New England Patriots Deatrich Wise Jr. #91 in action against the Los Angeles Rams during NFL Super Bowl 53, Sunday, February 3, 2019 in Atlanta. The Patriots won 13-3. (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)

New England Patriots Deatrich Wise Jr. #91 in action against the Los Angeles Rams during NFL Super Bowl 53, Sunday, February 3, 2019 in Atlanta. The Patriots won 13-3. (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)

Unhinged Alaska: The big bowl that wasn’t

By halftime they were ready to switch to the highlights of the earlier Puppy Bowl.

This column has two objectives. The first is to vent about the cosmic implosion masquerading as a Super bowl last Sunday. The second will deal with some serious research that I’ve just completed on Alaskan ice that was prompted by a semi sober inquiry from a reader currently residing in Death Valley.

The Super Bowl wasn’t. If our guests would have had an option, they would have rather sat through a power nap contest between two rival day care centers or a course on slow motion Bonsai tree trimming.

By halftime they were ready to switch to the highlights of the earlier Puppy Bowl.

We should have. Even though we considered the first half to have been a bland bowl of tepid tapioca, the halftime show was an off-key cacophony of performers who sounded more like they were having sneezing fits or gastronomical issues than performing songs.

Two minutes into the extravaganza, the only class act was when our dogs bolted for the basement and refused to return until their duty time prior to retiring.

What can I say? Adam Feline and the Purr-oon 5 blew the tats off of Adam Levine and the Maroon 5 when you compare the kitty band at the Puppy Bowl to their mewling competitors at the “big event” featuring teams comprised of cast extras from the Walking Dead.

Hey, some good came out of that waste of oxygen in Atlanta. The refs involved in the superlative no call in New Orleans have been relocated to safe havens deep in South America where they’ve found gainful employment as probational target stand-ins for minor league Jai Alai teams and the Patriots’ wide receiver, Julian Edelman can run unopposed for the mayor of Boston anytime he wants to hang up his cleats.

As for game’s MVP award, there should have been two. One for Edelman’s skills that kept the game watchable and the second for Gladys Knight and her superlative rendition of our National Anthem. Her class act, at least, made part of the broadcast memorable.

Moving right along:

Our Unhinged Alaska office receives some rather odd emails such as the one submitted last week by Ricardo F. of Death Valley, California.

Nick,

I read your Unhinged Alaska Column, “So you think this is cold” and you people must be totally out of it to live up there.

If you were military and stationed in the state, then I could understand it but voluntarily? No way!

By the way, how thick is the ice covering Alaska? How is glacier ice formed and is Homer located on one?

Desert Dweller Rick

Dear Ricardo,

I think the Mohave heat and drifting sand in your Jockeys is making you a bit delusional but I can see where the column might have confused you.

There are several areas in Alaska that are not covered by ice, such as most of the state especially our state capitol Juneau where hot gaseous anomalies known as legislative sessions keeps the city from glazing over except for the eyes of the politicians.

It is not true that glacial ice is formed when some of our valleys do not get properly defrosted during the forty- eight hour, summers. Our summers have been known to last up to almost up to a month.

FYI, we have several other species of ice.

First, there is domesticated or, ‘tame ice’, such as ice cubes, ice rinks, Popsicles, sno-cones and ice cream. Then there is Ninja ice, which is the sneaky stuff lurking beneath fresh snow or rain causing pedestrians to end up wearing their butts as earmuffs when they take less than cool gymnastic headers crossing a parking lot. It has a big brother called black ice that occasionally paints the surface of our winter highways and byways spawning spontaneous demolition derbies and adds to the excitement of night driving over a mountain pass or just trying to get out of Anchorage without a bullet hole in your car.

Let’s not forget ‘wild ice’ such as ice burgs, icicles and ice storms. Nor, should we overlook the infamous ambiguous ices such ice tea which can be either a sipping beverage or an aging L.A. rapper. Eskimo ice cream also falls into the category of ambiguous because it is neither, ice or cream and has the distinction of offering a licking a double scoop berry flavored Crisco.

So, as you can see, Ricardo, Alaska does have some serious ice but we are not plastered with it.

Nor does Homer sit on a glacier but the real estate surrounding it did when the Kenai Mountains initially coughed up ice that is now known as the Moosehorn stade during the Naptowne glaciation period some 9,500 to 25,000 years ago. (I threw that in there because it was way more interesting than the Monday sports columns on the Super Bowl.)

By the way, according to certain politicians with combined IQs of bread mold and the scientific expertise of deranged orangutans snorting Ajax, claim the world will be set on “broil” in 12 years unless we embrace kale as major food source, so it looks like we are in for a quick thaw. Come on up.

Nick can be reached at ncvarney@gmail.com.


• By NICK VARNEY


More in Life

Homer students pose after their performance from the musical Shrek on Saturday after the three-day Broadway Bootcamp theater workshop with director Jim Anderson in October 2023, in Homer, Alaska. (Emilie Springer/ Homer News)
Intensive Broadway Bootcamp offered in Homer in August

During the five-day bootcamp, youth participants will work with top performing artist educators to develop leadership skills through theater arts.

Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion
Young actors rehearse their production during a drama camp put on by the Kenai Performers in their theater near Soldotna on Thursday.
Kenai Performers’ drama camp trains young actors, puts on ‘super’ show

When they arrived, most of the actors had never performed before, but in just a week they’ll put on a real show

Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion
A copy of Howard Weaver’s “Write Hard, Die Free” rests on an ink-splotched guard rail in front of the Peninsula Clarion’s defunct Goss Suburban printing press on Thursday.
Off the Shelf: ‘Write Hard, Die Free’ an exciting and incisive window into history of Alaska, journalism

Immediately after the death of legendary Anchorage reporter and editor Howard Weaver, I picked up a copy of his memoir

This 1961 drawing of the Circus Bar, east of Soldotna, was created by Connie Silver for a travel guide called Alaska Highway Sketches. The bar was located across the Sterling Highway from land that was later developed into the Birch Ridge Golf Course.
A violent season — Part 1

Like many such drinking establishments, Good Time Charlies usually opened late and stayed open late

Dillon Diering and Sarah Overholt dance while the Tyson James Band performs during the 45th Annual Moose Pass Summer Solstice Festival in Moose Pass, Alaska, on Saturday, June 15, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
‘We’re about community’

Moose Pass throws 45th annual Summer Solstice Festival

This summer salad is sweet and refreshing, the perfect accompaniment to salty meat and chips. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
Fueling happy memories

Fresh salad accompanies an outdoors Father’s Day meal

File
Minister’s Message: The way life will be

“Is this the way it was all meant to be? Is this what God had in mind when He created us?”

Photo provided by Art We There Yet
José Luis Vílchez and Cora Rose with their retired school bus-turned-art and recording studio.
‘It’s all about people’

Traveling artists depict Kenai Peninsula across mediums

Promotional Photo courtesy Pixar Animation/Walt Disney Studios
In Disney and Pixar’s “Inside Out 2,” Joy (voice of Amy Poehler), Sadness (voice of Phyllis Smith), Anger (voice of Lewis Black), Fear (voice of Tony Hale) and Disgust (voice of Liza Lapira) aren’t sure how to feel when Anxiety (voice of Maya Hawke) shows up unexpectedly. Directed by Kelsey Mann and produced by Mark Nielsen, “Inside Out 2” releases only in theaters Summer 2024.
On the Screen: ‘Inside Out 2’ a bold evolution of Pixar’s emotional storytelling

Set only a year after the events of the first film, “Inside Out 2” returns viewers to the inner workings of pre-teen Riley

Most Read