Hva skjer, Wisconsin?
That's "what's up" in Norwegian.
I have been obsessing about all things Nordic and cross-country skiing these past few weeks.
It's No. 1 on my list of Things That Make Me Happy In The Winter. No.2 on the list is my Ariens snowblower.
I'm not sure why I love cross-country skiing. I am clumsy and awkward on skis, making my glide more like a galumph. The only reason that I can think of as to why the sport enthralls me is my Nordic DNA, which asserts itself for better or worse.
My love of the snowblower is simple and straightforward. I've been using an Ariens snowblower since I was 7 years old when Dad first brought one home to clear the gravel driveway in our country villa east of Colby. I used it steadily until I was 17 and left home for the bright lights of UW-LaCrosse. The machine continued it's steadfast work until Mom and Dad left the villa for the city life in Colby proper.
I bought my own Ariens snowblower a few years ago, and just like its predecessor, it has never let me down, shooting snow through the air in a graceful, beautiful arc.
So you can imagine how happy I was to read a story by my colleague Jake Prinsen, which blends both of my winter loves:
And now that I've got cross-country skiing on the brain, Chelsey Lewis offers a great place do that in this piece about Wisconsin Dells:
Go for the skiing, stay for the waterparks!
I made a vow years ago not to allow inclement weather or the performance of the Green Bay Packers to affect my mood. Because, hey, what can I do about those things? Still, the ending of last Saturday's game stung a bit.
But I was cheered up greatly by this Hannah Kirby story.
Yelich is great, but the real star of the show is Adrianna Wagner, a high school junior from Alma Center.
And as far as the Packers go, maybe next year?
► Dougherty: Easy to see why Packers QB Aaron Rodgers could stay in Green Bay (Note: This story is for subscribers)
Or use the loss to propel yourself toward personal growth.
► Harley-Davidson unveils eight new bikes for 2022. Some have heated seats and hand grips. The rebel mystique comes with a warm tush.
Speaking of fishing ...
Didja know? A Wisconsin fact drop
Hey, didja know that the American water spaniel was designated the Wisconsin State Dog in 1986? The breed seemed to originate in the Fox Valley. A guy named Dr. Fred J. Pfeifer of New London lobbied several dog registries to get the curly brown-haired pooches officially recognized as a distinct breed. In 1920 the United Kennel Club gave the breed its stamp of approval; 20 years later the American Kennel Club did too. (Source: "The Handy Wisconsin Answer Book")
My wife brought an American water spaniel into our marriage when we got hitched in 1991. The dog's name was Raisin, and she was the smartest, screwiest dog I've ever known. She stole socks, ate mulberries and once jumped through the screen of a second story window for reasons only known to her.
This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Nordic skiing, ice fishing and a balm for Packers depression