RSSAll Entries in the "Featured Peeks" Category

Fly Swatting Academy To Offer Seminars

Mel’s Fly Swatting Academy is again teaching the intrinsic art of fly swatting

in an almost absurdly low student-professor ratio.

They say: (Advertisement)

“It’s fly season again and time to tune up that lazy eye, that smooth stroke, that tight, consistent follow-through. A fly-free home is a happy home and enlightened swatting is incremental to a buzz-free environment.

“Who cares what the bastards do outside? I don’t even want to think about it. It’s your space we are talking about here but you MUST SIEZE IT!”

“It’s all true. Filthy disease-ridden balls of scum (No, not people who hold different political views than you) are these garbage-breath intruders. The buzzing buggers serve little purpose with the possible exception of industrial excrement transport or highlighting the status of unattended buttermilk.

“Then let’s get down to it, says Mel’s. “We can improve your life by enhancing the manner in which you deal with just one little plague-mongering pest. We are not talking about moose hunting or shark diving…or even wild marmot stew. We are talking about bringing flies to their knees.

“Our professional staff can turn you from a flitter to a smasher extraordinaire in less than a week. Daily, hourly seminars bring out the natural ability and instill a sense of can-do. The cost, although prohibitive, is well worth it given the peace of mind and the sense that you can dominate one surly aspect of nature.

“And you say this is stupid? Already there are leagues competitive teams with paying sponsors. Yes, the real world is on board and you hicks best get wise quick. While you’ve been riding the hay bale picking your teeth others are getting ahead. That means $$$$$$.

Example Lesson #2

We walk you through The Stare (patented) where the stalker freezes the prey, creeps up and over-wails on the unsuspecting ball of vile snot. We then obsess on your follow through and show you the affects of the methodical, consistent flanking of one’s adversary. You will master The Stun and the 3-In One. Watch your friends tremble in envy, as your handicap becomes all but a negative number.

Of course the riches of the sport will elude many. Professional touring swatters are making the big dollars these days. The amateur can reach new heights but the right gear can run up to $8000 if one wants the state-of-the-art equipment. Fly fashion has never come cheap.

After three weeks of classes – We guarantee that you will pass your fly exams-class 3 or class 4 and go on to pursue and succeed at exceptional honors like Bambo Fly Killer, Red Belt, Wolf-Eagle Squash or join the elite Eat Poop Then Land in My Potato Salad Assassins.

Enjoy a marvelous and vehement summer minus these pests. For classes on mosquito, coyote, bear and skunk find us at www.corallyourpests.com/ferocious.

Remember: Hone your skills for BIG Buck Fly Season in Sept and October when the livestock come back down to earth and the deer fly bites.

For boarding school reservations, indentured arrangements and family visits dial 34.
Methodology accepted by Kill The Flies Without Extended Guilt (KFWEG). Do not kill spiders or bees. They sustain life.

–Advertisement–

FIRST FOURTH OF JULY BARBECUE A REAL BASH

by Melvin Toole, whose  ancestors never agreed to sign anything

“I may never attend another tea party as long as I live”

       – King George III of  England, in response to protests in Boston Harbor, 1773.

“Who brought the potato salad?”

– Josiah Bartlett, of New Hampshire, about an hour after the approval of the Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776

The tradition of Fourth of July barbecues has been with us for over 200 years. Appropriately enough, the first one was celebrated while the ink was still wet on a noted document that declared the independence of the Thirteen American Colonies from Great Britain.* Since the end of the French and Indian War tension between the British Crown and the Colonies had increased significantly. The conflict had left the  royal treasury depleted. The British were real estate poor and needed cash run the empire. The solution? Raise taxes in the Colonies and tighten customs controls. After all, in the eye of the Crown, the Americans had benefited most from the French defeat  and somebody had to pay the bill.

Many of the Colonists responded by harassing tax and custom officials and in growing cases blood was shed. In Boston, in 1770 British redcoats opened up on protesters over on King Street, killing five. Spoiling for a fight, the Sons of Liberty jumped on the propaganda bandwagon, dubbing the bumbling incident a massacre, calling it The Shot Heard Round the World. Actually, according to ear-witnesses, the shot was heard only about as far as Concord but  that truth would have had far less impact on potential supporters.

In 1773 angry Colonists hosted the Boston Tea Party and in the spring of 1775 at Lexington the fighting had already erupted between Yankee farmers and British regulars.

The next year, on July Fourth, with hostilities in full swing, all of the Colonies except New York voted in favor of the now completed Declaration of Independence. New York adopted it on July 11, one week after a barbecue thrown by the Continental Congress. Historians still cannot agree as to whether the New Yorkers brought the slaw or a three-bean salad but despite an afternoon of candid, often controversial exchanges the the Tory-infested colony joined the rebellion.

We eavesdrop on that fateful July 4, at about 2:30 in the afternoon: A group of revolutionaries including Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Samuel Chase, John Hancock, William Whipple and Francis Lightfoot Lee are standing around a large pit where turkeys, venison and sausage were being cooked. The accents range from Yankee twang to southern drawl.

Whipple: …I don’t know Tom, I’m all for this all men are created equal business but I’m afraid we could be in for one ass kickin.

Jefferson: You worry too much, Bill, the  British are far too busy with the French to pay us any mind. Besides, we’re half a world away.  After a few months King George’s redcoats will be in full flight, tails between their lobsterback legs.

Adams: That may be wishful thinking, Tom. King George seems obsessed. He calls us a mob of insolent, petty lawyers. His doctors have even warned him about getting too excited about planning the war. I don’t expect him to back off. Our spies say he’s already hired regiments of Hessians to do his bidding.

Chase: Damn! Hessians would be nothing! Will those green horseflies give us no peace? I knew it was a mistake to rent this hall across from the city’s largest livery stable!

Lee: Miserable creatures much like the British tax assessors.

Hancock: How are those ribs coming, Sam? All this prime scuttlebutt has made me quite hungry.

Chase: I’m just about to add the sauce, John. It was concocted by one of my slaves. The sausages are just about ready. Hand me the spatula and I’ll turn them again.

Franklin: Has anyone seen George Washington? He said he’d make the trip down from New York today.

Lee:  He’s probably still busy watching the British fleet come up the Hudson. Have we established an official position on his expense account yet? It’s nice that he’s agreed to run this whole shooting match without a salary but somebody had better keep an eye on his taste for the good life. His sherry bill alone could put us all in the poor house before we put a bonafide army in the field.

Whipple: Speaking of money, we really don’t have the authority to spend a penny nor to levy taxes to fight a war against the most powerful nation on earth. We were lucky to raise money for this barbecue.

Franklin: All things in good time.  My dealings with the French have opened a host of new doors. It is our sacred duty to continue the struggle against tyranny with empty pocketbooks if necessary. The will of a free people is powerful.

Hancock: Just who are we including on this holy roster, Doctor Franklin? What about the Indians? What about the slaves? I don’t see any women among our group of eager signers.

Lee: Now wait a minute, John, up in Massachusetts, you’ve got a slew of hot headed ideas. You’ve also got a slew of indentured servants running around while, out of the other side of your mouth, you condemn slavery in the South. Slavery is just a matter of economics, boy. It’s nothing personal. Let’s kick the Brits out first, then we’ll deal with domestic matters.

Jefferson: It does sound a bit hypocritical now that you mention it, but the revolution will not survive without the support of the slave owners. Maybe we could change the wording in the first paragraph. How does some men created equal grab you?

Whipple: It’s too late. Our declaration is already at the printers. Besides, most of the fringe element cannot read anyway.

Franklin: Either way I think we have defined a set of timeless democratic principles…

Adams: That’s nice, Doctor, but let’s get back to the matter of “all men being created equal? Is that everybody or just white males who read and write and own land?

Franklin: It’s not just everyone who’s here now. It includes all the people who will come to these shores in the future.

Whipple: Immigrants? I never considered that a break with the Empire will open us up to hordes of the tired and poor. Do you want a bunch of ragamuffin foreigners roaming the streets of Philadelphia, Doctor Franklin?

Franklin: I don’t see that we have a choice. We have to include everyone.

Lee: Nonsense. We have to keep the lid on or we will become the minority in our own land.

Jefferson: It may appear to some that we have acted hastily and that reconciliation with the Crown is the logical outcome of our efforts…

Franklin: Reconciliation is no part of anyone’s plan. It’s submission or the sword. Our only alternative to independence is slavery.

Adams: Slavery for who?

Chase: Slavery for slaves, John. You Yankees just can’t seem to get a grip, can you.

Jefferson: Gentlemen, let’s not argue over issues yet to be addressed. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Adams: And then what happens when we want to get to the other side?

Lee: Gentlemen, let’s not let politics get in the way of our stomachs. Looks like the table is prepared. Let’s eat.

Hancock: Not so fast, Francis. I think my esteemed colleague from Massachusetts is on to something. Surely the French will be laughing up their silk sleeves at our brashness. I think we had better decide the slavery issue now.

Chase: Your food’s getting cold, John. First we have to send King George packing, then we can talk this over. I’m sure we’ll come to the right conclusions. After all, we are honorable men. Try some of these ribs. They’re delicious, and the eagle’s not half bad either.

*The actual signing of the declaration didn’t take place until August 2  but here, for the convenience of all, the author ascends to the divine right of historical embellishment . In addition, it is virtually impossible to determine if everyone holds a barbecue on that date.

    

Trump-free accepted by Merriam Webster

(Orlando) The term Trump-free has been included in the annual updated version of the heralded dictionary, Merriam Webster, due to a spike in common usage over the past year.

This particular dictionary is accepted as the ultimate source for legitimate words, spellings, definitions and grammatical uses. Only valid and vernacular words are included in this roster of English words

Joining caffeine-free, lint-free and gluten-free among others, Trump-free will be listed alphabetically and referenced in the back of the reference book.

Most commonly found in conversations about the 2020 presidential election, the term has waded into the conflicts between money and the environmental state of the planet. It is often used as a predicate noun or even a weak participle but can be applied to a plethora of situations where the speaker embraces the invisible or the lack of presence.

“Who’s she?” chanted red-hatted supporters at a recent election rally. “Lock her up!” they demanded as their truth-twisting idol flexed and fumbled at the podium.

Most not comfortable with books demanded to see the emails of this Webster person, whoever she might be. Many privately whispered that Webster was probably an alias and that she must be Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren.

Meanwhile the Trump base remains disoriented, confused over the presentation of their hero as an absent variable in the midst of crucial ingredients. Rather than a status of top dog the quasi-terminology paints the president as non-existent, suggesting that a situation might be an improvement sans Trump than with him.

“These throwbacks quote the Bible and the Constitution when it benefits them but most have never read either document. It seems the dictionary has fallen victim to the same indifference and ignorance worship,” said one of hundreds of Democratic presidential candidates. “I for one have never seen anyone successfully cherry-pick a reference book like this but there’s a first time for everything.”

– Gabby Haze

Take Your Base — I’ll Take Mine

A Critical Analysis of the National Sport

by Quentin Parquay, Royal Legion of Athletics

 

(Editor’s note: Mr. Parquay, a literary critic with The London World and former fellow at Oxford University, has been dedicated enough to sit through rain delays, extra-inning games and traffic jams so as to compose this international peek at baseball in 2015. Although well versed, drifting from Kahlil Gibran to Oscar Wilde, Parquay admits he possesses a limited knowledge of the game having experienced his first contest only last week. The following expose is reprinted from The Hamilton Hemorrhoid, a well- respected, often painful British sports bulletin. It has appeared Steamboat Magazine. Unlike golf baseball was never immortalized by George Bernard Shaw as (to paraphrase) “a pleasant walk ruined.)”

 

Baseball: 1.) a game played with a bat and a ball by two opposing teams of nine players, each team playing alternately in the field and at bat. The players at bat, after hitting the ball in fair territory must then run a course of up to four bases laid out in a diamond pattern in an attempt to score runs. 2.) a questionable competition of North American origin that promotes bad language, hooky, jawing, bad manners, superstitiousness, and the spitting/chewing of tobacco. 3.) the ball used in the game of baseball.

My interest in the field of baseball began when I first ran across “Casey at the Bat” in 1990. Although the epic poem had been around for decades it had not circulated through the offices of a man who dissects playwrights and Gothic novelists. I hope the following will be entertaining to the reader and beneficial to the fringe fans and the arts as well.

THE FAN

We Brits cannot afford to be critical of abhorrent fan behavior after the escapades of our cohorts at most football (soccer) matches from Cornwall to Kent. The counterpart American aficionado is actually quite calm and well behaved compared to the football fanatic. He only becomes dangerous toward the late innings after drinking cup after cup of overpriced light beer.

The aesthetic distance between the audience and the main characters is of special interest to anyone wooed by the theater. The left field character, for instance, is closer to the audience and can be more objective about how his lines are perceived in the grandstands. The thrower (pitcher) cannot gather this same kind of feedback. The audience however is well in earshot of various asides mouthed by fielders and the funny-dressed men behind fourth base that you call home plate.

The fan is most often in sympathy with one team or the other. He is most vocal at points of tension between singular characters or sometimes with entire groups of players. He is prone to embracing myths and often makes references to the supernatural as he metaphysically munches on hot dogs with onions and mustard and burnt peanuts, salted in the shell. His metaphors can be figurative, trite and/or utterly classic. His hyperbole is common only to the colonies. In later innings the fan gets swept up in the flow of dramatic monologue that results in comic relief or didactic tragedy.

THE CHARACTERS

Reflecting on the scene behind home plate we see one over-dressed character (the catcher) that carries with him a host of mandatory duties. He must not only catch the ball each time it is flung at him, but he must field difficult “pop flies”, cover his base, backup first base and throw down to second in the event of an attempted steal attempt. (We will discuss thefts and squeezes later in this article). While there is little morality involved in the steal, the catcher is often measured by his pinpoint response to the instant plot. In the local vernacular we hear fans loudly encouraging this catcher to “gun him down” or “nail him with a low throw”. This should not be taken as anything violent. The successful application of these throws and tags can often bring down the curtain for an inning.

The catcher’s associate behind the plate is called the umpire, a living allegory who attempts to impose his own doctrine. This dark character converts acceptable language into persuasive, tight, one-syllable chants with the sacred narrative “Steeerike, Bawww or Yurooout!” Otherwise most of the communication is in sign language that is reminiscent of Shakespeare that holds the audience in awe.

Amusing reaction to the umpire often dwells on King Lear’s cry: “Thou hast eyes to see…and see not!”

The rest of the extras dress alike so much that it lends an eerie, almost robotic essence to the performance. Each of the two reams is represented by wearing its own costume. It is within the professional ranks that we find strong connection to ancient bestiaries and ethnic euphemisms with names like “Tigers, Cubs, Braves and Giants”. On the local level this practice has been methodically embraced. Long socks may represent the desire to return to simpler days while “softball” fashions clearly illustrate a yearning for a

modernistic, almost impressionist, rendezvous with the keystone future. Significant action generally soils the players’ costumes but adds a delightful descent from the loftiness of pre-game ceremonies.

THE PLOT

Everything happening on the diamond is synchronized into nine innings where one team tries to outscore the other by whatever means available during the scenes that add up to an act. The two teams could play an eternity if the thing reaches extra innings. Imagine a summer day and a pastoral scene in right field where a player is responsible for catching the ball before it hits the ground, then hurling it back into the infield (main stage). He must do this before any players “tag up” and make their way around all four bases and off the set and backstage into the dugout. If the ball is caught cleanly the acting batter is out and has no further lines until he comes up to the plate again in two or three innings. If the fielder misses the ball the hitter gains access to any number of bases while other supporting cast scores runs. The clumsy fielder is often then seen as a goat. Continued performances of this quality will often result in an understudy placed in his position.

The main actor and navigator of the plot is the pitcher since he initiates the action. He delivers his lines while perched on a pompous little hill 60 feet (18.3 meters) from the batter’s box. He throws a variety of pitches to the catcher aimed at confusing, overpowering and terrifying the man with the stick (bat) in his hand. The umpire then watches closely as curves, sliders and fastballs cause negative capability of the part of the person trying to make contact (with a rounded bat) with the little spinning ball. Some of these pitches exceed 100 miles (or 161 kilometers) per hour. The fastball coupled with an array of sneaky pitches often causes the batter to pop up, ground out or strike out (signified by K for some unknown reason). These activities in no way represent literary onomatopoeia since there is no sound emanating from the ball as it travels to the plate. The onomatopoeia magically occurs when the ball slams into the squatting, supporting actor’s round, oversized glove. Here we see the frontline struggle by the designated protagonist to stifle the antagonist by making contact with a fiery sphere chucked in the direction of his head and vital body parts. It is here that we see another character, the manager, wheel out onto the field angered by the exposition of the background.

THE SET

The set can be universal as well as specific to baseball. The only props are the three bases and the plate, the walls, the mound, the backstop, the dugouts (2) and the scoreboard. The size of the stage varies greatly from set to set but is always characterized by white lines that protrude from home plate to the first or third bases. These are the symbols of the action. It is the actor who brings it all into perspective.

During my last sports melodrama the hero was a young pitcher for the Colorado Rockies. His saga was one of ever-increasing pathos. He quickly extended his poetic license by hurling a “loaded up” ball at the batter’s head. Soon after he balked, a clear sign that he neglected to prepare his lines before taking the stage. By the end of the inning he had reached absurd capacities in low comedy by allowing three other actors to reach untenable positions without exiting the stage. The tone of the play then becomes one of anticipation, bordering on anxiety. The guilt-ridden child actor is sent away by his rigid master to a place called the Minors that was never described by Dante or even the unholy angels. Each summer pantomime contains endless and simultaneous dramas with characters intact. It is this mysterious show and tell that stimulates the lifelong fans of the game. How appropriate in both a literary and mirthful sense. Play Ball!

“The check’s in the mayo.” – famous promise in Dixie.

Fossils of extinct tourists unearthed at Black Canyon

Anthropologists carefully separate history’s deposits near the Black Canyon of the Gunnison

(Montrose) Rare vestiges of ancient history were on display this afternoon at the Black Canyon of the Gunnison, just east of here. At first just a dribble, the recovered data now covers two parking lots and encompasses several Department if the Interior panel trucks.

Mostly bone and hair, the exhumed artifacts are believed to be from the 15th Century, long before scientists thought tourists visited the continent. Where these visitors might have come from or what they were seeking should be determined before the summer has concluded.

“This is big,” said Ellen Mulvaney-Kelly, a forensics and space expert at the Forest Service. “We have a wide assortment of of material to sort through and catalogue. Then we’ll interface the mounds of new data with what we already have collected. That should tell us where to go for the next step.”

The cornerstone find, Pea Green Man (1996), was found when workers excavated a former organic junkyard to make room for more fast food temples on South Townsend Avenue. It is not clear whether this fellow consorted with the other ancients or if he simply strolled the Uncompahgre Plateau oblivious to his neighbors in the valley.

Kelly said the discovery has only scraped the surface and that three digs just outside the park should shed light on the 16th Century as well as the foggy periods when the Spanish were here and later European adventurers would appear.

“We wonder what the Ute people must have thought about yet another invasion,” said Kelly. “It had to have been a clash of culture, yielding very little for the tribes caught somewhere between the Bronze Age and the arrival of horses in the San Juans.”

At primary glance the scull bones found appear to be genetically linked to today’s modern tourists. Sometimes buried in tombs, with souvenirs and photographs of mountains, the mummies indicate social standing and wealth. The middle class seems to enjoy private burial plots while less distinct groups were simply thrown from the cliffs into the Gunnison River and washed away to fertilize golf courses in Las Vegas and Phoenix.

Anthropologists think most of these early guests had sophisticated transportation and even primitive GPS trackers. Indeed, the original unearthing was somehow linked to tire tracks although no information in that link has been released as of this morning.

“How else could they have had the mobility necessary to explore our back country?” asked Kelly. “Although the net gain of all the digging and rock hauling has yet to be determined, researchers think their assertions will blow the doors off traditional thinking on the subject of the first wanderers in these mountains.

Much of the human motherlode will be displayed at the intersection of Main and Townsend until hunting season. Showcased 24-7, the display is expected to give today’s visitors something to do while they wait in line to make a left turn south onto 550.

“We are proud that a find of this magnitude happened here on our watch,” said Kelly. We expect the breakthrough that we’re seeing will lead to a greater understanding of genealogical and ancestral links. Maybe your relatives are represented here. Maybe not.”

– Uncle Pahgre

SATAN’S FACE ON KIND BUD

(Montrose) Residents here claim to have glimpsed the face of Lucifer, the Dark Angel, on a marijuana bud. The image, foggy at best, does resemble a face but determining whose face might require expensive testing and could be cost prohibitive.

The face of Satan is clearly visible on a marijuana bud in Montrose say residents there. How this might affect the future of dispensaries there is not known. Currently the county has no recreational marijuana outlets and only two medical ones.

The image does not talk or move around in any way. It is generally detected by the more superstitious and those frightened by the variables of afterlife. The community has only two medical pot facilities and no marijuana dispensaries despite lucrative tax revenues.

Montrose, Delta and Mesa Counties may not have marijuana dispensaries but these counties have a burgeoning drug problem mostly in the form of meth and heroin.

“Legislating morality doesn’t work,” said one pot proponent here. “Look at the stats. Look at places where there is an attitude toward education and responsible living. That’s where drug addiction and wanted pregnancies are the rule not the exception.”

Others say the face of Satan is a sign and that people should not smoke pot.

“How much more do we need?” asked a county commissar who demanded anonymity. “Now we see clearly that marijuana is in league with the Devil. Most people around these parts get it all right. Why can’t people just stick to what’s legal? A big old steak and a Coors was good enough for my grandparents and it’s good enough for me.”

– Tommy Middlefinger