The Thin Line between Ingenuity and Ridiculousness—between a Brainstorm and a Brainfart: Addendum 1


In my original post with this title, I applauded the use of cheese brine—the wastewater from the cheese-making process—to keep more road salt on Wisconsin roadways during the winter months. Apparently this innovation has been replicated in a wide variety of ways in a number of other snow-belt states. So, like the seemingly ridiculous concept of “pedal taverns,” the appeal of this ingenious repurposing of what would otherwise be “waste” seems to have transcended state boundaries.

In New York and Pennsylvania, the wastewater from the refining process that reduces sugar beets to sugar is being mixed with the road salt. In Massachusetts, the wastewater from molasses production is being used. And in several states with large potato crops, tests are being conducted with “potato juice.” In some instances, proponents of these “brines” believe that they not only make more of the salt adhere to the roadways but they also enhance…

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About martinkich

I am a Professor of English at Wright State University's Lake Campus, where I have been a faculty member for more than 25 years. I have now served multiple terms as the President of the WSU chapter of AAUP, which now includes all full-time instructional faculty, and as the Vice-President of the Ohio Conference of AAUP. I have also served several terms as an at-large member of the Executive Committee of AAUP's Collective Bargaining Congress. In addition to serving as co-editor of the Academe blog, I am also a member of the editorial board of Academe and have been a guest editor for an issue of the magazine on collective bargaining strategies. As co-chair of the Ohio Conference's Communication Committee, I began to do much more overtly political writing during the campaign to repeal Ohio's Senate Bill 5, which would have eliminated the right of faculty to be unionized. I have sustained that activism, and at the risk of stating the obvious, I have very much enjoyed contributing to the Academe Blog and to our chapter blog. I also maintain several other blogs to which I have re-posted, by topic, my posts to the Academe blog, as well as some other items.

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