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  1. 1. FOND DU LAC EDITION | WWW.SCENENEWSPAPER.COM | MAY 2015 SC NE E Rockin’ the BLUES Photo by Trish Derge
  2. 2. L2  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015 1160 West Scott Street | Fond du Lac, WI 54937 920-921-1600 | Visit us on Facebook Fond du Lac Distributors, Inc. has established itself as a company that offers the products our customers need, at a price they can afford, with excellent customer service. We are your resource for the best in windows, doors, siding, shingles, designer accessories and more. Fond du Lac Distributors, Inc. works to make sure everything that goes into your new home or remodeling project is the best it can be. Customer Satisfaction That Measures Up Visit our showroom!
  3. 3. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L3 Culver’s of Oshkosh - Koeller 1580 S. Koeller Street Oshkosh, WI 54902 (920) 231-6028 Culver’s of Oshkosh - Westowne 2270 Westowne Ave. Oshkosh, WI 54904 (920) 231-6019 Culver’s of Fond du Lac - E. Johnson 969 E. Johnson Street Fond du Lac, WI 54935 (920) 922-5559 Culver’s of Fond du Lac - Hwy. 23 W6606 Hwy. 23 Fond du Lac, WI 54937 (920) 922-2272 Culver’s of Fond du Lac - Pioneer 81 W. Pioneer Road Fond du Lac, WI 54935 (920) 922-2826 Come on in to your local Culver’s restaurant:
  4. 4. FOND DU LAC EDITION Advertising deadline for June is May 20 at 5 p.m. Submit ads to ads@ The SCENE is published monthly by Calumet Press, Inc.The SCENE provides news and commentary on politics, current events, arts and entertainment, and daily living.We retain sole ownership of all non-syndicated editorial work and staff-produced advertisements contained herein. No duplication is allowed without permission from Calumet Press,Inc.2015. PO Box 227 •Chilton,WI 53014 •920-849-4551 Calumet PRESSINC. L4 Michael Casper Scott Wittchow Dorothy Blisky Rohn Bishop Steve Lonsway Kimberly Fisher Trish Derge Jean Detjen James Page Dobie Maxwell Robert Meyer Dennis Riley Tony Palmeri John Price Richard Ostrom Rob Zimmer Will Stahl Blaine Schultz George Halas Michael Mentzer Jane Spietz CONTENTS SCENE STAFF Publisher James Moran • 920.418.1777 Associate Publisher Norma Jean Fochs • 715.254.6324 Editor Michael Casper • 920.344.0036 Ad Director/Sales Greg Doyle • 920.251.8944 Graphic Designer Ericka Kramer-Baker • 920.602.2297 CONTRIBUTORS L16 L12 Dave Steffen has been making music for a long time, specifically, singing and playing blues - rock on his collection of acoustic and electric guitars. It was a year or so ago that I caught he and his band at Frenchie’s Bar in Fond du Lac, and was reminded just how good he was. His career path, and his Chevy van have taken him from here to California and back, and included many talented musicians and transmutations. He’s met and played with some real greats whose names you’ll discover within. His story is one of determination to learn his craft, hone his skills, and play from the heart every night no matter where the stage, or how large the crowd. Having seen he and his mates several more times through this past year, I thought it time to let him tell you his musical tale of wanderlust. Also within your SCENE this month you’ll find the story of a fishing shanty, and the man who built it. The journey of this enduring shack from the ice of Lake Winnebago to its new home in our state museum is told by Mike Mentzer. Plus a lot of food, entertainment, nature, politics, humor, art, wine and beer are also in the coming pages. Enjoy your ‘merry, merry month of May!’ Michael, Editor Fond du Lac and surrounding south valley FROM THE EDITOR  //  MICHAEL CASPER Located on the beautiful shores of Lake Winnebago Artwork and Gifts created by Local Artists Reclaimed Furniture and Accessories Visit us at: N1866 US Hwy 151, Brothertown, WI 920-627-3010 Store Hours: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday 10-5 Sun 10-5 COVER STORY L6 Dave Steffen FINE ARTS R8 Foxy Finds FOOD & DRINK L16 Urban Fuel R2 Brewmaster R4 From the Wine Cave R6 Tricia’s Table ENTERTAINMENT R10 Live from Japan R12 Dobie Maxwell R22 Buddhist Advisor R24 Cinema Beneath R30 Postcard from Milwaukee R32 The Spanish Inquisition R36 Testicle Festival R38 Concert Watch R40 CD Review NEWS & VIEWS R14 Right Wing Nut R16 The View from the Leftfield Seats R18 Media Rants R20 Rohn’s Rants L20 The Gentleman OUTDOORS L12 FDL’s Greenway Arboretum R26 Rob Zimmer R34 Packer Shanty GREEN CHOICES R28 Seeing Green EVENT CALENDARS R42 Live Music L20 The Big Events
  5. 5. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L5 41 MPG HWY 15M340 37MPG HWY 16M8 35MPG HWY 16M36 $ 179 * PER MONTH, 39 MO. LEASE $ 229 * PER MONTH, 39 MO. LEASE 2016 MAZDA6 “…looks like it drives and drives like it looks.” A 2015 Car and Driver 10 Best! $ 259 * PER MONTH, 39 MO. LEASE 2016 MAZDA CX-5 The highest ranked vehicle appeal among compact CUV’s, by J.D. Power (855) 783-3355 HWY 41 & 23, FOND DU LAC (ACROSS FROM WALMART) *Payments are examples based on in-stock vehicles and available incentives at time of this publications deadline (04/28/2015) and are subject to change. Example payments shown are plus tax, title, license and services fee. Payments based on a 39 month, 10,000 mile per year lease, no security deposit required, with $1,999 or equivalent trade due at signing to approved credit. See us for complete details and a great deal on your next vehicle! Nick Faymoville 13th year Julien Bitterwolf 3rd year Meghan O’Malley 6th year Ryan Mikle 4th year DeAnna McEssey 1st year Tom Kuitert 20th year John Krug 5th year HOLIDAYMAZDA.COMHOURS: M-TH: 8AM - 8PM FRI: 8AM - 5:30PM, SAT: 8AM - 5PM Jordyn Wege 2nd year Kourtney Krah 1st year Shane Rosales 7th year JUST MINUTES AWAY... WORTH THE TRIP! Come test-drive a Mazda! 2015 MAZDA3 “The 3 is magnificent.” A Car and Driver 10 Best winner again this year. MEMORIAL DAYSale MAZDA NAMED LOWEST 5-YEAR COST TO OWN BRAND FOR THE SECOND YEAR IN A ROW Vehicle’s projected cost to own for the initial five-year ownership period is based on the average Kelley Blue Book 5-year Cost to Own data which considers depreciation and costs such as fuel and insurance. For more information, visit
  6. 6. L6  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015 ENTERTAINMENT // SERIOUSLY FUNNY
  7. 7. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L7 ENTERTAINMENT // COVER STORY BY MICHAEL CASPER Growing up in Plymouth, Wisconsin in 1951, there wasn’t a lot a 6 year old could do to occupy his time. When Dave Steffen and his family moved to the Crystal Lake area, he says he was a loner who liked to run away from school at recess. “I was pretty much out of the main stream,” Dave said “I was shy, and when I got off the bus, I was pretty much by myself, and there wasn’t really anyone around. I had a basketball hoop, so I was pretty good at hoops, but music was what I liked, and the guitar is what I loved.” Dave had older sisters who were into Dick Clark’s American Bandstand. “It was there that I was first introduced to the likes of Chuck Berry,” Dave said “The Ventures, Everly Brothers. Pretty much any group or performer that played guitars, I was into. I liked the Rock and Roll side of things. So for me, my ‘guitar life’ began at age six.” Like many youngsters, Dave got a toy guitar for Christmas, and his parents were very supportive of his musical passion. But he didn’t get his first real guitar lesson until he was ten. “My folks rented it from a guy by the name of Joe Champeau from whom I took lessons,” Dave said. “He lived about 20 miles from the Sheboygan area. I can’t remember what type of guitar it was, and I think my folks paid like $2 or $3 for the rental. My first lesson I flat out stunk (laugh). In fact my parents told me I didn’t have ‘it.’ But after that first lesson, I went back home, and basically practiced my guitar until my fingers bled. I was ticked off. I was not a natural. But I came back after the first week and I blew everybody away. At ten years old, I was totally deter- mined.” Playing the guitar may seem easy for those who watch Dave Steffen play, but it’s hard. And even Dave didn’t realize how hard. “To this day, when I teach students the first time,” he said “I recognize all over again how hard it is. It’s not like a piano where you can play a single, clear note. You have to work at it, your fingers get calloused, muscles have to do things they have never done before. It looks easy on TV.” Dave’s bullheaded determination led to his first performance. “My instructors were so impressed with my enthusiasm and quick progress,” Dave said “they put me in the ‘studio recital,’ after just three weeks. I was one of the last kids to perform, there were like fifty students. It was in a hall, and I played ‘Blue Tail Fly.’ I screwed up the first measures, so I started over again. I was nervous, it was my first time on stage. But I was already headlining (laugh)! And the studio was using me as an example of what can happen when you work hard.” Dave’s the first to say he wasn’t a natu- ral but he had learned some music from his dad, who had his own big band. “The Roy Steffen Band,” Dave said “a twelve-piece band that played all the Glenn Miller-like standards. They toured all over the Milwaukee and southern Wisconsin area. I remember my dad telling me about when they came to Cedar Lake to play a wedding, and found out they had to play polkas, and they didn’t know any polkas (laugh) they ended up having to pull out some sheet music in a hurry!” Dave continued to take lessons once a week. He would spend a lot of time listen- ing to “guitar stuff,” picking it up by ear. And that led into Dave’s first gig at age 14, with his group “The Wanderers.” “It was during Road America at the Pit and Paddock,” Dave said “back in 1965. We had to have our parents there, since we were all under age. We played some Beatles, Herman’s Hermits. I’ll never forget that night because I had an ‘awakening.‘ We were playing when all of a sudden Still Bending Strings... The String Benders - left to right Dave Steffen, Russ Reiser, Ron Kalista and Craig Neuser Photo by Trish Derge Continue on Page L8
  8. 8. L8  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015 ENTERTAINMENT // COVER STORY out of nowhere, there was a chick who came out of the crowd, climbed up on our piano, and started dancing and taking off her clothes! And that’s when I realized, I’m going to keep practicing guitar because this business is for me!’ (laugh) In 1968 Dave put together another band called Love Society. They took the song “Do You Wanna Dance,” by Bobby Freeman and gave it more of their own sound, and entered a Battle of the Bands, where an agent by the name of Al Posniak from the production agency Target Produc- tions, heard it and wanted to record them. “It actually became a hit locally,” Dave said “and we had a bidding war between three or four companies who wanted to sign us. We eventually signed with Scepter Records, which at the time had a singer by the name of Dionne Warwick signed to the label. The song made Top 10 across the country, we landed a manager, got a Grey- hound bus, and we were off. We toured. Did a live show on WLS radio in Chicago, did a show for TV called “Upbeat” which was out of Cleveland.” They were on a roll. Then came the realization that they needed another hit. “We tried doing a follow up,” Dave said “but we were kids. We were getting into heavier music. Against our manager’s will, we did a song called Tobacco Road, a psychedelic version of it which to this day I still think sounds cool, but it wasn’t a good business move. We ended up getting a contract with RCA, at the time located at 1 Wacker Drive in Chicago, and we recorded an album there. We had one hit, “Bang on Your Own Drum,” which was getting air- play, but no sales due in part to a shipping or trucking strike or something. There were no records to be found in the stores.” It was in 1974 when Sun Blind Lion was formed out of the Love Society, and with it came that harder edge sound. They recorded an album at Sound 80 Studios in Minneapolis. Bob Dylan had just recorded ‘Blood on the Tracks’ there two weeks prior. “It was at Sound 80 where ‘Jamaican Holiday’ was recorded in just a few days,” Dave said “it was a regional hit in 1976. We were doing a lot of midwest touring. Scott Rivard was the engineer, and he also was the engineer for Garrison Keillor and Prairie Home Companion. Record compa- nies were coming to see us, and we almost got signed. But they had a different idea of what they wanted us to be. Spandex pants, and all that...they were looking for a ‘for- mula.’ That was not our style. We decided we couldn’t be something we weren’t.” Sun Blind Lion kept gigging until about 1979. “And then in ’80 I decided it was time to follow my guitar playing and blues rock roots,” Dave said. “And we started the Dave Steffen Band. Back then you made ‘cassettes’ instead of vinyl albums. In ’81 we recorded in Sheboygan. In ’82 we did another studio album in Waupun at Madi- son Street Studio. Nick Kazulka, the engi- neer there, did a fantastic job. He had an old sound board that Jimmy Hendrix has once used, it sounded killer. And it wasn’t just the board, but also Kuzulka’s engineer- ing on that album was brilliant.” Then California called. “I had this friend, Don Burhop who lived in San Francisco,” Dave said “and he was doing the lighting for Jefferson Star- ship, Santana, Grateful Dead, bands like that. He told me, ‘Dave, you gotta come out here.’ He invited us to come out. We were playing a few gigs in some smaller bars at the time here, until in January of 85’ we finally thought we’d give California a try for a while. We loaded up the Chevy van and headed for the coast. That ‘few month trip’ turned into 10 years.” The band got by on very little. “It was not easy,” Dave said “ for quite a while we lived off a sack of potatoes (laugh). I mean there are only so many ways you can make a sack of potatoes into something appetizing.” They lived at Burhop’s house. “He took us in. And that cassette album we recorded in opened a few doors, and we ended up opening for The Tubes, Santana, Robin Trower. We entered a Battle of Bands, took 2nd place, we got to be known, but it took time and it was not easy.” True to his Wisconsin roots, Dave always returned in the summer months. “That blue Chevy van went more than 600,000 miles,” Dave said “it never rusted, thanks to the California weather, so we just kept dropping in a new engines and tranny’s when we needed to!” (laugh) We met a lot of great folks in California, hang- ing out in Marin County like Huey Lewis and the News, Carlos Santana, guys from the Dead. It was exciting, thrilling, but we never really got the ‘big deal’ we always wanted.” Dave moved back to Wisconsin in 1995 when his mom was diagnosed with cancer. “I came back to take care of her,” Dave said “it’s what you do.” Dave misses California, and its vibrant music scene, but as he says, “the times were changing out there, and we’ve been able to carry on what we love here in Wisconsin.” Playing the blues guitar is what he knows. “I’m not getting rich,” Dave said “I have a buddy of mine that does some yard work, and I’ll occasionally help him out, I call it ‘raking for the rich’ (laugh) to give my muscles a work out. But music is my love! And I’m making a living playing.” Dave will be the first to tell you he couldn’t do what he’s done without a core group of performers and friends. “Craig Neuser has been with me since we did our Hawaii gig,” Dave said. “He was 19 at the time, so it’s been 20 years. I was teaching Craig’s brother at the time, and I was doing an acoustic set; Craig came out and played with me, and he played pretty good, and the dude could sing, which was a bonus! Didn’t take much to convince him to come along to Hawaii. We also have Spencer Panosh, who was Craig’s good friend from Whitelaw, Wisconsin and I really liked his drumming, and I loved how he and Craig worked together so well. He joined Reverend Raven for awhile, but came back 10 years ago. Spencer is very talented, and a natural drummer. So when you match that up with the voice that Craig has, you get something special. They are reliable, with no baggage, you know? These guys are straight forward guys.” Dave also co-fronts another version of the Dave Steffen Band called The String Benders, a quartet including two acoustic guitars, drums and a bass. “Russ Reiser sings and plays acoustic,” Dave said “he started the Benders as a part time band. I joined him, along with Ron Kalista on drums, and Craig Neuser on stand-up fiddle, and harmonica. And Sun Blind Lion still gets together…a few gigs a year. We’re scheduled to do Mile of Music in August in Appleton.” To find Dave’s complete upcoming sched- ule, visit May - 2015 1 - Fri. Wisconsin Brewing House - Verona 2 - Sat. Firehouse - De Pere 3 - Sun. Smilin’ Moose - Osman 9 - Sat. Arrow Bar - Weston 14 - Thur. Fat Seagull - Manitowoc 15 - Fri. Cimarron - Menasha 16 - Sat. Waverly Inn - two Rivers 17 - Sun. Jakum’s - Sheboygan 22 - Fri. Fin & Feather - Winneconne 23 - Sat Road House - Dundee 24 - Sun. Fudgienuckles - Glenbeulah 27 - Wed. Cimarron - Menasha 29 - Fri. Silver Springs - Plymouth 30 - Sat. Stone Harbor - Sturgeon Bay 31 - Sun. Stone Harbor - Sturgeon Bay Continued on Page L7
  9. 9. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L9 Get the jump on Memorial Day Weekend Mother’s Day Baskets & Fresh Cut Flowers Call or Order Online 7 DAYS A WEEK - 24/7 It’s Springtime at Haentze! Fond du Lac • (920) 921-0970 • Open 7 Days a Week • M-F 8-5:30, Sat 8-5, Sun 9-5
  10. 10. L10  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015
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  12. 12. BY SCOTT WITTCHOW Thanks to the vision and persistence of Laura DeGo- lier, Fond du Lac now boasts what has until recently been a secret of sorts – a nature area of neatly kept 24 acres located in the middle of the city – the Greenway Arboretum. Located just north of Culver’s, Pick ‘n Save and Pioneer Road, the Greenway features paths for walking, a prairie loop filled with new tree plant- ings, heavy woods which can be explored by trails and a “back to nature” feel just yards from businesses, restaurants and homes. The scenic East Branch of the Fond du Lac River forms the western border of the Greenway and one trail extends nearly a third mile along the waterway. “The Greenway is a great place to escape and return to nature right here in the city,” said DeGolier.” You can walk up there, cross the railroad tracks and you are in a whole other world. Sometimes you could imagine yourself in the north woods. There is incredible natural beauty there when the frost falls on the plants or the soft winter snows come that cling to everything. It’s quiet; the river provides beauty and attraction for wildlife.” The main entrance of the Greenway Arboretum is located between Pick ‘n Save and the Salvation Army Thrift Shop. Signage is located in an opening of a fence that was erected last fall to keep motorized vehicles (ATVs, snowmobiles, etc.) off of a newly seeded two-acre field that will eventually become a savanna with grasses, trees and plants that were native to this area before development. Another access point is on the north end and connects a former railroad bed now turned into a walking path, from 12th Street. There are more than five trails in the Greenway plus several loops so that one can spend hours traversing the property. DeGolier and several others, including Diana Beck, were instrumental in getting this city land turned into the greenway nature preserve that it is today. She had spoken to several people (Beck, Ruth Dauterman, Gerda Strupp, Christine Kaup, Margie Winter and Sid and Carol Knight were big supporters) about the importance of the property. She explained that “a very small group of about six people had been meeting and doing some studies on parks. One of the speak- ers was from the East Central WI Planning Commission and he taught us that we should not try to change existing parks, but look to celebrate all the wonderful water that makes its way through Fond du Lac. My friends convinced me I should take action.” The result was a letter, dated Sept. 27, 2004, to Fond du Lac Parks Director John Kiefer. After a meeting with Kiefer, DeGolier talked with the FDL League of Women Voters and other friends in the FDL Audubon Society and told them she asked the city for maps of the city’s open spaces. “I was told that no list existed and no maps existed to show the location. Finally in the summer of 2005, I told (City Manager) Wayne Rollin that I was going to put in a Freedom of Information request. Finally, in August of 2005, we got three copies of maps of the city with the open spaces outlined in red.” DeGolier and Beck decided to explore the area that is now the Greenway Arboretum because it was one of the sizable pieces, and DeGolier likes its location because it was near her home. What they found out is that the property, once home to a house, had been turned into a dumping ground. Huge slabs of cement dumped there many years ago are still visible on the northeast edge of the property along the seldom used railroad tracks which serve as the east boundary of the greenway. At that time that land was owned by Phil Majerus and he used it as a land fill, according to DeGolier. “There were heavy duty sewer pipes and other items with value in the area. We had a meet- ing with Mark Lentz, FDL Public Works Director, and Rollin and talked about this piece, mostly about the junk and metal items. The city sent the zoning officer and he suggested Majerus clean up the property (in 2006). He then promptly asked the city to buy it from him.” The city was happy to do that, noted DeGolier, because cities can assess developers a fee or land when they do a new develop- ment for the purpose of creating a park. The city had money in such a fund in 2006 and the legislature was not happy with those FDL’s Greenway Arboretum becoming 24-acre Nature Gem in Middle of the City Continue on Page L14 L12  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015
  13. 13. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L13 Call 923.2323 209 N. Macy Street • Fond du Lac Mon. thru Fri. 9-8, Sat 9-5, Sun. 11-3 HEALTHY FAMILY FITNESSACTIVITIES Whether it’s Family Recreation,Adventure Rides through Rough Terrain, Road Racing or the Kid’s First Ride... We’re Proud to Help Get You Going! Thanks for choosing Attitude Sports! Owner Dave Haase BIKE SEASON IS HERE! Come see the professional, knowledgeable staff at Attitude Sports...Where biking is our passion and serving you is our honor. Get Out & Ride... BIKE TUNE UP TIME! Drop off Bike’s NOW for a safe Biking Season! May is National Bike Month!
  14. 14. L14  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015 GREEN CHOICES  //  GREENWAY ARBORETUM who were sitting on such funds and not using the money. Rollin used $25,000 on 4.5 acres and in 2006 acquired the prairie area. DeGolier, Beck and others soon found out that turning the property into a green- way would be a monumental task. “The buckthorn was so thick that one had to crawl through in some parts. The garlic mustard grew in many places and was harder to reach through the briars,” said DeGolier. “We hauled out bags and bags of the mustard for the city to pick up.” She also noted a local landscaper had huge piles of dirt in the open spaces piled 15 to 20 feet high. During rains, soil washed down through the Greenway to the river. It took volunteers several years to get the city to have the landscaper change his ways. Today, a host of volunteers (many who have formed an informal group called Park Watch of Fond du Lac) have made great headway in the Greenway Arboretum. Those who walk it will notice huge brush piles of cut buckthorn limbs as well as piles of wood ready for the furnace or campfire. It is estimated that there are over three miles of trails in the property and more are being developed each week, especially now that spring has arrived. DeGolier, of course, is very thankful for all the help that has been obtained in developing the Greenway. She said the DNR early on gave some help and encouragement and some herbi- cides. “The City of Fond du Lac has always been incredibly helpful. They do some of the really big things that no one else can do like burning brush piles. There are two sec- tions of trail that their summer crews built under the guidance of Mack Whitmore who has become a trained crew leader for the purpose of building trails.” Also, Fond du Lac County and Consul- tants Lab provided the funds for the trees on the prairie - there are about 25 plants. Marian University under Dr. John Morris started very early in the greenway’s history to bring students to pull garlic mustard and work on buckthorn removal. Margie Winter continues his tradition. Fond du Lac Noon Kiwanis has gotten involved in the past year and the Community Service Officers of the FDL Police Department have taken a real interest in the Greenway. In 2014, DeGolier received a grant from the Fond du Lac Area Foundation to assist with the oak/hickory savanna restoration. DeGolier is a Sheboygan County native and did not move to FDL until 1982. She started in the insurance profession as an agent with Thrivent Financial (AAL at the time) in December of 1979 and changed companies to Northwestern Mutual in 1983. On Feb. 1, 1999, she was appointed by Gov. Thompson to be the executive secretary of the Wisconsin Conservation Corps. Her term ended at the end of 2002 and the subsequent budget under Gov. Jim Doyle terminated the WCC. When DeGo- lier returned to Fond du Lac full time in 2003, she continued in the insurance business. Her love of the outdoors led her to working on land restoration with The Nature Conservancy and the Greenway Arboretum. To learn more about the Greenway Arboretum, contact Laura DeGolier at 920-921-4191 or 920-948-8041(cell). Celebrating Our 34th Year Get your Swing Back! Safe, natural, drug free alternative for pain control & Health Restoration. Most Insurance Plans Excepted • Medicare/Medicaid • Humana/FABOH • Anthem/BC/BS • WEA/HSM • Network Health • United Health Care • CIGNA • UMR • HealthEOS • Plus Many More Walk Ins and Same Day Appointments Welcome! Open Monday - Friday 8-12, 2-6 • Saturday by Appointment Dr. Scott Suprenand 921-4130 • 924 Forest Avenue • Fond du Lac Dr. Craig Wink mention this ad and you will receive a complimentary consultation Great health happens by choice...Not by chance! Get Healthy for Golf Season Continued from Page L12
  15. 15. May 2015 | Fond Du Lac | | L15 Happy Moter’s Day 432 Prospect Avenue • North Fond du Lac • (920) 922-3325 • A special Thanks to ALL The Mom’s from all of us at The Classic Cut Day Spa. We pride ourselves in being your #1 Choice for all your Beauty, Health & Hair Styling needs! Gift Certificates Available Only te Best for Mom!
  16. 16. L16  | | Fond Du Lac | May 2015 BY DOROTHY BLISKEY Urban Fuel, a new specialty coffee shop and café has opened its doors in Peebles, a tiny community just northeast of Fond du Lac. Serving breakfast and lunch Monday through Saturday, Urban Fuel is located in the same space that housed the former Gift ‘n Gab eatery and gift shop. Urban Fuel’s owner, Terri Deanovich of Fond du Lac, has had a dream for 10 years to open a coffee shop. As the owner of Deanovich Decorating for 20 years, she says she’s been waiting for just the right timing and the perfect location. In Febru- ary, she ended ownership in one business to launch her new venture as a coffee shop café owner. A few staff members from the former restaurant as well as several popular menu items were brought on board by Deanov- ich – making it a smooth transition. The comfortable leather couches and chairs surrounding the fireplace for extra “cushy” relaxation are also being recognized by former patrons. Urban Fuel’s atmosphere is unique – it’s in a building that was an old feed mill, dating back to the 1800’s. The result is an old world, rustic ambiance. Historical pictures from the old working mill line the walls. “My café space dates back to 1901,” Deanovich said, noting while part of the old feed mill burned down in the 1980’s, her spot was untouched. “There is so much history here, and I can’t wait to learn more about it.” As for the food and drink served at Urban Fuel, diners will find specialty cof- fees, teas, sandwiches, soups, salads and breakfast items – all deliciously homemade from scratch. Topping the list for breakfast is the quiche of the day. Varieties like spinach bacon or artichoke asparagus tantalize hungry diners who arrive for a relaxing first-meal-of-the-day or those who choose to have breakfast for lunch! Other choices include homemade oatmeal, breakfast sandwiches and mouth-watering pastries like cinnamon rolls, muffins, cookies and scones. Lunch selections include soups, salads and sandwiches on a variety of breads, wraps and Paninis. Soups like Lobster Bisque and Mushroom Brie, as well as sandwiches such as Turkey Brie and Grilled Cheese on a Panini delight leisure diners. “Even our salad dressings are made from scratch right here,” Deanovich said, noting Thousand Island and Avocado Ranch are two examples. “Everything we make is created after you order it, piece-by-piece. Nothing is prepackaged or rushed. We aren’t a fast-food type of place -- we’re an experience to be enjoyed.” Coffee is derived from high qual- ity beans purchased from Stone Creek -- a Milwaukee coffee roaster, making the “fuel” in the name Urban Fuel come to life. Specialty coffee drinks are an art -- one that Deanovich excitedly has jumped right into. Patrons will find her behind the counter, mastering “coffee art” which is the manipulation of cream and other ingredients into the coffee drinks. The art results in the creation of heart shapes and other designs in the specialty coffee drinks served. “Being a decorator for years, I love Urban Fuel Coffee Shop & Café Opens in Former Feed Mill Continue on Page L18
  17. 17. May 2015 | | R1 Friday/Saturday Admission Adult (age 13 & up) Child (age 4 to 12) Advance Pass Toddlers age 3 & under admitted free $4.00 $2.00 $5.00 $3.00 Gate Pass PERFORMING ON THE MAIN STAGE $1 CARNIVAL RIDES! SATURDAY, JUNE 6 Cheddar Chase Walk/Run @ 10:25 a.m. Big Cheese Parade @ 10:30 a.m. @LCCheeseFestLike LC Cheese Fest Follow us on Twitter @LCCheeseFest and help trend #CheeseJam Like us on Facebook at LC Cheese Fest VIC FERRARIJune 5th • 8 p.m. to midnight BOOGIE AND THE YO-YO’ZJune 6th • 8 p.m. to midnight UNITYJune 7th • 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Come celebrate your love of cheese at this year's Great Wisconsin Cheese Festival. This wonderful family event includes music, food, amusement rides, children's entertainment, animal petting zoo, walk/run, parade, cheese tasting, cheese carving demonstrations, cheese curd eating contest, cheese breakfast, grilling competition, and more! Proceeds from each year's festival are donated back to the community. A grand total of $1,140,734 has been distributed since the festival's inception. In addition, numerous non-profit groups have raised funds by operating a food booth at the festival. An admission pass is required to enter the Doyle Park festival grounds on Friday and Saturday. Each pass allows a person to enter the park on both days. Sunday is FREE admission day, so no pass is needed. June 5, 6 & 7, 2015 Doyle Park, Little Chute Directions To Little Chute: Little Chute is located 10 minutes north of Appleton and 20 minutes south of Green Bay. To get here, please take Highway 41 to Little Chute Exit 146/N, then go south on County Road N (scan QR Code below for Google Map to park) 2015 SPONSORS KISS FM SUMMER SLAM featuring CASH CASH and ANDY GRAMMER WWW.LITTLECHUTEWI.ORG/CHEESEFEST Advance admission passes are available from Monday, May 4 thru Thursday, June 4, at the Little Chute Village Hall, BLC Community Bank, Capital Credit Union, King's Variety Store, Larry's Piggly Wiggly, Simon's Cheese, and Vanderloop Shoes. Pass allows individual entry to festival grounds on Friday & Saturday. No pass required on Sunday, which is FREE admission day. June 6th • 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  18. 18. R2  |  | May 2015 FOOD & DRINK  //  BREWMASTER BY STEVE LONSWAY Our beer selection for this month once again came from bottle stock at the Stone Arch Tap Room. It is the first imported beer our team decided to write about and we are all glad we did! Hardcore IPA from Ellon, Scotland based Brew Dog, a release from their “Amplified series”. This time around, our entire brewery team of 8 got to sample this Scottish offering. It was really neat for me to page though the tasting notes from each team member and compile them all into this article. It still amazes me, after so many years in the beer industry, how differently people per- ceive flavors and aromas The amber colored long neck bottle boasts a label that is a simple dark green with reverse white in a dis- tressed print. Explicit Impe- rial Ale, as it is explained as well as the fact it is a product of Scotland. The side panel explains some fun numbers it took to create this beer including mention of the 9,900,000,000 yeast cells it took to make it all come together. With a best before date of 08/15/2026, we certainly didn’t have to rush to drink it, matter-of-fact I wish I had the patience to cellar this bad boy for several years to enjoy the inevitable changes it will incur. This sample was poured into several snifter-style glasses. The pour allowed perfect foam formation consisting of a mixture of loose and tight bubbles from the CO2 and an ivory colored head. The head height was right where it needed to be at around two inches – very inviting! The appearance is a tad bit hazy which is typical in highly hopped beers. The color is a rich copper and reddish hue. The nose this beer expels got so many different associations from our team, I could have written this entire article on the nose alone. Lively citrus, malty, bready, piney, resinous, sweet, nutty, tangerine, Skittles, freshly shampooed carpet, just to name a few. With orange and fruity the most common notes. Quite complex to say the least. The taste/flavor wasn’t too far behind with fun associations. Strong, caramel, bitter fruit, earthy, nutty and a little bit of oxidation is what we all agreed on as to what you can expect when enjoying this beer. With grand amounts of Maris Otter Malt and obvious huge hop additions of Centennial, Columbus, Simcoe, Amarillo and Citra, this beer comes across the taste buds as pretty balanced, maybe a bit light on the hop tones even at 125 IBU’s (again; this coming from a group of hop hounds). Important to mention is the belief of many experts that anything over 100 IBU’s is not perceived by the majority. This beer finishes dry from the elevated alcohol content of 9.2% abv and still carries through with big citrus and caramel tones. Overall this beer has a strong, complimen- tary balance with good body and a mellow warming sensation. Taylor was fortunate enough to be enjoying an Indian dish for lunch at the time of sampling and seemed to think the pairing was staged because of how perfect the beer paired with the spices. Now let’s learn more about the Scot- tish blokes who brought this brand to the states. It all started back in 2007 when two 24 year olds and their trusted canine companion begged and borrowed cash and converted it into stainless to start their dream in Fraserburgh, Scotland. Their first year produced 1,050 hectolitres of beer (895 U.S. barrels) with the two founders/ stakeholders (and again their dog) at the helm. Year two they pushed the envelope by brewing the U.K.’s strongest beer and the media storm that followed help them persuade the banks to loan them more cash for stainless and a new bottling line. Finishing out the year of 2008 at 4,050 hl and up to nine employees and “1 dog”. After a very suc- cessful on-line offer- ing of stock dubbed Equity for Punks and brewing the world’s strongest beer (at 32% abv), 2009 showed growth to 24 employees and 9,500 hl of beer produced. 2010 brought beer a n d t a x i d e r m y together when Brew Dog released a 55% abv beer that the bottle was cleverly hidden inside a taxi- dermy squirrel. This subsequently became the world’s most expensive beer and their business growth continued. With help from crowd funding, gimmicky brews (like brewing under water), exporting to 55 countries, the addition of tied-house bars and a very successful TV show named Brew Dogs, 2014 production numbers grew to 90,000 hl. They now employ 358 people, own 26 tied-house bars and have 14,568 shareholders, yet still only one dog. FINAL WORD: Search this beer out, buy two. Drink one tonight with Indian fare while you whisk through the pages of their website and stash the other in your cellar for later enjoyment. Cheers! Brew Dog Hardcore IPA
  19. 19. May 2015 | | R3 May 1st - Point Reyes May 8th - Misha Siegfried and His Band May 15th - Soap May 16th - Jam Funk All Stars May 23rd - Sly Joe and The Smooth Operators May 29th - Miles Over Mountains Fas t Shipping • Great Prices • F riendlyService Vast Selection of: • Speciality Grains 50+ varieties • Hops 50+ varieties • 20+ dry yeasts & all Wyeast strains • Ready-to-go kits for beer/wine pointbrewsupply.comLocated at 3038 Village Park Drive, Plover, WI 54467 Exit 153 off of I-39 S| | 1-715-342-9535 | Just over an hour from Fox Valley area! Shop with a Pint!
  20. 20. R4  |  | May 2015 FOOD & DRINK  //  FROM THE WINE CAVE BY KIMBERLY FISHER May Day… May Day… Next on our journey of investigating the big six, it is time to see what the reds have in store by exploring Cabernet, Pinot Noir and Merlot, this time with another twist. Cabernet Sauvignon is King. It is a grape that ages into subtle splendor, and is a world traveler. When its tiny dark blue berries are coupled with great winemaking, Cabernet Sauvignon can produce some of the longest lived and the most intrigu- ing wines in the world. Cabernet from Bordeaux can produce some of the world’s costliest wines in the world and yet you can find an amazing value such as those offered by a Petite Chateau, Chateau Picau Perna. This Cabernet based wine gives you structure and depth and blends with the addition of a bit of Merlot, ensures you won’t break your wine budget. Cabernet Sauvignon from Argentina deserves to be mentioned as that nation’s high altitude has an affect on grape growing that along with a unique climate showcases a specific style and quality of wine. Terrazes from Mendoza, Argentina harnesses quality over quantity. With an average rainfall of 8 inches a year, the vines have to work harder to get their nutrients which leads to a wine that showcases ter- roir. If you were to travel to Paso Robles, which is located in the Central Coast of California, you find Cabernet Sauvignon takes on two personalities. On one side of Highway 101, it is hot with no direct access to cooling ocean breezes. Here the soils are deep, fertile and produce subtle fruit. On the other side, the soils are more calcareous, the vineyards are cooled by marine influence and you will find wines such as those of Justin, who pioneered Cabernet Sauvignon grape growing, long before Cabernet was cool in the area. Pinot Noir is an extremely elusive grape as it is very sensitive to terroir and ripens early. When planted in warm climates, it ripens too fast and can lose its fascinating flavor compounds. Pinot Noir’s perfect place on earth lies in Burgundy where it can convey intricate flavors. Another great Pinot growing area is Oregon where the climate is similar to Burgundy. One pro- ducer that was a pioneer in the Willamette Valley is Erath winery. Another producer and region to explore across the globe is Villa Maria located in Marlborough New Zealand. This region is best known for Sauvignon Blanc, but try Pinot Noir from this area and you will be hooked. Merlot is often used as a blending partner. It ripens earlier that Cabernet Sauvignon in cooler vintages, and it lends to more alcohol in warmer climates. It has bigger berries and thinner skins than Caber- net which lends to less tannic, more opulent wines. The traditional style of Merlot is plump, soft and plummy. Matanzas Creek Merlot from Bennett Valley California takes plantings from the original clones from Pomerol located in Bordeaux and produces an amazing bottle of wine. Merlot from the Wahluke Slope in Washington comes from a warmer climate showcasing brilliant bright fruit. A good example that is reflec- tive of this warmer climate style comes from Chateau Ste Michelle and that winery’s Indian Wells offering. These last two months we have explored the big six grapes. These grapes can vary according to location, soil, aspect, barrel treatment, terroir and types of clones. Don’t stop with one varietal if you decide you don’t like it. Continue to walk down the path and see what else awaits you. By doing a comparison tastings like these, you will be amazed at the differences, the similarities and the passion that goes into taking these majestic grapes and turn- ing them into something so amazing… WINE! From the Wine Cave Seeing is smelling for a camera system developed by scientists in Japan that images ethanol vapor escaping from a wine glass. And, perhaps most importantly, no wine is wasted in the process. Kohji Mitsubayashi, at theTokyo Med- ical and Dental University, and colleagues i m p r e g - nated a mesh with the enzyme alcohol oxi- dase, which converts low molecular weight alcohols and oxygen into aldehydes and hydrogen peroxide. Horseradish peroxide and luminal were also immobilized on the mesh and together initiate a color change in response to hydrogen peroxide. When this mesh is placed on top of a wine glass, color images from a camera watching over the mesh on top of a glass of wine can be interpreted  to map the concentra- tion distribution of ethanol leaving the glass. Different glass shapes and tem- peratures can bring out completely different bouquets and finishes from the same wine. So Mitsubayashi’s team analyzed different wines, in different glasses – including different shaped wine glasses, a martini glass and a straight glass – at different temperatures. At 13°C, the alcohol concentration in the centre of the wine glass was lower than that around the rim. Wine served at a higher temperature, or from the martini or straight glass, did not exhibit a ring-shaped vapor pattern. ‘This ring phenomenon allows us to enjoy the wine aroma without interference of gaseous ethanol. Accord- ingly, wine glass shape has a very sophis- ticated functional design for tasting and enjoying wine,’ explains Mitsubayashi. Wine scientist Régis Gougeon, from the University of Burgundy, France, says the work is really interesting when considering its experimental setup, which allows for a rather straightforward and inexpensive detection of ethanol. ‘Bearing in mind the flavor enhancer properties of ethanol, this work provides an unprec- edented image of the claimed impact of glass geometry on the overall complex wine flavor perception, thus validating the search for optimum adequation between a glass and a wine.’ In the future the system could help indicate the best wine glass and precise temperature to serve a certain wine. Shape of Glass DOES Affect Taste!
  21. 21. May 2015 | | R5
  22. 22. R6  |  | May 2015 FOOD & DRINK  // TRICIA’S TABLE BY TRISH DERGE I know it sounds simple, and it actu- ally is...but there are a few tips I’d like to pass along to you on how-to make the best hard-boiled eggs. There are several cooking method variations, but no matter which you use, there are common mistakes you should try to avoid. 1. Using the wrong size pot Don’t try to cram too many egg in a pot. Not only will the eggs cook unevenly, but there’s more risk of an egg cracking. Trish’s Tip:  Eggs should sit in a single layer and have enough space to move around. 2. Starting with boiling water If you’re about to place uncooked eggs in a pot of boiling water, stop! Hard-boiled eggs should always be started with cool water. Bringing the water and eggs up in temperature together helps promote even cooking and prevents cracking. Trish’s Tip: Place the eggs in a sauce- pan and cover with cold water. 3. Using eggs that are too fresh Hard-boiled eggs can be difficult to peel, and this is especially true when they’re made using eggs that are too fresh. As eggs age, two things happen that make them easier to peel. First, they lose mois- ture through small pores in the shell, and the air pocket at the tip of the egg gets larger. I don’t want to get too scientific here, but the pH level of the egg’s whites rise as they age, which makes them adhere less strongly to the shell. Trish’s Tip: For hard-boiled eggs that are easier to peel, use older eggs. Buy your eggs a week or two before you plan to boil them. 4. Overcooking them Ever found that the yolk has a gray- green tint? A slightly stinky sulphur-like odor? A rubbery white? Dry, crumbly yolk? All of these are results of an overcooked hard-boiled egg. Trish’s Tip: Put the eggs in a saucepan, cover them with cold water, bring to a boil. Then, remove the pan from the heat, cover it, and let it sit for 10 minutes for firm yet creamy hard-boiled eggs, or up to 15 minutes for very firm eggs. 5. Not using an ice bath In theory, it seems like the eggs should be finished cooking when the timer buzzes. But, in reality, that’s not the case. Even once the eggs are removed from the water, they’re still hot. The heat from carryover cooking will continue to cook the eggs, risking overcooking. Trish’s Tip: Not only is an ice bath your ticket to stopping the cooking immediately, but it will also help sepa- rate the egg membrane from the shell, making it easier to peel. Once the eggs have finished cooking, drain the water from the saucepan and transfer the eggs to an ice bath. Let them soak until they’re fully cooled. Egg Salad is Easy... Right? Trish’s Easy-Egg Salad 1. Place six eggs in a sauce pan, and cover with cool water 2. Bring water to a boil, and cook 7 to 10 minutes 3. Remove from heat, and rinse with cold water, or place in ice bath 4. When cool, crack and remove the shell, then slice and chop the eggs into pieces in a medium size bowl 5. Add 1/3 cup Mayo, 2 tbsp Yellow Mustard, mix well, salt and pepper to taste Serve on toasted bread of croissant...or use as a dip with crackers!
  23. 23. May 2015 | | R7 Timeless Creations, Old World Charm Make Your Dream Home a Reality in With a Custom Designed & Built Home by Jesse Burg
  24. 24. FINE ARTS  //  FOXY FINDS Foxy Finds Musical instrument art series by Erinn Kom- schlies. Originals & Prints of Erinn’s work are available at The Fine Fox in Downtown Neenah. Full spectrum colors on black backdrop sets a dramatic tone. An Appleton native, Erinn is a naturally talented artist and currently attends St. Olaf College as a music major and plays the clarinet in the St Olaf Orchestra. BY JEAN DETJEN,ARTFUL LIVING Ceramic garden mush- rooms add a sense of whimsy and color to garden beds and potted plants. Avail- able at The Wreath Factory (Plymouth & Menasha). Bring on your inner scorpion with these eye-catching El Alacran de Durango cowboy boots from Joyeria Ordaz (Green Bay & Appleton). Supple alligator leather in rich cognac hues with embroidery detail and contrast stitching. Handcrafted in Mexico. $350. A variety of motifs and colors combinations are available. Mens sizes 5-12, custom orders accepted. R8  |  | May 2015
  25. 25. May 2015 | | R9 FINE ARTS  //  FOXY FINDS Here’s to living ArtFULLY in the heart of Wisconsin! Send your suggestions for Jean’s Foxy Finds to jdetjen@scene- Lipstick red sleeveless a-line cutout dress from Neesha. Available at Lil- lian’s of Fond du Lac in sizes S/M or M/L. $58 Avenue Art & Co.zigzag multi micro hooked area rug from by Dash & Albert. Add a bit of zip to your favorite space with this wool/cotton floor art with a bold, dimensional pattern of aqua, fuchsia, grass, and more. A guaranteed style statement! Other fun patterns available,prices vary by size. Bring on the Wisco lovefest with custom print merch from Blue Moon Emporium is a curated market- place featuring the works of local independent artists and designers. Stop in and find unique wares like Wisconsin-themed clothing, ceramics, screen-printed pillows, jewelry, upcycled accessories and other con- temporary handmade goods.  Good mood induc- ing ceramic bicycle mugs from Scatter Joy, Appleton.
  26. 26. R10  |  | May 2015 ENTERTAINMENT // LIVE FROM JAPAN BY JAMES PAGE GAME OF THE MONTH: Double Dragon Neon Developer: WayForward ESRB: Teen Release Date: 09/11/2012 System: PC/PlayStation 3/Xbox 360 Rating: Graphics: 3.0 out of 4.0 Game Play: 3.0 out of 4.0 Personal: 2.0 out of 2.0 Total Score: 8.0 out of 10.0 Player’s Page: Double Dragon Neon Pop in a cassette tape and travel back in time to the 1980’s. Visit a world of neon, leather, hair picks, and violence. This place, and story are not unfamiliar to long time video game fans, but it has been a long time since anyone has visited this bleak and depressing city. This place is home to the martial artists Billy and Jimmy Lee and Billy’s girlfriend Marian. As in any city, the inhabitants try their best to live their lives in peace but that is not always possible especially in a city riddled with crime. In the past Marian has been kidnapped on numerous occasions requiring Billy and Jimmy to come to her rescue. Flash forward to the current day and nothing much has changed since the world was originally introduced to the beat‘em up style of the Lee Brothers. One can easily see the dominance of 80’s music has been maintained, the cassette tape is still the most popular media format, and everyone is still hell bent for leather. Unfortunately for Marian, the various gangs in the city continue to want to kidnap her and keep her for themselves. This case is proven in a recent encounter on the streets of the city. Marian was standing on the sidewalk when she was approached by members of the Shadow Warriors gang who attacked and kidnapped her, and now it is up to Billy and Jimmy to rescue her once again, from the clutches of an evil gang with an unknown purpose. Double Dragon Neon is a relaunch of the classic side scrolling beat‘em up series Double Dragon. Maintaining the basic actions of punch, kick, and jump players will need to fight through multiple waves of enemies to reach the end of a stage and confront the boss. Players will not have to rely on their brawn alone to overcome the forces of the Shadow Warriors because they will be able to use various weapons such as knifes, whips, bats, and hair picks found lying on the ground or taken from enemies. The game can be tackled solo, but it is meant to be played cooperatively and is easier and more fun when two friends are sitting on a c o u c h filling the shoes of the Lee Broth- ers. W a y - Fo r w a r d has tried to replicate the original game play s t y l e o f D o u b l e D r a g o n while trying to add new elements which have been developed and accepted by the industry since the release of the original. The game improved upon the original games by adding a stage select menu, super moves, and in stage shops. The player will be able to acquire new super moves and passive stat improvements by obtaining cassette tapes which are dropped by ene- mies or purchased in shops. These moves and stat improvements can be leveled up by collecting multiple copies of the same cassette tape and by collecting ore which can be used to increase the number of each cassette tape which can be held. Although many game play elements have been improved from the originals the game maintains some of downsides of the genre. The movement of the characters tends to be a bit sluggish and jumping can be tricky if the player does not take a run- ning start. Playing through the game solo will be a bit difficult due to the number of enemies, but this is offset by the cassette tape leveling system introduced by the developers. Due to the 2D layout of the game fighting enemies can be difficult due to the need to line up attacks with the enemy’s location, but this can be easily overcome with a bit of practice. Double Dragon Neon immerses the player in the world of the 1980’s with a nice mix of graphics and music. Rich and vibrant colors help to recreate the distinc- tive color patterns of the 80’s, but at the same time the colors are slightly muted to help simulate the atmosphere of a dreary city. The soundtrack remixes a number of songs from the original games while adding new and upbeat characteristics. This helps to create a bridge between the old and new while helping to remind players of the sounds of classic arcades. Double Dragon Neon is a fun experi- ence which brings back the game play style from the early days of video games while blending it with more modern graphics and sound. The game can be purchased through the PlayStation Store, the Xbox network, or one of the many PC gaming clients. The digital nature of the game allows for one to use the co–op feature with a friend on the same system or with a friend who is online. One will be amazed how fast the hours fly by while playing this modern take on a video game classic. Remember, like all games if you play them just to have fun there will never be a bad game. Live From Japan
  27. 27. May 2015 | | R11 FOND DU LAC (920)922-2006 62 N. ROLLING MEADOWS DR. • OSHKOSH (920)233-3200 • DELAFIELD • STURTEVANT Home for the Holidays! Introducing Our Design & Sales Staff Tracy Lyons Chris Groesbeck • One-on-one Customer Service • Professional Installation on All Flooring • Interior Design Advice • Estimates are Always FREE Visit us online! WWW.FLOORQUEST.NET 177 S. Main Street, Downtown Fond du Lac • 921-3113 • Goldsmith Ron Emanuel Diamonds Engagement Rings & Wedding Bands • Custom Designs • Jewelry Repair • Unique Gifts • Watches SHOPDOWNTOWN Joshua Emanuel Goldsmith the Goldsmith the Original Designs in Gold & Silver for Over 40 Years! Original Designs in Gold & Silver for Over 40 Years!
  28. 28. R12  |  | May 2015 BY DOBIE MAXWELL I sadly admitted technology passed me by years ago, but now it’s getting ridiculous. The last straw was broken last week when my neighbor invited me over to sample some of his barbecue –another area in which I lack severely but that’s another tale for another time. One crisis per day. My neighbor has two teenage sons that think I’m extremely funny – I think. It’s either that or they are constantly laughing at me instead of with me. I’d like to give myself the benefit of the doubt but a recent incident made me start to lose hope. I think I need to pack my bags and move to an Amish colony immediately. I could use a fresh start, and the beard would help hide my shame. The event in question started innocently enough. I walked into the house and saw a basketball game on the living room television screen. All I did was ask who was winning and was informed it was the older son Jeremy. When a quizzical look occupied my face even more quizzical than usual, younger son Ryan dropped the crushing blow. “Uh…it’s not the TV. It’s a video game.” Excuse me? The graphics on video games are now so well developed I actually mistook it for a real game? I was so embarrassed I wasn’t able to maintain eye contact with the boys. I felt like a puppy that had been caught pooping on the carpet and all I could think of was how to slink out of the room and act like it never happened. I was half expecting the boys to rub my nose on the TV. Thankfully there was no mention of it at dinner, but I still felt like a total jackass. Video games have never been my thing, and I don’t really know why. It’s only the biggest explosion of fun in the history of human- kind, and I was born into the generation that was able to watch it all happen. I can still remember when “Pong” was the talk of the neighborhood. Everybody thought it was the second coming of George Jetson, and expected cars to start flying shortly thereafter. How did they manage to pack all that fun into one game? Blip. Blip. My heart can’t take it. Stop already! That was about sixth grade on my per- sonal time cycle, and my whole generation got hooked on the concept of video games at once. Nobody could have predicted then just how huge it would all eventually become, but one thing for sure is nobody would have mistaken Pong for a real tennis match. It was all so laughingly primitive, and shows just how close to monkeys all of us still are. Next up in my generation’s techno play world was a hand held football game made by Mattel, the fine folks who brought us Hot Wheels and Barbie. The football game wasn’t really football but rather a new series of blips on a smaller screen. They also had an auto race game, but at least in my neigh- borhood that never really caught on. The football game did, and it was a huge hit. The reason it likely became so widely popular is all it had to follow was the highly forgettable “Electric Football” game by a long out of business company called Tudor. Boys my age all recall having to take ten minutes to set up their team of tiny plastic football players on a metal “field.” Then when both teams were in position, a switch was flipped and a “play” allegedly happened. The field vibrated and the play- ers all went in separate directions – usually headed for the sideline out of embarrass- ment that kids had to suffer through this miserable excuse for actual football. To top off the realistic experience of it all, the “football” ended up being a piece of lint stuck in between the arm of a running back. If we really wanted to go nuts we could have our quarterback attempt a forward pass by flicking that piece of lint in the direction of one of the other players. All it had to do was hit the player any- where and it would be a completed pass. I know it sounds funny now, but this was the cutting edge of sports for millions of kids that now have kids of their own who will never be able to commiserate. We are the generation that has to suffer in silence. Another stinko sports spoof was the hockey game that was played with a series of rods that had to be manipulated to make the players move. The “puck” was a magnet that got whacked around the “ice” and maybe once every month or two the magnet might actually find its way into the net for a “goal.” There was no electricity involved, but this was just as useless as Electric Football. Probably the worst of all the sports games was “BAS-KET” by Coleco. This was an insult to our intelligence and consisted of a cardboard “court” and two baskets where an ordinary ping pong ball would land in one of several holes that had a lever that would flip the ball up to the general direc- tion of a basket. There was no defense, and stopped being fun after five minutes. Every kid I know got this game for Christmas, and we all grew weary of it simultaneously. It would have been more fun to throw snowballs at moving cars – which we eventually did. That’s the ultimate thrill...when an old man that looks like Fred Mertz’s father threatens to kick your butt. As my high school years arrived, so did Atari and video arcades in the mall. Alladin’s Castle was the ultimate hangout for the video game clan, but that’s when I started to lose interest. I did enjoy a pinball game now and then, but I didn’t let it take over my life like so many of my friends did. Pretty soon I was out of high school and then I had to play the ultimate game – how to keep my bills paid every month. That’s a lot harder than Pac Man or Frogger or Tetris or any of the games that hooked millions and became the gateway drug to the games of today. Who’d have thunk it? I sure would hate to be a video game designer today. How can anybody top what’s out now? My generation was easy to fool, as we had never seen anything before. Those two little blips on a Pong game were an out of this world cosmic mystery, and it grew from there. Every game was a new adventure, and it blew the minds of those playing. Now, five year-olds are bored with it all. Eventually it will have to come full circle, don’t you think? There will be a video game that has an attachment of a real ball or something and two kids will actually have to get together to throw it around in the yard. Then before long some other kids will join in and who knows, maybe some actual baseball or basketball or football will get played. There’s a novel concept for the future. It doesn’t help now though. I still feel like I got cheated out of fun, and I’m not thrilled about it. Dobie Maxwell is a stand-up comedian from Milwaukee. 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  30. 30. R14  |  | May 2015 NEWS & VIEWS  //  RIGHT WING NUT BY ROBERT MEYER We have heard complaints about the “do nothing congress” for the past several presidential administrations. Indeed, we frequently see that congressional approval numbers flirt with historically low positive rates. This has occurred whether the major- ity of congress has belonged to democrats or republicans. The American people have often decried the inability of congress to stop the bickering and work together to get things done. At the same time, we hear of politi- cians campaigning on the platitude that they will be willing to reach across the aisle. Still little improvement seems to come out each new session of congress. So where does the dissonance come from and, how might it be corrected? We must first understand that the Constitu- tional Convention created two houses of congress, in part, to make it difficult, but not impossible to quickly pass legislation. The problem as I see it, is that we have unwavering loyalty to political party at the expense of all other priorities. I am not speaking so much about commitment to political ideology, or philosophical worldview, as I am of an administrative apparatus of coercion. Our first president, George Wash- ington, warned us of this in his Farewell Address. Washington’s sentiments epito- mized the perspective of the Founders in general. “Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party generally. This spirit, unfortunately, i s i n s e p a - rable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy. The alternate domination of one fac- tion over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a fright- ful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevail- ing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty.” So while party loyalty forms out of the lesser angels of the human condition, it was viewed as a destructive force by the Found- ers. What is missing today is zeal toward the specific branches of government, which assures a robust operation of separation of powers. Congress today, seems to have devolved into the weakest branch of government, because members have not vigorously exercised their checks over the judicial and executive branches. Courts have been allowed to legislate from the bench through activism that ignores the jurisprudence of original intent. They have permitted judges to act as philosopher-kings. Likewise, con- gress has permitted itself to be outflanked by increasing numbers of executive orders which circumvent its constitutional role. Again, Washington comments on this state of affairs. “It is important, likewise, that the habits of thinking in a free country should inspire caution in those entrusted with its admin- istration, to confine themselves within their respective constitutional spheres, avoiding in the exercise of the powers of one depart- ment to encroach upon another. The spirit of encroachment tends to consolidate the powers of all the departments in one, and thus to create, whatever the form of government, a real despotism. A just estimate of that love of power, and proneness to abuse it, which pre- dominates in the human heart, is sufficient to satisfy us of the truth of this position. The necessity of reciprocal checks in the exercise of political power, by dividing and distributing it into different depositaries, and constituting each the guardian of the public weal against invasions by the others, has been evinced by experiments ancient and modern; some of them in our country and under our own eyes. To preserve them must be as necessary as to institute them. If, in the opinion of the people, the distribution or modification of the constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates. But let there be no change by usurpation; for though this, in one instance, may be the instrument of good, it is the custom- ary weapon by which free governments are destroyed…” In the Constitution, congress has a remedy to limit the jurisdiction of courts. “In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regula- tions as the Congress shall make.” Article III, Section 2, Clause 2 Congress has the ability to impeach judges as well, but when is the last time you heard of that happening? Congress has checks on presidential authority as well. The chief problem is that congress can not unite as a body, zealous of their particular powers and duties, but fragments itself according to party affilia- tion. If a judge legislates from the bench to accomplish what has failed legislatively, the portion of congress that has affinity with the judge’s decision will approve of the actions, rather than dissent with the usurpation. It is likewise with overreach by the executive branch. As long as this practice continues, people will feel betrayed by their represen- tatives and disapproval will be high. The Do-Nothing’s Courts have been allowed to legislate from the bench through activism...
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  32. 32. R16  |  | May 2015 BY DENNIS RILEY Judging by the look on his face or the tone in his voice as Indiana Governor Mike Pence tried to fend off some decidedly pointed questions from ABC’s George Stephanopolous that Sunday in late March, you would have thought that the Governor had found himself in the middle of a real firestorm and not just the verbal one that had accompanied Indiana’s passage of its very own Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) earlier that month. Doing his best to defend a statute that a substan- tial number of American citizens, both individual and corporate, were convinced provided a license to discriminate against members of the LBGTQ Community, Governor Pence kept telling us two things. First, RFRA statutes are common. The federal government passed one as far back as 1993 and that one passed almost unani- mously and was signed by none other than Bill Clinton. Nearly 20 states have fol- lowed suit. Barack Obama, he reminded us, had voted for the Illinois version of the law. Second, the law was not intended to permit discrimination. It was intended to protect the freedom of Americans of deep and abiding religious faith to act on that faith as is their first amendment right. The first of these arguments is disingenuous. The second pretty much glides past disin- genuous to dishonest. Start with Governor Pence’s contention that RFRA statutes are common. Yeah. But consider the history of the first one, the federal statute that everybody loved, even Bill Clinton. It came about, and it came to get such universal support because most people believed that the Supreme Court had significantly diminished reli- gious freedom, hence the name of the law. To keep it short, from 1963 to 1990 if a citizen challenged a government action as interfering with his or her religious free- dom, the government taking that action had to prove that it had a “compelling state interest” (usually public health or safety) that required taking that action despite its impact on the challenging citizen’s religious liberty. In 1990, the U.S. Supreme Court – in an opinion written by relative newcomer to the Court, Antonin Scalia – did away with the “compelling state interest test” in favor of a far less restrictive test requiring only that the action in question have a legiti- mate secular purpose and be administered in an even handed way. It did not, in other words, single out religion. The federal RFRA was to restore the “compelling state interest test.” Nothing more. The state versions of RFRA were to do the same because the Court held that the Federal RFRA did not apply to state actions. To add to the Governor’s disingenuousness, virtually every one of the RFRA’s passed in the last 20 years were passed before the Supreme Court granted religious liberty to certain kinds of corporations in the Hobby Lobby case. If corporate personhood conveys religious liberty rights on “closely held corporations” of the size and scope of the Hobby Lobby folks, it surely conveys those same rights on a small bakery, a floral shop, or a free-lance organist, incorporated or not. That means that Indiana’s RFRA really is cut out of a different cloth. Governor Pence might not have been aware of the history of the various RFRA’s floating around, but he had to know that one of the underlying purposes of Indiana’s version was to allow people – corporations are people remember – to act on their faith in the marketplace, even if that faith said that some people could not or should not be served in or by their place of business. He held the bill’s signing ceremony in private, surrounded by what one Indiana journalist referred to as a who’s who of Indiana religious conservatives. Beyond that, no discussion of the law by its sup- porters can go more than three sentences without reference to the example of the baker who doesn’t want to prepare a cake for the wedding of two gay people. Don’t forget that supporters of the law raised almost $1,000,000 on line to support an Indianapolis Pizzeria on record as having said that it would not cater a gay wedding. The intention of the law may have been the protection of religious freedom, but in the minds of a great many people in Indiana – possibly including its Governor – the freedom they expected to see exercised was the freedom to treat the LGBTQ Commu- nity differently than any other community. Sounds a bit like discrimination, doesn’t it? The weakness of Governor Pence’s arguments notwithstanding, there is a real issue of religious freedom to be considered here. Millions of deeply religious Ameri- cans want to be able to live their respective faiths in all aspects of their lives, even their work/business lives. But letting them do so creates so many problems for a society that recognizes rights in addition to reli- gious rights. In some sense we have to start with ground zero, when does a belief system become a religion due the protections of the first amendment? What about the guy in Indiana who wanted to proclaim himself Archbishop of the Church of Cannabis? But far more to the point, of course, what about the rights of others, including that most fundamental right, equal protection of the laws? Our hypothetical baker can’t deny a wedding cake to an African Ameri- can couple, a Muslim couple, a couple in which one of the two is in a wheelchair. And on it goes. There were once plenty of wedding cake bakers who would have refused a cake to a mixed race couple and done it on religious grounds. We decided they cannot. We are pretty far along in the process of deciding that today’s bakers cannot deny a cake to a gay couple. I fully realize that an awful lot of truly religious Americans believe that to be forced to do that will violate their religious rights. But should their religious rights trump the human rights of others? My answer remains No. I understand the conflict, but alas, I see no middle ground. Enough out of me. “Hoosier Hospitality” NEWS & VIEWS  //  THE VIEW FROM THE LEFT-FIELD SEATS
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  34. 34. R18  |  | May 2015 NEWS & VIEWS  //  MEDIA RANTS BY TONY PALMERI Mainstream American journalism, as the Media Rants column has been ranting about for more than 12 years, occasionally meets standards of excellence but more typically runs on a spectrum from medio- cre to insanely bad. Political journalism is probably the worst of the lot (too often it meets Joseph Goebbels definition of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play) with science and business reporting tied for second. That CareerCast recently ranked newspaper reporter as the worst job of 2015 (#200 out of 200), with broadcaster coming in at #196 is no excuse. Mainstream sports journalism? I wish I could wax eloquently about it with a verbal dexterity and grace equivalent to the awesomeness of a Lebron James layup. Unfortu- nately the quality of sports journalism (to the extent that such a thing even exists) requires only one blunt descriptor: SUCKS. Unless of course your idea of quality sports journal- ism is mindless cheerleading, bland press conferences, inability to tell the difference between real and manufactured scandals, and so-called experts screaming at each other on cable television. If that’s what we mean by quality sports journalism, then without question we have the best in the world. Poor sports journalism is not strictly a modern phenomenon. The late Howard Cosell complained about it in the 1970’s. Cosell is most remembered for being one-third of the original ABC Monday Night Football broadcast team and for his theatrical banter with heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali. Less remem- bered is the fact that Cosell saw sports as more than just entertainment or distrac- tion. His interviews with Ali during the champ’s Vietnam War draft refusal period and subsequent suspension from boxing raised the bar for what should be legitimate sports news; in his 1973 autobiography Cosell recounts how the ABC network received complaints along the lines of, ‘Get that nigger-lovin Jew bastard off the air.’ Cosell in 1973 lamented the general absence of journalism in sports coverage, both in broadcast and in print. Not much has changed, as can be seen in the treat- ment of three recent sports stories that cry out for competent journalism: (1) Chris Borland’s retirement from football, (2) The Chicago Cubs treatment of prospect Kris Bryant, (3) The NCAA final four basket- ball tournament in Indianapolis. Chris Borland’s Retirement: Refusal to Tackle the Elephant in the Room. When 24-year-old Chris Borland announced his retirement from the San Francisco 49ers this year (he was one of four players under age 30 to retire in 2015) after citing the possibility of future head trauma and diminished quality of life, he presented the mass media with a golden opportunity to give urgency to the issue of the National Football Leagues many decades long attempt to cover up the dangers associated with the sport. Remember how the major media for decades minimized or ignored the dangers associated with cigarettes? The rush to get Borland and others out of the headlines as quickly as possible is eerily similar. Kris Bryant: The Media’s Uncritical Acceptance of the Business of Sports. Baseball’s spring training is supposed to be the time when players compete for spots on the major league roster. So when Chi- cago Cub third base prospect Kris Bryant hit 9 home runs in spring, he appeared to be a lock to make the big league squad. Bryant may be on the team by the time you read this, yet the Cubs sent him down to the minor leagues for at least the first 12 days of the season so as to guarantee that he could not become an unrestricted free agent until 2021 at the earliest. In other words, the integrity of the game came in second to the owner’s bottom line. This is of course not unique to the Cubs; in fact it is typical across franchises in all profes- sional sports. What’s distressing is the media’s almost uncritical acceptance of the business side of sports, resulting not only in lower quality play (i.e. delaying the big league arrival of prospects like Bryant), but also making it easier for owners to raise ticket prices at will while having the audacity to ask taxpayers for money to refurbish stadiums or build new ones. Absent a critical media, sports team owners can get away with just about anything. The NCAA Final Four: Sports Media Called For Blocking Foul. In an epic case of bad timing, the Indiana legislature passed a homo- phobic version of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act during the height of March Madness in Indianapolis. The legislation in its original form would allow private businesses to refuse to serve gay, lesbian, and transgender persons on religious grounds. Massive protests erupted in Indianapolis, and even all four Final Four coaches signed on to a statement rejecting discrimination in any form. Yet moving the games out of Indianapolis was never seriously considered. Why? Because sports reporting mostly blocked any seri- ous discussion of that issue, leaving it for the serious news to handle. There are some great sports journalists out there. Mark Fainaru-Wadas and Steve Fainarus work on football’s concussion crisis and other issues is extremely well researched, provocative, and powerful. Dave Zirins Edge of Sports column brings a sense of social justice and moral clarity to sports. Regrettably, the Fainarus and Zirin are the glaring exceptions to the general rule of suckiness. Tony Palmeri ( is a professor of communication studies at UW Oshkosh. Sports Journalism Sucks
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  36. 36. R20  |  | May 2015 BY ROHN BISHOP In May, we Republicans will gather in La Crosse for our annual convention; which reminds me that back in March I took to social media to commemorate the birthday of the Republican Party. I wrote: “On this date in 1854 a group of abolitionist met in Ripon Wisconsin to form the Republican Party. 11 years later they’re dream to end slavery would be realized with the passage of the 13th amendment to the Constitution.” The response from liberals wasn’t surprising, “That was Lincoln’s Republican Party. Today you guys are a bunch of religious zealots, corporate sellouts, racist, homophobic, sexist, knuckle dragging, anti-science, war mongering, treasonous, backwards thinking goofs!” This onslaught of liberal compassion and desire to coexist with a different view point got me to thinking about the two political parties and their histories. I’ve written about the great history of the Republican Party; it’s why I’m a Republi- can today. Great leaders like Lincoln, Ever- ett Dirksen, Thaddeus Stevens, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan. I’ve never written about the history of the Democrat Party. It’s a history the public schools don’t want to teach, the media doesn’t discuss, and most American’s don’t know. It’s a history of treason and racism; it’s a history of shame! Kill those Indians Democrat President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act of 1830, forcing the relocation of five Indian tribes, known as the trail of tears. The Supreme Court ruled against Jackson, but Jackson was a Democrat, and the law doesn’t apply to Democrats. Today liberal’s pretend to atone for this human tragedy by opposing Indian nicknames for sports teams. Slavery The party of James Buchanan and Roger Taney wasn’t exactly anti-slavery. In fact, when slavery was threatened, Democrats, lead by Jefferson Davis, com- mitted treason and created a new country, a Democrat utopia called the Confederate States of America. Democrats opposed Lincoln, opposed the war, and wanted peace at the expense of tearing apart America and allowing a slave holding Confederacy. Democrats opposed the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments too. KKK Following the Civil War black Ameri- cans were voting Republican and electing black Republicans to congress, this atrocity so outraged democrats that they formed the Ku Klux Klan to keep blacks from the polls, thus returning the democrat party to the party of dominance for a hundred years in the south. The KKK was a great place for Democrats to launch political careers, and allowed the Democrat Party to install Jim Crow laws to help keep the “colored” man in his place. These laws would remain in place until the late 1960’s, when Repub- licans were finally able to splinter the Democrat majority, and get Civil Rights Bills through the congress! Segregate the black kids For decades Southern Democrats segre- gated schools, “Separate but Equal” schools for white and black kids, today Democrats continue to segregate kids; having climbed into bed with the education establishment to oppose school choice. The choice initia- tive, started here in Wisconsin by Governor Tommy Thompson, allows poor black kids an opportunity at a better education. Alas, Democrats stand in the school house door, demanding that those black kids attend failing, crime ridden, hell holes of inner city public schools, while Democrats send their children to the best private schools we have. It’s as if Democrats want an ignorant black population. Death to America Democrats seem to have affection for America’s enemies: from secession in 1861, to defending communist spy Alger Hiss, to releasing terrorist prisoners from GITMO, Democrats are always helping the enemy. In the 1960’s Democrats got stuck in Vietnam, only to run off and protest the war on Richard Nixon’s first day in office. Then, in the 1970’s Democrats cut funding out from under President Ford to ensure a communist victory in Vietnam. During the 1980’s democrats repeatedly undercut President Reagan, with secret letters from Senator Ted Kennedy to General Secretary Yuri Andropov, to John Kerry meeting with Daniel Ortega to help communism spread to Central America. In 1991 former President Jimmy Carter traveled to the UN to undercut President Bush’s attempts to build a coalition to unseat Saddam Hussein from Kuwait, and just like with Vietnam. Democrats sup- ported removing Saddam Hussein in 2002, only to run off and protest the war when the going got tough. Today’s Democrats led by President Obama, are implementing policies to turn our military victories into defeat, while surrendering the Middle East to ISIS, assuring those who hate America a safe haven to expand their empire, while at the same time Democrats are working to allow Iran a nuclear bomb! Same ‘ol party The same Democrat Party that put Japanese-Americans in internment camps, opposed Civil Rights, destroyed black families and America’s inner cities with welfare payments, is the same party that today opposes school choice for poor kids, wants to amend the First Amendment to shut down opposing political speech, all the while they’re nationalizing the internet, healthcare, school lunches, and mucking up the Middle East It’s the same Democrat Party that defends Bill Clinton’s treatment of women, defended Ted Kennedy’s murderous drunken behavior, defended slave owner’s treatment of blacks, defended FDR’s treat- ment of Asian-Americans, and Andrew Jackson’s treatment of Indians. From Andrew Jackson to Barack Obama, the Democrat Party has a history of shame. Rohn W. Bishop is a monthly contributor to the Scene. Bishop, a former Waupun City Council member, currently serves as treasurer for the Republican Party of Fond du Lac County Contact Rohn: Email: Twitter: @RohnWBishop The Democrats: A History of Shame NEWS & VIEWS  //  ROHN’S RANTS
  37. 37. May 2015 | | R21 Weidner
  38. 38. R22  |  | May 2015 BY JOHN PRICE - KABHIR,THE BUDDHIST ADVISER And who will It be? Will it be a screaming little slimy lump, jerking in uncoordinated manner and beautiful only to the people directly responsible for creating it? People who are just now investing their entire lives in its growth and development? People who immediately look it over carefully for signs of wholeness and health, and who would be devastated by any tiny flaw it might exhibit? Or would it be a shriveled and aged thing, long used to the point where it would offer little or no future. Would it strike terror in the people it encountered, aghast at the wasted ugliness of age and decay brought to the doorway as a direct sign of death:  age, moaning its last gasps of life as they gurgle out of a body in the throes of death? Or, would it be somewhere in-between, showing those answering the door an image of robust life, offering the glow of a creature in the midst of life, offering noth- ing but striking beauty as in the smiles of true life, borne of midlife true existence, a creature in its prime, giving the image of growth and simple being? So, we have the juxtaposition of birth and death, with life between, the baby just born and the grim reaper. Would the archetypes of life looking at us in its truly infinite beauty--the glory of birth and the image of decay? Throughout the ages, we are offered steadfast symbols of a baby born, so beau- tiful in its ugliness only seen by parents who gave it life, gestation, and the pain first played against the impossibility of the birth canal; then the ugliness of impend- ing death, a sight frightful in the personal horror only seen by those close to the end . These are longtime images of the mysteri- ous beginning and end of days. We generally associate encounters with archetypes of birth the death with the night. We imagine a knock at the door as a booming, “Knock, knock, knock, come to us,” disturbing our slumber, causing us to pad down the hallway to our front door, wondering, “who, or what, could it be?” Or, we associate being awakened in the night with an announcement of someone dying. There is deep apprehension associ- ated with that knock, bringing us news of a baby about to be born or the news of someone dying. As a two-edged symbol of life-death, in Buddhist monasteries, it is common to place little leftovers, like dessert treats, being left out for the “hungry ghosts,” to help themselves to goodies, much like western children leaving treats for Santa on the mantle overnight. So, we have a stage set m e t a - p h o r i - cally for both darkness and light coming to our door. Again, it’s like the phone ringing at 3:00 am; we answer, expecting the worst. And usually, it is the worst. We awake abruptly to horrific news of death. But is it so horrific? Death comes inevitably and surely. It isn’t something to be feared. On the most healthy and enlightened level, death is just like any moment of life: a breath, or not. Traditionally, we are taught that death brings eternal judgment, and facing that judgment, we fear punishment for all our misdeeds. The great Judgment Day: something to fear, whereby we are put before a vengeful God who knows of every little transgres- sion we made in our lives. It knows of our shunning kids in elementary school, mis- treating insects, lying to our parents with disrespect, straying from a committed rela- tionship, on and on. We imagine a mighty God taking us to task for every bad thing we’ve done. Then of course is the question of hell. Is it there? Are we doomed to eternal suf- fering? From the perspective of a Judgment Day, it’s pretty much all negative and fear- ful. If we’re Roman Catholic, just missing taking Holy Communion at Easter, our “Easter Duty,” brings hell and eternal damnation. There is of course the other side, the side of all the good we’ve done. The side of us bringing blessing and happiness to the world and its crea- tures. Even t h o u g h these are most defi- nitely real, we dwell not so much on goodness at Judg- ment, but rather, at our transgressions. How strange it is that we judge ourselves more negatively than positively. But the summoning in the night brings the greatly anticipated arrival of another kind of visitor. This visitor, often comes in the night; indeed, we often associate its arrival in the depth of the night, startling the home with a cry of, “It’s time!” And the bags, packed and waiting for this moment of excitement, are taken up for a hurried ride to the local hospital or the home birth- ing room. While the first visitor’s imminent appearance is associated with fear, this arrival’s emotions connote joy and expecta- tion. Naturally, we’re talking here of birth in the arrival of the second visitor. There is so much cliché associated with these two arrivals, it would be funny if it weren’t so tied with deep emotion. In other words, death brings slow mourning. Birth offers us joyous dancing. Both ushering’s imply a boat. The most famous of these boats bringing life is little Moses riding quietly in his reed basket; whereas the Grim Reaper arrives silently to take us away from earthly life in his ominous raft, across the river Sauran to the land of eternal death. Whether the newborn, pink with happi- ness, arriving on the banks of a new life or the old, stinking, decaying death, taking us into the netherworld pulling us on a raft into the knowing sea of eternal mystery of death. Each boat has its commonalities as it takes us to a new land. It is profoundly interesting that the two greatest mysteries associated with our humanly life involve being conveyed across water. But truly, out bodies reside in water. A great percentage of our literal being is composed of water, which has throughout history involved water. And there is no escaping the human story of water, as both a building block of life and a means of decomposing our corporeal body by water, the universal solvent. It takes our bodies apart as it works it magic of undoing the life water has built for our bodies. This column is laden with so many cli- chés it is nearly funny. But from a linguis- tic perspective, how can we paint a word picture of life and not fill our proverbial cup with the great metaphors of life, by not acknowledging the absolute impor- tance water plays in birth and death. Do complete the sewing of our garment into a whole, can we not say with certainty that our very existence is a weaving of water. From before our being born, the great mys- tery, to the Grim Reaper’s coming to get us with his dark raft, we are faced with the greatest mysteries:  where were we before we were born; and where are we going after we die? John Price-Kabhir, is a retired public school educator and a writer. He is an ordained householder in the Rinzai Zen tradition. He welcomes your input at 920-558-3076 or A Knock at the Door ENTERTAINMENT // BUDDHIST ADVISOR
  39. 39. May 2015 | | R23 The Bridge Bar & Restaurant 101 W Main St. Fremont, Wisconsin 54940 (920) 446–3300 Find us on Facebook! The Bridge Bar & Restaurant is a popular four-season destination located in downtown Fremont on the famousWolf River. Stop in by car, boat, motorcycle, or snowmobile and enjoy our laid back atmosphere here on the water. UPCOMING EVENTS: May 2nd – The Hits May 9th – Third Wheel May 16th – Kayla K and the Men-Brains May 23rd – Grayling Pinkel May 24th – Buffalo Stomp May 25th – Mike Mcabee May 30th – The Naturals May 31st – The Cherries June 6th – Jake Warne June 7th – Red Fish Remix June 13th – No Stone Soup June 14th – Third Wheel Where GOOD TIMES & GOOD FOOD come together! live Music • Food • Great Atmoshere