Daily Bread for 11.29.23: About Those Wisconsin Best & Worst Lists

 Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 41. Sunrise is 7:04 and sunset 4:22 for 9h 18m 15s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 95% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1961, Enos, a chimpanzee, is launched into space. The spacecraft orbits the Earth twice and splashes down off the coast of Puerto Rico.

  Rick Barrett reports Why Wisconsin is the ‘best’ or ‘worst’ place on so many random lists (‘Clickbait or helpful, rankings for cities and states are viral marketing’):

The Green Bay Packers have some of the sexiest fans in the NFL and Milwaukee’s Gen-Zers are No. 1 in the nation for leaving the nest.

As a state, Wisconsin has bragging rights beyond cheese. We’re one of the “least clumsy” states, according to a ranking, and we’re fifth in the nation among elderly-friendly labor markets.

Those are just a few of the dozens of surveys, rankings, and studies that pour into journalists’ emails, some serious and others nothing more than clickbait. Some result in stories while others fall flat.

Even zombies have weighed in on the action.

In one study, Milwaukee was ranked 66th among U.S. cities best able to survive a zombie apocalypse.

Huntington Beach, Calif., was No. 1 followed by Bellevue, Wash.; Alexandria, Va.; and Minneapolis.

California lawn care company uses surveys for marketing

The zombie study was done by Lawn Love, an online lawn-care company and prolific publisher of city and state rankings, some of which actually include topics like lawn irrigation.

There may be useful information in these lists, but their primary purpose is to promote a product. See also @ FREE WHITEWATER, Live by Clickbait Marketing, Perish by Clickbait Marketing.

Curious dolphins watch aquarium staff member mop the floor:

Daily Bread for 11.28.23: Opportunity If We’ll Take It

 Good morning.

Tuesday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of 23. Sunrise is 7:03 and sunset 4:22 for 9h 19m 44s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 98.4% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Finance Committee meets at 5 PM

  On this day in 1895, the first American automobile race takes place over the 54 miles from Chicago’s Jackson Park to Evanston, Illinois. Frank Duryea wins in approximately 10 hours.

  A 11.21.23 essay from Brookings by author Homi Kharas describes what fuels middle-class optimism. (Kharas has a new book, The Rise of the Global Middle Class, that I have not yet read. For today, this post confines itself to Kharas’s 11.21 essay.) 

Kharas notes the rise of a global middle class:

Joining the middle class has been a ticket to the good life for two centuries now, a history I trace in a new book “The Rise of the Global Middle Class.” The American Dream, the glorious years of European reconstruction after World War II, miracle economic growth in Japan and other East Asian countries, Xi Jinping’s great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, and India’s software revolution each brought hundreds of millions of people into the ranks of the global middle class. Today, thanks to this progress, most of the world, upwards of 4 billion people, enjoy a middle-class or better lifestyle for the first time ever.

Yes. (I’ll note that the period of China’s greatest economic success came only after liberalizing her economy toward freer markets, and that period of liberalization is regrettably over.)

Here’s how Kharas describes middle-class optimism:

Middle-class life satisfaction rests on two pillars. The first is the idea that hard work and self-initiative will lead to prosperity. The second is that thanks to this prosperity, the children of middle-class families will enjoy even more opportunities for the good life.

There’s a local aspect to this. To be successful, a community needs to have middle-class success. 

In Whitewater, CDA types in the decade from 2010-2020 failed to capitalize on state and national economic gains. See Whitewater’s Still Waiting for That Boom. (“While Wisconsin and America advanced, these gentlemen were left admitting reluctantly their own poor performance. (There was a national boom, uplifting many cities, but it passed by Whitewater. What did Whitewater get after the Great Recession, years into a national boom? Whitewater received a designation as a low-income community.  The gentlemen speaking, these ‘Greater Whitewater’ development men, were by their own accounts at the center of local CDA policy during most of the years that the state and national boom ignored Whitewater.) See also A Candid Admission from the Whitewater CDA (“This new EOZ program allows for private investments to be made, with significant tax benefits, in lower income communities like ours that need a boost to their economy,” said Larry Kachel, Chair of the Whitewater Community Development Authority (CDA).” Emphasis added.)

We have a chance for better. See A Development Director for Whitewater (“Whitewater’s development policy is meant to be a community development policy, not one captured against the public interest by a few. Who owns Whitewater? The proper answer — the answer suitable for a beautiful, well-ordered American town — is everyone and no one.”)

Rescued baby turtles scurry into the sea:

Daily Bread for 11.27.23: Car v. Deer

 Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be mostly cloudy with a high of 26. Sunrise is 7:02 and sunset 4:23 for 9h 21m 17s of daytime. The moon is full with 100% of its visible disk illuminated.

The Whitewater School Board’s Policy Review Committee meets at 6 PM and the full board at 7 PM. Earlier, Whitewater’s Urban Forestry Commission meets at 4:30 PM.

  On this day in 1945, CARE (then the Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe) is founded to send CARE Packages of food relief to Europe after World War II.

OpenAI. (2023). ChatGPT [Large language model].

  John Davis reports Car-deer accidents in Wisconsin in 2023 are expected to be similar to recent years (‘In the last 15 years, the chances of hitting a deer have increased’): 

Wisconsin drivers are on pace to hit as many deer this year as they have in each of the past three years.

Car-deer accidents in the state have been declining recently according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. But according to data from an insurance company, there’s still a greater chance of hitting a deer now in Wisconsin than there was 15 years ago.

“Recently, it’s been holding pretty steady,” said David Pabst, director of the Bureau of Transportation Safety for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. “We’re still doing over 16,000 crashes over the last three years, and we’re on that same track right now for 2023.”

Pabst said there have been about 11,000 car-deer accidents as of mid-October of this year. Between 25 and 33 percent of all the state’s car-deer accidents happen in October and November each year. This is the mating season for deer, also known as the rut, and deer are on the move. Most deer accidents this time of year happen in the dark, especially around dawn and dusk.


“We’ve always thought of deer hunting as a northern thing and that was certainly the case in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s,” said DNR deer program specialist Jeff Pritzl. “There’s still deer up north, but at the turn of the century, the deer population in the southern half of Wisconsin blossomed and continues to.”

This libertarian blogger uses a Mac, not a PC, but millions of Americans use their PCs for work and gaming. Many gamers enjoy snacks when battling monsters or fighting enemy armies while communicating with other players via headset. Where there’s a will, there’s a way: Steve Mollman reports Doritos is offering gamers AI-powered software that cancels out annoying crunching sounds. Mollam reports: 

Consider eating Doritos while playing video games. For many, gaming and the popular PepsiCo snack go hand-in-hand, but there’s a problem for players communicating via headset mics: crunching sounds. Many complain the noises distract them and hurt their performance.

AI has come the rescue in the form of Doritos Silent, described in a PepsiCo promotional video as “the world’s first AI-augmented snack powered by crunch cancellation.” The idea is that players can munch away without fear of disturbing other players. In addition to the snack there is software available for free download (it only works with Windows PCs for now).

Developing the product took six months and involved artificial intelligence and machine learning analyzing more than 5,000 crunch sounds, according to the snacks-and-beverage giant.


Of course, many observers might dismiss Doritos Silent as a trivial development, or a mere marketing ploy. A PC Gamer review called it “profoundly stupid,” while admitting it worked well enough with Doritos, if not always with competing snacks.

Either way, Doritos Silent speaks to how drawn marketers are to the video game industry (including Heineken, which recently offered a gaming PC that doubles as a fridge). Globally this year, that industry is expected to generate $188 billion in revenue, up 2.6% from 2022, according to a report from Newzoo, an Amsterdam-based industry tracker.

Daily Bread for 11.26.23: Winter in Wisconsin – A Place Like No Other

 Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will see light snow in the morning, followed by a mixture of clouds and sunshine, with a high of 33. Sunrise is 7:00 and sunset 4:23 for 9h 22m 55s of daytime. The moon is a waxing gibbous with 99.3% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1838, the Wisconsin Territorial Legislature assembles in Madison for the first time:

[A]fter moving from the temporary capital in Burlington, Iowa, the Wisconsin Territorial Legislature assembled in Madison for the first time. Two years earlier, when the territorial legislature had met for the first time in Belmont, many cities were mentioned as possibilities for the permanent capital — Cassville, Fond du Lac, Milwaukee, Platteville, Mineral Point, Racine, Belmont, Koshkonong, Wisconsinapolis, Peru, and Wisconsin City. Madison won the vote, and funds were authorized to erect a suitable building in which lawmakers would conduct the people’s business.

Progress went so slowly, however, that some lawmakers wanted to relocate the seat of government to Milwaukee, where they also thought they would find better accommodations than in the wilds of Dane Co. When the legislature finally met in Madison in November 1838 there was only an outside shell to the new Capitol. The interior was not completed until 1845, more than six years after it was supposed to be finished. On November 26, 1838, Governor Henry Dodge delivered his first speech in the new seat of government.

We’ve had some snow today, and that’s sure to delight some but disappoint others.  Wisconsin offers myriad winter adventures. Sam Li’s Winter in Wisconsin – A Place Like No Other highlights some of our cold-weather offerings. Go ahead, lean in: 

The 3D printer that crafts complex robotic organs in a single run:

Daily Bread for 11.20.23: Wisconsin Life | Amazing Grace

 Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be cloudy with a high of 46. Sunrise is 6:53 and sunset 4:27 for 9h 33m 38s of daytime. The moon is a waxing gibbous with 51.9% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Library Board meets at 6:30 PM. 

  On this day in 1945, Nuremberg trials begin against 24 Nazi war criminals start at the Palace of Justice at Nuremberg.

Wisconsin Life | Amazing Grace:

US Soybean Farmers Enjoy Export Windfall:

Daily Bread for 11.19.23: Wisconsin Life | Mine Museum

 Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 52. Sunrise is 6:52 and sunset 4:28 for 9h 35m 36s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 40% of its visible disk illuminated.

Abraham Lincoln (in the center) at the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on November 19, 1863. To Lincoln’s left is bodyguard Ward Hill Lamon. To his far left is Governor Andrew G. Curtin of Pennsylvania. The photograph is estimated to have been taken at about noontime, just after Lincoln arrived, before Edward Everett’s arrival and about three hours before Lincoln gave his famous Gettysburg Address. Josephine Cobb first found Lincoln’s face while working with a glass plate negative at the National Archives in 1952. (Source: NARA, Rare Photo of Lincoln at Gettysburg,

  On this day in 1863, President Lincoln delivers the Gettysburg Address at the dedication ceremony for the military cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Wisconsin Life | Mine Museum:

Bug farms are becoming big business

Daily Bread for 11.18.23: Wisconsin Life | Crane Count

 Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 51. Sunrise is 6:51 and sunset 4:28 for 9h 37m 35s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 29.4% of its visible disk illuminated.

By Jonathan Mauer – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, The Western Electric No. 2500, a typical American 12-button phone of the 1970s and early 80s.

  On this day in 1963, the first push-button telephone goes into service.

Wisconsin Life | Crane Count

100-pound baby southern white rhinoceros born at zoo in Virginia

Daily Bread for 11.15.23: Wisconsin Life | Hike it Baby

 Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will be sunny with a high of 61. Sunrise is 6:47 and sunset 4:31 for 9h 43m 50s of daytime. The moon is a waxing crescent with 5.6% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Park & Recreation Board meets at 5:30 PM.  

  On this day in 1864, Union General William Tecumseh Sherman begins his March to the Sea.

Wisconsin Life | Hike it Baby

Dini Dowd is a social media influencer and in her words “a stay-outside mom.” She travels the state with her husband and their daughter exploring Wisconsin’s lakes, parks and trails. She shares their trips on social media, helping other families plan their own expeditions and encouraging everyone to get outdoors.

Skaters glide across rare Alaska ‘ice window’:

Alaskan outdoor educator and ice rescue instructor Luc Mehl says an unusually cold and dry transition to winter created a rare ‘ice window’ in October on Rabbit Lake in Alaska.

Daily Bread for 11.6.23: Wisconsin Life | Naturalist

 Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 65. Sunrise is 6:36 and sunset 4:40 for 10h 04m 30s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 39% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1947, Meet the Press, the longest-running television program in history, makes its debut on NBC Television.

Wisconsin Life | Naturalist

M. Afi Lake is an avid gardener and naturalist who forages for food and medicine from unlikely plants. She can turn a nasty weed into a delicious dish.

A New Podcast From Serial: The Kids of Rutherford County

For over a decade, one Tennessee county arrested and illegally jailed hundreds, maybe thousands, of children. A four-part narrative series reveals how this came to be, the adults responsible for it, and the two lawyers, former juvenile delinquents themselves, who try to do something about it.

Daily Bread for 11.4.23: Wisconsin Life | Garden Art

 Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of 52. Sunrise is 7:33 and sunset 5:43 for 10h 09m 30s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 57.8% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1956, Soviet troops enter Budapest to end the Hungarian revolution against the Soviet Union that started on October 23. Thousands are killed, more are wounded, and nearly a quarter million leave the country.

Wisconsin Life | Garden Art:

80-something-year-old Gene Frey of Columbus has no formal training and yet his one-of-a-kind metal garden art is garnering a lot of attention.

This camel farm milks 1300 camels twice a day:

Daily Bread for 10.29.23: | Dairy Farm Life

 Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will be cloudy with a high of 42. Sunrise is 7:26 and sunset 5:50 for 10h 24m 50s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 99.4% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1969, the first-ever computer-to-computer link is established on ARPANET, the precursor to the Internet.

 Wisconsin Life | Dairy Farm Life:

When Rosario Ibarra arrived from Mexico for her internship, she had never seen a Holstein cow. Ibarra now runs one of Manitowoc County’s largest dairy farms. It’s a tireless job that has become a lifestyle.

365 Marathons In 365 Days:

Would you run a marathon? Maybe you’ve run a few? What about running a marathon every single day? If that sounds completely crazy, well — we would agree. But Gary McKee did just that – every day of 2022. Gary ran a marathon each day for an entire year, but his steps were driven by more than just personal drive. Every mile was to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support. As days turned into weeks, his ambition transformed into a town-wide movement. With New Year’s Eve as the grand finale, the community came together like never before with hundreds of supporters rallying to celebrate with him at the finish line. The result? A united community, countless inspired morning runners, and a staggering £1 million raised.

Daily Bread for 10.28.23: Wisconsin Life | Holga Photography

 Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 46. Sunrise is 7:24 and sunset 5:52 for 10h 27m 27s of daytime. The moon is full with 99.9% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis ends and Premier Nikita Khrushchev orders the removal of Soviet missiles from Cuba.

 Wisconsin Life | Holga Photography:

Cameron Gillie creates artistic photos using a Holga, a cheap plastic camera.

This Man Drives a Burger To Work:

Our latest contributor has driven the wackiest looking vehicles. Literally. We’re talking burgers, pencils and even…a snooker table. In Hyderabad, India you can find the world’s first and only handmade wacky car museum called Sudha Cars Museum. Meet Sudhakar Kanyaboyina, the mastermind who from the age of 14, turned his imaginative designs into bicycles and wacky cars. With hundreds of ambitious and creative designs, including the worlds largest tricycle, he eventually had enough to open his own museum with his daughter. His drive for creating the world’s wackiest cars isn’t exhausted yet and we know you’ll be revved up for this Great Big Story.

Daily Bread for 10.27.23: Wisconsin Life | Flying Dogs

 Good morning.

Friday in Whitewater will be cloudy with a high of 68. Sunrise is 7:23 and sunset 5:53 for 10h 30m 06s of daytime. The moon is a waxing gibbous with 97.8% of its visible disk illuminated.

  On this day in 1775, King George III expands on his Proclamation of Rebellion in the Thirteen Colonies in his speech from the throne at the opening of Parliament

 Wisconsin Life | Flying Dogs:

David Tan is a Middleton-based pilot who uses his personal aircraft to rescue animals in need of adoption like goats, dogs, cats, pigs and a bat. He does it all for free.

 Lost Your Luggage? It’s Probably Here

When you’re traveling, have you ever wondered what happens if your bag gets lost? Well, it’ll probably end up in Scottsboro, Alabama at the nation’s only store for lost luggage. Unclaimed Baggage opened over 50 years ago, when entrepreneur and radio enthusiast, Doyle Owens, had a bright idea. One day, he was on the phone to a friend working at Trailways Bus Lines and learnt that they had more unclaimed bags than they knew what to do with. Borrowing a pick up truck and $300 from his grandparents, Doyle bought his first load of bags back to Alabama, and the rest is history! In the huge store today, you’ll find both far-flung tourists and regulars who have practically become part of the furniture. However all the shoppers share something in common…a hunger for hidden treasure! Prepare to be amazed, amused, and maybe even a little confused by the astounding array of items you can find at Unclaimed Baggage.