Tuesday notes

Jun 12, 2012 By Steven R. Peck

Thanks, Ma

When the supplier of our daily weather forecast map and statistics sent its graphics package Saturday, it called for a cloudy, damp day Monday, with high temperatures only in the mid- to upper 40s and even a chance for snow.

Somebody forgot to tell Ma Nature, who delivered a beautiful Monday, at least in terms of the weather.

There are two ways a weather forecast can be off. On Monday we got the preferred outcome by far.


There won't be a regular Diversions section in this Sunday's Ranger, dated June 17.

Most people probably don't give newspaper printing schedules much thought, but the fact is that Diversions, which is Section B in the Sunday edition, is actually printed Thursday morning. We use it to pre-insert the Sunday circulars, coupons, magazine and, usually, the comics section.

Then, on Saturday night, when it's time to combine Section B with Sections A and C, we can treat the bundled comics, coupons and Diversions as one piece to handle rather than a half dozen or more.

Enough with the newspaper backstage pass. The point is that this week we're using that Thursday press run normally reserved for Diversions to print Section C of our 57th annual Mining and Energy Edition. We have 34 pages down, with an estimated 40 more to go before publication and distribution Wednesday, June 20. As for the coupons and Sunday magazine, we'll use the comics as the "jacket" for those pieces Sunday.

Thou in the Dow

In August 2011, the international credit rating of the United States of America was downgraded by one of the three big ratings agencies. There followed a massive plunge in U.S. stock markets, headlined by the familiar Dow Jones Industrial Average. Amid the justifiable gloom and doom, some in our office suggested that the stock market might not recover from the fall. So we decided to create an imaginary investment of $1,000 in a Dow Jones Industrial Average index fund, meaning if the Dow went up, so did the "thou" -- and vice versa.

Gains have been steady, and at one point in May the investment would have grown 11.5 percent. Things have been worse lately, though, and after Monday's fall the original thousand would have been worth $1,081.98.

Subscribe to

If you haven't yet encountered the new subscriber structure on, you soon will. It's appearing on the site this week. We're asking for a fair price to the top tier of access and services, just as we do for the print subscription. There's lots of flexibility, however, with three different subscriber levels, a one-day access option for a low price, and the headline service that won't cost a thing.

Check out to learn the details.

Camp, not farm

A news report Tuesday sounded a little more alarming than it turned out to be. Initial reports had it that 24-year-old James Friesen had escaped from the Wyoming Honor Farm in Riverton.

That's not true.

Friesen escaped from the Wyoming Honor Conservation Camp in Newcastle, the so-called "boot camp" for young male offenders who don't require full-blown prison sentences.

Broadcasters got it right later in the day, but if you heard the early reports you can rest assured that the escapee -- who is an admitted forger not considered particularly dangerous -- escaped from a facility more than 200 miles away.

Miami vs. Oklahoma City

The pro basketball finals begin Tuesday, and this is the matchup many fans had wanted to see, featuring two of the greatest names in the game, Kevin Durant of Oklahoma City and LeBron James of Miami.

Neither of these teams is a pound-it-into the post kind of outfit, so this series ought to produce some big-time running and big-time gunning.

When the top NBA players decide to concentrate and care, the results can be breathtaking for basketball fans.

We see two possible scenarios -- Thunder in five, or Heat in 7.

Here's to a good week.

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