2012.10.03 The next Paul Newman, a $500 date and more

Written by David Green.


No doubt you’ve heard of the millions of dollars raised for charity over the years by the food products company started by the late Paul Newman. Salad dressing, popcorn, lemonade and many other products featuring the actor’s image have raised huge donations for Newman’s favorite charities. Now another actor, to use the term somewhat loosely,  is looking to follow the same business model.

A recent shopping trip in Adrian resulted in me returning to Ohio with a box of “Larry the Cable Guy’s Corn Muffins.” It’s true, you might be a redneck if you buy muffins endorsed by a comedian.

And the muffins were one of 15 Larry the Cable Guy food products listed on the box. Others include triple cheese cheeseburger dinner, white cheddar mac and cheese with bacon, and two that I could believe Larry himself eats: beer bread and beer batter for fish.

On the box was the statement that “Each purchase supports Larry the Cable Guy’s Git-R-Done Foundation.” Don’t tell me, let me guess: the proceeds will go toward buying him sleeves for his flannel shirts?

Larry’s photo appears on the box four times, once with the advice that we can “make the muffins even better by adding shredded cheddar cheese.” I gave the muffin mix to a friend who offered to make and share them with me. Next time, I hope she won’t be generous enough to share.

Even with the cheese, Larry’s muffins were barely edible. Way too dry to eat by themselves, they were improved by breaking them into pieces and hiding them at the bottom of a bowl of chili or soup.

Even then, the last few muffins were moldy before I could use them all. Let this serve as a warning to Larry’s pals Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall and Ron White—I think I know what the Cable Guy will be giving you for Christmas. Now that I think about it, Jeff Foxworthy used to sell his own line of beef jerky. I hate to see what Engvall and White will come up with.

In other odd news, BioPet Vet Labs, a company in Knoxville, has developed a product sure to scare those people who don’t pick up after their dogs. The company’s new product, called Pooprints, uses DNA technology not unlike that utilized by real-life crime labs to identify the source of unscooped doggie doo-doo.

The idea is that management of condos, homeowner associations, or maybe even small towns could collect DNA samples from the mouths of registered dogs. If someone fails to pick up after their pet, a sample of the “violation” can be used to identify the dog responsible.

 Then the local poop police can deal with the owner of the guilty canine. When I think about the cost of all this, I suspect anyone owning a dog would seriously think of finding it a new home if they lived in an area considering the product. But would anyone really buy it? Why not just let the dogs poop in peace?

Next, it’s on to dating website What’sYourPrice.com, which has recently added Nadya Suleman, better known as the Octomom, to its list of clients willing to date winning bidders. Nadya’s minimum bid for a date is $500.

I can’t help thinking what would happen if the winning bidder ended up being someone who was somehow unaware of her claim to fame. Can’t you imagine the first date? They’re at a nice restaurant, just chatting, when her date asks her to tell him a little about herself.

What happens when she mentions she’s a single mom? Nothing much at first, probably, until she adds, “of 14—and I had eight of them at one time!” Maybe that’s something she should get out of the way before they meet.

Finally, there’s the story of the governor whose ignorance nearly cost him his life. Vermont governor Peter Shumlin was chased and nearly caught by four bears. Despite warnings from wildlife experts not to leave bird feeders out in areas inhabited by bears, Shumlin had several in his back yard.

In an even dumber move, he ran outside to try to save the feeders when he saw the two adult bears and two cubs in the yard. He said one of the adult bruins charged him on the back porch.

Shumlin told a newspaper that Vermont “almost lost the governor.” A man that reckless probably should be taking precautions. May I suggest he get a DNA swab done and filed away for future use? If Shumlin keeps taunting bears, his survivors may need it.

  • 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.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
  • Front.chat
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in 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.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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