Alaska Ear

A QUESTION . . . Whatever was the Humane Society of the United States thinking when it tried to give an award to Don Young, Congressman for Everyone Who Voted for Him? Darling Don's rejection letter drones on about the organization being hypocritical and spending donations on salaries -- like Don would really object to that stuff. Then he gets to the meat: The HSUS is anti-hunting and anti-trapping -- "the same coin as PETA."

The "award" was a big fat softball, lobbed right over the plate for our Don, and he smacked it out of the park.

ALASKA SOUTH . . . As we all know, a whole lot of the rich and infamous hide from our nasty winters in Palm Springs and environs. An earwig who consorts reports a fun BBQ given Sunday to celebrate the 78th birthday of former Gov. Frank Murkowski (on Monday). Nancy reportedly cooked fab Alaska salmon for the crowd.

That sounds like fun, but the event that made Ear go "Wow!" is Alaska developer Bob Penney hosting a fundraiser at his Vintage Country Club home in Indian Wells for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. An earwig says House Speaker John Boehner was there, plus a handful of Alaskans, including George Suddock, Ann and Earl Frawner, and Perry Green. The chat was about the economy and Libya. They reportedly raised $113,000.

OUT AND ABOUT . . . Soon-to-be-confirmed Attorney General John Burns was in Bethel on Thursday talking against domestic violence and sexual assault and marching in that city's parade rally. While there, he handed out red and blue bracelets he had made for kids at Bethel Regional High School. They read "Choose Respect" in English and Yup'ik.

There were only 400 available. An earwig says a U.S. marshal offered to trade Burns a specially engraved "commando" knife for the bracelet the A.G. was wearing, but with TSA being what it is the knife was going to be a problem at the airport, even for our attorney general, so no go.

OOPS . . . Assemblyman Bill Starr tripped over his hyperbole at Tuesday's Assembly meeting. An earwig reports Starr made a little me-me speech, claiming he was the only person who took the job of reviewing the school district budget seriously. To prove his point, Starr held up a copy of the budget and announced he was the only Assembly member at the table who had the budget with him -- at which time most of the other Assembly members held up their copies of the budget.

The audience loved it.

HAIRY PURCHASE . . . One of the performers in Saturday's Legislative Skits needed a costume wig and was pleased to find what he needed in a store across the street from the Baranof Hotel. He reports: "The wigs were between the bongs and the penis pumps. When the clerk asked if I wanted a bag for the wig, I declined. I wanted anyone looking out the window at the Baranof Cafe to see exactly what I bought (and what I hadn't!)."

ON THE MOVE . . . Bill McAllister, former spokesman for Sarah, most recently spokesman for the attorney general's office, announced on Facebook that he's leaving the job. Well, Ear thinks that's what he said. Here's the message. Translate for yourself:

"OK, spring cleaning: ... New play on tap? Check. (Opening a week from tonight.) New apartment? Check. (Scoping out Saturday.) Another year older? Check. (Birthday on Sunday.) New gig? Check. (Notice handed in at Department of Law on Monday.) New travel plan? Check. (Minnesota and Missouri in late May -- call it 3M.) New attitude? Checkmate."

The message doesn't seem to say whether Prickly Bill has a new job, but Ear really doesn't speak Facebook.

OUT AND ABOUT . . . Ted Mala, spotted lunching Wednesday at Bombay restaurant in Midtown, all happy about the success of the various celebrations of his father, movie star Ray Mala. And who knew there were two Ted Malas, the doctor and his son? A lot of people actually. It's the son who works for NANA. Dr. Ted works at Southcentral Foundation.

KUDOS . . . Matt Zencey, former editorial page editor at Your Favorite Good Morning Newspaper, has signed a contract with Potomac Books to write about Sarah's time as governor (a short book?). Says Matt: "The goal is to cut through all the knee-jerk pro- and anti-Palin spin and take a fair-minded look at what she did." The manuscript is due in June.

AND . . . Another Palin book, this one by writer/filmmaker Geoffrey Dunn, is due out in May from St. Martin's Press. It's called "The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power."

Hmmm. Wonder what position that one takes.

NO JOHN GALT . . . Musher Ed Stielstra, who finished 27th in the Iditarod this year, emailed ADN reporter Kyle Hopkins to report being contacted by The Atlas Society of Washington, D.C., after someone read Kyle's story about Ed's dogs. They wanted to thank him for naming one of them Ayn Rand. Ed plans a visit to the Society in D.C.

The "Atlas Shrugged" movie opens in theaters April 15 -- but apparently not in Alaska theaters. Alaska doesn't even appear on the list of states where it will show.

BALD BABE . . . Rep. Charisse Millett, lately and perhaps still of the Love Caucus, is one of the Juneau bald battalion who shaved their heads for charity -- to express solidarity with cancer victims. So here's the thing, d'Ears: turns out the woman is as gorgeous bald as she is haired. It's just so unfair. The charity is called St. Baldrick's Foundation.

IN SEASON . . . TV star Jeanie Greene, who is both Native and a subsistence user, noted on her Facebook page that she temporarily went off her diet and ate a rabbit head and neck. After numerous Facebook friends noted rabbit's head is not traditional Alaska Native fare, and offered to send her authentic food, Jeanie had to explain she meant a chocolate rabbit head.

OUT AND ABOUT . . . Local writers turned out in force at the museum Friday night to hear New Yorker writer Susan Orlean talk. Orlean was here for a couple of days, courtesy of the Alaska Press Club and 49 Writers. She did a Q&A, moderated by ADN writer Julia O'Malley, to a packed house in the auditorium.

Compiled by Sheila Toomey. Message Sheila at 257-4341 or Find Ear online at