Alert: Lost Kitty; Exhaust Fans & Cooking; Lots more on Smoke; Tune: Ashokan Farewell

CONTENTS 9/12/2020
Alert: Lost Kitty
Exhaust Fans & Cooking
Double Filter For Box Fan
Smoke Forecast Update
Found Key
Camera Returned
Radio Free Fl!p: Ashokan Farewell


Our neighbor’s cat “Snowy” disappeared last night and hasn’t been seen since.  She is quite little and looks more like a kitten. If you have seen a beautiful little cat with a grey/white head and tan/white body, please email me at and I can show you a photo of her. The neighbors are anxious to see her again. ~ Lizanne Schader on Victor St.


Thanks for the reminder regarding exhaust fans. I do think it’s worth considering that cooking can significantly increase the harmful particulate levels in a home.  Perhaps at higher levels than the current smoke ridden conditions outside.  So, even as you pointed out, turning on an exhaust fan will pull smoke particulates into the home, those may be at a lesser level than what is being produced from cooking.  

Admittedly it’s hard to say (without your own air monitor) when the air quality from cooking is more of a serious concern than outside conditions.  But there is lots of research that talks about cooking being a serious hazard to indoor air quality (depending on what’s being prepared on the stove top).

In real time, my wife just finished frying up some eggs for breakfast and forgot to turn on the exhaust fan.  The air quality, as I sit, feels pretty bad.  Is it worse than outside this morning?  I don’t know, but it seems worse to me. So I kind of wish she had turned on the fan.   

I agree we probably shouldn’t be using the bathroom exhaust fan, but I think it might be a different set of circumstances to weigh regarding whether to use a kitchen exhaust fan when cooking.  Kindly, ~ Brad Belvo, Walnut St. 

Thanks! I will post this. With the pandemic, all particulates are riskier than usual. Cooking is definitely an issue. I am planning to cook this morning since the weather has finally cooled off, and have a portable air cleaner with a sensor in the kitchen. Zeke fried an egg this morning, and the sensor did trigger. And then it settled down pretty quickly, having sensed that the particulates had been cleared. I brought the air cleaner into the living room when I came in to work on today’s emails, and it fired up again. That was probably from smoky air that had leaked in overnight to our sweet but leaking old house. The air cleaner dropped back down to low setting pretty quickly. As far as cooking, I think running an exhaust fan in all this smoke is a question of trading one kind of particulates for another.

I asked my big brother Joe, because he’s likely to have a real answer to most questions of technology. He says he takes combustion gasses from cooking very seriously. He’s currently using an induction top and an Instant Pot instead of range top and oven. He suggested I put my air cleaner up high in the kitchen because hot air rises, so that I can get a better picture of how much pollution is coming from my cooking. Mostly we’re eating salads, and microwaving stuff from the freezer. I’ve been stashing soups, stews and such every time I cook for months and now seems like a great time to use them.


If you use two furnace filters set in at right angles to each other, instead of one alone, it greatly reduces the strain on your box fan motor. You need to fill in the empty triangle on top and bottom with cardboard taped on though. Safer – to keep the motor from overheating. Here’s a how-to video. If you can find room in your budget to buy a real air cleaner, I would recommend doing so. Smoke Season is now a real annual event.


I thought I’d pass along a quick update for you and anyone else who may be interested. The current NOAA HRRR model is suggesting that the smoke will start clearing the Bellingham area around 6pm tomorrow and we should be quite clear by the early hours of Monday. As always, the model may be off and the forecast could change by the end of today or tomorrow, but I thought it was worth providing an estimated timeline for folks. Let’s hope the forecast holds or the smoke clears out sooner. Regards, Tim Sturtz

Here’s a link to the first image:

Here’s a link to the second:


Not sure if this is the right address but my son found a VW key on the corner of Walnut and W North this morning. It’s on a Mt Baker lanyard. Claimer can call me at 303 319 5406. Thanks, ~ Kyle Harris


I carried little cards to all three businesses near where I found yesterday’s camera, and when I went in to the ReStore they gave me a description of the camera and case and the phone number of the owner, who had called in and asked about his missing camera. I called the owner, and he came over late this afternoon and picked up his lost camera. He was very happy, and so was I. ~ Lee Seaman


Jay Ungar & Molly Mason Family Band. Molly used to live here in Bellingham, and she taught for Puget Sound Guitar Workshop in the early days. I remember coming back to my cabin around 2 AM and finding my bunk occupied by Molly, Larry Hanks (another old Columbia neighbor from Williams Street) & I think Eric Schoenberg. She was showing the guys the complex swing chords to Beginning To See The Light. She was out ahead of all of us on those fancy chords, having learned Texas Swing as a kid. I kinda skootched them over far enough to squeeze into my sleeping bag, and fell asleep to lovely music. When Molly moved back east, she and Jay started their own east coast version of Camp, called Ashokan. That’s where the name of the tune comes from. Jay wrote this tune one year in the quiet melancholy time after the last of the campers had gone. Ken Burns picked it up for his Civil War series. But some of that song’s tendrils stretch and twine to Bellingham. Molly is still an extraordinary guitarist.

Love/Fl!p 360-671-4511  2518 Cherry Street

If you want to ask me to post something, just email me. If it’s urgent, phone. If it’s a real emergency, call 911.

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