Jul 28, 2010

Lamont Area Hit By Spurt Of Real Life Situations Too Embarrassing To Put In Normally Outrageous Lamont Blog

The lowly and largely scape-goated Lamont Blog, a humble rag that is self-tasked with recording the ebb and flow of the 2nd smallest Town in the State and its environs for an innocent, disbelieving world, ran up against a brick wall of painful reality after any number of almost unbelievably shocking and disturbing things happened that are just too darn outrageous to capture in the Blog - given the Greater Lamont Metropolitan Area's (GLMA) already battered reputation and standing within the State. These humbling and shockingly inane occurrences, many of which are the natural by-products of decades of bad thinking and laziness (oh, why are these two traits always grouped together like conjoined twins or whatever? And when exactly did this town begin to go wrong, anyway?), can pretty much only happen in a place like Lamont and thus would be considered too far-fetched and fanciful if communicated to outsiders not familiar with this humble little berg and its many quirky short-comings and idiosyncrasies.

"Good gravy, man! There is no way we could ever print any of that!" bellowed the shame-faced Mayor. "I mean, who would believe some of those things? The Lamont Blog, no stranger to the strange, would be laughed out of the State (but would probably be eagerly accepted in Idaho!) if we printed some of that stuff! The few people I told are still shaking their heads and mumbling to themselves, for crying out loud! Those Blog articles about space aliens and people returning from the grave to support our new library are tame in comparison to the stark reality that faces the GLMA on an almost daily basis. When a given community takes the path of least resistance or opts for complete inaction on a consistent basis for 50+ years, one can expect some unorthodox perspectives to develop and all, but the cultural and procedural nightmares that have been uncovered this month go way beyond the pale, let me assure you! I am just thankful that they are not directly related to the Town of Lamont but are dysfunctional manifestations afflicting other entities that unfortunately co-exist with us out in far, far northwest Whitman County!" he prattled on! (Oh, but the rest of the County is so normal and efficient!) "If that level of bad thinking existed within the apparatus that is the Town of Lamont, let's just say that it would be time for a little tush kicking! But given that they are coming from entities outside of our direct control, we just have to manage around them as best we can and hope we do not get tainted in the process!" he said optimistically!

"Oy vey! Silence is indeed the very bedrock of a peaceful and happy life - especially when it comes to the nightmarish bad thinking that has been uncovered around here in the last month or so!" said Ebenezer Lamontowitz, Lamont's lone remaining rabbi and great, great grandson to Lamont's founder and original resident (and poet!), Jedediah Lamontowitz. (known for the now famous and emotionally moving poem (in iambic pentameter!) "Never turn your back on a dadburn billy-goat!) "Some things should just not be shared outside the Town for the greater good of all - especially those innocent outsiders forever damaged and scarred by hearing the real scoop on us! But given what we have seen from entities in this area, the very fact that Lamont is even still in existence is a testament to the true blessings bestowed on this town from above. (and don't forget all the 'Divine Patience!) We have so much to be thankful for, let me assure you" he said with a conspiratorial wink of the truly wise and connected. "And I am just glad my great, great grand-daddy ain't alive to see what his dream has come to in the last 5-6 decades! (until a few short years ago!) It would break his little pea-pickin' heart!" he sobbed, wiping away a tear.

"Like, dude, no way that that stuff should be shared around the State, doggone it! That would be a bogus thing to do!" said Bif Martin, Lamont's only professional wheat surfer. "I mean, like, what a wipe-out to our reputation and all. Well, not so much ours, but rural America as a whole would sure take a hit. And it ain't like the undertow around here ain't enough to suck you right down to the waiting sharks or nothing, but to totally wig out and barf up a bunch of reality on a totally unsuspecting and unprepared State would be a real downer, dude. A real downer! Plus, it is all so unbelievable in the first place - like a real reality buster, dude, that hopefully no one would believe the sort of nonsense that passes for common sense and practical application around here, man. I mean, whoa! That's what I am hoping for, anyway" he said before grabbing his board for a little 'wheat surfing' before it gets too dark.

Jul 23, 2010

Town Uncharacteristically (and only momentarily!) Honors Hapless Mayor For Successful Mosquito Control Year

The ever-grateful and appreciative citizens of the Town of Lamont, never shy in gushing praise for even the smallest, most seemingly mundane things that come their way, (Hey, we were able to actually write that without bursting into dadburn flames! Whoa! Its a miracle!) has opened the floodgates of love and affection (not to mention a lavish percentage pay increase!) for the non-salaried and normally pilloried Mayor because this year is a surprisingly light mosquito year - by Lamont standards, anyway. (Well, we do blame him specifically when the mosquitoes are bad, so why not throw him a bone when they ain't so bad? A town's got to be fair! And it ain't like we mean all that positive stuff in the first place, anyway!) The Greater Lamont Metropolitan Area (GLMA), a region nestled between the haunted, hellish, snake-filled, forbidding, totally creepy 'Scablands' and the beautiful, rolling-hilled, wild flower-scented Palouse (where deer frolic and prance for no particular reason other than they are just glad to be alive (and it is not hunting season!) and it is like an 'all the wheat you can eat buffet' over there), has an unfortunate necklace of small lakes/ponds that are about 3 inches deep and that, of course, provide the perfect breeding ground for any number of cranky, energetic, aggressive, demonic, resourceful, mean-spirited and obviously fertile and frisky species of mosquitoes - the likes of which make those blood-sucking nightmares in Alaska, Louisiana, and Siberia look like tame house pets in comparison! Lamont, known regionally for only 2 things - 1) being 100 years old and not having managed to install a public restroom and 2) a nightmarish mosquito problem straight out of a Stephen King novel (the old Stephen King - not how he is now that he has descended into scatological insanity and just wants to sell books based off of his formerly good name!) - has struggled for years to come to grips with their 'little mosquito problem' (Don't forget that vexing bathroom conundrum! We worked for years on that one, too - to no avail, of course!) and, just last year, that doggone awesome Kynda Browning of Tekoa fame provided the solution with a mosquito control program that they use over there and that all Lamont had to do was pay a marginal fee to join - no brain work or math required!! (Talk about an understanding, solution-oriented woman! Whoa! There is no way we could have done that on our own!) Anyway!

"Well, feeling the love and camaraderie of the somewhat mercurial citizenry is what makes this job so rewarding and fulfilling!" said the beaming mayor while being mercilessly pelted by those unfortunately abundant local roses (thorns intact, of course!) flung at him by the adoring and disturbingly accurate hoards. "I mean, I am just as glad as the rest of our thoughtful, feisty, generous, truly appreciative citizenry to not have over half of my blood drained from my veins by some freakish little "disease dispensers" from some fetid swamp or stinking backwater or whatever! But the funny thing is, our mosquito sprayer guy from last year went on to greener employment pastures and the doggone State of Washington's test for mosquito dudes is so darn hard that it takes a PhD in chemistry and physics to even get a D- on the darn thing - so we have not been able to spray at all this year since we don't have an actual 'mosquito sprayer dude'! (Or mosquito gal! Gals can kill mosquitoes, too! This is the year 2010, for Pete's sake! Lamont is an equal opportunity mosquito killing town!) Isn't that ironic? We cannot spray this year but the mosquitoes are almost non-existent! So really, I have not done a darn thing in the mosquito realm at all, other than whine about the American manpower situation! (that ain't the only issue he has done nothing on, come to think of it!). This wonderful mosquito year is all the Good Lord's work - not mine" he stammered before looking up and seeing the formerly adoring yet decidedly fickle and surly crowd slowly begin to morph into that mob of angry, raving villagers from the movie classic Frankenstein (and where the heck did all those darn torches and pitchforks suddenly materialize from, anyway? And why are they all speaking with those really bad German accents?) "Whoa! Wait!!! I never said I sprayed for mosquitoes! I thought the citizens were just glad that we didn't have swarms of the vampire-like nightmares hovering over the town like some biblical plague in Egypt or whatever!! Hey! Ouch! That pitchfork is sharp, you maniac! Watch where you poke that thing! Owww. Hey!!! We have a pitchfork ordinance in this town, doggone it! Don't make me call our enforcement officer! (Editorial Note: Okay, now that was a big mistake! Talk about throwing red meat to the lions! Whoa! The Mayor is really not very bright when it comes to public mood management!) (or in any number of other areas!) Owww!! Help!!! HELP!! Get off of me, you unwashed rabble!!!" he screamed (like a dadburn school girl!) before fleeing for his largely meaningless life, the angry (some would suspect tipsy!) mob in hot although swerving and unsteady pursuit! Thankfully, given the light mosquito year and all, the Mayor will have plenty of blood to spare for clotting and bruise formation and all of that, should the need arise. And it looks like he will be needing it - especially since he, for obvious reasons, is not able to run very fast! (Editorial Note: Darn, too bad the Lamont Blog forgot to bring their binoculars - since we had a great angle to view the prolonged altercation! Oh, it turned out to be quite a show! We wonder if we should have gone to help, however! (On the side of the mob/rabble, of course!) No, that might have tainted our journalistic objectivity, and we can't have that, now can we?)

Jul 22, 2010

Area Coven Of Committed Meddlers Running Out Of Ideas To Thwart Town

In a sordid tale straight out of the feudal Middle Ages that would make Macbeth himself shudder in terrified approbation, a loosely organized but highly spirited cadre of area malcontents, busybodies, and self-described (and self-delusional!) 'Lamont Lovers' with malice in their hearts and way too much time on their hands have borrowed an unfortunate phrase from the Vietnam era and have committed themselves to the quite irrational course of 'destroying the Town of Lamont in order to save it'! (from those doggone elected officials, no less!) This small but obviously energetic group, a vast majority of whom do not even live within the town limits but indeed project their 'evil eye' from the surrounding area, have cast every spell and incantation known to their kind in a vain attempt to ensure that Lamont stays firmly rooted in the dark, murky past where progress of any kind was an abomination and where a permanent underclass was always present so that they could somehow feel good about themselves when those inevitable comparisons were made between the self-described area 'ruling elite' and those doggone plebeian, beast-of-burden-like 'Lamonters'!

"Oh, do you know how many of those stupid frog toes I had to collect in my decidedly futile and doomed attempt to undermine that doggone new library they have going in over there?" croaked Thelma Festoon, 63, an area farm wife and vice-president of misinformation and voodoo hexes for the so-called 'Lamont Lovers'. "And just think of all of those newts that I mercilessly wiped out in a vain attempt to make sure the paint didn't stick to that stupid fire station! (Hey, why paint when you will just have to paint again later - years from now?) Regardless of what we do, nothing seems to work anymore! Maybe I am losing my touch for corruption and mischief, but it seems that no matter what we do, Lamont just continues to improve and get better! That is just so wrong!" she hissed ominously! "How am I supposed to feel good about myself if I can't cast pitying glances down my long, wart-covered nose at those doggone people within the town limits of Lamont - a town that I don't now nor have I ever lived in - although I claim it as my own. (Oh yeah, that makes sense!) That just ain't fair at all" she bayed in the general direction of the waning moon. "Oh, why can't we seem to stop even one of their surprisingly exciting and well-managed initiatives?" she gurgled disgustingly! (Okay, we at the Lamont Blog are obviously running out of descriptive witch noises! Hey, this job ain't as easy as it looks! I mean, doesn't 'cackle' pretty much cover it from soup-to-nuts? 'Hiss' was pretty good though - but, let's be honest, it really can't compete with the robust and all-purpose 'cackle'! I mean, what can?)

"Well, at first it kind of creeped me out, like when I would find a chicken foot next to the town computer or when some necklace of human teeth would somehow show up on the lawnmower key chain or whatever!" said an area Mayor who asked not to be identified. "Sure, one would expect some opposition to positive changes, especially in a place like Lamont that historically has been very comfortable at whatever state they found themselves in at any given time - but to call on the unholy forces of darkness to help frustrate a town's entry into the 19th century seems like a lot of effort to go thru, if you ask me!" (Hey, who is asking you?) "I mean, what is so wrong with kids having a library or fixing the park up nice for our citizens? Sure, you have to break a few eggs to get stuff like that done, but those eggs have been on the nest too long anyway and to be quite honest, they have indeed smelled fresher! Whoa!" he said, just inviting another round of passionate and quite hyperbolic area hate-mail! (Oh, when will he ever learn!) "Can't we all just get along? But hey, when we get the new library done, maybe they will have positive books on things like hobbies and personal development and, who knows, maybe even a bible or two that can help focus these rabble-rousers in a direction that does not run counter to the upward momentum of the already beleaguered but certainly blessed 2nd smallest town in the State! A boy can dream, can't he?" he said with a disturbing level of naivety and with 'ostrich-like, head-in-the-sand' optimism that is out of all proportion to the current situation, given who we are dealing with and their dark, sinister motives!

Jul 17, 2010

Area Mayor Launches Desperate Public Awareness Campaign To Save Teetering American Culture From Imminent Internal Collapse!!

In a bold yet decidedly forlorn gambit to pull our national bacon from the fire before our cultural identity (some would say empire!) goes the way of Rome, Great Britain and/or the quite irreplaceable 'Sonny and Cher TV Show', an area Mayor attempted to rally all the forces at his disposal, such as they are, to stem one of the most egregious manifestations of our national decline - the subtle national seduction and/or conquest by small, yappy dogs who look like little freak shows from outer space or whatever. This coordinated public service program, code-named "Hugs, Not Pugs" is designed to draw attention to the obvious perils of small dog ownership in general and to replace that quite unnatural and sinister (yet obviously overpowering and IQ destroying!) need to shower attention and affection on some ill-conceived creature that is the unfortunate byproduct of centuries of demented and quite sadistic 'selective breeding' and to replace that disturbing and quite misplaced need with something that they obviously lacked during their tormented, profoundly hellish formative years - the natural and much less disgusting human contact known as 'the simple hug'. (Note: Being from Northern European stock and not one of those Mediterranean cultures that pretty much slobber all over each other for no particular reason, this hug thing can get way out of hand, too! What is so darn wrong with the culturally robust 'High-5', anyway?)

"Good gravy, man! How can we all just stand around as this majestic human experiment, the very pinnacle of human governance ever achieved on Earth, this America we all know and love, just gets eaten away by the narcissistic excesses of a bunch of stubby, noisy, 4-legged fiends with bladder control problems? (don't forget about all that incessant barking when safely ensconced in the car and thus out of harm's way!)" raved the purple-faced Mayor to no one in particular. "I mean, can't anyone but me see that this obsession runs counter to everything that we hold dear as a culture? Oh, and all that baby-talk that has replaced normal, everyday adult conversation when one of those genetic abominations is in the room! Wake up people! The wolf is at the very door! (Editorial note: Wolf? Oh, come on now! And to think I felt myself being swayed by his somewhat poorly structured argument up to this point! They aren't threatening wolves at all, just cute little sweetie-weeties who need a huggy-wuggy! Don't we, Mr. Snuggims?) "Wake up, people! It just ain't natural to devote such a large proportion of one's mental, physical and financial resources to something that could never exist in nature in the first place! (and who would have a name like 'Mr. Snuggims, for Pete's sake!! Oh, that is just so wrong!) And this doggone town is loaded to the gills with the beastly little nightmares! (On a rare positive note, given their size, that makes cleaning up the grass in the park that much easier since no one around here uses 'doggie-doo' bags! Hey, every cloud has a silver lining!) You can forget the doggone Communists and their terrorist stooges, (Don't forget Rap music!) our real enemy is curled up right beside you in a hot pink sweater with matching collar and is wearing some doggy perfume that, truth be told, most of you should have the decency to put on before going out in public, for crying out loud! (Hey, he forgot about the cute little painted nails! We just love those, don't we, Mr. Snuggims?. It is such a nice touch and makes my Mr. Snuggims look so handsome and dashing!)... Oh has this whole doggone world gone mad! Whatever happened to human contact and the quite necessary bonding between homo sapiens? Are you listening to me?" he ranted and prattled on like some sort of cat-loving mental patient or something. He's crazy as a loon, ain't he, Mr. Snuggims? He doesn't know you like I do, now does he? (Followed by sickening kissing sounds and some indistinct and quite insane cooing!)

Jul 15, 2010

The Town Of Lamont - A Prime Example Of 100 Years Of Being Forced To Consistently Choose Between 'The Lesser Of Two Evils'

Flying in the face of the age-old adage "Two negatives can sometimes make a positive", the lowly and amazingly still-kicking Town of Lamont realized late Tuesday that the current state of the Town is actually what ultimately and quite necessarily happens if a group of individuals either willingly chooses or is forced to consistently pick between one of several decidedly unappealing or downright cruddy options, any of which are manifestly unsuitable for any number of reasons, although at least one of these options is somehow 'less bad' than all the rest - thus making it superior and somehow enticing. Although known in sociology circles as "The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea" syndrome, this phenomenon normally affects dysfunctional families and/or really crappy 3rd world countries, so finding such a prime example in the Great State of Washington has got all those academic eggheads beside themselves with excitement and glee.

"Well, being the mayor and all, I can pretty much attest that the collective municipal decision making largely consists of deciding which option is less likely to finally be the straw that broke the camel's back in the short to intermediate term" said the jaded and cynical elected official who realized long ago that trying for a higher, more moral, long term approach to town management was a recipe for personal scorn and ridicule and who thus has gradually been worn down to a nub by the all-powerful voter block of people who fear success and even view success as some sort of failure itself - especially if anyone else succeeds besides them! (Oh, maybe you have to live in the Greater Lamont Metropolitan Area to understand that whole concept! Whoa! But its true!) "Anyway, I have to face this sort of thing on almost a daily basis, but being short-sighted and selfish, I never took the time to contemplate the cumulative effect of 100 years of this quite depressing situation. What a perpetually compounding hole we have dug ourselves in! I just assumed that things got this way fairly recently, but given that we do not have a public toilet and our fire station went unpainted for 60+ years, I guess this sort of underachieving decision making has been going on since our humble little town was founded in 1910! Wow, somehow that makes me feel better! If I thought that it was just a recent development, that might be profoundly unsettling for me personally. Knowing that it has been going on for 100 years, although outrageous and dysfunctional to the extreme, somehow makes me feel happier inside! See, it is happening again! Wow, maybe this ain't such a frustrating town after all!" he gushed, displaying a look of madness which, although quite common in these parts, would more than likely cause the typical 'outsider' to call for a dadburn exorcist or witch doctor or whatever! "But hey, what is so doggone hard about thinking in a 'win-win' sort of way, anyway? Why does that run so counter to our very natures out here in this wind-swept, cattle-scented and largely isolated and reclusive corner of the Palouse?" he rambled on philosophically! (Editorial Note: For the last 5 years or so, the town of Lamont has gratefully allowed Century West Engineering to play a major role in selecting our options for us, (which, in fact, was a darn good decision on our part, come to think of it!) and all things considered that has worked out swimmingly - all the way around. (for us, anyway!) True, they cannot be brought in on every minute decision matrix that we face, but for the big stuff they really seem to have all the bases covered from a positive, pro-growth, infrastructure-enhancement perspective (something we could never quite pull off on our own)- as will be obvious to anyone who has not seen this little town in, say, the last 5 years or so and wants to drop by to say "Howdy"! Needless to say we would like to keep Century West around! The closer the better! Maybe open up a branch office in Lamont or something. Yeah, that would be great, for us, anyway! We've got plenty of open land to build upon! Oh, do we ever have open land! Whoa! Acres of the stuff!)

Jul 14, 2010

Area Rancher Saddened, Dismayed After Hiring Local Private Investigation Firm To 'Tail' New Prize Bull

In a classic example of 'suspicions confirmed are worries averted', an area rancher, acting only on a general, vague 'gut feeling' of his wife, hired a local bovine private investigation firm to see what in the heck that doggone bull was really up to at all hours of the day and night, given any number of unusual events and circumstances that have plagued the ranch since the expensive purebred was purchased from that bull farm down California-way several months ago. This sad tale of intrigue, mayhem, tomfoolery and any number of late night shenanigans first began when the farmer/rancher's wife, Brunhilda Snopes, age 63, began noticing little things that were just not right around the ranch. (you mean besides her husband??) "Well, for a while there I just assumed that insanity had taken over me like it pretty much has every single member of my family for the last 125 years!" said the relieved Mrs. Snopes as she wiped her hands on her worn, tattered apron that appears to be about as old as her family's insanity but she is just too darn cheap to replace it. "Anyway, it started off with little things, like that time I took out that nice beef roast for Sunday dinner the night before only to wake up and find chicken breasts in its place with a vegetarian cookbook left right there on the counter for all to see. At first I just thought it must be one of the kids playing a joke, but they are all in prison or hiding from the law in some mountain redoubt in Idaho or whatever, so I know it wasn't one of them. Oh, and my husband would rather die than enter the kitchen, (have you ever thought it might be your cooking?) so I knew it wasn't him, neither! And then all of our leather shoes disappeared! It was all so weird!" said the excitable Mrs. Snopes. "But then I noticed that right about the time all these strange events took place that my roses were all eaten down to a nub - like someone or something had a quick snack on the way to commit those 'deeds most foul'! That is when I convinced my always reluctant and somewhat nervous husband that it was time to bring in a professional outfit to get to the bottom of it" she said proudly, always savoring those times she gets to exert her will on her hapless, un-manned husband.

"Well, we got the call at exactly 6:03 PM, and I could tell from the worried, almost frantic tone of voice on the phone that somewhere, somehow we had a cow go bad!" said Buster Cheatem, of the Clandestine Cow Consortium, a locally renowned bovine investigative firm. "Oddly enough, the average citizen has no idea how crafty and sneaky the typical, run-of-the-mill cow can be. All that Hollywood propaganda on those sweet, docile cows just grazing their lives away until it is time for that big trip to the meat processing plant is just a bunch of hooey! Heck, half the dern cows in the Palouse make the turn-of-the-century mafia in New York look like a bunch of frilly, giggling school girls, for crying out loud. There just ain't nothing them dern bovines won't do! So when a rancher gets a lively one, there is just one place for them to call! Yes sir! 1-800-CHEATEM! I ain't met a cow yet that I can't outsmart!" he lied - although the opposite might be true! "Anyway, after donning a simple but highly effective (and eco-friendly!) disguise, we were able to clandestinely infiltrate the herd and ascertain any number of undesirable behaviors perpetrated by the whole dern mess of 'em, but that doggone bull seemed to sure be the brains behind the entire nefarious operation! Whew! And once we felt certain that we were gonners when we assumed he had gotten wind of our sting operation and started a little mini-stampede aimed right at us! Oh, you ever try to run for your life in a 2-man cow costume? It ain't easy, let me tell you...!!" (especially if you are the one in the back! Whoa!) he whined. "Anyway, needless to say, we got to the bottom of it, and as part of our usual fee we accept beef, although I much prefer the taste of heifer over those stringy, pungent bulls - but like my pappy always said - 'Beef is beef, as long as it is in your freezer and not someone else's" he mused nonsensically, attempting to add yet another folksy expression to show solidarity with the locals but only succeeding in diminishing a story that, at best, was decidedly under-whelming to begin with and maybe even bordering on the downright mundane! (whoa! that was a little snippy!)

Jul 12, 2010

Supposedly Deep Thoughts On Decidedly Small Towns

The little town of Lamont, pretty much like some old, gnarled tree whose spreading branches have been an inevitable refuge for innumerable wayward birds who, over the last century, having been battered and blown by the winds of the world, have sought a much needed respite in its comforting and sheltering recesses - a town by all measures always small and insignificant as man judges those things - but one with a powerful symbolism for those who have healed and mended and/or started anew under its canopy - like a small and valueless gift from a long-lost loved one can carry a significance out of all proportion to its actual worldly value - a place as faded and unimpressive as an old forgotten pair of shoes and somehow comforting in the same inexplicable way. Like salmon recognizing and cherishing the stream of their birth regardless of the 1000's of miles of intervening waterways that their lives exposed them to, small towns like Lamont can leave the same, time-worn imprint on the ever-impressionable soul like a foot will eventually manage to forever personalize a new pair of shoes (especially those hard, leather kind! Oh, I hate those! What beastly little torture chambers!) - every foot leaving a slightly different imprint - but an imprint all the same - an imprint unique to the individual - and one that it recognizes immediately upon being reintroduced - regardless of the gap in time between events.

This is the power of a place like Lamont that one can only understand by living thru it and with it, by forming that bond and being formed by it over the general passage of time, like a river polishing and smoothing the hardest stone - never hurrying to do so, but also never daunted in its gentle pursuit, either. This country has 1000's of Lamonts, places both large and small, cast in forbidding wastelands and nestled at the very bosom of the earth's bounty. But these bonds, somehow thrust up from the stony ground of the human heart, form a considerable backdrop for all that we are - as individuals, as Americans and as human beings ourselves. A sense of place and belonging, a primary need since the terror filled days of our brutal and short-lived hunter-gatherer ancestry, forms the very foundation of what it means to be us - a central core so primary and fundamental that we no longer even recognize it until it is taken away. And all the pressures of the world, this modern world with its drive onward and upward - where accommodating an increasing number of people on an ever diminishing resource base places a natural premium on efficiency - at least efficiency as seen by a culture hurtling at break-neck speed, carried on by its own momentum and sense of purpose - and oftentimes just for the love of movement itself. But in that inevitable shuffling of priorities and requirements and essentials, decisions are never made by lone individuals but by a disjointed collective of well-intentioned souls, towns like Lamont can often be cast aside, most frequently by the very fruit of the mother tree itself - fruit that buys into the newer and faster and more exciting.

Which brings us full circle to the importance of maintaining the Lamonts of this world. This essential glue that holds the collective whole together requires a level of devotion outside the mere emotional - it requires energies beyond the self-congratulatory and it requires a commitment in addition to the status quo. This rare mixture of passion, reflection and enthusiasm, if fostered and allowed to grow, could very well save a large number of the obsolete and unfashionable relics of a slower municipal America, and we will all be richer for that. But only time will tell if these dreams and devotions are just the latest buggy-whips in the coming age of the automobile - or if they are indeed the last stand that turned the tide in our favor once and for all. Stay tuned to find out! If nothing else, it will be an interesting ride! And as has been said, everything there is to know about the world can be learned in a place like Lamont - and like any good canary-in-a-coal-mine worth its salt, we hope you will follow this little bell-weather as the bitter winter storms come, and the winds batter our tattered branches, but our tenacious persistence in the longing for the coming, healing, revitalizing Spring and its inevitable rebirth never diminishes. Because as the battered little birds nestle in our meager branches, so, too, do we nestle under the branches of the larger America - pausing to heal our broken wings and damaged plumes, drawing strength from something greater than ourselves in the hope that one day soon we can once again soar into the heavens (Okay, this is Lamont, so maybe 'soar' is to grand a word! More like that half flight/half flop thing that young birds do when out of the nest for mere hours! We don't want to get all carried away with our own capabilities!), and that our passionate although often inconsequential (some would say annoying!) singing will be just one more happy voice in a world that seldom takes the time to listen to such things, being busy and all, or one day we will all wake up and be deafened by the very silence itself and wonder where things went wrong!

Jul 11, 2010

Former Mayor Returns From Beyond The Grave To Throw Support Behind New Town Library

In a bold move that pretty much gave everyone the creeps but helped sway a few opinions of the 'old-timers' who are pretty much against anything new in the town, a previous Lamont mayor, Jed Stubbins, now deceased, seemed to suddenly appear or materialize or whatever the heck that was during a recent council meeting when the current mayor finally got organized enough to get around to following the agenda and a discussion on the new library was undertaken. Mayor Stubbins, smelling faintly of sulfur as is only right for previous (and current!!!) Lamont mayors, served the town of Lamont between the world wars and is lovingly remembered as that mayor who finally overcame the almost supernatural resistance of well over 95% of the citizenry and brought electricity to the now 2nd smallest town in the State. This quantum technological leap for Lamont, although consisting primarily of a single 40 watt bulb until at least the year 1979, forever marked his mayoral tenure as the most progressive to date but left him with many detractors - some unfortunately still alive today.

"Well, I don't live in the town, but I came to the meeting in the hope of introducing some red herring or bogus canard or patently false argument so that the more easily swayed members of the Council would vote against the new library and so Lamont could remain in the Dark Ages of ignorance and backwardness where I feel most comfortable!" said Gertrude Festoon, 74, an area gossip and part-time farm wife. "And right as I was about to shrilly pipe up and begin my well-rehearsed yet contrarian blather all of a sudden that darn Mayor Stubbins returned from his just rewards and ruined the whole darn thing! Oh, I never liked that man! And to add insult to injury, he kept looking at me, giving me that 'See you soon, Gertrude!' look or whatever that was! I mean, it is bad enough that Lamont is punching its way out of the wet paper bag of Luddite-like backwardness, but to have people return from the grave to support these changes just doesn't seem fair! And look at all the problems that darn electricity has brought us! Why anyone would trust that man is beyond me!" she screeched, making every dog tail within 10 miles sink instantly to the 'between the legs' position.

"Well, Lord knows that I have had my little problems with electricity, like that time I was 46 years old and wanted to listen to the radio under water in the bathtub and all, but all things considered, Mayor Stubbins' return from 'the great beyond' to support the Lamont library pretty much helped me change my position on the matter" said Bronco Snopes, an area rancher so named because of his quite impressive fear of horses. "Sure, I have no use whatsoever for books and all that fancy learning and all of that, but once I heard that Lamont is going to have a big, fancy fish tank in there and one of the first aquatic creatures they are going to buy is the fresh water fiddler crab, that was all I needed to know! How that darn Mayor Stubbins heard about Lamont's big aquarium plans from beyond the void is a mystery to me, but I love to look at the little fishes and who knows, maybe while I am watching that little fiddler crab will be able to reach out and grab one of the innocent little swimmers! Oh, that would be so awesome!" said the sadistic maniac! (Editorial Note. The freshwater fiddler crab is a peace-loving critter and will only be placed with fish that are 100% compatible with its sneaky, sticky-fingered ways - so the Lamont Library aquarium will not become "The Wild Kingdom" by any stretch of the imagination, regardless of the sick desires of a decided minority!)

Jul 9, 2010

Local Woman Wins Prestigious Palouse Limerick Competition

Although hard to believe, the town of Lamont actually won something when a local fashion maven and area farm wife, Thelma Bodine, age 33, stunned the judges at the 39th annual 'Palouse Limerick Competition' held in Lamont over the weekend. Mrs. Bodine, more well known in these parts for her modern and often 'risk-taking' and avant-garde fashion sense (at least for around here!) than for capturing the very essence of the democratic process in a small town setting - (especially in a town that doesn't trust them 'big word' people!) submitted a limerick that, according to the judges, captured the very essence of the Lamont experience - and even reduced several of the normally staid and hard-hearted judges to tears with its cutting accuracy and subtle encompassing of small town living in the Palouse.

"Well, you never know what the Lamont contingent is going to trot out from year to year - so needless to say I was a little nervous when she marched right out there to deliver her limerick" said Fester Festoon, an area farmer/rancher and last year's runner-up for his edgy portrayal of the intrinsic benefits and downright deliciousness of pickled pig's feet (And their juices! Don't forget those spicy juices!). "And of course it is always a little bit of a scandal - I mean with them fancy modern clothes she wears and that alluring, 'come-hither' hair style more suited for that dern Paris, France or San Francisco before that big quake (In 1906!!) or whatever. I mean, come on! Can't the woman have a little modesty - but she obviously has the 'right stuff' when it comes to all them fancy words, so you have to hand it to her there! Well, spank my momma, but you could have knocked me over with a feather, I mean, I felt like a dadburn tea kettle in a tornado, when we all realized that she did pretty much capture the entire democratic process in Lamont to a tee, and I ain't just whistling Dixie, neither!" he stammered, mixing metaphors and clichés and all those other doggone verbal associations in one painful to read sentence. "Plus, anything we old timers can do to derail that doggone mayor with all of his 'big city ways' and keep things the way they are is, by definition, a good thing, ain't it? I mean, this is our town, for crying out loud - even though we don't participate and we let the place go to the devil (quite literally in several cases!) for the last 50+ years or so. (Don't forget the fire station went unpainted for 60 years! Oh, just ponder the idle man-hours!) But still, we have squatter rights for this town or whatever dern legal term that is" he droned on as if he was never going to stop. (Editorial Note: We were going to say that he really had 'the bit in his teeth', so to speak, but haven't we suffered enough at this point? I mean, come on! A 'tea kettle in a tornado'? Oh, the lengths of suffering this Blog will endure to bring you the breaking news from Lamont! On some level it seems quite mad, doesn't it?)

The winning limerick, composed over a 4 month period, is printed below for our readers and to set the bar that much higher for Lamont's hopeful repeat victory in next year's competition. (Can lightening really strike 2 years in a row? I mean, what are the chances of Lamont winning anything in the first place?)

First place limerick

We once had a mayor of sorts
Whose every deed we greeted with snorts
Try as he might,
He could not get it right
And for thanks got a boot to the shorts!

Jul 7, 2010

Experts Trace Town's Truly Shocking Collective Neurosis Back To 'Cow Tongue Sandwiches' In Early Adolescence

The kooky and somewhat 'off kilter' town of Lamont, quite possibly the nuttiest, quirkiest, most out-in-left-field town in the history of the Great State of Washington (especially until a few short years ago! Whoa!), made a major breakthrough late last week when a team of harried, over-stressed and genuinely quite brave abnormal psychologists and sociologists specializing in municipal deviance (Talk about risking their own sanity and psychological well-being by exposing themselves to us!! Whoa!!! What professionalism! What devotion to the higher goal of municipal sanity and the nation's mental health!!) managed to trace back the one unifying root cause for all of the town's problems - both past and present - a feat rarely accomplished in the so called 'soft sciences'. This one singular trigger event, although buried under decades of repression, ignorance, poor language skills, blind pro-cattle sentiment and just a general lack of self-awareness and concern for things going on around them, was, tragically, rooted in the very cow culture of the Palouse itself.

"Well, I just remember my poor old momma telling me 'you either eat this dadburn cow tongue sandwich or you're gonna get the business end of my belt! If I can turn this thing on your good-for-nothin' father when he don't tow the line to my satisfaction, I can sure turn it on your scrawny rear-end!" recalled Jethro Festoon, 56, one of the more 'unique' area farmer/ranchers. (And what a group to pick from! Its like an all-you-can-eat buffet of 'charming' idiosyncrasies, for crying out loud!!) "Oh, what a choice that dern woman left me! (Hey, that's your momma, boy!) And I remember telling her that at least Festus Bodine's momma peeled the skin off the dern thing - but my loving although somewhat authoritarian (Editorial Note: Somewhat authoritarian? Good gravy, man! She makes Stalin look like Mary Poppins on muscle relaxers! Oh why, historically, have some of the women around here felt the need to be so domineering and unpleasant? Hasn't anyone seen "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" for strong female role models on the unforgiving frontier?) momma would proceed to tell me that cow tongues are like potatoes, all the dadburn vitamins are in the skin! Who can argue with obviously superior logic like that? So I ate them. Yes, I'll admit it!!! I ate them and I acted like I liked them!!! I am not proud of it, but those were the days before them fancy 'One-A-Day' vitamins and all that dern mess" he said, showing a surprising level of local knowledge for human health in general and vitamins in particular. (Editorial Note: 46% of the town believes Vitamin C comes from mosquito bites - thus ensuring that our scurvy levels are off the national charts and people show way too much skin in the summertime - especially right around dusk!)

"Oh the humanity!!! Gag!!! Argh!!! Oh, that is just so wrong!!!" bellowed the mayor who was not raised around here and who gets a little 'green around the gills' just thinking about all those parts of a cow that people around here eat with gusto on a regular basis!!! (We won't even mention 'gelding time' and/or those unfortunate 'Rocky Mountain oysters'!) (Oh, why did you have to mention those? Gah! Ugh!) "Oh, half the time plain-old hamburger gives me the creeps! I mean, what the heck is in there? But that is okay on some level because all the pieces are so small it does not take the most fertile imagination to imagine that they are all Filet Mignon versus some snout or whatever. But a tongue! Gah! Excuse me! Ugh!" he stammered as he bolted from the room before returning several minutes later with his pallor a few more shades of gray!. "Anyway, so it turns out that every single person in this whole dern town ate tongue sandwiches except me? And their supposedly loving mothers made them? Oh, the cruelty! What horror! But oh, now THAT explains a lot, doesn't it! Why couldn't someone have told me that years ago when I got roped into this dern job! Do you realize how many 1000's of man-hours I have spent trying to explain the unexplainable and rationalize the profoundly irrational that is the foundational 'Elemental Table' of the town of Lamont? Oh, whoa, I need to go lay down" he stammered after visualizing a wriggling cow tongue between 2 pieces of Wonder Bread! "Why would anyone who is not starving so willingly eat all those creepy parts of a cow that I shudder to even think about? But people around here gladly woof down these culinary calamities and then brag about it to everyone they know!! Oh, thank goodness I was born in California!" said the big squeamish sissy who will always be an outsider until he can come to grips with eating parts of the cow that may not be pretty but have a certain chewy character all their own!!

Temps Set To Soar In Lamont Although We Don't Have Some Big, Fancy Beach To Cool Off At (Based on yet another sad, crushing true story!)

In yet another example of Fate itself holding the lowly and largely luckless Lamont down and giving it a hemisphere-sized 'nuggie' (Oh, how do you spell such a word?), it would appear that the whole Pacific Ocean weather pattern has focused its quite considerable energy on reducing Lamont even further in the eyes of the world while that doggone Long Beach just ends up coming out 'smelling like a rose' once again. (Oh, and half of them will even get a tan without breaking a sweat!). This latest example of cosmic unfairness stems from some unusual weather pattern that somehow allows the Lamont area to become some hellish, Dante-esque, nightmarish, volcano-like inferno reminiscent of the very pits of Hades itself while other larger, more hip, less population challenged towns (that actually have stores!) on the coast are kept cool and fresh by billions of gallons of pleasantly cool but not-too-cold water that sneak down here from Alaska for some darn reason. (Oh yeah, life is fair! Even the very oceans themselves are on Long Beach's side!)

"Well, sure, Lamont is pretty much set to emulate a 'minute steak' on the broiler rack in the oven and our lives themselves, such as they are, are going to be devalued even further and what few shreds of hope we collectively hold as a town will be cast into the very furnace of Fate itself - but I have been leaving the sprinklers on in the park for an extra 3-5 minutes per day, so that is just as good as some stupid beach, ain't it?" said the cheapskate Mayor in a vain attempt to somehow equate a measly garden hose with the best doggone ocean in the whole dadburn world! "Well, at least I was leaving the sprinklers on a little longer - that is until that doggone Melba Bodine, age 73, went running out there in what I think was a bikini and I was struck blind for 3+ days! Although my eyesight is now returning somewhat, the mental anguish was so severe I pretty much just lay on my bed now, sobbing uncontrollably - so I am not sure what is going on out there!" he whined! "Are we still a town? Has the whole place gone up in flames through spontaneous combustion? Is there any writing paper left so we can hastily scrawl out a new bikini ordinance?" he sniveled!

Although Lamont is expected to reach and maintain the highest temperatures of the year, that well-planned, refreshing, largely cattle-free municipal 'Shangri-La' over there (that doggone Long Beach!) right on the beautiful Pacific ocean with all of its fresh breezes, abundant seafood and charming, well-educated citizens is expected to peak out at 72 degrees and sunny - more than 30 doggone degrees less than Lamont! (Okay, anyone still think this whole Long Beach thing is a coincidence??? I mean, come on! At some point this has to be considered 'piling on'!!! They have the whole Pacific Ocean on their side and we cannot even get Sprague Lake to be on our team! Oh yeah, life is fair! Darn your eyes, Long Beach, WA!)

Jul 6, 2010

Area Parrot Owner Appalled When 'So-Called' Friend Brings Bucket Of Fried Chicken To Annual 4th Of July Celebration

In one of those rare moments of clarity when the façade of years of friendship and camaraderie gets ripped away and the emptiness of the average human relationship becomes laid bare for all to see and recoil from, an area ex-friend, Bertha Belcher, age 34, a local farm wife, (who wasn't, in fact, officially invited for obvious reasons!) committed the ultimate social faux pas when she showed up (half 'in the bag', no doubt!) at the home of a certain Erika of Century West Engineering fame bearing a culturally insensitive gift which caused a social tsunami the likes of which has not been seen in the Palouse since Elmer Festoon brought German sausage and sour kraut to that WWII Veterans celebration back in 1982. (that was the last one of those ever held in these parts, for crying out loud! And not because we were running out of Nazi-spanking veterans, either!) The ever-gracious Erika, known across the region for her cutting edge 'parrot rescue' program, was reported by insiders to have greeted the artery-clogging gift with open-mouthed incredulity as the bucket of 'yard bird' was un-ceremoniously (some would say quite rudely!) thrust into her open arms as Bertha pushed past her in a frantic dash to find the restroom after spending almost 45 minutes in the car (And Lord knows that Lamont doesn't have a doggone public restroom yet, for crying out loud!). "Well, I just so happened to be milling around the front door, waiting to see if someone brought a dessert besides that stupid watermelon when the whole dern thing just unraveled right in front of me!" said Gomer Festoon, 53, an area rancher. "I could not hear what was actually said between the two now-hostile parties because those doggone parrots were singing the theme to "Gilligan's Island", but I could tell by Erika's suddenly stiff posture and icy sideways glance as Bertha lunged past her that something of import had just occurred. Sadly, right about that time Erma Blatt brought over what was supposed to pass for brownies, I guess, (Who could tell? Whoa!!) so I followed her into the kitchen to help get them organized - and thus I missed the best part of the altercation!' said the notorious sweet-tooth and unrepentant mooch who loves nothing more than a good 'chick fight!'

As Erika, ever the gracious host and stalwart patriot, proceeded to transport the contraband chow into the kitchen where she could keep an eye on it and see who, if anyone, would partake in the sacrilegious fare, but unfortunately, in order to do this, she had to walk right past the gleefully singing parrots. "Oh, one minute I was caught up in the 'spirit of the fearless crew' and the next thing I knew there was nothing but crushing silence as that doggone chicken made its way to the far kitchen counter - like some dadburn gloomy funeral procession or whatever" said Elma Bodine, age 46. "It was like someone abruptly hit the 'mute button' or something! Those parrots were as stunned as the rest of us! Oh, it was horrible... Then they all started shrieking 'Murderer, murderer, murderer, murderer! over and over (In unison!) until that hellish cacophony thrust me right to the very brink of madness itself! (Not that that would be a very long trip! Let's be honest here!) Talk about a party killer! And on our nation's birthday, too!" she said with her usual knack for stating the obvious! "So, I can't really blame Erika for getting her nose out of joint over the whole dern mess. People just need to be more sensitive, that's all!" she said soothingly. "And this is cattle country! Who but a crazed lunatic would even consider bringing chicken, for crying out loud?" she fumed, bringing forth a darn good point!

Jul 3, 2010

New Town Park Garbage Can Voted "Top Ten Best Town Park Garbage Cans" In Far, Far Northwest Whitman County!

The shockingly easy to please and beaming town of Lamont received what is by all accounts their greatest praise to date (In the last 100 doggone years, for crying out loud!) when a potentially intoxicated or otherwise impaired group of self-described 'waste disposal experts' offhandedly commented on the excellence of the newly painted 'waste disposal receptacle' located over by the new covered picnic table in the town's only park. (Of course, they don't have a big, fancy fairgrounds like that doggone Rockford, WA!) This outstanding icon of America's fading greatness was donated to the town of Lamont by Councilman Dale Windsor (the notorious cheapskates cannot even buy their own doggone garbage cans, for Pete sake!) was, by all accounts, sitting in the Windsor shop since at least the early 1960's, although its origins and providence are believed to be much earlier than that - although experts differ bitterly on that score. (Those darn experts are so feisty! Always looking for a scrap!) The said 'rubbish receptacle', consisting of two (2) parts that don't appear to have been designed to function together as a unified whole (could there have been some sort of 'cross pollination' of sorts in the distant, murky past? And is there another mis-matched 'lid and can' set lurking somewhere out there? Oh, the possibilities are indeed intriguing but outside the scope of this tightly focused article!), are made of surprisingly sturdy metal and remind the casual observer of that garbage can that the 'Cookie Monster' or the 'Grouch' or whatever the heck that Sesame Street puppet was lived in - but who can remember that sort of thing?

"Well, it is at times like these that I just wish my poor, sweet mother was still alive to savor in our triumph!" said the teary-eyed Mayor while gently patting the town's sole prize possession. "I mean, when you are a town that is as small and dysfunctional as we are, it is not every day that a team of industry experts lavish such unexpected praise and accolades on you - and to be honest, we are so humble and unassuming that this sort of thing gives us a 'municipal blush'. We are honored and all, but we are just not used to this level of collective recognition for our meager and often discombobulated efforts! Yes, to us it is much more than a simple garbage can - it is a monument to our somewhat feeble recovery after decades of apathy and mismanagement, and it is incumbent on us all to keep this whole thing in perspective and to not forget to actually use the darn thing as opposed to just throwing our trash on the ground in the park which seemed to be the accepted practice for at least the last 60+ years! We in Lamont believe in that whole concept of 'form and function', and cannot see the town filled to the gills with beautiful yet ultimately worthless works of art that do not provide at least a modicum of practical application. Anyway, to encourage our recalcitrant (and cantankerous!) citizenry to actually use the darn thing, we will be holding our next town meeting in the park and will provide free beverages (Non-alcoholic, of course! Are you crazy! The town is a powder keg as it is! That is all we need - a rampaging hoard of tipsy, battle-hardened, blue-haired, devil-may-care grannies once again pillaging the dern place like the very Mongol hoards themselves! (Once again, the Lamont Blog asks 'Where are the men?'!!!) We just finished cleaning up after their last doggone rapine-filled melee when Oprah got preempted for some darn reason!!!) - the supervised disposal of said beverage containers will help desensitize the culture-starved rabble to utilizing our one and only artistic, art deco-like municipal rallying point. Plus, we have so many doggone sodas left over from our festival that it ain't even funny!" he rambled on disjointedly! (Don't forget annoyingly! Oh, why won't he ever stop while he is ahead?)

Jul 1, 2010

Thank You, Brave Friends!

As the birthday of this great nation looms large on the horizon, this is the perfect time to step back from the molehills in our lives that we worship like sacred mountains and to project ourselves all the way around the world to where those brave and heroic men and women, our neighbors, really - are away from home in a foreign land with friends they never thought they would have (and who they would now willingly die for!) and in places few sane people would willingly go. This collective harvest of excellence, drawn from towns both small and large across America, is a shockingly representative sample of this human experiment that we call home - and few towns anywhere have more reason to be more awe-inspired and appreciative than the kooky and largely self-absorbed Town of Lamont. Let's be honest here. If, by some cruel twist of fate, the Greater Lamont Metropolitan Area (GLMA) was somehow transported to the historical Soviet Union or Nazi Germany (and maybe even Canada between the 2 world wars!), I think we all know that the whole dern mess of us would have been shipped off to Siberia or some frozen 're-education camp' long ago. (Editorial Note: What town doesn't need a good, cleansing trip to the gulag from time to time? Well, that might be okay if the Lamont Blog got to pick who actually went to that frozen nightmare! Just kidding. Okay, that was a bad joke but that is the ultimate rub though, isn't it? Who gets to actually pick the ones who 'go away'! Anyway! Moving right along! And for the record, (and before our detractors go berserk and get on the horn to their well-worn gossip networks) - the Lamont Blog is decidedly and profoundly 'anti-gulag'. In fact, we are anti-authoritarian in almost every way - but 'anti-gulag' ranks right up there at the top! Okay, we are kind of soft on anti-disestablishmentarianism, but that is just because it is the longest word in the English language. But for that we would be against it!) (Hey, I thought we were 'moving right along', for crying out loud!) The GLMA's of the world are only allowed to exist at all because our system of government, although not perfect, is big enough to accommodate even the most outrageous tomfoolery and truly shocking excesses in human quirkiness - and the very fulcrum of this tolerance-inspired system of human governance are those select individuals who serve others in our much media-maligned yet shockingly adept Armed Forces - whether that service is at Firebase Bella in the wild and primeval Waygal Valley in Afghanistan - a valley that even Alexander The Great bypassed because of the hostile and cranky natives (Oh, why won't people ever change? I mean, come on!) or the lunar hellishness of the Western Desert of Iraq or even the volatile and hair-trigger Demilitarized Zone in the Koreas. Project yourself over there - with its withering heat, nightmarish insects, the smell of sweat and waste and camels (Oh, and we in Lamont endlessly gripe about our 'little cow problem!!) and tap into the hopes, dreams, aspirations and astounding beauty and inner strength of those giants who last year worked at a Dairy Queen in Dothan, Alabama or were farmers in Whitman County, Washington. In their example, hopefully, we can find new reserves of goodness in ourselves! And, after all, don't we owe them that, at least? They will be coming back here soon, after all - most of them in one piece, Lord willing!

Any of you who know Lamont know that we can ride on the wings of fancy and self-praise with the best of them. (Most of us can, anyway. The rest - and you know who you are - want things to remain cruddy and medieval and squeal with each new advance!) Our current obsession is a new garbage can we have in the park. It was old and metal, but we painted it bright colors and it just adds a 'certain something' to our little public space and we love it. (It is a really cool, old design!) One might argue that with the world like it is, our focusing on such trivialities is a crime against all that we should hold sacred. But, you see, we respectfully disagree! Our nutty obsessiveness over the most obscure improvements is, in fact, a token of appreciation to those brave souls who carry the lumber of Freedom for us all. The luxury that is Lamont's self-absorption was paid for with the most precious coin this Republic can offer. Talk about a pearl of great price! So yes, there is no shame in Lamont making a fuss over the most mundane things - in fact, truth be known, we should do more of it! (And what the heck else do we have to do, for Pete's sake!!!) So, in case the military censors are not doing their job and have failed to block the Lamont Blog in a well-reasoned attempt to keep the morale of the average soldier and sailor from collapsing (What, is that why I have my rear-end all the way over here in this hellish, hate-filled oven where people are shooting at me and where my nose is under constant assault, just to enable and protect that doggone Lamont, WA, for crying out loud? Oh, what was I thinking when that recruiter came to my high school?) (Editorial Note: That could be pretty discouraging for the average person, come to think of it! But societies are always judged by how they treat the least among them! But to fight to support Lamont? That does seem wrong on any number of levels! See why we are so thankful?) - we would like to extend our small but sincere note of personal thanks to you all, regardless of locale. So many of the things we as a nation take for granted and would yelp with indignant outrage if they were taken away are bought with your youth, energy, sacrifice and humanity. (and just think of your poor mothers and the mountains of worry they lay at the Lord's feet every day! The scope of the comprehensive sacrifice is truly staggering!!) What more can be said than that? But this little town knows and remembers! Keep safe and Godspeed! And when you get home, come see our garbage can! It ain't much, but to us it is pretty special!