2009.12.30 A year gone

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

It’s that time of the year when I sit with a stack of 51 Observers—a year’s worth of labor—and pull out interesting items for the year-in-review edition. Occasionally I glance at page 3 and I hear myself saying, “I wrote that?”

Among my odd tales, I wrote about my little bag of gris-gris, a Christmas present from New Orleans. Voodoo in my pocket that now, a year later, has lost its magic and needs to be recharged.

I wrote of a cheery holiday movie that told what Earth will be like when humans no longer rule the planet.

The first mention of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste was published in the Observer last January. It’s for diaper rash.

The Observer received a best of its class award in the state newspaper contest. As editor, publisher, sportswriter, etc., I went to Grand Rapids to retrieve the plaque, then came home and chipped ice from an eavestrough after failing as staff janitor.

 I wrote about the welcome lack of service at Altu’s Ethiopian restaurant in East Lansing, but I had trouble eating my sourdough plate.

I planned to do sleep inertia studies by ripping a quilt off a sleeping spouse, but feared for my safety.

I felt oddly sad when recalling an incident from 17 years ago when I didn’t stop to buy a soft drink for my son. Let it go, you dork.

I finally discover Skype and begin making free phone calls—to the neighbors’ house half a block away. At the moment, there are 15.7 million people signed in with Skype.

I asked if May Baskets still exist and heard back from several readers. One of them concludes that May Baskets are rarely hung these days because no one is ever home.

I reported on an odd sight at the state track meet. Because of the position of the sun, I couldn’t look at the flag during the National Anthem. Instead I looked at the crowd and saw men without hats—at a sporting event, no less. Very funny.

I provided an update on trepanation—drilling holes in the head. It’s an age-old cure for what ails you.

The subject of human taxidermy came up at a social gathering. Something useful such as an umbrella stand? Something familiar like sitting on the sofa with the remote? Think about it now while you have the time.

I cautioned that washing a ripe pear and drying it on a bath towel will get you in trouble with the spouse.

I wrote about my free sample of Frieda’s Black Garlic—mushy, odoriferous, a little terrifying. Strange stuff, but I want more.

I told about a rare trip to the mall where I encountered a clothing store clerk who had to wear a backpack all day and another whose bright blue underwear were exposed at the top of his pants. I fled.

 I offered this suggestion for lice control: Mix lard and sulphur and rub along the back and tail. Unfortunately, it attracts flies.

A photo was shown of one of my proudest home repair projects: a C-clamp attached to the broken kitchen sink faucet. We finally had a handsome new faucet installed, but I miss that clamp.

Note for the next school reunion: Attach name tags to the forehead for easy identification.

I checked my pulse by attaching a drinking straw to my neck—and determined I was still functioning.

Mention of the old football bridge brought a visitor to the office who spoke of the absolute terror she experienced when her gym class headed for the park via the rickety bridge.

I don’t consider myself a cellphone refusenik, but I still don’t have one. My wife is threatening to give me one, but really, I don’t feel like talking.

I continue to get junk e-mail for Ms. Leddy and I now have an odd desire to buy a pair of FuzziBunz.

I volunteer to help judge another state’s newspaper contest and soon entered the Five Stages of Judging Day Grieving.

The year came to a close with a leg cramp and several suggestions were received, the latest delivered in person on Christmas Eve. No, it wasn’t from Santa. It came from my fake Uncle Bill: Drink more water.

That’s the end of one year, but another one is soon beginning and this space will have to  be filled. Maybe you’ll read more about this item:

When I awoke from an odd dream this morning, my invisible friend asked, “Have you ever actually written a news story based on interviews you conducted in a dream?”

“Only city council stories,” I answered.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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