My ‘This Week in Mining’ fan letter

Renne Passal reports on "This Week in Mining."
Renne Passal reports on “This Week in Mining.”

Dear WDIO-TV,

I love “This Week in Mining.”

Every Sunday night I tune into your show and every Sunday night I learn something new about northern Minnesota mining. I even like the mining industry commercial at the end.

Here’s why I like “This Week in Mining.” It offers a three-minute look into a unique part of our region. It gives me a sense of place, news about an important industry and awesome video of 400-ton dump trucks.

I used to live in Maine. You should tell the ABC affiliate in Portland to do a news show called “This Week in Lobsters.” I think the lobster industry would pay for commercials too.

But don’t let Renee Passal take a job in Maine. She’s great. Her rapid-fire, no-nonsense reporting delivers a freight train full of information every week. There’s been a lot of bad news from the mining industry lately: layoffs, labor strife, environmental controversy; but somehow Renee makes everything seem OK.

My favorite part of “This Week in Mining” is the opening and closing segment. The first sound you hear is a truck honking its horn, right? I love it. Some great video of workers in hard hats, blast furnaces and bucket loaders as big as a three-story apartment buildings. Great editing too. There’s a bit at the end where  molten steel morphs into an open-pit mine. It’s almost psychedelic.

And where did you get that catchy synthesizer music? It sounds like something from the royalty free YouTube archive. A perfect fit.

I just wish I could watch the show on a better TV.

Our house is equipped with 19-inch Zenith TV that looks like it aired Bernard Shaw and Wolf Blitzer reporting the first Gulf War. Throw the signal through a digital adapter box and the dump trucks look like moon landers.

Maybe I should get a millwrite job in Bovey so I could buy a new TV.  But I guess Magnetation just closed the mine.

I hope they don’t close all the mines.

Because then there wouldn’t be any “This Week in Mining.”

Sincerely,

Nick Up North

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