Jan 28, 2010

Town Enters 2010 With Century West Engineering Poised To Oversee "All That Complicated Stuff"

In a bold move that dramatically minimizes the looming specter of complete and total disaster if left to their own devices, the Town of Lamont once again chose the Spokane-based engineering firm, Century West Engineering, to help them cope with the radical culture shock that is the 21st century. (we won't even mention the 19th or 20th!) "Well, the Town and the Fire District are planning a new Community Services Building with a generous grant from those unsung heroes over there at the Dept. of Commerce and it was time to formally go thru the process of picking an engineering firm once again" said the Mayor in a strange mixture of primitive grunts and feeble hand gestures. "So, anyway, after reviewing the surprisingly robust and well-qualified list of applicants, any number of which were excellent in the extreme (Belsby, for one), Lamont chose to stay with the mind-numbingly excellent engineering firm that dragged us kicking and screaming from the Cro-Magnon era to somewhere around the year 1750 in just under 4 years!" he said enthusiastically while swatting at a persistent and obviously determined horsefly. "Sure, change of that magnitude is hard, especially in Lamont and the surrounding area, (Oh, the surrounding area! Don't even get us started!) but I just cannot see going back to starting cooking fires by rubbing sticks together or going to fetch water from the creek (pronounced 'crick') versus turning on one of those new-fangled tap things after working up one towering thirst chasing after those wily migrating caribou!" he grunted. (Darn caribou! Why can't they just stand still instead of running for their lives all the time?)

"So, with this whole Community Services Building project, not only is the ever patient Century West exposed to the almost unbelievable list of idiosyncrasies that the Town of Lamont brings to the table, but they also must navigate the political intrigues and archaic totems that are the common fare in dealing with other governmental organizations in this immediate area" he said. "That takes a level of understanding, patience and persistence that is much more common in a boxing referee than in a world class engineering firm. Believe me, being the Mayor I know first hand how difficult we can be, but exposing the Century West team to the broader cultural context that is the Greater Lamont Metropolitan Area just seems a little cruel at times! (God bless Bryan Hicks!) - but Century West has proven their mettle over and over again and somehow continues to 'bring home the bacon' for us!" said the Mayor, using a somewhat ill-fitting food reference after realizing that he forgot to eat breakfast and that that growling noise is not in fact from some meddlesome saber-toothed tiger prowling the camp looking for a quick snack. "So, anyway, it is another year and thanks to Century West our future looks bright indeed. Let's just hope Lamont and the surrounding area don't somehow goof it all up!" he said hopefully (Don't you mean naively?)

Jan 25, 2010

Beautiful Rockford, WA Stuns Lamont By Holding Rival 'Social Event' In Same Calendar Year

The charming, strategically located and annoyingly well-managed Town of Rockford stunned the lowly, shockingly self-absorbed yet sweetly humble Town of Lamont, the 2nd smallest Town in the State, by announcing that they, too, would be putting on an exciting event in this calendar year - on May 1st, 2010 - in spite of the fact that Lamont thought that they had 'dibs' on the year 2010 and thus could expect no competition to their 100 year festival from anywhere in the State. (What collective self-delusion!) "Well, I guess times are changing around here!" said the huffy Mayor who tends to crumble when faced with competition of any kind. "So when I got wind of that surprisingly clever Sadie Hawkins/May Day dance on May 1st - held in Rockford's own fairgrounds (What show-offs! We don't even have a public bathroom and they have an entire fairgrounds? Oh yeah, life is fair!) - of course I was consumed with envy and angst" said the brooding public servant. "Sure, we naturally look up to towns like Rockford with all of their fancy trees and stores and restaurants and all of that - but a dadburn dance? The only way that the citizenry of Lamont could ever work up the courage to dance in public would somehow involve a jug of moonshine and the woeful siren call of a lone banjo or whatever. But these Rockfordians are organizing a whole event around dancing! What nerve! What bravery! What unbelievable gumption! And what’s with their smarty-pants Mayor - Micki Harnois? She is obviously a doggone genius! And then there's that amazing over-achiever Clerk/Treasurer they have - that iconic Darlene! Dang! How are we ever supposed to compete against that? But anyway, I still thought we had 'dibs' on 2010! Is nothing sacred anymore? Let me guess, they don't resolve disputes with the time-honored 'Scissors, Rock, Paper" method anymore, either! Oh, I just wish I was the Lamont mayor back in our heyday - the year 1911. Things were just so much simpler! " he sniveled.

The inspired and lovely Town of Rockford (known as the Gateway To The North Palouse!) is located on SR 27 about 15 miles south of Spokane Valley - and will be holding their really cool dance at the Rockford fairgrounds (the money raised will go to support the fairgrounds which is a darn good cause in these budget cutting times! Go help!) on Saturday, May 1st from 6:00-10:00 pm. Lamont, on the other hand, is having their 100 year festival in the town park (that we need to immediately rename 'The Lamont Fairgrounds', for Pete's sake! Why don't we have our own fairgrounds?) on Saturday, June 19th at 11:00 AM. Mark your calendars for both events! The strength and beauty that is America is contained in its small towns - so stop being so busy and come savor the vibrant beauty we all once took for granted. You can ease into the richness that is Americana by going to the Rockford event first then plunge yourself back 100+ years by attending the Lamont festival on June 19th. (Going straight from the modern world into the parallel universe that is Lamont might be too shocking for all but the most robust nervous systems - so it is better to ease into it via Rockford first! Better safe than sorry, as we always say!)

Besides stores, restaurants and businesses of any kind, some other cool things that Rockford has and Lamont does not includes: Little League baseball, a really smart, socially robust Mayor (who is on the AWC Board of Directors, too, for crying out loud!), an annual Frog Race, basketball, horsemanship, summer movies in the park, a Saturday Farmer's & Flea Market and teen organized dances (there is that dancing AGAIN!). And the summer culminates (that means finishes up or something) with the Southeast Spokane County Fair where three lovely young ladies are crowned Queen and princesses. This amazingly complicated organizational effort (by Lamont standards) also includes exhibits, entertainment, concessions, rides, vendors, and booths manned by civic groups serving wholesome (what?) homemade foods in the fairgrounds and Town Park. (They have a park too? Isn't the fairgrounds enough? Dang!) Oh yeah, and they have a fully-functioning traffic light, too! (Darn their eyes! Now that is just piling on, for Pete's sake!)

Jan 22, 2010

Area Mayor Confronts Common Citizen Over Outrageous Belief System

In a clash of cultures not seen in this country since that obnoxious "Urban Cowboy" fad confronted the late 1970's with all its bad hair and man-made, brightly colored fibers, an area Mayor drew the ultimate 'line in the sand' after Festus Festoon, age 63, voiced opinions so far outside of the American mainstream that the Mayor had no choice but to confront the issue head on with the full authority granted him by the Great State of Washington. "I don't care what anyone says! I just don't care! But I never have and never will eat at Taco Bell! Taco Bell stinks!" said Festus before cowering after seeing the Mayor puff up like an adder in a cage full of kangaroo rats. "Darn your eyes, sir! How dare you utter such blasphemy!" bellowed the Mayor as he threw himself on the unfortunate wretch and wrapped his vise-like hands on Festus' turkey-like neck. "Ahhh. Ahhh! Get off of me, you maniac! I can't breathe!" bellowed Festus as the Mayor attempted a time-tested (yet embarrassingly unsuccessful!) citizen's arrest while clumsily botching the tricky 'full-Nelson' wrestling (pronounced 'rassling'!) hold which, thankfully for Festus, slid harmlessly off of his vulture-like shoulders. "Take it back! Take it back, I say! Say you love those outrageously delicious 'Burrito Supremes' and those totally awesome 'Nachos Belle Grande"! Say it so everyone can hear, darn you!" screeched the Mayor thru gritted teeth before shrieking in horror (like a girl!) as Festus' toupee came off in his free hand after successfully engaging the aging un-American agitator in an ever-handy (and considerably less technically difficult!) standard headlock! "GAAHH! What the....?" screamed the Mayor as he unsuccessfully attempted to shake the fake hairpiece free which, unfortunately for him, had somehow become entangled in the band of his watch. "Help! Help! Get it off me! Oh, for the love of all that is good in this world, get that horrible thing off of me!" said the panicked Mayor while wildly swinging his arm above his head in a vain attempt to rid his person of the surprisingly real-looking 'vanity-hat'. "Give that back! Stop it! You are getting it all messed up! It cost me almost $200.00! (Editorial Note: In fact, it was only $14.00 at a Spokane area pawnshop - and worth every cent!) Be careful! That's my hair!" said the suddenly brave yet still gasping Festus with the determination of the truly desperate. "Help! Help! Oh, what is that thing? Help! Get that horrible monstrosity off of me! Oh, the horror!" sobbed the psychologically traumatized Mayor who, unable to rid himself of the ghastly furred menace, collapsed into a heap of blubbering insensibility. "Don't hurt it! Don't hurt it! I have a date tonight with the 'Widow Bodine!" pleaded the sniveling Festus while reaching for the prized yet somehow depressing 'head ornament'. "Oh the humanity! The "Widow Bodine" is dating again? Oh, that is just so wrong! Has the whole world gone mad?" mumbled the Mayor before passing out cold from fright and social confusion.

Well, after the two combatants were finally separated and the above referenced 'hairpiece' was returned undamaged to its much-relieved yet somewhat sheepish owner (who immediately yet inexpertly put it back on!) and the Mayor was properly sedated and rolled into the Town Hall on the only office chair with wheels - both sides agreed to deny that this altercation ever took place as the Mayor entered therapy due to a sudden fear of small, furry things and Festus agreed to be more open to foods that don't require ketchup.

Jan 20, 2010

Area Marriage Hits "Rocky Patch" After Wife Brings Home Movie Considered 'Horror Classic'

A local farmer/rancher, Bubba Bodine, has been gripped with 'crushing insomnia' and the 'night sweats' after his loving yet outrageously passive-aggressive wife, Melba, brought home the movie 'Teen Wolf' that tragically combined all of the elements that form the gumbo of her husband's most long-nurtured fears - shape-shifting man-eaters, coyote/wolf references, really short Canadians, poor plot development and almost unbelievably bad acting. "Oh, darn her cold, conniving eyes!" bellowed Bubba while shaking his fist at their wedding photo resting on the mantle of the fake fireplace in their single-wide trailer. "I have given that woman the best years of my life, and this is how she repays me? I could have married any one of those girls in our high school graduation class (all three of them!) - but I chose her! What was I thinking? (Editorial Note: Maybe it had something to do with her huge, quite angry father and staring down the business end of that double-barreled shotgun! But what do we know?) Anyway, I knew something was amiss when she so casually slid the movie in the VCR and then gingerly sauntered into the other room with due dispatch. I knew right then that those unholy chuckles and hardly restrained snickers emanating from the kitchen were portents of ill-fortune and that I was the likely victim of some cruel, inhuman ruse! And, sure enough, before I knew it, hair and fangs were sprouting out all over the place and an entire high school was up in arms with fear and bloodshed! Oh, the horror! I was paralyzed! My fear, never far under the surface, was so all encompassing that it prevented me from even moving from the couch! (In retrospect, thank goodness it is still covered with that highly fashionable yet 'easy to clean' plastic coating!). Since then I have not slept a wink for fear of impending doom while the wife sleeps the slumber of the smug and content. Darn that woman!!!! I married a she-devil! Oh, what did I do?" he whined.

"Oh, for Pete's sake! What is it now?" sighed the exasperated Melba while sitting at the kitchen table plotting her next move to psychologically unhinge her less than stable husband after what is just the latest skirmish in the ongoing war of dominance in the Bodine household proved so doggone successful. "I mean, isn't it bad enough that we had to sleep with a nightlight on until well after our third child was born? (that would make it about 12 years if we at the Lamont Blog did the math right!) And how many times have I had to drop what I was doing because my husband thought he saw coyote tracks out by the cows and came sprinting back to the house for moral and physical support, for goodness sake? If a man is that terrified of coyotes, maybe he should not become a rancher in the first place. HELLO!!!" she said while rolling her eyes towards the ceiling with amazed disgust. "Sure, I got that movie in the vain attempt to toughen him up so he could somehow overcome that totally irrational fear he has for wolves and coyotes and, of course, those pesky Canadians (The Lamont Blog has to side with Bubba here, at least on this last point! Canada! That whole country is just somehow wrong! So much like America yet so different!), but how was I to know he would lock up like that and become paralyzed with fear. I mean, I knew he was somewhat easily spooked, but even I would not have been able to predict that totally disproportionate response to a teenie-bopper werewolf movie that even had basketball in it, for Pete's sake! (Sadly, that whole basketball/werewolf thing is indeed true!) And to think that out of matrimonial concern I was going easy on him! He should thank me for putting "The American Werewolf in London" back at the last minute! And he just better be glad I insisted on leaving that plastic covering on the furniture, in spite of what his mother always says! (Sadly, it would appear that his over-protective mother is the root cause of many of these rather odd and irrational phobias!) I am just getting too old to go cleaning up after another person! Raising 5 kids pretty much knocked that desire out of me once and for all, doggone it." she said. "And I sure ain't going to go cleaning up after a grown man that is scared of that shrimpy yet surprisingly charming Canadian, Michael J. Fox...! That has to fall outside of any interpretation of the modern-day marriage contract! I know my rights! I watch 'Judge Judy' darn near every day!" said the local legal scholar. "And maybe my daddy should have left well enough alone after that very brief indiscretion in an otherwise endless sea of devout chastity during my turbulent formative years! (Note: Key word in that sentence is 'brief'!) Oh, I just don't know! she sobbed.

Jan 19, 2010

Shocking Geographical Ignorance Causes Area Woman To Confuse Earthquake Location (This is a true story!)

In an unfortunately true tale so unsettling that it makes one's head want to explode, an unnamed area woman called almost everyone she knew to 'share the news' that there was a major earthquake in the very lair of the devil himself - an undetermined location known in some circles simply as "Hades". Unfortunately, an almost unbelievable lack of detail orientation and basic knowledge of the world allowed this woman (not from Lamont proper, thank goodness!) to confuse this imagined seismic event with a very horrific and real earthquake in the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere - the struggling, long suffering and now almost completely devastated country known simply as 'Haiti' - where upwards of 150,000 of our 'fellow travelers' are feared dead and where human suffering is well beyond the realm of understanding for the average American in the 21st century. (our prayers go out to these people!) Although there is some linguistic similarity between the 'much discussed' and highly undesirable "Hades' and the unfortunate location of the real disaster, Haiti - the fundamentally erroneous assumptions that needed to be 'taken for truth' in order to assume that the major media outlets would report on an earthquake in the very pits of hell itself and that some even more obvious and likely explanation was not in order is too stunning to fathom without 'resorting to the bottle'! (Editorial Note: We really wish we were making this up!)

In fact, Hades is a place named after the ancient Greek lord of the dead and ruler of the nether world, which is thus referred to as the domain of Hades or, by transference, as Hades alone. The largely misunderstood yet highly unpleasant "Hades" was the 'black sheep' son of Cronus and Rhea, whoever they were. When the three sons of Cronus divided the world among each other, Hades was given the underworld, while his less cranky and more socially robust brothers Zeus and Poseidon took the upperworld and the sea, respectively. Some ancient Greek smarty-pants, Sophocles, once wrote, 'the gloomy Hades enriches himself with our sighs and our tears'. Of all the phony Greek gods, Hades is the one who is liked the least and even the gods themselves have an aversion to him. (he must be the Mayor of Hades! And we thought Lamont was bad! HA!) People avoided speaking his name lest they attracted his unwanted attention. (Yep, he's the Mayor, indeed!)

Haiti, on the other hand, is a mostly mountainous country with a really nice tropical climate. Haiti's location, history and culture once made it a potential tourist hot spot, but instability and violence, especially since the 1980s, have severely dented that prospect. Sadly, decades of poverty, environmental degradation, violence, instability and dictatorship have left it as the poorest nation in the Americas. Haiti, as opposed to 'Hades', achieved notoriety during the brutal dictatorships of the voodoo physician Francois "Papa Doc" Duvalier and his son, Jean-Claude, or "Baby Doc". Tens of thousands of people were killed under their tyrannical 29-year rule. (which makes this latest disaster even more heart-breaking) The State Department warns U.S. citizens to exercise a high degree of caution when traveling to Haiti - which is one of the very few things that it actually has in common with the so-called 'Hades'.

Unfortunately, the above-referenced geographical confusion draws attention away from a real tragedy that needs prompt action and consideration from the entire globe!

(Editorial Note: Please make your kids do their school homework every night, people! I mean, come on! Don't let this happen in your family. Plus, geography can indeed be fun. It is good to learn about those strange and exotic places like Idaho and Canada - and yes, even Haiti! Have you studied a map today? It might not be a bad idea. And give generously to reputable organizations that can make a difference in the lives of the suffering. Thank you!)

Jan 17, 2010

Shocking Development: Area "Redneck" Befriends Local "Nerd"

In yet another bone-chilling indication that the 'End Times' are upon us; the very foundation of the culture of the Palouse was shaken to its core after it was learned that Jethro Festoon, an area redneck, was seen 'hanging out with' and 'talking to' a well known local geek and math-nerd, Thurston Peabody III, over the last several weeks. This unlikely pair, separated by the previously assumed insurmountable hurdles of basic math knowledge and innate hunting ability (don't forget appreciation for the fine art of taxidermy!), seems to be a prime indicator that this world has indeed lost all sense of balance and propriety and that the human race as a whole is on the verge of a global collapse not seen since the last ice age. This disjointed duo, although lacking almost any conceivable areas of commonality, seems to 'actually like each other' and have even mentioned each other to their horrified (although distinctly separate, thank goodness!) friends. Jethro, the 4th son (out of 7!) of an area farmer/rancher family, successfully gutted his first deer at age 3 while that unbelievable nerd, Thurston, once passed out cold when the "Outback Steakhouse" somehow goofed up his steak order and served it medium rare by mistake, thus causing a sudden blood pressure drop that resulted in quite a scene for the unfortunate fellow diners. As if this disunity is not bad enough, the local geek, Thurston, has every intention of going to college to study Physics or Engineering, while the 'good old boy', Jethro, hates math because there are just 'too many numbers"! (Editorial Note: Oh, please tell me that he DID NOT just say THAT!)

"Oh, this is a dadburn joke, right?" bellowed the stunned Bubba Bodine, 52, dumbest son of the somewhat disreputable Bodine farmer/rancher clan and thus the one destined to take over the ranch when the 'old man' retires. "I need to smack some sense into that Festoon boy! That's treason! What is next - him reading books and watching the History Channel without someone making him at gunpoint?" bellowed the outraged alpha-redneck before spitting out a surprisingly large wad of chewing tobacco that ironically landed on the tip of his own shoe. "That is how them nerds will take over the whole doggone world - one dumb, innocent, tradition-bound farm kid at a time! Next thing you know Jethro will want to finish high school, leave the ranch and maybe get a job at the Grange or a company in Spokane or something! How are we ever going to maintain our archaic way of life if the very social bonds that keep our 'young `uns' hog-tied to the land are laid bare and the 'outside world' is shamelessly promoted by some guy that knows how to use a dadburn scientific calculator, for crying out loud! That is just wrong!" he screamed before succumbing to a coughing fit caused by inhaling too much grain dust during the last harvest season. "Maybe me and 'the boys' need to go have ourselves a chat with that nerd! Sometimes a man has to take matters into his own hands for the good of society, for Pete's sake!"

For his part, the nerd's family moved to Lamont to 'enjoy the peaceful life' and have high hopes for their only son (isn't one enough!). "Well, we are very proud of Thurston" said his beaming mother. (The nerd also goes by the loving nickname 'Copernicus' of all things - whatever that signifies!) "His father and I are very happy that he is able to branch out in regard to his collection of friends and those interpersonal experiences with people so radically different from himself will really help him when he goes to college and is required to interact with people from cultures from across the globe. And we like that Jethro boy. He is kind of quiet and socially awkward but seems like a really nice kid. I just wish he would not wear those awful 'wife beater' shirts so often. (that's all he owns!) Maybe I'll buy him a nice flannel shirt or something for his birthday. I wonder if he would wear it?" said the sweet woman before going back inside to begin preparing a well-balanced dinner (that means there will actually be vegetables on the table - which in-and-of itself is a major social 'faux pas' in these parts!) before her husband gets home from his high-tech job in Spokane where math, quite suspiciously, is used on a regular (if not daily!) basis.

Jan 13, 2010

"Fancy-Pants, Socially-Sophisticated, Know-It-All" New Guy Buys 'Old Blat Farm' - Area Residents Brace For Influx Of "New Ideas"

The Lamont 'Greater Metropolitan Area', never known for being 'early adopters' in many aspects of modern human existence, was thrown into 'a twitter' after the "Old Blat Spread" was sold to some 'newcomer' who, by his very nature, is destined to bring in any number of 'high-fluting' (that means 'modern' and thus quite unnecessary!) ideas that are sure to upset the time tested patterns that have served the Lamont area so well since time immemorial. "Oh, that is all we need now!" lamented Goober Snopes, voted "Hunter/Gatherer of the Year" four years in a row! "Just when I got the notion that things have finally settled down after that whole 'irrigation vs rain god prayers ' debacle and the great 'plow vs stone hand-shovel' debate' (Oh, please don't even mention the advantages of the 'bow and arrow' over the throwing spear to him! Oh, please don't go there! We will end up being stuck here for hours!), along comes this obviously advanced species of farmer/rancher (who just might catch the eye of the ladies, and who needs that kind of competition, for Pete's sake!) who is likely to go introducing who knows what kind of farming devilry (that is code for new farming tools and techniques!) and new ideas (pronounced 'idears") on how we should conduct ourselves as a Town!" he fumed. "I just don't understand what is wrong with those tired and well-worn 'hunter/gatherer' ways that served my pappy so well and his pappy before him and all the way back to the time the entire Town descended from Cain after that whole unfortunate 'Abel Incident' any number of years ago. (Sadly, after Goober's grandfather, the specifics of the paternal line become more than a little murky - although that purported scandal is outside the scope of this highly-focused, sociology-centric article!) We don't want no change 'round here, dadburn it! Can't the world just leave us alone as we eek out a shockingly substandard living 'the old way'?" said Goober while kicking his homemade deerskin sandal in the dirt that he still turns over by hand every year since everyone knows that even a horse-drawn plow is the work of the 'devil' himself. "Next thing you know someone will want to start paving, improving 'this-or-that' and maybe even painting a building or two! (yes, that would be controversial, indeed!) We just can't stand for that sort of modern 'mumbo-jumbo' in these parts! he bellowed. "I don't care what no one says, my flint ax is just as good as any of them steel axes you can buy - and I get to knap my own tools right at home as the wife grinds out our corn (on her knees in the dirt under a blazing sun!) on that perfectly good grinding stone I found for her, thus saving me trips to that 'big city' where I might be exposed to who knows what kind of new-fangled ideas (yes, he pronounced it 'idears' AGAIN!) or what not!" he stammered huffily. "Those socially-sophisticated know-it-alls should just stay where they belong in those huge towns like Tekoa and Colfax where other people appreciate their 'big city ways'!!!" he sniveled insanely.

"Well, as we all know, Lamont is not one of those towns that adapts well to change - and nothing spooks the heck out of area folk more than having someone overturn the apple cart of long self-serving tradition and seemingly insane practices that went out of fashion several millennia before the early bronze age!" said the Mayor while rubbing two sticks together for a fire. "Let's just say that the concept of anything new just scares the 'be-jeebers' out of a lot of people and makes them feel inadequate and threatened. On a positive note, although no one within a 10 mile radius knows how to build a single thing, (some societal activities can become forgotten thru lack of use) Lamont is regionally famous for fixing just about anything - with a special emphasis on 'patching the previous patch!' - a skill that appears to be highly developed only in isolated sub-cultures often dominated by social introverts and unbelievable cheapskates! Anyway! I have not met that 'new farmer' guy yet, but I for one will gladly embrace someone with some new ideas rattling around in their outrageously shaggy head. I just hope the existing citizens/farmers don't put the 'Corn Curse' on him or somehow try some other mischief on him before he has a chance to settle in good and proper. Change can indeed be traumatic, especially in Lamont, but that isn't a reason to go getting all 'pagan' and 'devilish' on a person just because they might be more in tune with the 'so-called' modern times than we are. Lamont should be big enough for the 'stubborn, Luddite-like laggards' and the people with some new ideas too! Nothing in this world remains in a vacuum, regardless of how hard the 'old timers' try to make it so! (that just ain't natural!) Can't we all just get along and move out of the dark ages?" he concluded naively while looking over his shoulder to see if someone left another one of those all-too-common "Corn Curse' scarecrows in his own doggone yard (The mayor has quite a collection at this point - one worthy of the Smithsonian!), as seems to be the pattern every couple of weeks or so, for Pete's sake!

Jan 12, 2010

Nation's Capitol Has Rare Moment Of Sanity After Lamont Town Picture Is Splashed All Over "Newspaper of Record"!

An eerie calm descended over the somewhat turbulent and discombobulated nation's capitol after millions of readers were able to transport themselves across the continent and back in time after one of the Lamont Blog's so-called competitors (if you call that competition! HA!), the Washington Post, ran a decidedly calming and almost supernaturally soothing picture of the Lamont Town sign with the world famous "Lamont Grain Growers" in the background. The picture, taken by one of the rare lawyers in DC with an obvious abundance of common sense (not to mention good taste!), in addition to taking the edge off of the nation's burdens of obviously under-appreciated global leadership, also highlighted Lamont's unique census tally methodology. "Well, I had every intention of invading Canada that day, but after seeing that very relaxing and calming photo of one of the most under-appreciated towns in North America, I decided to "give peace a chance'! said an unnamed 4-Star General from some secret bunker under the Pentagon. "If it wasn't for kicking tail on unsuspecting countries that don't pay the proper respect to the 'Stars and Stripes', I would be pretty much out of a job!" he said while chomping on one of the soggiest cigar stubs in the history of the American Armed Forces. "But once that picture of Lamont sufficiently blunted my warrior instincts, I began to see that Canada has a lot more in common with us than say - France or Belgium. So, maybe after lunch I'll redirect my obviously abundant energies in that direction. Who knows? Any country that eats snails needs a good boot to the pants as far as I am concerned! Right now all I want to do is put my feet on my desk, (made from the wood from some captured Japanese aircraft carrier or something) close my eyes and 'smell the manure', as they say. Looking at the Town of Lamont is a lot better than that 'anger management' therapist I have been seeing - and a lot cheaper for the taxpayers, too! Thank goodness that this great nation still has towns like Lamont! That really gives me something I feel good about defending!" (certainly as compared to those other 'neighboring small towns' that the Lamont Blog could mention - namely in Lincoln and Adams County!) said the now-pacified general while gazing lovingly at an overly large framed painting of Napoleon himself!

"What? We were in the paper?" said the Mayor with that all-too familiar look of ox-like confusion. "In Washington DC?" I just hope that no one from the IRS saw it! Or one of those organizations that like to do audits because 'they are fun!" That would be cool, however, if some 'big shot' from the USDA-RD or whatever happened across it and was so calmed and soothed that they called a special meeting or something to see how they could funnel monies into the second smallest Town in a relatively lightly populated State! You know, maybe one of those huge bureaucracies can give Lamont a grant so that we can put in a bathroom in the Town Hall or whatever! That would be sweet! Stranger things have happened, especially in the ever-crazy Town of Lamont!" said the humble public servant well known throughout the Palouse for having one of the most limited bladder capacities on record! "Anyway! As long as stories about Lamont do not somehow involve Law Enforcement, then I am happy, I guess!"

(Editorial Note: Although the Lamont Blog and the Washington Post have been bitter competitors for years, we would like to thank them for grasping the needs of this great nation and giving the entire country hope by so prominently featuring the small yet scrappy Town of Lamont! Maybe we can bury the hatchet after all - and the Lamont Blog can drop their plans for that 'hostile takeover' of one of the country's most prestigious newspapers since, at least for now, they seem to be making at least an honest effort at reporting the 'important news', for Pete's sake!)

Jan 10, 2010

Area "Little Sister" Drives Long-Suffering Older Sister "To Brink Of Hysteria" During Festive Holiday Gathering (Another Shockingly True Lamont Tale!)

In a shockingly brazen violation of almost every known aspect of the time-tested 'sacred bond of sisterhood' itself, an area woman, Erika X (not her real name), unleashed a 'Pandora's Box' of irrational fears and foolish phobias on her unsuspecting and naively trusting older sister when Erika, quite wickedly, placed approximately ten (10) crickets inside a seemingly innocuous Christmas present (filled with stained glass pieces or something!) and made sure everyone had the cameras at the ready when the "Trojan Horse-like' gift was finally opened by the excited and glowing (let's don't forget 'forgiving'!) older sister on that fateful Christmas morning, 2009. The unfortunate crickets, just minding their own business in a local pet store or something as they passed their seemingly uneventful lives waiting to be eaten by some creepy loner guy's snake or lizard or whatever, were a convenient and handy "winter substitute' for the real source of the older sister's persistent and near-paralyzing neurotic obsession - the common, everyday grasshopper (Oh man! Grasshoppers? That really is nuts! We at the Lamont Blog have to side with the younger sister on the basis of this fact alone!) - a supposedly harmless plant-eater that has instilled fear into the older sister since she was - well - 'knee high to a grasshopper'. (you can't make this stuff up, folks!)

"Well, my sister was and is a number of years older than I am, which used to bother me when I was a kid but now is a source of continual joy and happiness for me as I feel obligated to remind her of this fact on an almost weekly basis now" said the loving younger sister, Erika, age 30-something. "Well, you know the whole story - the bossy older sister who was allowed to date (sadly, mainly with complete and total losers!!) and was able to drive and wear make-up and all of that. So, being young and without the usual bonds of restraint that make family life somewhat tolerable and that normally helps to hinder and oftentimes even prevent actual bloodshed, I felt like she was too big for her britches and I decided to take her down a peg or two. (A peg or two? Good gravy! I shudder to even think of three pegs, for Pete's sake!) (Mental note to self: I need to be nicer to my sisters!) Knowing of her irrational fear of grasshoppers, I whiled away about a week of my largely misspent youth and gathered every one of the critters I could find in anticipation of the perfect 'moment of opportunity" she said excitedly! "Well, it was after her first real date with a guy whose knuckles didn't actually drag on the ground - and she got home a little late - just as happy as Cinderella or whatever. Needless to say she was totally sacked out at 6:00 AM sharp when I sneaked into her room in classic 'commando-like fashion', unloaded a surprisingly full coffee can of the writhing, multi-hued grasshoppers (who would have guessed there were so many kinds of grasshoppers in Eastern Washington! What bio-diversity!) under her blanket and made my way out into the hallway literally panting with anticipation" said the smiling sadistic sibling. "Before I could even get to the 'third Mississippi' there proceeded forth a blood-curdling scream of such epic proportions that it would have even made Dracula blush, and out comes my sufficiently humbled older sister, batting at her hair like it was on fire or something. Talk about GREAT!!! What perfection! Sadly, rather than continue down the hall and into the front yard where the neighbors could finally witness what I had to put up with on a daily basis, she paused just long enough to latch her talon-like claws on my still-tender neck and began to shake me like a rag doll. She always was one for overly dramatic displays of emotionalism!" she said disgustedly. "Anyway, once my poor mother was finally able to pry the 'she-devil' off of my loudly protesting windpipe and restore order, I knew right then that this wasn't over. Oh no!" she chuckled evilly - almost 25 years later! (What willpower!) "All good things come to those who wait!" she concluded gleefully before bellowing out an amazingly authentic BRUUUHAHAHAHA last heard (with that degree of heart-felt gusto and verve!) in the 1932 version of the hit movie 'Frankenstein'.

(Editorial Note: The staff at the Lamont Blog appreciates a good prank as much as the next largely disreputable small town news organ, but this seems to have taken shockingly sadistic sibling rivalry to a level that even we cannot endorse - although there is $20 bucks in there for anyone who happened to catch either episode on video tape!!)

Jan 6, 2010

Town Boldly Enters 19th Century With "Next Generation Of Restroom Technology" For Lamont Town Hall

In a bold move to dramatically increase the Lamont Town Hall experience for our various employees (okay, we only have one part-timer, doggone it!) and primitive architecture buffs alike, the ever resourceful yet obviously modest Town of Lamont displayed their latest solution to the age old problem of having Town fathers who would build a building designed to last 60+ years but not include a bathroom because they were too darn cheap! (They should be flogged! Flogged, I SAY!!!) The latest innovation, designed to overcome an unfortunate yet persistent situation that impacts every human on planet Earth, (especially those in the coffee friendly nations of the world!) - most cleverly integrates a spare closet, a sign that somehow 'accidentally' fell off a bathroom door in Spokane and contrary to the very laws of physics somehow 'found its own way' into the trunk of the Mayor's car in the murky, moonless darkness (It was awfully windy that day! It really was! Whew, the wind! Never seen the like!) - and, most amazingly, a genuine (pronounced "gen-u-wine") Japanese chamber pot once used as a really ugly ashtray in a biker bar or something and purchased for the somewhat inflated price of $4.00 (after rejecting the much more reasonable offer of $3.50 at least 10 times, the no good wretches!) at an area antique shop. (more like 'Den of Thieves'!)

"Well, Lamont has always been known as a Town well ahead of our own time, at least in our own minds - such as they are, so bringing actual restroom facilities to the Town Hall is just about as exciting as it gets around here!" stammered the Mayor who oftentimes goes by the very hip and modern-sounding rapper-like initials "B.B.". (Don't be fooled! It stands for 'baby bladder'!). "You just don't know what a relief it is to be able to drink coffee again! Sure, small town government is so fast-paced and exciting a person really doesn't need coffee - I mean, who could dream of a better, more exciting, lavishly appreciated, ultimately rewarding job than being a small town mayor - but a nice cup of coffee every now and again is just like a cherry on top of some huge ice cream thing or whatever" he said, losing track of a seemingly poorly chosen and ill-fitting analogy. "If I had a dollar for every time I fantasized about stomping 'the tar' out of whoever would build a long-term strategic asset and not put in a dadburn restroom, I would be able to make that trip to Dollywood I have been dreaming about. But now that we have 'modern facilities' a lot of that long simmering resentment and anger can hopefully begin to fade away! (Not likely! Some wounds are just too deep to ever heal!) Sure, Towns like Lamont only get to be the way that Lamont was just a few short years back if there was a dominant culture of all encompassing, mind-boggling, near-paralyzing inertia and a startlingly complete and total lack of detail orientation and forethought like was manifestly demonstrated by the almost unbelievable bathroom-less Lamont Town building - (darn their eyes, the no good cheapskates!) but someone has to put a stop to the blatant insanity at some point and that, I feel, is what we have tried to do here! I am just so tickled pink!!! (he almost said 'tinkled'! Talk about a one track mind!)" gushed the Mayor who no longer has to pace back and forth like a caged lion before struggling home every half hour or so (oftentimes having to resort to dragging one leg thru the snow with a ghoulish grimace of pained restraint on his pinched-up face!) to 'check on the cats!' or whatever lame excuse he comes up with that day! (Like we don't know!) "Sure, we have a planning grant now (thank you CDBG, Dept of Commerce and Century West Engineering!) to bring modern facilities to Lamont, but that will take some time to get thru the planning and until construction is complete (assuming we get funding!), so some interim step just seemed appropriate, especially since it can drop to right around twenty degrees below zero in January in the Palouse and I was never very fond of being forced to 'sing soprano' out behind the fire truck when the north wind was howling like a banshee!" he said, realizing that he should have stopped talking several long minutes ago and wishing he could take that last sentence back or somehow make excuses to minimize his obviously crystal clear description of previous 'less-than-socially-acceptable' activities! (Desperate times require desperate measures, doggone it!!!)

(Editorial Note: Special thanks goes to a person (referenced at the Lamont Blog before!) who came up with this 'interim solution' in the first place but asked not to be named for some strange reason. (chicken!) We do, however, appreciate her (yes, it is a her!) creative problem solving skills (on any number of levels!) and that is why we like to employ her services from time to time to help us overcome a problem set that can only be found in the shockingly archaic yet so sweetly humble Town of Lamont! Plus, the firetruck part was made up for dramatic effect! Really, it was! How could you even think otherwise? The nerve!)

Jan 4, 2010

Pitiless Parrot Prank Causes Christmas Dinner Disaster (Based on a true story!)

In a sordid tale of animal intrigue and cunning too frightening and unreal to contemplate for long without descending into madness, an area parrot successfully sabotaged a festive extended-family gathering by shamelessly (although quite amazingly!) imitating the oven timer and thus causing the 21 pound holiday bird to be removed from the oven more than an hour early, thus spoiling the dinner showpiece and causing a run on the mashed potatoes and dinner rolls since undercooked turkey, as it turned out, is only truly appreciated by the family dog. "Well, you know how the holidays are! Everyone is a nervous wreck getting this done and that done" said the avid yet frazzled animal lover. "So, when I trusted the fickle whims of technology and set the oven timer on 6 hours, I never even gave a thought to the idea that I needed to be suspicious when the oven timer went off! I mean, can't we put our trust in anything at this point? And as for that doggone parrot, it is bad enough when he imitates those unfortunate noises (obviously more socially appropriate for the barnyard than the ballroom!) my brother-in-law all-too frequently makes (the man is indeed a phenomenon!) - and to provide that decidedly unwelcome mimicry almost without fail when our poor preacher comes over for coffee - but who would have guessed that they would use their 'other worldly' imitation skills to influence and shape (the word 'steer' might be appropriate here but one doesn't want to confuse animal groups at this critical conversational juncture!) our dietary preferences in such a purposeful and self-serving way? And who would have guessed long-nurtured and inherently ingrained bird loyalty would run so deep in - well - a bird?! I mean, just think of the forethought and pure evil genius of imitating the oven timer bell to ruin a turkey dinner - all to satisfy some animal-centric agenda based on some murky 'code of honor' completely outside the cultural grasp of the much touted 'homo sapiens'!"

"On some level I am furious with that whole tragic series of events, but that fury is tinged somewhat with admiration and maybe even a touch of fear, too. It is just a shame that my mother-in-law was there. Now I will have to hear about this for years - decades even! Heck, if she has her way, it will be on my tombstone! I am still trying to live down that tiny piece of eggshell in an omelet I made in 1982!" she lamented! "Plus, now I know that I have to keep my eye on that doggone dog and that stupid parrot. I just can't help but feel that they were somehow in on this together - like some peanuts-for-turkey 'quid pro quo' or something! I have noticed that they have been spending a lot of time together since Thanksgiving! But surely they can't be co-conspirators in this, can they? But maybe that explains all of those slobber covered peanuts I have found around the birdcage. That whole relationship deserves further scrutiny, indeed!" she said wearily. "Anyway, I never really thought about it, but I guess it was a little insensitive of me to cook a turkey every year in a house full of parrots! That was just wrong! Next year we are having ham! Ham and maybe a beef roast or something. Now if I could just get that meddlesome parrot to quit imitating the ringing of the phone every 5 minutes I might be able to wind down from the stress-filled holiday season!"

(Editorial note: The parrot's ability to mimic sounds is amazing to the point that they can create sounds that appear to the human ear to be "more real' than the actual sounds themselves. Why they choose to make certain sounds at certain times remains a mystery (at least to the humble Lamont Blog!), but given the chaos-inducing nature of their quite considerable efforts, one must assume that there is a greater, more over-arching intelligence at work here - one whose motives we fail to understand at our own peril!)

Jan 3, 2010

Tensions Mount After Smug Area Cat Smacks Unsuspecting Neighbor Cat "Upside The Head" In "Crime Of Opportunity"

An atmosphere of uneasiness descended like an ominous storm cloud upon the 2nd smallest Town in the State after an area tomcat, known simply as "Thor", reached down and thumped a seemingly innocent neighbor cat 2-3 times (in less than a dadburn second, for Pete's sake!) on the exposed forehead after it inadvertently walked too close to the bench where the recalcitrant tomcat was lounging in what passes for sunshine in January in the Palouse. Thor, a gray and white rabble rouser, although feigning sleep, was able to reach out and assault the surprised visiting cat that was just apparently 'passing thru' to see what the heck was going on 'over yonder' - and was caught completely by surprise by the paw-like blur that appeared to "come out of nowhere" - thus unsettling what was otherwise a very warm and peaceful winter day in the Palouse.

"Well, I was minding my own business, pretending to take out the trash for the third time that day and I saw the whole doggone thing!" said Thelma Bodine, 56, an area farm wife/busybody. "I was checking to see if any of my neighbors had anything new in their yards or if they had bothered to finally take down the Christmas lights yet when I happened to see that more-than-slightly obese gray cat just lounging to beat all I ever seen on that bench in the neighbor's backyard (that nice new bench, by rights, should have been taken out of the weather last fall, for goodness sake! But nooo! Everyone is too busy for basic preventive maintenance in this Town!) when all of a sudden that sweet neighbor cat, apparently ignorant of her impending peril, walked right under the bench and into the buzz saw that is Thor's paw. It was all very sudden and unsettling! The neighbor cat never knew what hit her. She just looked up in stunned horror and ran at full speed back to her own yard. And for his part, Thor never even bothered to move more than the offending paw. That cat is one cool customer, let me tell you!" she said respectfully while nervously kneading her tattered and well-worn kitchen apron in anticipation of another potential ruckus.

Although accounts tend to differ somewhat, it would seem that no claws were in fact used and thus no actual injuries were reported. (other than bruised feline pride at falling prey to such a well-crafted although seemingly obvious ambush, doggone it!) (hindsight is indeed 20-20!) The much-loved tomcat, Thor, an indoor/outdoor cat of some renown, claims that he just responded 'out of instinct' when seeing something furry go bobbing by and that there was no actual malice or ill-intent in his apparently random actions - although the victim reports a surprisingly long series of 'altercations' - most of which appear to be minor in nature although several reportedly involved getting chased up an area tree. Although no legal action has been taken as of this writing, both cats have been encouraged to stay 50+ feet from each other and have agreed not to go to the bathroom in each other's backyard for a period of 30 days.