Best Bets

Our erstwhile editor escaped to Europe last month. Yes, he brought back chocolate, souvenirs and a copy of the Reykjavik Grapevine, a weekly newspaper in Iceland. The Grapevine has headlines like “Whale hunting to begin again in Iceland,” “Transcending Time and Space” and “Abandon Ship,” about Pirate Party leader Birgitta Jonsottir. In other words, it’s kind of like Homer, except the word for “airplane terminal” is umferoarmiostoo.

Mr. World Traveler said that upon his return to the Last Frontier, he looked up the weather for the places he had been and found that in Homer, Seattle, Chicago, Reykjavik and Paris, the forecast was about the same: rainy and in the 40s to 50s. As the French say, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

However, the French have really awesome bread, cheese and chocolate, and they don’t dress like schlubs. Fashion hint: if you’re in Paris and don’t want to be immediately noticed as American, leave the Crocs, cargo shorts and T-shirts at home.

It’s good to get outside our bubbles now and then to see how the rest of the world lives. We can see how other people solve problems like building roads, keeping the streets clean and getting from Paris to St. Malo (Answer: on trains that go very fast). Like us, foreigners laugh, dance and have fun. On a fine spring evening and after a long winter, they bask in the sun and embrace the warmth.

Soon enough, people from far-away lands will visit us and exclaim over our awesome scenery, wildlife, food and charming culture. They might even find our accents quaint and think our clothing eccentric. Just as we fall in love with them, perhaps they will fall in love with us. Ideally, they will leave behind small fortunes to support our struggling economy. Be nice to them.

This month we get ready — wash those streets, put on a fresh coat of paint and pick up the trash. Meanwhile, we have plenty to do with these totes awesome Best Bets:

BEST BIG CRAWL BET: First Friday art shows are bursting out all over from the Pratt Museum to Bunnell Street Arts Center. Don’t miss the student artists and writers at West Homer Elementary for their big splash. See all the listings on page 14.

BEST THERE’S GOLD IN THEM THAR CIRCUITS: Electronics have lots of precious metals. Instead of strip mining in salmon streams, recycle your old computers and radios at the 13th annual Electronics Recycling from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday at Spenard Builders Supply. Cook Inletkeeper sponsors the event. Drop off electronics for free, with a suggested donation of $15 for computer monitors and TV sets.

BEST PICK IT UP BET: With the snow gone, the crud of winter has emerged: dirty pop cans, slimy cigarette butts, plastic bottles and who knows what. We want our town nice and spiffy for when the Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival starts next weekend, so pitch in from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday for the annual clean-up day. Pick up trash bags and return them full at the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center. Get a jump on the clean-up by starting to pick up trash today.

BEST STEP IT UP BET: Increase your step count for Homer Steps Up 2018 with this month’s Walk With a Doc, held 9-10 a.m. Saturday at the South Peninsula Athletics and Recreational Complex. This month’s health pro is nurse practitioner Devry Garity, who will talk about asthma.