|ARCHIVES #10 Spit, Thongs, Ding-Dongs, & Probes...URBAN CAMPING LEGENDS REVEALED! Headless cows and moon-monsters! Beware all who camp!!!|
Happy Hour with the Dead End Kids...shaken, not stirred.
Frank Martorana and his garden before the Amazing Hair Growth Experiment
It's a miracle!
Scoop Says: I'll update this asap, but for now here's the mostly-original article that was sort of mangled during cutting and pasting for the newspaper column. Stay tuned!
Scoop of the Month
Tim Briggs: Unsafe At Any Speed...in which daring Tim winds up in the Doghouse! PLUS the Trivia Quiz Answers and some casual slander!
Crazed Stunt Puts Briggs In The Doghouse
Psuedo stunt man Tim Briggs ran into hot water recently when he tried to water-ski across a small pond that had formed on the road near his trailer.
The severe storm that struck Southern Wisconsin last month formed a shallow basin that seemed to tempt Tim. It didn’t help that friends were celebrating his birthday, and alcohol was a factor. Also, for the record, I want to state that I did a ‘Spell Check’ on ‘psuedo’, and my only alternative spelling was ‘Speedo’, which I certainly don’t want to mention in the same article as Tim.
Anyway, water-skis were conveniently found, and Tim took up the challenge. Towed by a golf cart driven by Mary Atella, Tim got halfway across the puddle before he fell. He landed hard, but thankfully his life jacket kept his head from hitting blacktop, although local scientific minds later stated they really didn’t think ‘that would make much difference’ to Tim’s brain.
Tim made a successful ski run on the third try. The crowd cheered wildly, acknowledging Tim’s agility and skill as he sailed right across the deadly treacherous pond. And then came the aftermath…
Tim was sore from his bravado but wouldn’t admit it. He concealed his pain from all but wife Diane. But it was only a short time later that his prior stunt caught up with him.
“Tim was trying to fix something by the side of the bed,” said Diane. “Maybe an outlet. He had to squirm in on his injured side to get there…you know how it is, there’s not a lot of room between the bed and the wall. So it’s lucky I happened to come back in time, because he was trapped!”
Tim’s painful side injury would not allow him to raise himself enough to get out of the confined space. Tim later told this reporter that try as he might, adrenaline flowing, he was definitely wedged. “It was 20 minutes of sheer hell,” said Tim.
“I heard him calling,” said Diane, “and I thought he was just saying Hello. It wasn’t until he sounded more urgent that I investigated.”
Diane had to physically pick the bed up to allow Tim enough room to roll over and squiggle out of his confinement on his good side. “Any more antics like that and he’ll be in the doghouse for sure!” remarked Diane.
And it was mere days later that this literarily happened. Upset over being confined to her kennel for a minor infraction, Tim’s wonder dog Lacie was able to lure Tim into her kennel by rolling Tim’s last can of cold beer into it. As soon as Tim crawled in, Lacie slammed the kennel door and had the run of the trailer until Diane came home.
OK, I’m exaggerating. But how did Tim come to wind up in the kennel? I asked Diane about it, and she just shrugged her shoulders. “What else can I say except ‘Tim and beer?’ I think Lacie was barking or wouldn’t go in the kennel or something…he (Tim) has a strange mind indeed.”
Tim rides on into history...
DESPERATE SEEKING CONTESTANTS
NOTE: If you want to try the Quiz and maybe read the story to get clues, go to Archives: 'Giant Sea Creature...' Good Luck to All! PS: The Chief (my Editor) and I agreed that the opening line to 'The Theme From Shaft' might confuse small children and some adults, although we weren't exactly sure why. So it wasn't in the paper, but it's here now...gee, no one flipped out over the lyrics in the 70s, did they? Then again, who can remember?
It looked grim for my annual Summer Trivia contest. No one ever enters, except one person, back in 2001, I think. And this time it came right down to the wire. Finally, by begging, I coerced two contestants to enter at the very last moment. They are Carol Okerstrom aka ‘The Vulture’, and Steve Gorniack aka ‘Gornoman’. You website-viewers probably know them well, alas.
In the last column a suspenseful tale was told of a giant muskrat that viciously attacked two innocent floating women. References were made to Sherlock Holmes and Shaft, which begat the Contest. Here are the questions:
2) Why did I mention Sherlock Holmes as a reference? 3) Because of what story? 4) What kind of bullet caused Dr. Watson’s injury? 5) Fill in the blanks to the opening line of The Theme from Shaft: “Who’s the ___ ____ ____ who’s a ___ ___ for __ ___ ___?”
I deliberately omitted the 1st question, which dealt with beer, because The Vulture is going to jump all over this question because it is ambiguous. She was almost right, and I might be generous, so let’s see if she really needs a ½ point to win…
The Vulture: “Since you are obviously in great despair…and since I have nothing better to do (than enter): 2) ‘Because you are a sneaky guy who is trying to trick us.’ 4) ‘A silver bullet aka Coors’.”
OK, at this point she definitely needs that ½ point.
Oops…it looks like Gornoman gets the same ½ point for question #1! Let’s see what develops: 2 & 3) “The line ‘The nightmare got more nightmarish and then even nightmarishier’ is from the first Sherlock Holmes mystery, ‘Sherlock Holmes In College’ (which was)…rejected by the publisher who cited many grammatical problems including…run-on sentence structure and the use of non-existent words.” 4) Yes, another ‘Coors Silver Bullet’ answer…monkey see, monkey do, Gorno!
So at this point we have a definite ½ point tie. A semi-valuable Scoop Golden Star Certificate and a Dave’s Milton Ace Hardware Gift Certificate hang in the balance. But then, with only one mere question remaining, Gornoman pulls ahead by correctly filling in every blank to the opening line of the Theme From Shaft! Gornoman wins by a full point, Ladies and Gentlemen!
And the answers are:
1) Hamm’s beer 2) “The Giant Rat Of Sumatra”, a famous Holmes
case. 3) What story? None—it was merely a passing remark by Watson
about a case “for which the world is not yet prepared.” 4) A Jezail
bullet. 5) You’ll have to ask Gornoman or go to the Scoop site; I’m
on probation with my Editor, The Chief.
See how exciting this can be? So let’s get more involved this winter when my new ‘Winter Blues I Have Nothing To Do Trivia Contest’ debuts on the Scoop website. Check often, and for a vital past history of The Vulture and Gornoman, see Archives: Trivia. In the meantime I will attempt to fend off The Vulture’s malicious attacks. As for you, enjoy the rest of the season and have a safe and healthy winter, and check out more Scoop at www.scoopjackson.net. And if you can’t stay out of the doghouse, at least write and tell me about it! Thanks everyone!
Email Scoop at firstname.lastname@example.org.
OK..."Who's the black private dick who's
a sex machine for all the chicks?"
|Scoop of the Month BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE What the Milwaukee Fire Department does for fun! plus a HOT recipe and A Warning For Couch Potatoes!|
Zachary Torpy, age 4, keeps slacker Paul Schad moving along
BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE
The heat turns up every July when the Milwaukee Fire Department has its annual Camp Outing at Blackhawk Campgrounds in Milton. Not only do they consistently bring along temperatures in the 90s, but a select crew begins early in the week building a house. They do it for charity, but it’s a little different from Habitat For Humanity. You just have to be a Firefighter to understand. They started the building on Tuesday, and Saturday night, at dusk, they burned it down. Last year ‘builder’ Paul Schad put it in context: "We start it on fire, settle in on our lawn chairs, and watch it burn while we have a beer. It’s a fire we don’t have to put out, and a burning house we don’t have to go into."
The house-burning is a grand finale to a week of raffles and events that raise money for the Childrens’ Burn Camp, officially the Wisconsin Alliance For Fire Safety (for info and to help: Burn Camp). Bob Monfre, one of the Committee that serves a two year term making sure things go right, quietly added: "Please don’t get me wrong, and you don’t have to mention this, but the MFD knows there are a lot of people already donating from Milwaukee, so each year we request that our fund-raising money goes for kids from out of the area, kids that maybe don’t have a chance otherwise. We’ve raised an average of $3,500 each year at the Camp Outing, and it lets them be with other kids who have gone through the same thing. There, they don’t get stared at, and for a week, they are just normal kids. They camp, swim, and get to do all the things we do here at our own Camp Outing, which is have a lot of fun. Off-duty Firefighters volunteer to drive to wherever they have to in order to get these kids to the Burn Camp. And one of our Firefighters flies a Blackhawk helicopter, and he lands at the Camp and lets the kids get an inside look before taking off again. They love it."
The current Committee Members are Bob and his girlfriend Kelly Shannon, Steve & Michelle Martinson, Dan & Leslie Berendt, and Mark & Lisa Tepp. They managed to overcome every snag, and things went smoothly. Paul Schad AKA ‘Fire Dude’, building again this year, was asked about his ‘official’ title. "Just call me the moron who bakes out here in the hot sun building this thing," he said. "But Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was this house. So give credit to Greg Blumenberg (‘rafter man & rough carpenter’), Pat Nogalski AKA ‘Noodles’ (‘moral support & laborer’), Mike Torpy (‘laborer’), and Pat Sierra (‘rough carpenter’). But I also want to mention that we got a bit behind because two of the aforementioned individuals, whom I won’t name ("I think Noodles was one."---Steve) had to go golfing one day."
This is a well-planned week. First in on Sunday afternoon comes the Committee Headquarters, a 40’ construction trailer that is the command post for the activities, games, contests, and raffles that keep over 350 people having fun for seven days. Coincidentally, the Miller Lite beer wagon is then parked right next to it. ("So we can keep an eye on it," said one Member. "Plus we need to take frequent samples to ensure proper temperature and taste.").
Next, a humongous tent is set up to serve as the main gathering place. NOTE: If you have problems assembling a two-man tent, picture the new Committee guys and ladies staring at directions for a 60’ x 40’ Circus Tent that rises nearly 30’ into the air. But by golly everything was up and running one hour later, thanks to the leadership of past Committee Carnies Milke Olinger and Chuck Stamschror.
Anyway, back to the house. Last year Paul put ‘Bob the Builder’ in the upper window of the house. He also filled Bob with firecrackers. "When the flames hit the upper story, ‘Bob’ basically blew apart. He had sparks shooting out his ears and his butt. I guess some little kids were crying about ‘Bob’ being treated like that, but life is hard, you know." And then Paul wept at the remembrance of those tykes who cried at seeing their little Bob the Builder being reduced to ashes.
OK, I lied. Paul didn’t cry. He grinned slyly. But the kids were spared another trauma anyway. At first, Paul thought about sending someone to Toys ‘R Us for ‘Dora the Explorer’, this year’s popular TV heroine, but the fact that Noodles went golfing instead of shopping prevented another cartoon figure from being burned at the stake. But the house-burning would still go well, and those in the know at the campground started arriving early for prime golf cart seating. Anticipation was high, and the wait was worth it. (PS: Credit must be given to the little guy in the full firefighter’s outfit who constantly sprayed down all nearby structures, including RVs and especially the Miller Lite beer wagon. There were other hosers who kept water at the ready for any stray sparks, and they did a great job. Not one thing other than the house was even singed).
It was a calm night, and the flames shot up high as speakers blared ‘Burning Down The House’ and ‘Disco Inferno’. It was as surreal as it gets, kids shooting water guns at distant flames, people staring in awe or just smiling, everything cast in an eerie orange light. When the Big House went down, reduced to a heap of embers, the hosers moved in to put out the last of the fire, and the crowd gave one long, last round of applause before heading out.
On Sunday the Committee took down the Big Top, cleaned and policed the area, put the last of the gear away, and hauled the big 40’ HQ construction trailer away, thanks to Joe Polka’s big Dodge. Joe managed to bend two trailer rims while goofing around at the storage area, which means the Committee will have another chore on their hands next year, but they sure are grateful anyway. They are also grateful to the Milton Police and the Rock County Sheriff’s Departments for their behind-the-scene coordination and guidance.
NOTE: This reporter was a bit concerned about writing this tale. Would I get someone in trouble? Mrs. Scoop says I worry too much, but what if the entire Milwaukee Fire Department went to jail for arson or something like that? So I called Sheriff Tom Kunkel for advice.
He laughed. "Scoop," he said, "it was a controlled environment protected by Firefighters! Go ahead and write it."
Thanks, Sheriff! Thanks MFD for a ‘hell’ of a night!
Phase One. The firewood is merely for each night’s ‘small’ bonfire.
Moments after ignition
MRS. SCOOP’S SLOPPY JOE RECIPE
Speaking of hot stuff, sometimes the best camping recipes happen by accident. This did because we didn’t have any taco shells, so our Mexican meal almost became a mere ‘loose meat’ meal. But then Mrs. Scoop got inventive. Here goes, and make sure you have cool, refreshing beverages at the ready!
‘Loose Meat’ (hamburger) cooked in skillet
2 tablespoons Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce (www.huyfong.com)
Sweet Baby Ray’s Hot ‘N Spicy BBQ sauce (add to taste)
Garlic (add to taste)
I’m sure you carry all these ingredients while you camp. Or maybe not. So send your favorite ‘inventive’ recipe to me at email@example.com so I can post it on my Drink & Dine page.
COUCH POTATO WARNING!!!
I received a late-minute email just now, in which a person who has been mentioned here before told me I would be hearing about her, but please don’t mention her name on the Scoop site, as her friends Google her name all the time looking for fresh dirt. I made a bargain: I needed the story now, and if I got it within my deadline, her name would be withheld. She responded within ten minutes. She will now be known as ‘TC’.
Says TC: "I had a house (RV) full of people, so I decided I would sleep on the Hide-A-Bed sofa. Well, I don’t know if you’ve ever slept on one of them, but the bars that hold the mattress can be very uncomfortable. My back was hurting, it was around 3am, and I couldn’t get to sleep. So I decided to sleep across the first section of the bed horizontally.
"The end of the couch immediately sprung up and I got stuck at the head of the bed. I could not get out! Thank God my grandson was sitting out on my deck and happened to look in and see the end of the bed up. He pushed the bed down and helped me out."
And remember, TC: No eating in bed, or you'll wind up with a crumby night's sleep! Or, should I say, sleeping with crumbs...