All through the pandemic a running joke has been “Oh, I didn’t expect [insert surprising news development here] on my apocalypse bingo card.” The Dumpster fire of the 2020s has been like that. So when a ruthless authoritarian oligarch invaded an independent nation that used to be part of his country’s empire, well, quel surprise, as they say in Canada.
What has been surprising is how the civilized and free world has stood up for Ukraine and against Czar Putin. Humanitarian and military aid has been pouring into the largest country in Europe. Valiant Ukrainian soldiers have been fighting fiercely against Russian soldiers. Farmers have been stealing tanks and armored vehicles faster than a Porsche with its keys in the ignition in downtown Spenard.
There have been protests all over. Pretty much every multinational corporation in the world has closed business in Russia. When McDonald’s and Starbucks consider your nation persona non grata, you know the oligarchs will start to sweat.
Here’s hoping world condemnation and sanctions will bring Putin to his senses. Innocent people are dying and displaced. Refugees who last week danced in Maidan Square in Kyiv this week find themselves trying to rebuild their lives in Warsaw.
The Betster sobs about ten times a day reading the news. Even in war there appear bits of joy: a woman playing “What a Wonderful World”on the piano in a refugee center. Old ladies standing up to soldiers. Ukrainian President Voldymyr Zelensky channeling his inner Winston Churchill with daily defiance.
We’ll get through this, Betster persons. Somehow, some way, we will emerge stronger. In the meanwhile, seize a little joy with these best bets:
BEST LIVE! BET: Enjoy live music in an intimate setting wiht the Homer Council on the Arts Second Friday concert from 7-9 p.m. Friday. Ben Peters performs. Inspired by musicians like the Grateful Dead and Tony Rice, Peters incorporates elements of rock, bluegrass, and funk into his unique finger-picking guitar style. New to Homer, Ben previously gigged in the southern Maine music scene with jam band Jelly Sauce.
As a solo artist he adopts the “Travis picking”’ style made popular by guitarists like Jerry Reed and Tommy Emmanuel to accompany his own melodic leads with a simultaneous rhythm and bass. Though practiced in playing with other musicians, this style allows him to be his own band. Admission is by donation.
BEST SKATE ON BET: For spring break, the Kevin Bell Ice Arena offers open skating from 12:15-1:45 p.m. today, 12:15-2:15 p.m. Friday and 4:15-6 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free for children 5 and younger and $5 for everyone else. Skate rental is $1.
BEST MEET UP BET: The Homer City Council holds its regular meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, with a worksession at 4 p.m. and the Committee of the Whole at 5 p.m. Listen in on KBBI AM 890 or through Zoom. Agenda items include the Charles Way Water/Sewer District, an ordinance to amend the city code regarding fireworks and an ordinance to amend the city code regarding the size of large-retail store parking lots.