958-2018 combines the 1958 Williston Report with new chapters exploring the impact of oil in North Dakota. Kyle was a founding collaborator with The Digital Press, so it’s only fitting that this book marks the 20th volume from the press. You can download the book from here before the book’s official release on Tuesday.

If that’s not your cup of tea, here’s a small list of quick hits and varia:

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Friday Quick Hits and Varia

It’s the final Friday of the summer as classes start on Tuesday here in North Dakotaland. On my regular walks down by the river, I can see the very first signs of the trees changing colors and while the temperatures feel more appropriate for the “frog days” of summer, the trajectory is clear: more cooling days than warming days from now until February.

Despite the COVID-inflected season, I have to admit that I’m pretty excited about the start of the academic year. I’m teaching a new class in a new way and look forward to the challenges associated with the uncertainty of the fall semester. 

With the end of the NBA season, I’ll have more time to worry about my Fightin’ Phillies, NASCAR, Formula 1, and an increasingly interesting slate of boxing this fall (including this weekend’s Eleider Alvarez – Joe Smith Jr. tilt).  For the first time in over 20 years, I’ll be able to sit back and watch the Indy 500 on Sunday. 

Finally, if you haven’t had a chance to check out the most recent book from The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota, I urge you grab a free download of One Hundred Voices: Harrisburg’s Historic African American Community, 1850-1920 edited by Calobe Jackson, Jr., Katie Wingert McArdle, and David Pettegrew. Even if you’re not interested in Harrisburg at all, the book is part of a larger project that is a model of public history and community activism. Download it here.

Even with everything that’s going on, I did manage to herd up some some quick hits and varia: