In tonight’s edition of The Express newsletter, we’re pondering the question of “How many Mainers have to be on the cast of a soap opera before the plots become down-to-Earth and uneventful?”
Mainers Lexie Stevenson and Max Shippee have recently joined Portlander Melissa Ordway on the cast of the long-running CBS soap “The Young and the Restless,” giving the cast a disproportionately large Maine contingent.
It’s only a matter of time before they swap out all the love triangles, power plays and back stabbings for some downright competitive cornhole tournaments, right?
(I knocked my son’s bean bag off the top of the board at a barbecue last weekend, and I thought he was going to give me the cold shoulder for a week. Young and restless, indeed.)
Let’s see… what else…
What we’re talking about
Portland’s getting professional hockey back — The company that owns the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers announced it bought a minor league franchise from Alaska and will be relocating the team to Maine’s largest city for the 2018-19 hockey season. Portland has been without professional hockey since the American Hockey League’s Pirates abruptly left town in 2016 after 23 years here. No word on what the new team will be named, but if you have suggestions, tweet them to our Jake Bleiberg @JZBleiberg. I’m suggesting the Portland Young-and-Restless.
MaineHealth is receiving a $10 million grant to improve cancer treatment — The Harold Alfond Foundation grant will be used to build a cancer care network between MaineHealth’s 11 member hospitals and Boston’s Dana Farber Cancer Institute, linking individual Maine cancer patients with top regional physicians and specialists.
Gov. Paul LePage came down to Portland today — He was taking part in a 90th anniversary celebration for the former Eastland Park Hotel, now the Westin Portland Harborview. As planned, the governor ceremonially threw a key made from fish food into Casco Bay. He then told reporters he was considering carrying a firearm in the aftermath of the recent shooting in Virginia.
Classical music fest reminds Portland pub crawlers… that Bach was into beer, too. Portland Bach Festival organizer Emily Isaacson told the BDN’s Kathleen Pierce: “People are frustrated with the elitist sheen and feel they have to take a ‘Classical music for Dummies’ lesson before a show. All these expectations take away from what the artists attended.” Bach jammed at pubs in his day, too, so the festival features a Bach-and-Beer event as a reach-back to that tradition.
And for your woodland bravery fix, we have this story of 20-year-old Rachel Borch, who was out for a jog when she was attacked by a rabid raccoon. With the crazed animal’s teeth sunken into her hand, she stuffed its face into a puddle and drowned it. I assume you’ve already read this story, because our web traffic suggests just about everyone has, but just in case, the link is here. If that’s not enough, outdoorsman John Holyoke gives us a look back at five other interesting tales of crazy animals in Maine here.
Tweet of the day
The Big Idea
Advances in technology are allowing scientists to replicate natural armor — New three-dimensional printers are giving scientists the technological edge they need to do what Mother Nature mastered a long time ago: Make nearly impregnable armor. From Smithsonian Magazine: “The queen conch gets beat up by waves and predators, but the structure of the material that makes up its shell is remarkably strong. This is due to the structure of the shell, which features criss-crossed calcium carbonate layers laid out in different orientations and separated by softer proteins, explains MIT engineering professor Markus Buehler, whose lab designed a man-made replica of this structure that could be used in helmets and other protective armor.”
Got any interesting story ideas, suggestions or links to share? Email Jake Bleiberg at firstname.lastname@example.org, or tweet @JZBleiberg.