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How did I Miss That? Cherokee Verbs Tamed—But Not Ducks

Steve Russell
1/29/16

The Cherokee Phoenix reported that John Standingdeer, Jr., a citizen of the Eastern Band, has been awarded Patent Number US 9,158,762 B2 for a “new and useful invention” for the “Deconstruction and Construction of Polysynthetic Words for Translation Purposes.”

Cherokee verbs can do a lot more than English verbs, and conjugating Cherokee verbs is for those of us not native speakers only slightly less intimidating than rocket science. Standingdeer claims to have found a way though the language thicket of Cherokee and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office agrees that his method is original. He’s set it up on the web for those who want to give his method a try.

Within a week of Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson endorsing Ted Cruz, there was dissention in the duck blind. Willie Robertson endorsed Donald Trump.

“The winner,” Cousin Ray suggested, “will be the one who gets his ducks in a row.” 

Outside the political duck blind, CNN caught the Teflon Trump campaign releasing a video that blasted the VA for its treatment of U.S. soldiers illustrated by pictures of Russian soldiers. The mistake has been corrected without comment, but in an earlier contretemps where the campaign tweeted men in WWII German uniforms, the Trumpers blamed the error on a “young intern.”

USA Today reported that Omo, a white giraffe, has survived her first year in Tarangire National Park, Tanzania. Omo is not albino but merely leucistic. An albino has no melanin at all, making characteristic red eyes because all you can see are blood vessels. According to Derek Lee of the Wild Nature Institute, her color puts her at greater risk of becoming a victim of poachers.

Cousin Ray started to say that in the U.S., white things are at less risk rather than more…but he quickly piped down because in the U.S. the shooting victims are human beings.

Mother Jones reported on the mostly southward migration of U.S. gun manufacturers, pulled by state and local subsidies in addition to weak labor laws.

Remington Arms moved from a union plant in New York to a nonunion plant in North Carolina for almost $70 million in subsidies.

Sturm Ruger opened a new plant in North Carolina in spite of $15.5 million in subsidies lavished on an existing plant in New Hampshire.

Berretta USA moved from Maryland to Tennessee for over $14 million in subsidies.

In a bit of regional poaching, Smith & Wesson decamped New Hampshire for Massachusetts and over $6.5 million in subsidies.

It doesn’t always work. Florida Gov. Rick Scott claimed in 2011 he had poached Colt from Connecticut with an incentive package, but Colt backed out and has now declared bankruptcy, leaving Florida holding a $1.66 million bag.

The Pearl County, Mississippi Picayune Item reported that two father and son teams had a shootout over a repair bill at a gun shop, leaving one father and son dead and the others “seriously injured.” Early reports did not give names or specify which pair “won” the gunfight.

“Not to worry,” assured Cousin Ray, “everybody knows the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.” I asked him if he meant that whoever died was wrong in the dispute over a $25 repair bill? “Something like that.”

KPRC reported that the DeLorean is about to go back into production in Humble, Texas. The new DeLorean Motor Company is refurbishing old DeLoreans since purchasing the original parts stock in 1987. Refurbished models sell between $45,000 and $55,000 and they have sold “new” models made with old parts for $57,500.

The new DeLoreans will be virtually identical to the 1982 originals and the target price point is under $100,000. How far under depends on what modern engine will be used for the new cars. The originals were infamous for being a bit pokey.

I thought even just under $100,000 sounded pretty steep, but Cousin Ray disagreed. “What do you expect to pay for a car that will time travel?”

In less happy auto news, Land Rover is ending production of its iconic British answer to the Jeep. Land Rover has taken Brits all over Asia and Africa and Australia since 1948. It was thrown on the market to keep the company afloat long enough to ramp up production of real cars.

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