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The Blanche Report: New King, Weather and Cicadas

Although spring is slow in coming, it’s never to early to plan your summer vacation. In case you don’t want to go to the same old, same old places, we have a few other ideas for you. Ready? You know how Montreal has the Jazz festival, the comedy festival and sometimes the protest festival? Well here are a few other festivals for you to consider:

The Turpentine Festival in Portal, Georgia—about an hour outside of Savannah—where you’ll find one of the last remaining turpentine stills in the country. You can see a firsthand demonstration of how turpentine is made,then you can check out booths selling locally made turpentine and other handcrafted items.

Humungus Fungus Fest in Marquette Michigan. You can see the world’s largest mushroom and biggest mushroom pizza. After that you can mosey on over and take part in the mushroom parade and witness the strong man competition.

And finally you can try the Underwater Music Festival in the Florida Keys. In addition to underwater tunes, you will get to see a brilliant display of marine life in North America’s only remaining coral barrier reef. Boats will be positioned around the reef broadcasting the music via Lubell Laboratory speakers.

The Queen of the Netherlands abdicated her throne today in favor of her son, the first king in over 120 years. King Wilhem Alexander and Queen Maxima appeared on the balcony of the Amsterdam Royal Place with their three young daughters, waving to their adoring crowd. It seems that in the Netherlands, abdicating is the norm. In England, this just ain’t done. Liz will stay Queen until the cows come home.

You know those slippery polymer twenty dollar bills? Well, they are now coming to a theater near you in $5’s and $10’s. The $5 bill features images of the Canadarm and Dextre, the Canadian Space Agency’s robotic handyman, while the $10  has a picture of a train on it. The new notes will go into circulation in November and last two-and-a-half times longer than the old, cotton-paper bills. Make sure those bills stay out of the dryer. Seems they melt in the heat. The weather has been front and center of late. Climate warming bit the dust long ago in favor of climate change. In the midwest United States, the temperatures are going to drop a staggering 60 degrees in the next couple of days, from 80 degrees down to around 20 or 30. A foot of snow is expected in Denver. Where’s Al Gore when you need him? This next piece is a tad on the gross side, so if you’re eating, perhaps wait till you take your next bite. This May, billions of cicadas will wake from a seventeen-year subterranean slumber. The biggest outbreak will be in Kansas, a smaller one in New York City. In case you don’t know what a cicada is, they are the bugs that make that high decibel noise from somewhere in your grass. 

To avoid them, we suggest you do not mow your lawn during the day as the little pests think the lawn mower is a mating sound. If you nap outside during the afternoon, wear earplugs. That’s when they’re at their loudest. The only redeeming feature about these bugs is that after they hatch their eggs, they burrow into the ground till the next cicadapocalypse. Feh.

We’ll talk…

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