ROSE (roz) n. One of the most beautiful of all flowers, a symbol of fragrance and loveliness. Often given as a sign of appreciation.
RASPBERRY (raz’ber’e) n. A sharp, scornful comment, criticism or rebuke; a derisive, splatting noise, often called the Bronx cheer.
We hereby deliver:
• ROSES to Corvallis resident Carolyn Webb, for noticing that the city was missing something — and taking steps to fill the gap.
Webb was the organizer of the Wednesday event at the Benton County Courthouse to mark the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. Over the years, Webb had noticed that while Albany and Lebanon held major events to remember the events of 9/11, Corvallis had nothing similar.
So she started an event herself, scheduling it for noon on Wednesday. She emailed people she knew, made calls, extended invitations in person and used social media platforms to get out the word.
In the end, about 20 people gathered outside the courthouse on Wednesday to wave flags and hold hand-drawn signs with a simple message: "9-11." The event also attracted people who were in Washington, D.C. or New York City on that day in 2001, and their memories still are vital.
Twenty or so people isn't a huge turnout, but it's not bad for a first time out. Here's hoping that this event grows next year and that it eventually becomes a Corvallis tradition. Thanks to Webb for pulling it together.
• ROSES to the Oregon State Beavers' football schedule for this Saturday: Kickoff is 1:15 p.m. Enjoy it while you can, Beaver fans: Only one other starting time has been announced for the rest of the season — and that's a 7:30 p.m. kickoff in Reser Stadium for the Nov. 8 game against the Washington Huskies.
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• RASPBERRIES, sort of, to The New York Times, for giving us yet another reason to fear living in the West. A Sept. 10 story in the newspaper reports on the potential dangers posed by the 161 active volcanoes in the United States. It turns out that 7 of the 10 most dangerous active volcanoes in the U.S. are located in the Cascade Range. And the story starts, of course, with a vivid description of an eruption at Mount Hood in the 1780s.
Actually, although we bristle a bit at yet another New York publication reporting on another pending natural disaster for the West (remember The New Yorker's piece on the Cascadia subduction fault? Of course you do), the truth is that the Times story is fascinating. Reporter Shannon Hall notes that active volcanoes in the U.S. aren't monitored nearly as closely as their counterparts across the world, for various reasons. (One reason, in the case of Mount Hood, is that placing equipment to monitor the volcano would seem to violate the Wilderness Act.)
But there's no doubt that early detection of an eruption can save lives, and the Times points to a recent example: the April 2018 eruption of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii, when scientists were able to precisely predict where magma would flow. The online version of this editorial includes a link to the Times story.
• RASPBERRIES to the National Toy Hall of Fame, for not yet giving its due to a childhood staple for centuries.
The Hall of Fame, which is located in Rochester, N.Y., this week announced its finalists for induction in the hall, and it's the usual mix of relatively new (the card game Magic the Gathering, for instance, dates back to 1993) and grizzled veterans such as Matchbox cars, which date to 1952 and every year must deal with the shame of knowing that its main competitor, Hot Wheels, already is enshrined in the Hall of Fame. (It's sort of like how Blood, Sweat & Tears must deal with the fact that Chicago has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, while BS&T remains cruelly excluded.)
Each year's finalists always bring at least one head-scratcher, and here's the primary one from this year: The finalists include the top.
You read that right: The top, that globe-spanning, endlessly spinning star of the movie "Inception," has not yet been inducted into the hall. It's time to rectify this injustice.
Among the other finalists this year is the smartphone; Hall of Fame officials said it deserved finalist status because it's served as a platform for countless mobile games. We say, hold the phone: To earn inclusion in the hall, toys have to prove that they're not just a passing fad, and we're not yet sold that these fancy phones will stand the test of time. (mm)