Best Bets

For those keeping track, the signs that summer might be ending continue. Kids back in school? Check? Most of the Homer Spit businesses boarded up? Check? Fireweed turning crimson. Check? Last cruise ship of the season. Check? Burning basket burned. Check? Sandhill cranes left? Check.

Oh my gosh — the cranes have left? Did you see that? Reports flooded in last Sunday on the Betster Tip Hotline about thousands of cranes circling about as they ascended over the mountains. Great gyres of cranes swirled about, honking and flapping and waving good-bye.

So that’s it. Summer is over.

Not yet, Betsteroids. As long as our windshields don’t freeze over with thick frost, it’s not over. As long as we can drive without studded tires, it’s not over. As long as Beluga Lake remains open and floatplanes take off and land, it’s not over. As long as we can wear street shoes to town, it’s not over. As long as a chunky sweater or light jacket keeps us warm, it’s not over. As long as the leaves cling to the trees, it’s not over. As long as we can drive to or from work in sunshine, it’s not over.

You may say the Betster is in denial about winter. You may say that Yours Truly should accept the changing of the season and embrace the joys of fall. You may say the Betster is a dreamer, and I’d say, thank you John Lennon, I’m not the only one.

In a land where spring quickly becomes summer and fall quickly becomes winter, do we really have four seasons? Nope. It’s two, with narrow shoulders on either side. Who can blame us if sometimes we pad our shoulders?

Winter will come soon enough, and the Betster will shift into the proper attitude. Snow! Skiing! Puffy jackets! Wool scarves! But not yet, not today, not while we have fun things to do like these Best Bets:

BEST ROLL ’EM BET: Brats on the grill. A carefully planned schedule. Nine totes awesome documentary films. It’s time for the 14th annual Homer Documentary Film Festival, our own little Sundance and Telluride by the bay. DocFest starts tonight with the gala opening at 6:15 p.m., with a barbecue dinner and then the showing of “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.” The gala is $20 or free with a $60 festival pass. Films continue all week until Sept. 28. Visit for the full schedule.

BEST GRILL ’EM BET: Well, not literally, Betsteroids. Be kind to our Homer City Council candidates. They have one thing we don’t, the bravery and willingness to serve. KBBI Public Radio, Homer News and Homer Tribune reporters lead a question-and-answer forum today at 7 p.m. at Kachemak Bay Campus. Find out the candidates’ positions on a variety of topics and get to know them face-to-face.

BEST GET WISE BET: Speaking of journos, some of us also will be on a panel discussion, “Media Literacy: How We Make Informed Opinions,” at 5:30 p.m. today at the Homer Public Library. Learn how to analyze, evaluate, create and act using all forms of communication.

BEST KEEP ON KEEPING ON: Here’s another sign summer isn’t over — Salmonfest keeps on chugging. Yes, the big festival is over, but the Salmonfest Music Series continues. This weekend’s event is Blackwater Railroad, playing at 9 p.m. at Alice’s Champagne Palace.