Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I'm home in Park Rapids, day nine of ten, perched at the Bella Caffé (sic). When I grew up here (insert creaky voice and waving of cane) we didn't have a coffee shop. How different things would have been. Now there are two: Bella, which serves fair-trade coffee and has a lovely sun room full of absurdly robust plants (e.g. a five-foot tall geranium) contributed and tended by my friends' dad in exchange for free coffee, and Jackpine Java, which has a fireplace and where all the tables and chairs are hewn from pine logs, and where half the space used to be a taxidermy joint but now features Tanning & Scrapbooking. By taxidermy joint I mean it was a veritable frat party of stuffed northwoods creatures, lounging and awkwardly socializing around more hewn-pine furniture for sale, including two buck heads mounted for corner display, facing each other with their antlers locked, and a fake pond scene with an improbable congregation of stiff grouse, raccoons, rabbits, a fox, and an upright black bear with a surprised look on his face, holding a bird feeder between his paws.

You can kind of see the sign here behind the snowplow pickup.

I am here to grade portfolios, but first I had to pick up the new Park Rapids Enterprise and turn to the Incidents report. Here is today's selection.

Mailbox and Christmas light damage was reported in Helga Township;
A couch was left on railroad tracks in Farden Township;
A Park Rapids store requested an officer for a party who's asleep/passed out in the store;
A Park Rapids caller reported he left his vehicle to be worked on two years ago and it has not been returned, "may be a problem to get back";
A 911 Park Rapids caller reports a male "assaulted her old man, has a wrench";
Suspicious activity was reported on Central Avenue, "possibly running a business out of his home, several cars late at night at this residence";
Exhibition driving was reported in Park Rapids;
Harassing text messages were reported in Park Rapids;
A Nevis vehicle was rummaged during the night;
A female reported going to a male's house in Helga Township to retrieve property and he answered the door with a baseball bat;
Two children were reported locked in a vehicle in Straight River Township;
Mail was opened and moved to another mailbox in Akeley Township;
A Lake George Township caller reported his ex calling three times, he has an order for protection;
A four-wheeler was reported towing four kids on a toboggan on city streets in Hubbard Township;
A male was reported rolling around and yelling in Park Rapids;
A Hart Lake Township caller reported two young guys with slurred speech stopping by her house, looks like they've been four-wheeling their truck in ditches and she thinks they are stuck, reporting party called to say they are now running over fence posts;
A Farden Township caller reported hearing a gunshot, back window has a hole in it;
A party was refusing to leave in Henrietta Township;
A person was reported kneeling by the side of the road in Nevis Township;
St. Joseph's reported a man was assaulted with a willow stick;
A deer was reported caught in a fence on CSAH 36, extricated but now it appears unable to move;
Four horses were reported out at a Helga Township intersection;
A Park Rapids store requested an officer as they are terminating an employee for theft but the employee is claiming he was being threatened, which is why he didn't ring up the items;
A caller reported putting her truck in the ditch on the east side of Highway 71, she thinks she can drive it out, requesting officer for traffic control.

Home sweet home.


DW said...

You couldn't make this stuff up.

Well, maybe you could...

tilda said...

an inflatable snowman slashing in vancouver made the news TWICE. Each time we were reassured that the family of the mutilated lawn ornament was bravely holding up, christmas spirit intact.

Amy said...

Frat party of northwoods creatures, ha!!! Exactly! Assembled with a eye for boisterous--almost drunken--combination it was. Do you have a picture of the ole' Black Moose? Wishing I did.
Also, why is it that the pine log furniture in these places is always so disproportionately large? So Flintstone-ish? I know it needs to accomodate some wide bottoms, but come on!

ps. did Sarah give you the rice?

Dawn said...

So when you say they now offer "tanning and scrapbooking," you mean tanning of people, not tanning of hides, right? Because that could really go either way...

CHELSEY said...

Dawn, hide tanning sprang to my mind too. It would not be out of place!

Ame, I have photos somewhere of the old Black Moose taxidermy conflagration, but I can't find them--another hard drive, I think. Thank you again for the wild rice, that was a fantastic harvest.