Out of the Office

An ulu the author made as part of the Alaska Humanities Forum Sister School Exchange. (Photo provided by author)

Out of the Office: A sister school experience

As I write this column, I’m drowning in stories of Legislature budgets, potential school closures and some guy stealing a mammoth tusk in Anchorage. There’s… Continue reading

 

Painting Lines

I have been drawing those lines my whole life.

 

Two birders scan Bishop’s Beach on Saturday afternoon, May 12, 2018, during the Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival. (Photo by Michael Armstrong / Homer News).

Birding: the universal outdoors activity

Like many imported Alaskans, I have a long list of outdoor activities I acquired after moving here in 1979: skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating, dog mushing,… Continue reading

 

The author with a pair of friends this past summer at Grewingk Glacier. (Photo provided by Megan Pacer)

Out of the Office: Hold my beer while I wade in glacial melt

Last week, the members of my team and I came in absolute dead last at trivia night. I normally wouldn’t share this with so broad… Continue reading

The author with a pair of friends this past summer at Grewingk Glacier. (Photo provided by Megan Pacer)
The sign announcing the start of the Alaska Highway in Dawson’s Creek, British Columbia. Taken in August of 2018. (Photo by Brian Mazurek)

Out of the Office: What a long, strange trip it’s been

If there’s one lesson I’ve learned this past year, it’s that sometimes you have to change your life, and sometimes your life changes you. Last… Continue reading

The sign announcing the start of the Alaska Highway in Dawson’s Creek, British Columbia. Taken in August of 2018. (Photo by Brian Mazurek)
FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2018, file photo, New England Patriots defensive back Stephon Gilmore, center, celebrates his interception with Dont’a Hightower, left, and Eric Rowe, right, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

Please tear us apart

In contrast to Will Morrow’s spin on being a Patriots fan (see “Don’t Tear Us Apart”, Jan. 27), I offer my own. Being a Chicago… Continue reading

FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2018, file photo, New England Patriots defensive back Stephon Gilmore, center, celebrates his interception with Dont’a Hightower, left, and Eric Rowe, right, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)
The summit of Vista Trail on Skilak Loop Road, seen Nov. 23, 2018, while waiting for skiing to come to the central Kenai Peninsula. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Out of the Office: Power of the Culture of the North

First, a few confessions. On Nov. 10, 2018, I marked the first snowfall of the season by getting off work and immediately bolting to the… Continue reading

The summit of Vista Trail on Skilak Loop Road, seen Nov. 23, 2018, while waiting for skiing to come to the central Kenai Peninsula. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
My snowy driveway one winter morning, near Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Out of the Office: Get outside 2019

Last New Year’s Eve I was at the same event I was for the two previous New Year’s. I rang in 2018 in a duplex… Continue reading

My snowy driveway one winter morning, near Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Out of the Office: At the edge of the world

Anniversaries are strange things — in many ways they are arbitrary, days we mark on a calendar to keep us from forgetting that we have… Continue reading

Skiers climb a hill near the start of the Kachemak Bay Marathon Ski Tour in March of 2007 near Homer, Alaska, in winter where Homer actually had snow. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Out of the Office: Don’t wait for snow or ice — just get outside

Now would be the time when an enterprising outdoors columnist writes about all the wonderful winter sports to be experienced. Fresh snow has fallen and… Continue reading

Skiers climb a hill near the start of the Kachemak Bay Marathon Ski Tour in March of 2007 near Homer, Alaska, in winter where Homer actually had snow. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Out of the Office: What are men to rocks and mountains?

I’ve met a lot of addicts since moving to Alaska. Not the kind you think, though. My friends are constantly searching for their next fix… Continue reading

Laurie Lamm takes an exercise break on her lunch hour along the Airport Dike Trail on Thursday. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

As the daylight dips, how not to bottom out

I keep this graph in my office. On the Y-axis (the vertical one, if you don’t remember high school science and math) the hours of… Continue reading

Laurie Lamm takes an exercise break on her lunch hour along the Airport Dike Trail on Thursday. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Outdoor living: I don’t think we’re in Alaska anymore

If you are new to Alaska, this is not normal. If you are new to this place that sits above the 60th parallel (most of… Continue reading

Passion and risk

Sept. 29 and 30 were not good days for me. On Sept. 29, I covered the 72-24 victory of the Soldotna football team over Kenai… Continue reading

The Scandinavian shop of the author’s great-grandma. (Photo provided by Victoria Petersen)

Why fall is a favorite

This is my favorite time of year. Maybe because I was born teeter-tottering on the cusp of Leo and Virgo, one part holds on to… Continue reading

The Scandinavian shop of the author’s great-grandma. (Photo provided by Victoria Petersen)
Right Mountain reflects off of Kenai Lake on June 6, 2018. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Out of the Office: That was summer

In Alaska, seasons seem to be things that are not so much enjoyed, but gotten through. As I say this, I hear the chorus of… Continue reading

Right Mountain reflects off of Kenai Lake on June 6, 2018. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Melissa Garcia Johnson separates foraged wildflowers at a beach on North Douglas Highway. (Photo by Kevin Gullufsen/Juneau Empire)
Melissa Garcia Johnson separates foraged wildflowers at a beach on North Douglas Highway. (Photo by Kevin Gullufsen/Juneau Empire)