Alaska Ear (12/16/12): Good will to men

GOOD WILL TO MEN . . . Earwigs without lives have noticed that the new Senate Republican majority has yet to release a full list of committee assignments. So far the leaders have announced only committee chairs and seats on the finance committee (presumably because those are the seats they used to buy their majority).

This has given rise to rumors there's already trouble in paradise, caused apparently by tension between those who want to focus on oil taxes and those preoccupied with social issues -- you know, returning Alaska women to the Stone Age.

Ear is assured that everything will be sorted out in an organizational caucus scheduled for right before the Legislature convenes on Jan. 15. Intelligent, rational minds will no doubt prevail (cue the laugh track).

A QUESTION . . . Earwigs are asking what exactly Dan Kendall does as mayoral chief of staff? The rumor mill claims Larry Baker is still doing the heavy lifting. Tough on Larry, if true, but good for us, say earwigs.

HAVE A MUNI CHRISTMAS . . . Anchorage first lLady Lynette Sullivan is seriously into the holiday season. She commissioned the making of Christmas tree ornaments to hand out to Special People. The design is the muni logo -- that anchor-in-a-circle thing -- which, it turns out, in clear Lucite looks like a snowflake. Ear's information is sadly secondhand. Sigh.

Before you deficit hawks start whining, she used her own money.

EX LIBRA . . . Former Lite Gov and UAA Chancellor Fran Ulmer has a children's book out: "Walking with Katy" is about a boy named Johnny who walks his little dog Katy every day after school. There are six separate stories, for easy bedtime reading no doubt. And just in time for Christmas. (You can check it out at

It's not news but Ear was startled to be reminded of all the "careers" Fran had before retiring from UAA and becoming a writer. In addition to legislator, mayor of Juneau, lawyer and teacher, she lists planner, manager, adviser, board member, volunteer and singer. Ear will take her word for that last one.

DECK THE HALLS . . . Wally's gone but Ermalee and the next generation of Hickels held the family's traditional Christmas party for Those Who Count Thursday at the manor (OK, a really nice house in Turnagain). Joe made the pastries, so of course they were fantastic.

SORE LOSER AWARD . . . Yikes. Did you see the comments of 65-year-old Rep. Bill Thomas about Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins, the 23-year-old District 34 candidate who unseated him? Did Bill really call the fresh-faced new legislator an -- ahem -- bodily orifice that's not an ear? Gosh, is someone finding it tough to pass the baton to the next generation?

BTW, Jonathan will not be the youngest legislator ever. A couple of guys from the last century were even younger: Terry Gardiner and John Sackett. So say earmites who can Google.

A WINTER GETAWAY? . . . An earwig who regularly suggests Ear go somewhere -- anywhere -- asked: Have you seen the Google Map directions to the Fiscal Cliff?

Among the directions: "Start at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. ... Go far left ... Arrive at Capitol Hill, take extreme right ... attempt to take Political High Road ... Continue toward Dire Straits ... Bypass Road to Recovery ... Continue straight up S#%t Creek."

Although it appears to be the work of Mad magazine, it's online so it must be true. Oh, and it features a survivalist ad.

It looks exactly like a Google map. Check it out.

GUIDANCE . . . Who says Dutch Harbor has the best cop briefs? Here's one out of Soldotna that warmed Ear's lobe:

"Failure to complete logbook as required ... On 12-10-12 the Alaska Wildlife Troopers in Soldotna issued a summons to Matthew P. Terry, 21, of Tuscaloosa, AL for Failure to complete logbook as required by Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Terry submitted freshwater logbook pages that indicated he had taken the following species from the Kasilof River: Chupacabra, Tuna, Jack Beluga, and Blue Whales. Bail was set at $210 or optional court appearance (in) Kenai District Court within 30 days."

Compiled by Sheila Toomey. Message Sheila at