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Thursday, June 20, 2024
Good morning to you!

Welcome to another edition of the mailbag where you will find some of the comments, questions and ideas sent recently by subscribers of this newsletter or our publications. They are edited for space and clarity.

“Soldiers in Vietnam used Slinkys — obviously sent from home — as makeshift radio antennas (Slinky, June 11, 2024). Apparently, they threw the toy over tree branches to get more range.” - Lori

And Wolfman Jack appreciated it. - Shane

“I hate buying paper towels for the office and home (Paper towels, June 12, 2024). But when it comes to using public restrooms, I like paper towels. After I wash my hands in a public restroom with only a hand dryer, I wonder who didn't wash their hands and dry them and touched the doorknob ahead of me. I'm no germophobe, but there are times in particularly dirty public restrooms when I use a hand towel to turn off the faucet and open the door after I've washed my hands. I'm guessing half of people who use a public restroom don't wash their hands, especially if no one else is there.” - Brad

According to Medical News Today, only 5% of people wash their hands long enough to destroy infectious germs after using the bathroom. - Shane

“Interesting statistics about paper towels (Paper towels, June 12, 2024). I, too, use two or three per time but probably don't use public restrooms enough to reach 12 per day. As for electric hand driers, the various designs and machine placements are also probably discussion for another time. Then there is the environmental issue associated with electricity. Society still uses a lot of fossil fuel generated electricity. Besides running hand driers, the alternative paper towels are being transported by trucks that are still powered by fossil fuel, but if they get to EV, there are still issues. For now, I'm satisfied with shaking hands with people who wash their hands regularly. I'm not getting excited about how they dry them as long as it is not on my hands!” - Chuck

Nanu, nanu. - Shane

“Shane, I am all for saving trees as well as the planet, but my biggest pet peeve is using a restroom that only has air hand dryers and a door you must pull on the handle to leave (Paper towels, June 12, 2024). I prefer using paper towels in restrooms to turn off the water and open the door. I like the feeling of drying my hands with something substantial other than air, especially when I have personally witnessed many people leave a restroom without even using some hand sanitizer (gross). I am all for that foot-opener thing that some places attach to the bottom of the door so you can open the door without touching the handle. That is so much easier than me standing on one leg trying to pull the handle with my foot, getting the door to stay open long enough for me to escape without much contact. Better yet, make all restroom doors push to exit, probably not applicable everywhere. Yes, I am aware I probably have some germophobic condition, but when I wash my hands, especially at a restaurant, I want my hands to stay clean. Thank you for your daily thought-provoking column!” - Kris

If you really want to laugh, put a bunch of hand soap or lotion on the bathroom door handle and watch how people react when they touch it. - Shane

Have a thoughtful Thursday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman
President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

See Shane Goodman's previous columns here.


Clear Mortgage meteorology

Shower and thunderstorm chances continue intermittently today. Friday will be dry and hot again before rain chances return Saturday.

For help with pre-approvals or refinancing, get in touch with Originating Branch Manager Carrie Hansen at carrie.mortgage.

From the June issue of CITYVIEW 

Throttle therapy

By Jackie Wilson

Summer means spending time outdoors, and what better way to experience fresh air than with an open-air ride? As such, this month’s column doesn’t feature a car at all but rather a two-wheeled thrilling ride on a 2024 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy. (Note: This was a RIDE and not a test drive, as my only motorcycle experience was driving a dirt bike in the late 1970s in a grassy pasture.) I recruited Gary Bland as my driver. Gary owned a Kawasaki 440 for 20 years and drove a Harley a few times since then.

Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1903, William Harley and Walter Davidson designed an engine to fit on a two-wheeled bicycle. Harley-Davidson has weathered company ups and downs for more than a century.


CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines®
The results have been tallied and published in the February issue of CITYVIEW and online!


Best Local Patio Bar

1. Big Grove Brewery

2. The Pelican Post Bar & Grille

3. The Bartender’s Handshake

Read all the results now!


Pyramid Theatre Company – Stoner Theatre. "The Black Feminist Guide to the Human Body." June 22-30. 

Des Moines Performing Arts. STOMP! Jun 20-23. 

Momentum Art Program has created a Community Art Project around belonging called Hands of Hope. It will have its grand opening reception as part of the program's Community Support Advocates Headquarters on June 25 from 4-6 p.m. at  1516 Valley West Drive in West Des Moines. There will be food, music, art and more.

— John Busbee, The Culture Buzz

Explore Des Moines

CITYVIEW's seasonal guide for activities and things to do in Central Iowa

EXPLORE: Central Iowa Drinkeries
By Cyote Williams

Wineries, breweries and distilleries make up this list of what we like to call “drinkeries.” Get the best wines, beers and spirits specially made in the heart of Iowa.


Bad news, good news - Japan. Takeru Kobayashi retired and un-retired in a week. The man credited for popularizing competitive eating in general and Nathan's Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest in particular, gave up the old soak and choke down. He won his first of seven straight Nathan's contests in 2001 eating a world record 50 hot dogs in 20 minutes as a rookie. Then, after rival Joey Chestnut was banned from Nathan's for endorsing vegan dogs, Kobayashi was coaxed back to a "gastro a gastro" contest with Chestnut... Suntory vending machines have created a new incentive for virtual workers to come back to the office in Japan. They are programmed for two-at-a-time only operation, so that workers have a reason to meet and talk with others to get free drinks. (Newsroom Tokyo)

Bad news, good news - Polk County. The Whiskey House permanently closed in Ankeny's Prairie Trail, reducing by one the number of live music venues in the metro. Ankeny also recently lost La Cava, El Azteca, Luddy's Tavern and the Club Car. Ankeny continues to be an enigma in the business of restaurants. Quite successful downtown, both Zombie Burger and Fong's Pizza & Tiki Bar gave up on Ankeny. Lola's, too. Yet the Ankeny Olive Garden has been one of most successful in the entire chain... Cafe San Miguel announced a fall 2024 opening for their decadent Latina bakery on Grand Avenue "next to the MoLo Hotel," which also hopes to open in the fall.

After 15 years, Iowa trailblazer Peace Tree Brewing Co. of Knoxville announced they will end brewing and distribution operations in the next two weeks. Their Blonde Fatale was the strongest Iowa beer and a rite of Lake Red Rock summer.

Deals. Thursday nights starting at 5 p.m., Moroccan couscous - lemon chicken, beef keftas, five vegetables, harissa - are $17 at Purveyor (505 E. Grand Ave., Des Moines)… Aussie pies, savory and sweet, at St. Kilda's Collective (333 Fifth St., Valley Junction) farmers market stall are good deals at varying prices. Indoors, Thursday's happy hour brings $12 fried cod sandwiches, cheeseburgers, Cubanos, chicken sandwiches, and veggie burgers... Eastside Eddie’s (3517 E. 26th St., Des Moines) Thursday special is hot beef sandwiches with green beans $10... Sprockets (2314 University Ave., Des Moines) offers a breaded pork tenderloin special on Thursdays for $9.99... "Summer Stir" commences swirling this Friday 5-9 p.m. Ten sample drinks $25 (prepay, $30 at event) at these downtown bars - Hessen Haus, Fong’s Pizza, Coda, Johnny’s Hall of Fame, The Copper Cup, Ta’Chido Cantina, The Stuffed Olive, El Bait Shop/High Life Lounge. Johnny’s will also have $12 burger baskets and Fong’s offers super slices of pizza pie for $3 until 6 p.m.

— Jim Duncan, jd91446@aol.com

Featured home for sale
Attention, Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.

$2,900,000                                                           3545 Lincoln Place Drive, Des Moines, IA 50312

Nestled in the heart of South of Grand, this private 3-story estate is surrounded by lush trees and stunning landscaping. The centerpiece is the exquisite white gourmet kitchen featuring a Wolf gas stove, expansive pantry, catering room, and two eating areas seamlessly connected to the family room, perfect for entertaining. Spanning over 2 acres, the estate boasts 6 bedrooms, 7 baths, 5 fireplaces, and over 7,000 square feet of living space.

See the listing here.

See More Homes For Sale
SOLD: Featured commercial real estate transaction
SALE DATE: 2024-04-08
SALE PRICE: $400,000
ACRES: 0.279
From the June issue of Altoona Living magazine

Curtain call
Residents share their experiences on stage.

By Chantel Boyd

For many people, public speaking is their worst fear. They recall suffering from butterflies in the stomach or worse before stepping out on the stage for their elementary school programs and the terror of having to speak in front of their peers in high school speech class. For them, the thought of performing before the public in a stage production sounds as appealing as being tarred and feathered. Others actually seek the spotlight, volunteering to memorize lines and create play props, eagerly awaiting the day the curtains are drawn back and the show begins. Some of these people share their reasons why center stage is the place they want to be.

A career in the making
Noah Sinclair, 13, is actively involved in Class Act Productions, both on and off the stage.
“I act on stage, and I also help with painting the set,” he says.

Noah became interested in both acting and helping with the set because both seemed like a lot of fun.

“What interests me most about theatre is how much fun it is to develop the character you’re playing and bring it to life,” he says.



FROM KCCI: Missing Iowa man’s autopsy complete: David Schultz's death not a homicide

SAC CITY, Iowa — Officials say the autopsy for David Schultz is complete and his death was not a homicide. Schultz, the 53-year-old Wall Lake trucker who went missing in November, was found dead in April a little over a mile from where his abandoned truck was located. ...READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: UPDATE: 9 injured in crash between daycare van and semi in West Des Moines

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA — Seven kids and two adults were transported to several different local hospitals according to the West Des Moines Police Department. "So we like to say apparent minor injury because we weren’t doing lifesaving procedures on anyone at the scene,” said Sergeant Adam Porath with the West Des Moines Police. “So I don’t know specific injuries, but it doesn’t appear that anyone has life threatening injuries.” ... READ MORE FROM WHO

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: Iowa DNR reports multiple bear sightings in eastern Iowa

Iowa DNR used recent bear sightings to offer advice on possible encounters with the animals.. ....READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

Weekly fuel report

The price of regular unleaded gasoline rose 3 cents, averaging $3.18 across Iowa according to AAA. Prices are down 12 cents from a year ago. The national average on Wednesday was $3.45, steady from last week’s price.

Retail diesel prices in Iowa rose 3 cents this week with a statewide average of $3.52. One year ago, diesel prices averaged $3.61 in Iowa. The current Iowa diesel price is 28 cents lower than the national average of $3.80.

Wholesale ethanol held steady and is currently priced at $2.16.

Natural gas prices fell 13 cents at the Henry Hub reporting site and are currently priced at $2.88/MMbtu.

Sports headlines
ESPN: Pistons fire coach Monty Williams after one season, owe him $65 million.  ...READ MORE 
SPORTS ILLUSTRATED: PGA Tour Commissioner Says Talks to Unify Golf Have 'Started Anew,' Offers No Specifics. ... READ MORE
CBS Sports: WNBA Rookie Rankings: Caitlin Clark outduels Angel Reese to retake lead, Kamilla Cardoso cracks top five.   ...READ MORE
1975: “Jaws” released in theaters..... READ MORE
1941: Ford signs first contract with autoworkers’ union. ... READ MORE
1963: United States and Soviet Union agree to establish a nuclear “hot line." ... READ MORE
Birthdays and notables

These celebrities were born on this date:  Stephen Frears, Brian Wilson, Candy Clark, Lionel Richie, Chino Moreno, Amos Lee, Tika Sumpter, Chris Thompson, Nicole Kidman, David Iacono, John Goodman, Frank Lampard,  Christopher Mintz-Plasse

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to: tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Morning chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:

Why can't you make a dinosaur omelet? BECAUSE THEY ARE EGG-STINCT! - Gail Tomlinson. Or, Because you can't beat fossilized eggs! - Carolyn Rogers. Or, along those lines, because they are too hard! -William Snyder.

Today's riddle

What do you call a female opera singer who had quite a range at the lower end of the scale?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com


To advertise in the Daily Umbrella or Waukee, Norwalk or West Des Moines/Jordan Creek Living magazines, contact:

Martha Munro
Account Executive
Office: 515-953-4822 ext. 314
Mobile: 515-321-5246

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