The Cribbage Belt

Go West, young man!

Geoff Franklin comes from a long line of craftsmen and women. For the last eight generations, his family and descendants have called the hills and forests of Oregon home. In 1848, six of his ancestors strapped on their boots, hiked up their skirts, and undertook an American expedition west on the now-legendary Oregon Trail. “They were called crazy,” he says, and to understand and undertake the perils of the Trail, crazy isn’t a crazy word. Continue reading


Field Research at Lyon’s Pub, Minneapolis

Any endeavor benefits from some fresh air once in a while. I’m so entrenched in research and writing that I often forget to take it easy, breathe a bit, and walk a little lighter. Lucky for me I remembered that on Friday. As I was leaving a downtown appointment on my way to catch the light rail into St. Paul, I passed a few gentleman playing crib outside Lyon’s Pub. It was a beautiful day, start of the holiday weekend, and I strolled on, thinking, “smart guys.” Half a block away I stopped, decided I had plenty of time to kill, and turned around, heading back down 6th street toward Hennepin Avenue and Lyon’s Pub. Continue reading