Wodin’s Day

November 17, 2010

Wodin’s Day wonce more. It is cooler here at -7 degree-os. Beautiful sunrise in the south over the Alaska Range.

Yokelly, the venerable Volvo is in the shoppe today. Why can’t cars just run all the time without developing problems? (he whined). I have scooped 3/4 of the snow off the driveway and may get the last bit today. Good exercise, I guess.

Meanwhile, I am reading Dante’s Inferno again. Great stuff. Think of all the people you have told personally or mentally to go to hell. Dante did this and then wrote a great narrative poem describing what those creeps are suffering now and eternally for their misdeeds on earth. There are 9 circles in Dante’s Hell, and some circles have several different compartments envisioned as concentric rings. He arranges the pagans and unrepentant sinners, as he calls them, according to an ethical scheme rather dissimilar to modern penal codes. Those who adult or murder or defraud are of course all there, but murders are in the 7th circle, whereas fraudsters of various types populate the 8th and 9th circles. Dante saw fraud as betrayal, and the closer your relationship to the betrayed, the worse the sin. Hence Judas is at the very bottom. Anyway, the descriptions are endlessly inventive and fascinating, and as Dante hikes the infernal paths with his guide Virgil, you learn a lot about Italian history and medieval Catholic theology. Once he hits rock bottom, where Satan is stuck in ice, Dante climbs out the other side to the earth’s surface again and, in Purgatorio, climbs the mountain of Purgatory, where those who sinned but repented are working off their bad karma before they make it into Heaven. This is a long process. Adam and Eve are still working on it, for instance. In the final third of the poem, Paradiso, Dante gets a view of the heavenly spheres up in the sky, where blissful beings who passed Go and collected will reside forever and ever. Most people who read Dante don’t make it that far in the story (including me—maybe someday).

Locally, our own little Inferno features the following misdoers


• Byron J. Captain, 35, of Tetlin, was charged with fourth-degree assault after he allegedly struck his sister in the face Sunday night in Fairbanks after she refused to let him use her cell phone.

• Patrice A Devore, 24, of North Pole, was charged with fourth-degree assault after allegedly grabbing someone’s arm and scratching them Sunday in North Pole. No other information was available in charging documents.

• Carlos Gabriel Martinez, 22, of Fairbanks, was charged with two counts of fourth-degree assault and violating conditions of release after he allegedly shoved his wife and slapped her Sunday in front of their Chief John Drive home. Martinez also reportedly threatened to kill their chihuahua during an argument.


Alaska State Troopers received a report Friday morning that someone broke into Video Unlimited in Delta Junction and stole candy and chips worth less than $200. Damage to the building is estimated at $2,000.


• Teddy K. Smith, 43, of Fairbanks, was charged with driving under the influence after Fairbanks police contacted him Sunday night at Thrifty Liquor, following a report he struck a fence on 22nd Avenue near Rickert Street. A chemical test found his breath-alcohol content to be 0.226. The legal limit is 0.08.

Multiple charges

A Koyukuk man is accused of stealing a snowmachine and joy riding to the nearby village of Nulato. Donovan Huntington, 26, has been charged with felony counts of first-degree vehicle theft and second-degree burglary and a misdemeanor count of third-degree theft. Huntington was reportedly doing work for the small city Friday when he stole a key to the snowmachine and the city’s water plant. After stealing $260 in quarters from the plant, he reportedly attempted to buy alcohol at a liquor store but was refused service because he already appeared intoxicated, according to charging documents. He then went to Nulato, where a state trooper contacted him the next day. Huntington reportedly told troopers he blacked out and did not remember how he obtained the snowmachine.


• More than $1,500 worth of tools were stolen on the night of Oct. 20 out of a vehicle parked in the 3500 block of Industrial Way, according to Fairbanks police.

• Fairbanks police received a report Monday night that a $1,200 fur coat was stolen from Alaska Furs and Gifts in the Bentley Mall. A woman might have been trying to distract the store clerk while a man stole the coat, according to police records. The coat thief was described as a slim white male in his 20s, about 6-feet, 2-inches tall with dirty blond or brown hair. He was wearing a red sweater when the coat was taken. The other subject was described as a slim white female, 5-feet, 8-inches tall with blond hair. She was wearing a black coat, boots and blue jeans at the time of the theft. She also had missing teeth, according to police.

There you have it.

Enjoy Wodin’s Day.

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