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Alaska Ear: On the run (6/16/13)

ON THE RUN . . . Former Assemblyman Matt Claman, an actual Democrat, says he'll run for Lindsey Holmes' West Anchorage House seat next year, whether or not the current "Recall Lindsey" movement succeeds. In addition to his Assembly seat, Matt was also mayor-for-a-minute when Mark Begich left for the U.S. Senate.

Omniscient Ear predicts Lindsey's butt will remain in the aforementioned seat until the 2014 election. The problem with a recall is it takes so long. Holmes' two-year term is likely to be up by the time signatures are collected and the grounds for recall are approved by the lite gov -- an approval that seems pretty iffy to Ear. And then more signatures have to be gathered, ad infinitum.

The most interesting question is, what happens if Lindsey gets booted? Whenever a legislative seat turns up empty, for any reason, the governor appoints a replacement to serve until the next election. The replacement has to be of the same party as the gone lawmaker.

Hmmm. Is that the same party the people in her district voted for in the election? Or the same party as the exiting lawmaker is now?

Elections Director Gail Fenumiai says this situation has never happened before but she presumes the replacement would be the same party as Holmes is now -- meaning another Republican.

At least one Democrat -- a lawyer -- says no way. It's got to be the party chosen by the voters.

What fun. Can you say "lawsuit"?

OUT AND ABOUT . . . Earwigs with social lives report Peter Greenberg, CBS News travel editor, aka "The Travel Detective," recorded one of his remote location radio shows last week at the Millennium Alaskan Hotel in "remote" Spenard. The occasion was the official re-opening of the renovated deck at the hotel -- it's now called The Deck at Lake Hood.

Mayor Dan was there to be interviewed and, presumably, to enjoy the sun, food and libations. Also spotted, landlord Mark Pfeffer, lobbyist Bob Evans, local travel guru Scott McMurren, former City Manager Denis LeBlanc and wife Dana, and recently departed UAA Athletic Director Steve Cobb.

WHERE IS HE?. . . Dan Fagan, that is. What the heck happened to him?

Lynn Melling, the dishy former KTUU anchor, wrote inquiring about our home-grown right wing shock jock's whereabouts.

Seriously, does anyone know where Dan is? He vanished from sight, and reportedly from Alaska, a couple months ago. His Facebook page is "closed." He had a lunch date with Ear but, really, he could have just canceled. He didn't have to blow town.

Should Ear file a missing persons report?

WHERE SHE IS . . . FYI, Lynn Melling now anchors for Fox in Des Moines. A movie her Alaska photog husband, Ian Planchon, worked on screened recently at Bear Tooth -- "Where the Trail Ends." It's about free ride mountain bikers. Now he's a cinematographer for the new "On Any Sunday," a sequel to the 1971 Steve McQueen classic about motorcycle racers.

Ear doubts she was impressed with our 70-plus-degree weather. It hit 91 in Des Moines on Wednesday.

AN ACTUAL FACT . . . Ear heard from Mayor Dan's office about last week's suggestion that the mayor got to pick the new police department spokeswoman. The mayor simply reviewed the final choice sent over by Chief Mark Mew and passed it on to the Assembly for the required approval, said city communications director Lindsey Whitt.

Chief Mew agreed that's the way it happened.

Turns out all "executive" hires pass through the mayor's office on the way to the Assembly.

THEY'RE COMING . . . The June issue of Living, the magazine from the extremely tasteful Martha Stewart, has a page promoting Anchorage tourism. Food venues singled out for special note are the Crush Wine Bistro, Snow City Cafe, Kaladi Brothers Coffee and M.A. Gourmet Dogs.

Dogs? No, not puppies. They're talking about the cool hot dog guy on the corner of Fourth Avenue and F Street.

THEY'RE HERE . . . Two tourists walk off a ship at the Broadway Dock in Skagway and notice the fish ladder spilling water from Pullen Creek into the bay.

One man asks the other, "Are there signs that tell them where to jump?"

-- From Jeff Brady's "Heard in the Wind" column in the Skagway News.

Compiled by Sheila Toomey Message Sheila at 257-4341 or

Sheila Toomey |