Alaska Ear: Just relax (1/5/14)

JUST RELAX . . . In case you missed it, Saturday was officially World Hypnosis Day in Anchorage. Mayor Dan proclaimed it so.

If we had known, we could have gone to the BP Energy Center and gotten hypnotized. According to the announcement, hypnosis allows a person to "write new chapters in your life, put aside fears, and change what you believed was unchangeable."

Ear thought that was why we had Happy Hour.

The best thing Ear has heard about Mayor Dan is that he's a practitioner of T'ai Chi. But do we really want him hypnotizing people? Or are we already too late?

FLYING FACTOID . . . last week declared Honor Code Joe Miller a "Tea Party Superstar" and a "Ted Cruz Wannabe." Check the story for yourself, but it sounds like they meant it seriously.

FLYING FACTOID TOO . . . Nuvista Light & Electric Cooperative, the Southwest Alaska group tasked with creating sustainable, affordable energy for the area, has a new executive director: Tiffany Zulkosky of Bethel. She's 29 years old. She's a former rural director for Sen. Mark Begich, a former director for USDA Rural Development...

And a former mayor of Bethel.

What were you doing when you were 29?

GOODBYE . . . The powerful women of Anchorage are looking a little seedy these days -- flaky skin, chipped fingernails and just a touch of shadow over the upper lip. But it's not their fault. Esthetics, the little in-salon on the first floor of the Hotel Captain Cook, closed suddenly last week after nearly 20 years catering to the schedules of busy businesswomen, politicos and other newsmakers.

GUESS WHO . . . Actress Alyson Hannigan, under the gun to perform on Monday's episode of "Hollywood Game Night" on NBC had to come up with a fast clue to help her team identify an unnamed celebrity:

"Wanted to be the vice president ... really dumb," she said.

SIGH . . . The following appeared in the online Rose Bowl Parade program, about the wonderful Colony High School Knights Marching Band, which honored the parade by marching in it this year:

"The challenges presented as the only marching band in Alaska include variable weather, lack of traditional support structures, and long distances to marching shows and competitions. Because of expense, travel outside the state is limited to once every two to three years for the group, which is based in Palmer, a city about 40 miles from the state capital Anchorage."

GOODBYE -- REALLY. . . The search for reasons to be happy that 2014 is upon us is akin to that Greek guy's search for an honest man, or looking for ice cubes in the desert or something. But earwigs dredged up a few:

• Because we won the title of worst dressed human beings on earth in 2013, we probably won't have to endure that particular humiliation in 2014. Anchortowners don't mind being badly dressed, we just don't like having it noticed by Outsiders.

• This may be the year people finally forget what state elected Mike Gravel to the U.S. Senate (us, from 1969-1981, for you newcomers). That fact had almost slipped into archival obscurity when, in May, Paradigm Research paid him and other former congressmen $20,000 each to conduct a highly publicized "Citizen Hearing on Disclosure." That search for truth concluded that the government is hiding proof "there is a presence watching our planet," to quote Mike. You can see Mike's December interview about aliens at

Do you think we would have elected him if we knew his real first name is Maurice? Just asking.

• And: Alaska's rainy day bank account plunged sharply in 2013 -- by $2 billion. The Pew Charitable Trusts' project on State Fiscal Health estimates Alaska's remaining funds are "sufficient to keep the state operating for 775 days."

Sounds dire, but everything's going to be better in 2014 because the oil companies have to pay less tax, right?

• Okay, here's an actual good reason to welcome 2014: People who claim to know predict this year's PFD could be double last year's.

Happy New Year!

Compiled by Sheila Toomey. Message Sheila at 257-4341 or