Thursday, October 25, 2007

News Digest for October 25, 2007

All the links in today’s news digest lead to current stories. Please note that some media organizations update their web sites regularly, which may result in broken links in the future.


Vaudeville • \VAWD-vill\ • noun – 1: a light often comic theatrical piece frequently combining pantomime, dialogue, dancing, and song *2: stage entertainment consisting of various acts (as performing animals, acrobats, comedians, dancers, or singers)

“Look daddy,” piped the curious five-year old. “That man over there is putting on a show for us!” Unbeknownst to the precocious little boy, the vaudevillian appearance of Derwood’s herky-jerky dance was being caused by the invasion of yellow jackets from a nearby nest into his clothes. “That back flip was outstanding,” exclaimed the little boy’s father.

From Merriam-Webster: In the 15th century, several amusing songs became popular across France. These songs were said to have been written by a man named Olivier Basselin who lived in the valley of the river Vire in northwest France. The songs eventually became known as "chansons de vau-de-Vire," meaning "songs of the valley of Vire." Other people began writing and performing similar songs, and as this form of entertainment became more widespread, the link to vau-de-Vire was forgotten. The nickname was shortened to one word, "vaudevire." As the phenomenon spread beyond France, further changes in pronunciation and spelling shifted "vaudevire" into "vaudeville." The meaning also broadened to include humorous performances and variety shows.



Benton PUD may cut electric rates – Benton PUD announced Wednesday that it is working on a plan to reduce electric rates for the fifth time since 2003. (Tri-City Herald)

Alcoa to PUD: Don't delay – Alcoa could lose interest in its Wenatchee Works aluminum smelter if Chelan County PUD commissioners fuss too much with the contract on the table that would have the utility supplying power to the smelter through 2028. (Wenatchee World)

Clallam County PUD adding new outage tracking program (KONP Radio, Port Angeles)

Blackouts averted after Southwest link restored – San Diego County came within minutes yesterday afternoon of adding electricity blackouts to the list of woes caused by the wildfires. (San Diego Union-Tribune)

New York – Lawsuit Over Nuclear Plant Defense. Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo filed legal papers yesterday arguing that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission must require the owners of nuclear plants to defend their reactors from an aerial attack. (NY Times)

South Dakota – Basin Electric chooses S.D. site for plant. Basin Electric Power Cooperative has chosen an eastern South Dakota site for a new $331 million power plant with turbines fired by natural gas and steam, the company announced Wednesday. (The Jamestown Sun)

Massachusetts – GreatPoint to build gasification plant in Somerset. A Cambridge coal gasification company today revealed plans to build a pilot-scale manufacturing plant and research and development center in Somerset. (Mass High Tech: The Journal of New England Technology)

New York – Questions raised about Long Island Power Authority appointment – Two state senators from Long Island this week asked Attorney General Andrew Cuomo to review the recent the appointment of former KeySpan director James Larocca as chairman of LIPA, saying the move "raises serious conflict of interest issues." (Knight Ridder Tribune Business News via the Power Marketing Association Online)

Utility’s Profit Surges – American Electric Power said Wednesday that its third-quarter earnings rose 54 percent, helped by a warmer than normal summer that increased energy usage. (NY Times)


$125,000 in pollution fines to help Duwamish salmon (Seattle Times)

Huge weir arrives at dam – After some 280 miles of smooth sailing, a 1,000-ton aid to salmon migration reached its new home here Tuesday. (Walla Walla Union Bulletin)

Weather eases up after last week, allowing river fishing to rebound – Weather put the brakes on river fishing last week, but conditions have improved and so has fishing. (The Olympian)

Hook your fill of salmon on the world-class runs of Chilliwack, B.C. (Idaho Statesman)


Pint-size hydro power on tap (CNET News)

Green Power Suppliers: Marketing Renewable Energy to the Masses – Department of Energy recognizes six companies for helping the U.S. 'go green' during 7th Annual Green Power Leadership Awards. (Renewable Energy Access)


Sealing Leaks Can Lower Heating Costs – Heating costs are rising again this year, but there are steps families can take to save money and still keep warm. (KMSP-TV, Eden Prairie, MN)


Climate Change Testimony Was Edited by White House (NY Times)


Self-Appointed Traffic Cop – Is the company you pay to bring you the Internet blocking parts of it instead? That's been a fear of some Internet users for a long time. Now many Comcast customers are anxious after reading the Associated Press report last week that the cable-modem service interferes with the BitTorrent file-sharing program. (Washington Post)


CITY OF SHELTON’S REMOVAL OF CONTAMINATED SOIL TO BEGIN MONDAY – Work to remove gasoline contaminated soil from two intersections in downtown Shelton will begin Monday. The intersections are Fourth and Franklin and First and Franklin. Work at Fourth and Franklin will begin Monday as the State Department of Ecology is requiring a section seven feet deep to be dug from curb to curb to eliminate contamination. Fourth Street will be closed between Railroad Avenue and Franklin Street from Monday to next Thursday (November 1). The First and Franklin site was initially thought to have much higher contamination. However, current tests have revealed that the contamination may not be as high as initially thought, but a specialized crew may still be needed to clean up the site. The clean up at First and Franklin will require the intersection to be closed for two weeks beginning November 12. The City is continuing to test and gather information on both contaminated sites. Again, the intersection at Fourth and Franklin will be closed from Monday to next Thursday, and the intersection at First and Franklin will be closed for two weeks beginning November 12 so crews can clean up gasoline contaminated soil. If you have any questions, contact Shelton City Engineer Mike Michael at 432-5125. (KMAS Radio, Shelton)

Hospitals backtrack on keeping mistakes secret – The Washington State Hospital Association has changed its stance on the public disclosure of hospitals' preventable mistakes, saying now that it won't try to block the release of information about errors such as leaving instruments inside patients and performing the wrong operations. (Seattle Times)

'No evidence mascots are demeaning' – A state panel heard strongly negative reviews Tuesday from local school officials about a proposal to ban American Indian high school mascots from 15 Oregon schools. (The Daily Astorian)


Free Publicity – Brewer in Dispute With Real Sam Adams. The Boston brewers of Sam Adams beer objected when they learned that a mayoral campaign here included Web sites invoking the name of their product.

Only in Mossyrock – Man Accused Of Killing Trees May Have Poisoned Neighbor

Mom helps cheerleaders grab boys' beer – A woman let her teenage daughter lean out of a moving van to take beer from a vehicle that was driving alongside on a southeastern Nebraska highway, authorities said Wednesday;_ylt=AoCDkjYm4Wnuw0RVyZIuKLbtiBIF

Undressed sleepwalkers set off alarm for hotel chain – A surge in naked sleepwalking among guests has led one of the country's largest budget hotel groups to re-train staff to handle late-night problems.;_ylt=Aq4i.NxZ1WMq5OQIS0HJCbHtiBIF