Mar 30, 2010

Local Man Just Can't Understand Why Stupid Cat Comes Back Inside To Use The Doggone Litter Box

In what is either one of those cute, charming quirks of nature or is in fact just the tip of some elaborate and shockingly nuanced inter-species 'power-play' iceberg, an area man was more than a little put out when his cat, Roberta (the Latin lover!), made three (3) special trips inside the house yesterday to 'relieve herself' when there is an almost limitless number of places 'to go' outside - and the weather has been so nice, too! The headstrong yet affectionate cat loves nothing more than sitting on the back deck all day long, basking in the sunshine and keeping a weary eye out for those doggone rival cats and/or the occasional bird that would have the temerity to invade her otherwise well-ordered and peaceful 'Sanctum Sanctorum', also known as the back yard.

"Dang it, man! What is wrong with that stupid cat!" said the area man, litter box scoop in hand (and a pinched up look on his slightly green-tinged face!). "This stupid house is on three large lots and there is 2 garden spots, an old chicken coop, a separate garage and any number of trees and bushes to choose from! But for some darn reason, that little minx seems hell-bent on making extra work for me! My other darn cat seems perfectly comfortable going outside - and even seems to prefer it - but not Roberta! Oh noooo!" he fumed. "And every time I open the back door I'll look right at her and tell her in no uncertain terms 'You better not be coming in here to use the bathroom, doggone it!" - but she will just push right past me with hardly disguised pity and disgust and make her way to any one of the three (3) litter boxes that are strategically dispersed across the house. What nerve! What cheek! What blatant disregard for the desires and feelings of others!" said the put-out pet owner. "It is almost like she just enjoys seeing me clean up after her in the most unpleasant way - like it is some test of dominance or some chilling battle of wills! It just all seems so unnecessary, somehow!" said the defeated, broken man while pulling out the can-opener to open up a can of 'Fisherman's Feast', Roberta's favorite afternoon snack.

Mar 28, 2010

Local Mayor Laments 'Social Vacuum" Caused By Lamont's Complete And Total Lack Of A Proper Literary And Archetypal "Village Idiot"

In a touching and quite rare gesture of actual emotion and human sentimentality, a local Mayor waxed poetic at his heartfelt longing and desire for a single person who could fit the much-needed small town role of the traditional (yet poorly termed, indeed!) 'village idiot' made so popular for centuries by almost every writer of quaint, rustic fiction - at least European fiction, that is. "Well, being a small town Mayor has its ups and downs, and let me tell you there is a lot of 'learning on the job' - so being able to rely on some tried and true icons from our collective literary past in managing the Town could only help make things run that much more smoothly, I think" he said with a dreamy yet melancholy look in his 'far away' gaze. (the cheapskate is probably skimping on coffee again!) "Anyway! It just doesn't seem fair that, although only having about 100 people at last count (although we have had 12 new, law abiding, really nice people move here in the last month or two that aren't even counted yet! Whoa! I hope we don't become the 3rd smallest Town in the State!), one would think that there would at least be one 'village idiot' in the lot. I mean, we have a village grouch, a gossip, a goodie-two-shoes, an outrageous hypochondriac, a cringing violet, a scrooge, a witch, a scoff-law, a know-it-all, a shrew, a scamp, a sloth, a hermit, a horse's rear-end, a blow-hard, a battle ax, a mooch, a non-stop talker (oh, we have any number of those!) - not to mention a whole herd of snooty, cantankerous, rabble-rousing busy-bodies that seem to thrive around here like mushrooms in a spring cattle pasture. (Okay, these obviously energetic individuals tend to live outside the Town limits for the most part, although that is close enough!) And the rest are just good, strong, salt-of-the-earth type citizens who play by the rules! But doggone it, there is not a single person who fits the bill as the traditional, overly indulged, always pleasantly underfoot, much loved, inappropriately named 'village idiot' that no small town is really ever complete without. It just doesn't seem fair somehow!" he whined at the seeming social injustice of it all. (What, are we too small for that, too?)

"It would sure be nice as we are cleaning up the Town for the exciting 100 year festival on June 19th to look out across the park and see some supposedly unfortunate yet much loved and sheltered individual puttering thru the grass, studying the majestic wonders of the bark of some tree that no one else ever even notices or gently stroking a posse of unlikely and oft-neglected house-cats that follow him everywhere in recognition of his pure and well-intentioned soul. (and the occasional cat treat!) And how are we supposed to be a 'real town' if we do not have some supposedly disadvantaged yet kind-hearted individual traversing the streets at all hours, keeping a protective eye on everything and finding all manner of lost things and miraculously returning them to the doorsteps of their frantic, beyond-hope owners - seeking no overt recognition for himself - but just setting the scales of justice right in some small yet not insignificant way. And who can we count on in a clutch, when all support seems remote and distant, to come barreling out of the bushes to efficiently subdue some vagrant would-be trouble-maker or meddlesome nare-do-well in order to save some innocent child from even modest harm or upset! I just can't help but feel that Lamont is somehow less rich for this want (although that is indeed a blessing in and of itself!) - and this is proof yet again that the Lord does indeed work in mysterious ways that are beyond the understanding of worldly man - as if we didn't know this already!" he said regrettably. "Oh, and if we could just learn to 'judge a tree by its fruit', in spite of and regardless of what man or society or whatever tells us is the ideal for human expectations. Isn't it amazing how the powerful are often humbled by the actions of the so-called meek and lowly, at least in matters of the heart and conscience, anyway!" he mused!

Mar 26, 2010

Area Mayor Steamed After Councilperson Announces Upcoming Holiday To Long Beach, WA (a doggone rival town!)

In a shocking display of duplicity and backstabbing not seen since Benedict Arnold did whatever it was that Benedict Arnold did to make himself so loathsome (that must have been after they named that delicious breakfast entree after him - Eggs Benedict! Hey, that means the poor guy can't be totally rotten, after all!) - a local Councilperson of some renown - Ruth Simpson - is all excited and is telling everyone she knows that she is 'getting away from Lamont' and going for 4 days to one of the most beautiful and best managed small cities in the State - the entirely too organized, strategically located, blessed by nature and just generally attractive City of Long Beach - a long time Lamont rival - at least from Lamont's point of view, anyway. "Oh, we are just so excited! I really need a vacation and going someplace really nice like Long Beach is just so perfect!" she droned on annoyingly as the Mayor stood idly by, feigning icy disinterest while gazing out the window with hardly concealed disgust and feelings of betrayal. "It has been a while since I got to go on vacation, and when the opportunity to go to Long Beach for a long weekend came up, of course I was all for it!" said the outrageous turncoat while twisting the knife just that much more! "Four whole days right on the Pacific Ocean, relaxing and going for walks and visiting museums and bookstores and eating at nice restaurants! Who could ask for anything more?" blathered the unbelievable ingrate who obviously somehow has overlooked Lamont's somewhat dubious claim to be the 'Vacation Mecca of the Northwest Scablands'. "And the good thing is, I bet we don't even see a cow the whole time we are there! Never mind all the smells we will leave behind in Lamont!" said the insane rebel who needs to be placed in a mental institution. "My daughter and I are just so excited" she said cruelly, obviously attempting to reduce the poor Mayor to tears at the outrageous cheekiness of it all!

"La, la, la, la, la, la. I can't hear you! La, la, la, la, la!" chanted the Mayor with his hands firmly clasped over his ears as Councilperson Simpson was describing the awesome accommodations that she will be staying at while visiting that doggone Long Beach - one of the hidden gems of Washington State. "Jimmy cracked corn, and I don't care, Jimmy cracked corn, and I don't care!" ranted the tone-deaf Mayor as Ms. Simpson plowed on thru these quite infantile distractions and explained their itinerary and outlined all the fun things she is planning to do to a shockingly large group of highly interested yet amazingly disloyal citizens who just seemed to come boiling out of their houses on word that Ruth was going to Long Beach! (has the whole town gone mad?) "Oh, why do I feel like Caesar while she is that doggone Brutus? What is wrong with her just staying right here? If she needs to 'get away', there is plenty of room to pitch a tent in the park! Who could ask for more than that??? I just can't believe what I am hearing here!" he whined pathetically while shaking his fist in the general direction of the Pacific Ocean. "Darn their eyes!" he bellowed melodramatically before slinking back to the office to lick his wounds and regroup to fight another day against seemingly insurmountable odds brought forth whenever Long Beach is mentioned in any way!

(Editorial Note: Although no one has had the heart to tell the Mayor, Councilperson Simpson has every intention of visiting the Long Beach City offices to say hello and hopefully get some much needed and long overdue tips on how to actually manage a Town, for Pete's sake. (Good gravy! We'll take anything they can give us! One has to start somewhere!) Plus, unlike Lamont, they are bound to have a whole bunch of cool, colorful brochures on neat things to see and do, thus making the Simpson vacation that much more outstanding and memorable) (Darn their eyes for that one, TOO!!!)

Mar 25, 2010

Crushing Melancholy Descends On Town After Area Woman Spends 45+ Minutes Answering Simple 'Yes or No' Question With Tragic Life Story

In an all-too common move that had everyone within earshot longing for prescription pain medication and/or reaching for any wayward, potentially self-directed sharp object that just happened to be laying about, an area woman, Gertrude Bodine, age 67, turned a simple, meaningless inquiry into a painfully detailed synopsis of a largely misspent and unfortunate life as if for no other reason than she had a reluctantly captive audience in her tenuous, wildly clutching grasp. The seemingly innocent question, put forth mainly as a conversational filler to span some awkward and inexplicable gap in the otherwise stilted discourse, is believed to have had something to do with an area cat, although none present can seem to recall the specifics clearly given the all too natural human tendency to deeply repress and/or bury painful life traumas in that unfortunate dustbin of the human essence - the mysterious, largely misunderstood yet much called upon 'sub-conscious' - where only the most painful of life's traumas hold sway and dominion.

"Oh, I knew there was a perfectly good reason why I never liked doggone cats!" bellowed the obviously pained and still shell-shocked Gomer Snopes, 49, an area rancher. "All I could think about was getting home to work on my tractor, and the next thing I knew I had to hear about that time Gertrude's father got her sister a puppy and not her and how her husband would not eat anything that wasn't slathered in ketchup (Hey!! What's wrong with ketchup?) and how she has always been self-conscious of her hair and if we thought she should dye it blond! Oh, it was horrible. And who cares if no one ever liked her rhubarb crisp! I just don't care! And what does any of that have to do with a dadburn cat? What does any of it have to do with anything? And why in the heck was I even standing there in the first place? I have my own problems, doggone it! What about me? What about my pain? Why won't anyone love me? I never got a puppy either, dadburn it!" he hollered insanely before resting his head in his hands and submitting to what amounts to a 'good farmer cry'. (Editorial Note: Oh, we hope we never have to witness something like THAT again! As if this whole 'hideous life experience' thing wasn't enough! Talk about piling ON! Farmer tears? Oh, that's just so wrong! Now we have two memories to repress!)

"Well, we were all standing there, and you could see old Gertrude was all excited about something - and not a good excited neither!" said Thelma Snodgrass, 62, an area farm wife and regular church-goer. "She definitely had a bee in her bonnet or a rash on her backside or something, because it was like she was about to jump out of her skin at any moment, the poor dear. And when she started off on how her husband, may he rest in peace, only changed his socks once a month regardless of how much she nagged him and that she never had a dog in her whole life that would mind her and how one of her boys went 3 whole years eating nothing but vegetables (Oh, the horror! Did she really need to let that embarrassing skeleton out of the closet? I mean, show some restraint!), I knew that all was not now well in the Bodine household, nor was it ever! No sir!" she said sweetly while doing a little 'happy dance'. "Oh, I just can't wait to tell everyone I know (and many that she doesn't!) all the things I just learned. It's about time those 'goodie-two-shoes' Bodines were brought down a peg or two, and now I have the ammunition to do it! Oh, I have waited for so long for something like this to happen!" she beamed gleefully! "I'll have tongues wagging all over the tri-county area by sunset, for goodness sake! Sure, her life story is sad and all, but revenge is best when served cold!" said the evil she-devil as a faint waft of burning sulfur drifted on the suddenly stifling breeze! (And we won't even mention the creepy, monk-like chanting that seemed to come from every direction at once!)

"Oh, that was such a nice conversation" said the shockingly clueless Gertrude after returning home to begin dinner. "I am just so thankful that I have such nice friends who don't mind stopping on the street for a few minutes to catch up on the latest happenings! It was great to hear how they were doing! I bet people in those big cities like Tekoa and Colfax don't have many experiences like that, now do they?" she said with smug satisfaction before puttering off into the kitchen to try that doggone rhubarb crisp recipe one more time before moving on to other culinary disasters - the number of which seems limitless at this point, unfortunately.

Mar 21, 2010

Palouse Sheep Farmers Breathe A Collective Sigh Of Relief As "Wolves In Cow's Clothing" Becomes All The Rage

In a troubling development that is sure to wipe the smug, self-satisfied looks of well-seasoned (although outrageously misplaced!) superiority off of their decidedly blank, annoyingly clueless faces; area cattle ranchers were given a staggering body blow to their seemingly unassailable position at the top of the so-called 'rancher food chain' when it was reported that a vast majority of the new wolves brought back into the State from Idaho have chosen to dress themselves up as cows as opposed to their more time tested and socially acceptable sheep counterparts. "Well, wolves are of course very adaptable and have a higher level of cognitive processing than previously assumed, so after being driven almost to the point of extinction, they really had no choice but to adapt to their radically altered environment" said Dr. Walter Pinkerton, an area animal psychologist. "So, if the new wolves were to simply return to their old, tired methods from ages past, they would have to expect the same sad outcome - thus a change in strategy was indeed in order" he droned on endlessly in a fine-tuned monotone. "I mean, sheep farmers have been on the lookout for impostors since at least the time of the writing of the New Testament, but cattle ranchers have been lulled into a totally false sense of security and are thus tragically exposed to this latest predator ploy" he concluded, gazing over his bifocals while clutching his still unlit pipe in the safe confines of his ivory tower office where nothing of value ever actually gets done.

"Oh, that's just great!" bellowed Festus Festoon, 56, a smug area cattle rancher. "Oh, I just knew that things were going along too well for their own good, doggone it! Half the fun of being a cattle rancher is making fun of those doggone second-class sheep farmers, for Pete's sake! I mean, what is the use of spending all day outside in terrible weather while being covered from head to toe in foul smelling substances (Although they don't seem to mind at all! Just the opposite, in fact!) if you don't have anyone to tease and belittle and feel superior to?" he pouted while thrusting his malodorous arms up towards the heavens in some vain protest gesture. "If you think about it, the whole doggone English language is chocked full of expressions directed at belittling those stupid sheep - like 'meek as a lamb', 'sheep-like' or whatever, where cattle have cool expressions like 'bull headed' and 'strong as a bull'. And think about it, sheep are known to run in blind terror at the slightest little noise while cattle, when spooked, have frightening 'stampedes' that strike fear into the heart of even the bravest man! And all of these linguistic differences in favor of cows can be traced back to that wonderful biblical expression "wolves in sheep's clothing" he snickered with a rare sparkle in his normally cold, fish-like eye. "If we lose that linguistic advantage, we will lose everything and then we will have one less social group to look down upon and cast into the social wilderness as we see fit. That just ain't right! What is life for if we cannot look down our noses at all the cattle-less unwashed masses around us?" he fumed with only a tinge of madness in his eerily active face. (Oh, and why won't that eye of his quit twitching, for Pete's sake? That's just spooky!)

Interestingly enough, the wolves themselves are really, in fact, in an age-old battle against the ranchers themselves and their food source is largely incidental in the larger context of this primal struggle for the 'top dog' position on the food chain. This situation is not helped by the fact that area sheep farmers are a full 46% smarter than their coddled, pampered, predator-sheltered, some might even dare to say 'trauma averse' (that is code for being a sissy!!) cattle rancher counterparts! (Editorial Note: This staggering IQ differential is a natural byproduct of contending with those doggone wolves for 1000's of years! - Oh, and all that increased blood flow to the brain due to fewer clogged arteries from not eating all that doggone beef 3 meals a day - and, I mean, who can even think of eating mutton! Yikes! The 'other white meat' it ain't, that's for sure!) Given this, the wolves' chances for long-term success are greatly enhanced by focusing on the hapless, fumbling, embarrassingly soft and shamefully inept cattle ranchers as opposed to the sharper, physically fit, more astute, technologically savvy (not to mention humble!) sheep farmers. So, once again, the wolves are providing the same service they have always provided to this planet - culling 'the herd' of the weak, the less clever (Oh, just say it - DUMBER! Why beat around the dadburn bush?) and the markedly genetically unfit - thus making the herd as a whole stronger in the long run. But, in this case, the herd being culled is now made up of the doggone ranchers themselves - thus providing no shortage of irony and long-overdue social justice in this otherwise profound and tragically competitive little part of the Palouse. (And who can blame the wolves for not wanting to eat mutton? I mean, come on!)

Mar 17, 2010

Area Parrot Suffers Unfortunate 'Wardrobe Malfunction' After Viewing Lamont's Outrageously Awesome Town Improvements

In yet another startling testimony to the excitability (and downright wackiness!) of the common cockatoo, an area bird, Tangi, age 7, was so gob smacked by the improvements made by the Town in anticipation of their 100 Year festival being held on June 19th that he experienced an embarrassing yet hopefully short-lived 'control problem' related to his normally preened and well quaffed feather covering. "Well, when he gets all excited he likes to let his feathers go wild, for some dern reason!" said the now infamous (and annoyingly efficient!) Erika, an area parrot rescue person and one of the team of outstanding individuals from Century West Engineering who have served the Town of Lamont so well and dragged us kicking and screaming into the warm, loving embrace of the early 19th century! (Not bad given that we were in the late bronze age only 4 short years ago!) "I have tried telling him not to do that - that one day he was going to be stuck like that, but do you think he listened to me? My mother was forever telling me not to make faces at my stupid sisters because I might get stuck that way, so of course I tried to pass on that wisdom to my parrots (what about HER kids, doggone it?) - with less than stellar success, as you can well see" she scolded with that unnerving certainty that all mothers seem to possess! (Oh, why do they have to be right so often?) "Just because the average parrot is oftentimes as smart as a human 5 year-old doesn't mean they know everything - but try telling that to one of them, for Pete's sake!" she said exasperatedly!

"Anyway, Tangi seems to love nothing more than driving thru Lamont (a town just slightly bigger than his cage at home!) on those fantastic new roads they just got and stopping for a refreshing drink of some of the best water in the State, (both excellent additions brought to the Town by Century West Engineering, those rascals!) but ever since he heard that Lamont was sprucing up the place for their big festival, he has been bugging me non-stop to drive him out there to see what the heck is really going on!" said the over-indulgent aviary expert with an exasperated sigh. "So, needless to say, he was more than a little excited about the new painting project for the fire station and he began puffing up a little as we slowly drove past, but when we toured the new parking lot over by the Community Center (that used to be a notorious weed field!), that was obviously the straw that broke the chicken's back, because he just spazzed out and has been stuck that way for several hours. I hate to say "I told him so", but I did, in fact, tell him so!! I guess that 'old wives tale' is true, after all! I am pretty sure as we drive back home that his totally understandable awe and amazement will begin to fade and he will return to normal - not that that doggone bird was ever very normal in the first place, that is" she said peevishly. "Next time I will just have to be a little more careful about what I show him in Lamont. I guess even parrots have their limits when it comes to positive change - as does an amazingly vocal segment of the citizenry, or so I have heard, anyway - but one never knows what to believe!" she said sagely - having learned from her parrots that simply repeating things is not always a good thing to do.

Mar 13, 2010

Local Voodoo Witch Doctor Vows To Place Curse On Everyone Not Attending Lamont 100 Year Festival On June 19th

In a startling declaration that has every chicken within a 30 mile radius quaking in their coops, a local practitioner of the long discredited and ultimately powerless pagan practice of voodoo has vowed to unleash all of his 'mumbo-jumbo' on anyone who is aware of the totally exciting and extremely rewarding Lamont 100 Year Festival but decides to stay home and mope around the house for no good reason. "Uga baga buga!" bellowed the poorly disguised Chester Bodine, 52, the somewhat ridiculous witch doctor while shaking a fake plastic spear that one of his kids purchased at 'Safari Land' on their one family vacation in the last 30 years. "Sumba ampa powa" he sneered, while twitching and shaking and bulging his eyes out in a quite unnatural way, thus increasing the overall cheesiness of his obviously heartfelt presentation. "Anyone who knows of the Lamont festival and does not attend - may their receding hairlines flee from them like scared jackals and may every morsel they ever eat rest forever on their hips! Oh yeah, and may your dog have fleas, too!" he said menacingly. "Life is too short to sit in one's straw hut, missing out on fun, socially significant gatherings in order to appease the voracious spirits of laziness! Let all who hear these words be warned!" he hollered unconvincingly before resorting to a coughing fit due to his '2 pack a day' habit. "And don't forget about that Sadie Hawkins dance in Rockford on May 1st, either!" he rasped!

"Oh, that is just great!" bemoaned the besieged Mayor. "Here we are trying to organize a fun, family event and now we have some doggone voodoo nut job in the park placing curses on everyone in the whole dern world! I mean, why do I have to be the Mayor of a town that even has a witch doctor? I bet Cheney and Tekoa don't have witch doctors! (He is not so sure about those rival small towns in Lincoln and Adams Counties, however! Who can tell what those doggone rascals are up to from minute to minute!) Oh yeah, life is fair! We have 100 dadburn people and of course we have a witch doctor in the group! That's just peachy!" he cried with that all too familiar tone of self-pity and angst! "And where did he get that lame costume and phony hair? Oh, that is just so wrong! And what self-respecting witch doctor wears cheap, well-worn cowboy boots that appear to be covered in one of those unfortunate cow byproducts that make living in the Palouse so special? That ain't no dadburn witch doctor - that's just one of those doggone farmer/ranchers trying to scare up some visitors for the festival!" said the super-sleuth detective, finally stumbling on the obvious! "Dang it, man! We don't need no hocus-pocus or pagan tomfoolery to have a successful festival - not when we will have so many varied food vendors, raffles, entertainment, live music and a parade! Oh, when will Lamont put aside their primitive myths and mores and embrace the fact that we really aren't that bad of a town, after all?" he pleaded hopelessly. 'Success or failure of the festival is in the Hands of the Good Lord - and all the bad acting and poorly applied makeup in the world won't change the outcome one jot or tittle! And someone needs to tell him to quit tracking all of that manure into the park! Can't a man wipe his feet off from time to time, for Pete's sake?" he said exasperatedly while watching his step as he stormed off back to the office.

Mar 12, 2010

Area Airedale Society Lodges Complaint Against Lamont Blog Over Inflammatory Depiction Of Breed

The humble Lamont Blog, the scrappy and self-styled 'Premier News Organization in the Palouse', was formally served with a decidedly scathing complaint after they inadvertently ran a controversial photo of an Airedale under what can only be deemed as 'compromising circumstances'. The photo in question was originally published in response to a very disturbing and unnatural 'hugging spree' that had gripped the Town in its cold, life-sucking grip, and really had nothing to do with Airedales themselves - although open-minded individuals could somehow be led to believe that that was in fact a fairly typical behavior for that largely misunderstood breed.

"Well, I was casually surfing the internet when, much to my horror, I somehow ended up at that cursed Lamont Blog!" said the highly agitated Airedale owner, Sheri, who appears to be on the run from the Authorities in the forlorn desert wastes of the American Southwest. "Anyway, not being a big hugger myself, I was naturally drawn into a somewhat poorly written article on how hugs are destroying this little old town stuck out in the middle of nowhere, when I happened to glance at an obviously faked photo of a sheepish-looking Airedale with his paw wrapped around an obviously content and relaxed cat. I could not believe my eyes! What blasphemy! What distortion of reality! What a crime against an extremely loyal and loving breed!" she ranted insanely! "Anyone who knows anything about anything (Editorial Note: Thankfully the Lamont Blog has never been accused of THAT!) knows that no self-respecting Airedale would ever even be in the same room with a cat, let alone 'cavort' so shamelessly with the doggone things! I mean, I have nothing against cats, but that is the same thing as showing a picture of a snake lovingly embracing a kangaroo rat or a Bald Eagle nuzzling up against a salmon or whatever. It just isn't natural, I say! I demand a retraction!" she fumed!

(Legal Note: We at the Lamont Blog only desire to provide insightful and cutting edge reporting and had no desire or intention to ignite some 'inter-species' conflict and certainly had no intention of disparaging an outstanding breed of dog by implying that certain members of that canine sub-group were not avid cat chasers. We apologize for any confusion or discomfort our picture caused as we attempted to stomp out a very real societal problem - the blatant and widespread scourge of spontaneous hugging by people who really do not know each other that well. And we would also encourage Sheri (and her pooch!) to immediately turn herself into the closest branch of the FBI (Feline Bureau of Investigation) so she can put that whole tragic 'legal mess' behind her once and for all. Oh yeah, Sheri, and try to be nicer to your sweet twin sister, too! Thank you.)

Mar 11, 2010

Mayor Finally Finishes Literary Classic "Moby Dick' - Now Refers To Rival Small Towns As "Cursed White Whales!!"

In a troubling move that has Herman Melville turning over in his grave (while clutching handfuls of his now somewhat thinning hair!), a local Mayor, never a person who anyone would even remotely call 'bookish', finally got off of his dead rear-end and finished one of the pillars of western literary culture after numerous 'fits and starts' since his inglorious graduation from an extremely understanding State university a shocking 25 years ago this year. This classic novel, having something to do with a bunch of guys with biblical sounding names racing all over the place and slaughtering innocent whales until some albino whale who felt ostracized by the other mean, snooty whales decided he just wasn't going to take it anymore or something and began a systematic destruction of every ship on the face of the earth. Anyway, the doggone book was about 1,000,000 pages long and was filled with a bunch of arcane nautical terms like spinnaker, bowsprit and foremast and the like - not to mention a generous sprinkling of colorful expressions like 'thar she blows!', 'shiver them timbers' (not to be confused with 'shiver me timbers' from that other book the Mayor has yet to finish - Treasure Island, for Pete's sake!) and that ever handy expression 'heathenish old scamp'. (talk about a term perfectly suited for Lamont!)

"Well, yes, that was quite an arduous endeavor, but one I was indeed well matched for, as it would appear" said the suddenly smug, swaggering, literary-wanna-be Mayor, (who doesn't object to being called 'Ahab', by the way - although other names that start with the letter 'A" seem to be far more popular!) (and vulgar!) standing there, book in hand, gesturing with his new 'Sherlock Holmes' pipe and showing off his new sophisticated 'smoking jacket' with those fetching fake leather patches on the elbows (Did Sherlock Holmes ever really wear a lime green smoking jacket? I mean, come on! And what does Sherlock Holmes have to do with Herman Melville or literary prowess or whatever in the first place? There must be some flawed symbolism nestled in there or something - thus proving the Mayor's lack of basic knowledge of literature once again! Oh, that is just so embarrassing!). "Sure, when one so brazenly wades into the treacherous, danger-infested waters of a great mind like Melville, the associated risks to one's world view are stark indeed!" he said annoyingly - donning an atrociously fake English accent that made everyone in the room want to hold him down and knock the 'plum pudding' out of him. (like that is new! And who says we need a reason!) "It was truly a testimony to the insanity of Man's innate desire to control the world around him - even to the extreme of his own demise. (Editorial note: The small town mayoral parallels here are truly staggering! Whoa!!!) All very heady stuff in the age of terror and Hip Hop music and that girl that seems to be on every piece of merchandise in Wal-Mart and all!" he said piously before resorting to a coughing fit after pompously puffing on his new, unused pipe - although he did not take into consideration the reality that he is not, in fact, a smoker - and thus blew burning embers all over his person. "Pity about those whales, though" he wheezed before having to cut the interview short to run and get a sip of Lamont's excellent water and to put his now actively smoking 'smoking jacket' out before more serious harm was in fact done to him or others.

(Editorial Note: The Mayor claims he would have finished the novel much sooner except for the fact that he felt supernaturally drawn to go get coffee every time one of the unfortunately named major characters was mentioned. Yes, that major character was, in fact, called 'Starbuck' so let's just say that the Mayor has spent an inordinate amount of time all wired up in 'The Gents', as those rascally Brits like to say!)

Mar 8, 2010

Town Experiencing Disturbing, Unprovoked "Hugging Spree" - Mayor Pressures Council For Emergency "Cease And Desist" Order

In yet another troubling indication that the 2nd smallest Town in the State has lost its collective mind, the entire metropolitan area of Lamont has been infected with a frightening scourge of spontaneous physical displays of affection that has sociologists and dudes in general scrambling for answers, insiders report. This shocking trend not only includes the polite yet brief 'double back pat' hug, but has also morphed into creepy 'arm around the shoulder' encroachments, a marked increase in generic 'back patting' and a disturbing 270% increase in full fledged 'bear hugs' that last more than 2 1/2 seconds! (Oh, that is just so wrong!) "Whoa, ease back there, buddy - that is close enough right there!" said the naturally cautious Mayor as the UPS guy came to drop off a package that required a signature! "I am not sure what the heck has gotten into these people, but given that my ancestors came from northern Europe where more than a casual wave was considered socially promiscuous except under the confines of marriage, this whole hugging thing is more than a little unsettling!" he said with that all too familiar look he has when someone tries to hand him a screaming baby with an obviously full to overflowing diaper. (Oh, if that were only a rare occurrence!)

"I mean, I know that living in Lamont is really the answer to the American dream and all, and I am glad people are generally happy and upbeat about their lives and want to share that happiness - but whatever happened to folks just picking up the phone or sending a card or something?" he pondered disgustedly. "Just the other day, I was walking to the office to check on our mosquito treatment program with that amazing Kynda Browning of Tekoa fame - and right there at the corner of Spokane and 7th streets there was some kind of 'group hug' or whatever the heck that was! I mean, right there in broad daylight! I thought for a minute there I was going to have to turn on the fire hose or something! That pretty much just gave me the creeps...! I mean, what is wrong with saying "nice to see you" or 'good job' or whatever - what is with this whole hugging thing between innocent neighbors? Its like the whole town has gone mad, for Pete's sake!" he said while glancing over his shoulder to make sure no one was making an opened-armed mad dash at him from behind while he wasn't looking. "Sure, Lamont is a friendly town and all, but too much of any one thing is bound to cause some problems at some point. And when did the good old "high five' ever go out of style, anyway...? Now that is an appropriate form of physical affection amongst neighbors - at least sometimes, that is!" he said cautiously.

Mar 7, 2010

Mayor Flummoxed After Disturbing Percentage Of Town Thinks Newsletter Is Written Specifically About Them

In one of those mind numbing scenarios of statistically improbable absurdity that can only happen in the Palouse, a shocking number of citizens in Lamont, a bustling metropolis of 100 souls, is absolutely convinced that a large portion of the articles in the 4 page Town newsletter were written specifically to expose some sort of hidden mischief and/or corner cutting that they have been hiding from the prying eyes of the Town or were put there to somehow make them seem less stellar and erudite in the eyes of their envious and highly competitive neighbors. The humble Town newsletter, produced every so often to inform the citizenry of what the heck is going on, contains stories about future plans, ordinance issues, upcoming events and other small town trivia that once made this country great and served as a rallying point for the 'body politic' in a simpler, bygone era.. Sadly, in the 2nd smallest Town in the State, this mundane and hastily crafted document has proven itself to be an endless source of controversy and angst that has almost led to blows on more than one occasion.

"Good gravy, man! Its just a doggone small town newsletter!" bellowed the Mayor with that all-too familiar look on his face like that of a dog who sees his own reflection in the mirror for the first time and wonders what the heck is going on. "I mean, we have to expend the postage for the water bills anyway, so we like to piggy-back the newsletter in the same envelope for maximum communication potential" said the outrageous cheapskate! "Normally, I just sit down a few hours before human saliva hits the water bill envelopes themselves, so needless to say it is not the most thought out document ever written, but it certainly is not some masterpiece of intrigue and social satire either, for goodness sake! How can so many people think so many articles were written specifically about them - and that they were only put there in the first place to personally single them out in the eyes of their equally implicated neighbors! I mean, what are the chances of that? Can our town really be that edgy and self-focused? But on a positive note, I do receive a lot of startling confessions - thus helping us to solve any number of lingering Town mysteries that we might not have ever figured out! I have to wonder, however, if one of those no-good rival towns in Adams or Lincoln county somehow has a hand in this nefarious intrigue, serving as agent provocateurs or nare-do-well rabble-rousers or whatever in a vain attempt to hamstring Lamont's meteoric rise to prominence in small town circles the world over!!" he pondered with more than his fair share of outrageous home-grown paranoia and delusions of grandeur. "Why can't our adoring citizenry just read those simple articles for what they are - minor interest items - instead of assuming that they are part of some grand conspiracy designed to undermine the very foundation of Western Civilization itself! Oh, what in the heck is really going on here? Why can't I seem to grasp the real issue in regard to this doggone newsletter opposition?" he whined! "Is it the fact that there is news in Town now, as opposed to the inertia-hampered but obviously comfortable decades past - or is it the fact that it comes in the water bill (which should be a good association since we have just about the best water in the State and our rates are so reasonable!) or does everyone just have too much time on their hands and this leads them to think that everyone else, namely me, is thinking and writing specifically about them? (That is certainly not the case!) Doggone it, man! What the heck is the problem here! Its just a small town newsletter, for Pete's sake - not the dadburn Communist Manifesto!" he said patriotically while gazing lovingly at the good old 'Stars and Stripes' that is waiting to be hung back up on Lamont's new, huge flagpole once the weather gets a little warmer!

Mar 4, 2010

Area Farm/Ranch Patriarch Has Gone Thru Entire Life With Only One Facial Expression

In one of those stories that could only happen in the Palouse, the head of a somewhat disreputable and ornery area farm/ranch cabal, Elmer 'Old Man' Snopes, has somehow managed to muddle thru his entire life without ever changing the expression on his face - much to the discomfort of friends and family alike, insiders report. The progenitor of the disturbingly large and unfortunately energetic Snopes clan just never seemed to get around to manipulating his facial muscles - thus leading to a disturbing case of atrophy that, at this point, appears to be beyond the scope of medical science itself. "Oh, why did you have to bring up that whole unfortunate 'frisky business'! whispered the obviously nervous and distraught Ida Snopes, 79, Elmer's long suffering wife. "I mean, how much torment is one woman expected to endure in this seemingly endless lifetime? Sure, I love him and all, but some mental images are better left to the distant, murky past, for Pete's sake! And that one certainly falls into that decidedly unpleasant category! Oh, I'll have nightmares for weeks now! Thanks loads, whatever your name is!" she shuddered while spitting and crossing herself several times! (too bad she didn't have any salt to throw over her shoulder!)

"Well, let's just say that my daddy is not only a man of few words, but he also don't go around wasting all his time and energy on making useless facial expressions to make himself seem all friendly and normal and human and all of that nonsense" said Festus Snopes, Elmer's oldest son. (not to be confused with 'Fester Snopes', purportedly a cousin in ways that the Law doesn't allow!) Let's just say that you never want to play poker against the man! He's dern near impossible to read! It's eerie! He just stares at you with those beady little eyes and you never know if he is bluffing or if he has all four aces! If he was ever able to actually learn the rules of poker, that man would have been a phenomenon. I guess it is a good thing that he ain't that smart!" concluded the chip off the old block.

"Well, needless to say it is hard to pick out Christmas presents for my daddy" said Ida Lou Snopes Bodine, 56, the patriarch's somewhat high strung and excitable daughter. "My whole life I have tried in vain to please that man, but regardless of what I got him and no matter how much it cost, when he got done pulling off the Christmas paper, he would just look up at me with those droopy, sunken eyes and I never could tell if he really liked it or not! Sure, he would mumble a few words of thanks or whatever, but don't all disappointed fathers do that? Oh, for the last 50 years I have been reduced to uncontrollable tears on each and every Christmas morning! I hate Christmas! I hate my life! Why doesn't he love me? Why can't I be a good daughter to him, unlike that hellion she-cat sister of mine! Oh, just leave me alone now! Leave me to my torment!" sobbed the insane daughter/drama queen! (Editorial Note: Why can't she be the one in the family with no outward signs of emotion? Oh yeah, life is fair!)

Mar 3, 2010

Lamont Schedules 33rd Annual 'Bring Your Cow To Work' Day

In a special treat for the citizenry and kids alike, (to say nothing of our much loved and pampered bovines!), the Town of Lamont, a municipality forever on the cutting edge of exploring the deep richness that is the human/cow relationship, is encouraging its always reluctant and largely rebellious citizenry to mark March 23rd as the day to load up their favorite cow (or two!) in the hauler (after hosing it out, of course!) and bringing them to the workplace so they can share in that strange and sadly diminishing human phenomenon called 'work'. Cows, who never really got the hang of that whole 'employment thing', have for 1000's of years been seemingly content with just standing around, eating continuously and making unsettling messes all over the place (Oh, we won't even mention the noises!) and thus can potentially benefit from this exposure to the 'human' way of doing things, it is believed.

"Well, I am not sure who first came up with this boondoggle of an idea or why the Council continues to foist this madness on us year after year, but doggone it, it took us until almost August of last year to finally get the Town Hall to stop smelling like a dadburn barn, for Pete's sake!" said the obviously peeved Mayor while that one eyebrow of his twitches like it always does when he is really mad or he smells something really unpleasant (in this case, we are not sure which one it is!). "Sure, we get all this 'touchy-feely' 21st Century garbage crammed down our throat, but the council never sees fit to allocate a few measly dollars for a carpet cleaning service, now do they? You have to remember, we don't have a doggone bathroom in the Town office - not that those no-good cows would bother to use it, anyway! They are just animals, I say - just a bunch of uncouth 'beasts of the field' and they don't belong in the dadburn workplace! Sure, everyone pledges that their cows are 'potty-trained' and all, but that is just a bunch of bull, if my experience is any guide!" he bellowed insanely, one whole side of his face now twitching like a paper sack full of puppies! (What a killjoy! Some people will try to ruin anything!)

Although this wonderful and quaint tradition has brought joy and happiness to generations of Lamontazoids, this program is not without its detractors, however. Given that Lamont is decidedly rural in nature and the surrounding area is made up largely of cattle ranches, many of the area families don't have any place to take their cows, since the cows already live where the rancher's work, and vice versa - thus causing feelings of intense isolation and social exclusion for a sizable segment of the citizenry (what about the dern cows themselves! How do you think they feel?) who already feel like they are 'well outside the mainstream' due to the fact that people tend to shun them (some even flee in horror!) because they always smell like - well - you know - COWS! The Lamont Council has been struggling to overcome this obvious conceptual incongruity and is toying with the idea of having a 'Bring your cow to work day - unless you are a rancher and the cows are already there - so bring your mother-in-law' instead Day'. Needless to say, they will undoubtedly turn this poorly articulated idea over to the Mayor to smarten up and to communicate, probably without any additional funds, either!

Mar 2, 2010

Lamont Somehow Staggers Through A Council Meeting With Both A Sheriff's Deputy and Newspaper Reporter In Attendance

Although under normal circumstances the humble yet decidedly wayward Town of Lamont would feel like a 3-legged field mouse trapped between a hungry, highly motivated cat and an over achieving (one dares not say yappy!) mouse-hating terrier of some kind; the decidedly bewildered and continually upward moving 2nd smallest Town in the State somehow survived this hideous 'trial by fire' without anyone being arrested or making the front page thru some outrageous feat of absurdity or tomfoolery that, unfortunately for us, seems to be all too common these days. "Well, when I got word that both the Sheriff's Department and a top-notch reporter from the Whitman County Gazette were going to be attending the meeting at the same time, my mind naturally took to decidedly paranoid wings of fancy and I dreamed up any number of citizen inspired ambush scenarios or other hideous life-dramas that would somehow make it as the feature of some doggone Geraldo Rivera special or whatever!" said the relieved Mayor after successfully making it to his home (and changing his doggone shorts, for Pete's sake!). "I mean, when you are a Mayor of a small town in Eastern Washington, you pretty much learn to endure just about any outrage or travesty of human beastliness, but if this job has taught me anything, it is that there is no such thing as a dadburn coincidence!" he stammered on annoyingly like Rocky Balboa after getting smacked around by that huge Russian dude in whatever "Rocky" movie that was.

"Anyway, another contributing factor to my overwhelming (although decidedly warranted!) paranoia centered on the fact that a significant segment of the area population spends an inordinate amount of time actually plotting the downfall of the Town (under the banner of saving it, or so they tell each other over and over! Talk about a stereotypical echo chamber!), to say nothing of bushwhacking the Mayor, and these quite considerable energies could bear their wicked fruit at some point, regardless of how bitter the taste might be for all concerned" he droned on philosophically. "I mean, if some people would just remain neutral or maybe even pitch in a little instead of always attempting some outrageous 'gotcha moment' we might even be the 3rd smallest Town in the State by now! But NO!!! And a good chunk of these folks do not even live here, for Pete's sake!" he whined. "That just doesn't make any sense to me! So yeah, when I heard that two of the pillars of our humble little northwest Palouse universe (okay, Lamont is in a pretty small universe, although we do, however, love the Sheriff and the Gazette and the Lamont Grain Growers!) were making an appearance at our monthly meeting, naturally I was a little concerned and steeled myself for the worst. Never underestimate the pent-up devilry of a bunch of 'do-nothing' gripers, I always say!" he said sagely, finally making some sense! (Editorial Note: One always has to watch out for those folks who will claim a town as their own but refuse to live directly in it!)

Although on the surface the commingling of ominous outside forces (the Gazette and the Sheriff) did seem like it just might be some foreshadowing to a disgusting passion play (and oh, who loves drama more than Lamont?) of quite unnecessary 'Lamont bashing' orchestrated by that segment of the citizenry that wants the Town to stay firmly mired in the 18th century (you would be surprised if you knew who these people actually were!), the attendance of the extremely sharp Deputy (actually he is a Sergeant!) and the very talented and clever reporter was in fact just a random occurrence, thus knocking the stuffing out of the Mayor's quite hokey and unsubstantiated 'No Coincidence Theory' once and for all. "Well, if a broken clock can tell the right time twice a day, then I guess I am entitled to be wrong once in a blue moon!" he blathered on defensively, making absolutely no sense whatsoever! (like that is new!) And the Mayor, never known for being handy in the kitchen, actually made a lame attempt at appeasement and baked what he quite casually referred to as 'oatmeal cookies' for the meeting - although the texture was all wrong and there was about 10 times too much 'Allspice' added to the dough. (Editorial Note: We would like to apologize for any and all gastro-intestinal or digestive incongruities that might have resulted from consuming these so-called 'cookies'- and would remind these unfortunate individuals that that was a personal offering that had nothing whatsoever to do with the Town itself - i.e. Don't blame us - blame him! I mean, who puts that much allspice in oatmeal cookies, anyway? Something is just not right there!)