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Friday, January 30, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 17.0° F  Mostly Cloudy
The Daily


Business as usual

I had hope there for a couple of days that we might exit January and go straight into spring. But it is Wisconsin, and reality has intruded in the form of another winter storm. So February comes all wrapped in white, dipped into the freezer. And we carry on with business as usual. >More
 Brain trust

Did you catch any of the presidential inauguration festivities on Monday? It was quite a serendipitous thing, having a holiday coincide with such a public function so fraught with symbolism and portent. That way the maximum number of people could share in the experience and perhaps form a communal reaction to the same stimulus. It promised that things would be different from here on. And we were prone to believe it. >More
 Early warning system

I warned one and all last week that tickets to the Isthmus Beer & Cheese Fest, happening this Saturday afternoon at the Alliant Energy Center, were going fast and could sell out before the doors opened. Well, it has happened. As of this writing on Wednesday afternoon, there were about 30 VIP tickets left at the online site and no regular tickets. A canvass of retail outlets turned up two available. By the time you read this, we're done. >More
 We're all in this together

Who knew that there was a vibrant traffic in dinner with strangers going on about the area? Well, features editor Linda Falkenstein, for one, and in her role as resident food editor she has given us a tour of communal dinners open to the public at large that take place in Madison and some other local towns. "Let's Have a Meal Together" describes folks finding comradeship and community around the dinner table. >More
 We're Number XXXVIII!

I happened to notice that last Saturday's New York Times carried this notation on its dateline, just below its motto, "All the News That's Fit to Print": Vol. CLXII, No. 56,000. Latin scholars will correct me if I'm wrong, but it tells me that the Times is, or was by the time you read this, in its 162nd year of publishing and had produced 56,000 issues up to that point. >More
 That's a wrap

Bret who? Christmas came early for Badger football fans when Gary Andersen was named UW head coach last week. The guy who almost beat Wisconsin last September, when his upstart Utah State Aggies fell just short of the upset (16-14) on the Badgers' home turf, brings an impressive record of program-building to a well-stocked, well-run major college operation. If Barry Alvarez can coach his boys to a Rose Bowl win, it will be a great end for a not-so-great year in Badger Nation. >More
 A bittersweet holiday

Storm clouds gather upon storm clouds as I write this on Wednesday. There's the lingering gloom of the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., where the loss of so many little ones causes parents everywhere to hold their children closer, as well as the predicted blizzard. The holiday cheer and bright emotions of the season are muted; the joy is replaced by caution. >More
 Of mines and wines

The mining bill is the topic du jour surrounding state government these days. If you are as ignorant about the issue as I am, you will be enlightened by staff writer Joe Tarr's cover story this week, "To Mine or Not to Mine?" >More
 Crossing the divide

In our cover story this week, former Isthmus editor Marc Eisen delves into one of his favorite topics, development, by revisiting the perennial sad story of dysfunction between the state's two dominant population centers, Milwaukee and Madison. In "The Madison-Milwaukee Divide" Eisen interviews a selection of business, political and education leaders who bemoan the continuing communications gap between the two places, but who indicate that the divide may be narrowing, albeit at a snail's pace. >More
 What's past is prologue

Having survived turkey time and the visiting relatives, we offer you this week a little time-travel experience. You thought time travel to be impossible. Well, the human mind is a wonderful thing. In the arts we take you back to the future as we explore the steampunk phenomenon and its practical application as a social event, while in our cover story we look to the future as now, with new horizons in education. >More
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