The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

2006.04.06 Duck amok

Written by David Green.

By JEFF PICKELL

My cousin, who’s an aeronautical engineer for a company that designs and manufactures helicopters, told me something interesting last Christmas. I just remembered it this morning.

He said that, when designing a helicopter, engineers have to make sure the fuselage can survive midair collisions. Now, obviously if a helicopter hits something big, like a plane, it’s going down, no matter how sturdy it is. But ducks, geese, and other sizable migratory fowl also pose a significant risk to a helicopter if they run into one, my cousin said.

How do engineers test how well a helicopter can stand up to ducks? I asked.

As my cousin described it, they take what is essentially an oversized potato gun, put a dead, frozen duck in it, and fire it at the parked helicopter. Then they measure the damage it did.

“So your job is to riddle helicopters with duck fire, then measure duck splatter?” I asked.

“Essentially,” he said.

“I wish I were an engineer,” I said.

Now, I’ll smack an alpaca, but I like ducks. I like saying the word “duck.” I like thinking about ducks. I like drawing pictures of them. There’s a park in Kalamazoo that has a bunch of ducks in it in the summer, and they entertain me for hours.

“Look at you guys, just ducking around, being ducks,” I say to them. “What do you guys do all day?”

The answer is obvious, ducks duck. I mean, they do a lot of walking and swimming, but mainly they duck. Another thing ducks do is quack.

I like the word “quack” almost as much as the word “duck,” and the fact that ducks quack pleases me to no end. 

When I was employed with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, I had a working relationship with ducks. That is, instead of working, I would walk to the dam in the park’s river and watch the ducks duck around.

One day, while walking the path to the dam, I turned a corner and found a female wood duck not 10 feet in front of me, headed, presumably, also to the dam. It’s not every day that a man sees a duck walking over turf, so I followed the duck, cautiously, observing her almost too duck-like behavior.

The first thing I learned about ducks is that they have keen senses. The duck knew I was there immediately.

But, fact number two, ducks aren’t cowards. The duck could’ve taken to the wing, like I would have, were I in her place, but she instead tried to act like I wasn’t there, peering over her shoulder every now and again to make sure I wasn’t gaining too quickly. She waddled on, cautiously, and courageously.

I sensed this. “Fear me not, duck,” I called to her. “Fear, anger, hate, aggression. These things lead to the Dark Side.”

She quickened her pace. Fact number three: ducks don’t like Star Wars nerds.

Eventually, the duck and I made it to the dam, the duck ducked into the river, I walked to the top of the bridge and observed her.

She swam up to another duck. A mother duck. The mother duck quacked.

The first prolonged and bitter argument I had with a teacher concerned whether or not “The mother duck quacked” is a complete sentence. It is, in fact, a complete sentence, but say it aloud a couple of times. It sounds funny.

You know what else is funny? This joke, which Gene Beaverson told me the other day.

A duck walks into a store.

“Do you have any duck food?” he asks the owner.

The owner says he doesn’t sell duck food. The duck goes home. The next day, the duck returns and, again, asks for duck food. The owner repeats that he does not sell duck food. The duck goes home again. Despite the owner’s daily insistence that he doesn’t sell duck food, the duck continues to ask for it. One day, the owner gets sick of it. When the duck comes in, he says, “If you ask me for duck food, I’ll nail your feet to the floor.”

The duck looks at him for a second, then asks, “Do you have any nails?”

“No, I don’t have nails,” the owner replies.

So the duck says, “Good. Do you have any duck food?”

Here’s another duck joke—Two cows are standing in a field. One cow says to the other, “What do you think of this mad cow disease going around?”

The other says, “It doesn’t affect me. I’m a duck.”

By the way, do you know why ducks have flat feet? For stomping out forest fires.

Do you know why elephants have flat feet? For stomping out flaming ducks.

 

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016