While football “experts” predict a fast end to Tim Tebow mania, a young Minnesota lady has gone viral with a song she composed for the Broncos’ quarterback. Says Bill Speros at ESPN: “Kaycee Robertson has found her dream date in Tim Tebow — all she needs is for him to ask. Instead of just sitting around and waiting for Tebow’s call or tweet, she took a big step Wednesday by posting ‘Ask me on a date, Tim Tebow,’ on You Tube. A self-styled ‘youth pastor in hipster clothes,’ Robertson is a Lutheran student ministry director who lives in Minneapolis. Robertson wrote the lyrics and music to the song featured on the 2 minute, 44 second video, in which she sings ‘I glanced, and saw that you don’t have a wedding ring’ and later adds ‘Marry Me, Tim Tebow’ — in Pig Latin. If Tebow does connect with her on Twitter … he doesn’t have to worry about a long-term commitment. ‘I’m not ready to get married at this point. But I would definitely say ‘yes’ to date and see where it goes from there.’ She sees Tebow as a good match, in large part, because of their shared Christian faith. ‘I do want to go out with him because of his faith and his love for God. I work in ministry and, I, too, love Jesus. He shows his faith more than other athletes … and shows his faith beyond football,’ she said. ‘And he’s easy on the eyes.’ ” I can say with absolute certainty that Ben Roethlisberger gets no such attention.
At the Vikings-crazy site, the Daily Norseman, Christopher Gates is biting down hard on cold reality: “Like we ever should have had any doubt that the Minneapolis Mafia was going to end up getting their way with this whole thing. From reading Tom Pelissero’s Twitter account this morning, it looks like there isn’t a snowball’s chance in Cuba of the new Minnesota Vikings’ stadium going up anywhere outside of the Minneapolis area.
From what I hear, Ramsey County and Shakopee stadium proposals both will be dead on arrival. Look for #Vikings to push Basilica site hard.
“This basically means that things aren’t going to change a whole lot with a new stadium. The parking is going to continue to suck, the tailgating will continue to basically be non-existent, and the city of Minneapolis will continue playing the role of The Sisters while the Vikings will play the role of Andy Dufresne during his first two years at Shawshank.”
A 4 percent increase means “record growth,” says Dee DePass at the Strib. “Minnesota’s agricultural, mining and manufactured exports broke a record for the third quarter, growing 4 percent from a year ago to $5.1 billion, state officials said Thursday. Manufacturing accounted for the largest share of the state’s exports, at $4.6 billion, an increase of 5 percent from the third quarter of 2010. All exports combined to beat the state’s previous high mark for a third quarter, which was $5 billion in the third quarter of 2008.”
April 23. That’s when Amy Senser goes to court. Says Abby Simon at the Strib: “Senser, accused of a felony in the August hit-and-run death of a popular Minneapolis chef, will face trial starting on April 23. Senser appeared in Hennepin County District Court Thursday morning for a brief procedural hearing in the wake of a second charge being filed against her in the Aug. 23 hit-and-run death of Anousone Phanthavong, 38. Senser was prepared to enter a not guilty plea, according to her attorney, but Judge Daniel Mabley postponed the entering of a plea.”
Good stuff in Paul Demko’s Politics in Minnesota piece on the state’s GOP trying to square things with both their books and activists: “‘The lack of transparency is a major source of distrust between the base and the party,’ said John Gilmore, an activist from the 4th Congressional District. ‘The base wants to help the party very much. In order to be able to do that, it needs to believe that the party is being forthcoming and transparent and we can correct whatever mistakes were or were not made in the past.’ But Republican National Committeeman and executive committee member Jeff Johnson cautions that an audit should be carefully weighed. ‘With respect to looking further into a forensic audit, that is a decision that we will have to make and we will have to make soon,’ said Johnson, who helped oversee the internal financial review. ‘If you do that, you’re going to spend a lot of money on that, and you’re not going to spend that money on elections.’ … In addition, there are questions about whether some form of punishment should be sought against former party Chairman Tony Sutton and other officers. Sutton has acknowledged that he did not inform other GOP officials about an agreement he signed making the party responsible for any legal debts associated with the 2010 recount. … But many GOP officials are reluctant to push forward with more scrutiny of past financial decisions for fear of further tarnishing the party’s brand ahead of crucial 2012 elections. … Privately, sources close to the process say there is mounting pressure to move past the episode and to forgo the expense and potential embarrassment of a more prolonged investigation. In speaking to reporters after his election, Shortridge suggested that it was time to move beyond recriminations for past mistakes.” My, my, isn’t this the sort of thing best discussed “in a quiet room”?
It’s time to check to see if you’re related to these two. Rachelle Klemme Of the Wadena Pioneer Journal reports: “Mike and Lea Snyder of rural Wadena are new Minnesota Millionaires after Mike purchased two tickets for the big prize. Wearing ‘Winner’ sweatshirts provided by the lottery, they were formally announced at a 1 p.m. press conference at the Holiday gas station in Wadena, where the winning tickets had been purchased. … Mike Snyder had only played Minnesota Millionaire a few times, and this year he purchased two tickets instead of just one as usual on Nov. 18. Mike was watching Monday morning news on TV when it was announced that one of the two winning numbers drawn Jan. 1 was purchased in Wadena County. He recalled thinking, ‘Boy that sure looks like mine,’ and woke up his wife. Lea didn’t even know he had bought tickets.”
Drought. No doubt about it. Andrea Johnson for the Minnesota Farm Guide writes, “Warm temperatures have allowed farmers to keep livestock outdoors. Feed, electric and fuel bills are smaller. Tiling and ditch work — normally ending in December — have continued in many areas. But there’s no denying that Minnesota is in a drought. The Jan. 3, 2012 U.S. Drought Monitor showed abnormally dry to severe drought conditions. Pete Boulay, a climatologist with the Minnesota State Climatology office, encourages farmers to visit www.climate.umn.edu for information. ‘Precipitation totals for the last 18 weeks are less than three inches in many areas, a negative departure from the long-term 18 week average of five to nine inches. When compared with the same 18 week period in the historical database, the 2011 precipitation totals rank among the lowest on record,’ said the Minnesota Climatology Working Group. Many portions of Minnesota report autumn precipitation deficits of five or more inches.”
Here’s another version of why the (blessedly) mild winter of ’11-’12 is good for city finances. Says Patrick Condon at the AP: “Cities that normally spend millions on salt, sand and snowplows are happily saving the money for other purposes. Some are even taking advantage of the mild weather to carry on with outdoor projects that would usually have to wait until spring. ‘There’s a sigh of relief,’ said Chris Sagsveen, who manages road and bridge operations in Hennepin County, Minnesota’s most populous because it includes Minneapolis. In 2011, his department spent its entire snow-removal budget for the year by the end of March. He dreaded the potential for another fearsome winter. But the county barely spent a penny in the final months of 2011. So far this year, it hasn’t tapped the snow budget once. … In Minnesota and North Dakota, crews have parked their snowplows and are patching roads and highways instead. Chicago spent just $500,000 on plowing in December, down from $6 million a year earlier. In Buffalo, N.Y., public works overtime is down by 25 percent, and the city has saved more than $300,000 on salt. Syracuse, N.Y., one of New York’s snowiest cities, has had 13 inches this winter, compared to an unusually heavy 77 inches by this time last year. Public Works Commissioner Pete O’Connor said he’s saved $500,000 in salt, overtime and fuel.”
The rumor is true — Target will host mini-Apple stores. The New York Times story by Stephanie Clifford says: “Target confirmed today that it plans to test Apple mini-stores at 25 of its retail locations this year. Apple already has centers within Best Buy stores, but an expansion to Target makes the computer brand accessible to shoppers who aren’t necessarily looking for electronics. Target currently sells some Apple products, like iPads and iPods, but it does not sell Macintosh computers. The announcement confirmed rumors reported by AppleInsider and other technology blogs late last week. The Apple details came after Target said it would open in May small boutiques within its stores called The Shops at Target.” Do NOT expect to see “70% off! Clearance!’ signs hanging over the MacBook Pros.