4:14 p.m. - 2007-10-07
Are you enjoying the hot weather or hating it? Yesterday I was filled with joy as I reclined in a lawn chair all afternoon, reading a book. Also I'm ill, so it felt doubly good to be sniffling outside.
As the busy-ness continues, these last two weeks were at least peppered with fun concerts. I saw Ryan Adams at the State Theater. It was my first time at that venue, and I thought the place was lovely and my third row seat totally rocked! Ryan was nice enough to come and play with the opening act Romantica's first song. The link above states that Ryan had a "breakdown" but it didn't seem that way to me; the sound was shitty and if the Cardinals had played two more songs as an encore I don't think the audience would have complained. The concert was short at 80 minutes, but the rocking version of "Peaceful Valley", formerly a midtempo 6/8 shuffle, was almost worth the price of admission. I love the music of Ryan Adams and remain a huge fan, and also was very glad I payed a chunk of change for the June Cedar Cultural Center show, where the sound was perfect.
Mr. Adams could have learned some generosity from Billy Corgan, however. R and I attended the Smashing Pumpkins show last Tuesday with D and CH. The band played for 2 hours and fifteen minutes, with three encores! Billy spent time at each corner of the stage, greeting the crowd. I was impressed by Corgan's guitar skillz, both acoustic and electric. Also the light show was fantastic. Here's what the Strib said.
I have a random critter story! Because I had a $50 gift card in my pocket from my former temp job, I hastened to the swanky intersection of 50th and France to shop at anthropologie, a store which I love for its unique clothing and hate for its exorbitant prices. ANYWAY, as I was circling the block to get into the parking lot, I spotted a chipmunk on the side of the road. It was quite a bit in front of the Road Toad Honda, so I just stopped and waited for the chipper to cross. Instead the rodent stopped in the middle of the road and ran back to its original spot on the curb, where A RED-TAILED HAWK F*CKING SWOOPED DOWN, CARRYING THE CHIPMUNK AWAY IN ITS TALONS! Crazy and surreal! I felt sort of guilty and responsible for the chipmunks demise. R and SH commented that it was a good meal for the hawk.
*Side note: I did find some $20 tops at Anthro and got some designer jeans on sale that actually fit!
SH just came and visited me, bringing fresh veggies from the St. Paul Farmer's Market and a wee bag of kettle corn for me! She also shared the story of Sam, a seagull with an addiction to Doritos! Check out the YouTube vid here!
My sister A and her new hubby, T-Dogg (he named himself thusly in his last email!) sent photos of their recent honeymoon trip to northern WI and Duluth. While they yearned to see a moose, they did come upon what they thought to be moose poo! T-Dogg saved these photos as a pair; I don't know how to separate them.
Above you can see T-Dogg impersonating a moose, and the mystery turd.
I think A and T-Dogg's photo looks like moose poo, but regardless, today let us focus on the moose anyway!
Alces alces, the largest member of the Cervidae, or deer family, is native to the temperate to subarctic zones in the Northern Hemisphere. The largest variety, Alces alces gigas lives in Alaska.
Male moose range from 6.5 feet tall and 1,200 to 1,600 lbs, with females weighing closer to 900 lbs. Antlers on a mature moose can be over 6 feet wide!
Moose enjoy eating the new growth of willow and birch trees, as well as water plants. In the winter they will eat tree bark and nuts, and can create "hedges" or "browse lines" where they have bitten off all of the plants in a line six to eight feet tall!
Like deer, male moose stop eating and get horny and rowdy during September to October. This rut does involve fighting with other bulls, which sometimes can be fatal. The winner of the shove-fest gets to mate with the female. In 230 days, in May to June, the cows give birth to little baby moose!
Don't you want to pet it!? (But don't, Mama will f*ck with you!)
Baby moose are born at around 33 lbs, and start eating solid food within a few days of birth. Calves stay with their mothers for a full year, until the Moms chase their yearlings away before they give birth again in the spring. When food is plentiful, moose cows will give birth to twins 15 to 75% of the time.
Immediately after the rut, bull moose begin eating once more and drop their antlers. They're too heavy to carry around all winter. In the spring, the antlers begin growing again, fed by the blood-rich velvet skin that grows over them. The photo below shows early antler growth.
Moose Fun Facts:
Well, I hope you've learned something about the moose. Now, A and T-Dogg, you'll be totally prepared for a moose sighting on your next trip!