Civil Engineering and Politics

This is your Community Bulletin for the week of June 25th, 2016.

And wow, what a week.

First off, the scouts: The first boys that were rescued have all been returned to their parents after getting their statements. It seems that the ninth boy, Francis, is still speaking incoherently, but has calmed down and is less bitey toward hospital staff. Mr Banjeet Singh with the Forest Service had a chance to talk with the boy and thinks he may have tried foraging on wild mushrooms and misidentified some. They are waiting on the bloodtests to come back.

The upshot from this is that we now know that the boy’s father is the scoutmaster everyone’s looking for. Best of all, he is, thankfully, an avid outdoorsman and former Search and Rescue coordinator. So, he should be fine…

Sheila has packed up and has headed back out into the upcountry to check in on some of our Off-Grid neighbors. She’ll be staying a couple of weeks with the Jones’s before checking in with the Smiths and The Other Jones’s. If anyone needs to get ahold of her, she will be on the VHF around 3:00 PM for about half an hour each day if she can, and will check her email as battery and reception allows. “Folks who live off-grid, especially the Jones’s (either of them) get a little twitchy when you start unpacking a small RadioShack from your knapsack, so if I don’t get back to ya, assume no news is good news, right? Right.”

Now to civic news.

With all the big moving and shaking going on in the world, there are lots of things getting voted on that will have lasting yet uncertain impacts for many years to come. These are big important things. All over the world. Locally, however, there are grumbling about the city budget again, and whether the “403 Outstanding balance” should be used to paint the fence at the Historical Society or fix the giant pothole in front of Stumpy’s. As editor of the town’s only local news outlet, I think I speak for most of the folks in this town when I say “Please, for the love of Pete, can we not do this again?”

We are talking about fifty bucks worth of paint and a half yard of asphalt. Let’s not drag the whole town through another political season where we trot out a litany of abuses and excesses and he said/she said/they said.  Unfortunately, when folks get testy on the national stage, it has an effect on everyone. Not even our sleepy little town is immune to the hot-blooded thrill of forceful rhetoric and clever personal attacks. But remember, the folks around you, your friends and neighbors, will still be here when this is all over. Please try to remain friends and not just neighbors. Try to keep this in perspective. As the ancient wisdom goes- “Don’t sweat the small stuff. It’s all small stuff.” Secondly, lest you forget, there’s no talking politics in Edna’s Diner. Well, unless you’re Edna of course. So, consider yourselves warned.

The Council of Old Guys would like to remind you that it’s gonna be a scorcher of a summer. Also, they’d like to remind you that things were so much better back in the old days, but you’d be too young to remember that. Except, of course, for the things that are so much better now. “You kids never had it so good,” Art Song pointed out to Dale Bradley’s daughter, who had just stopped in at Stumpy’s to grab milk and really hadn’t expected a Social Studies lesson from one of our towns luminaries.

Weather this week is expected to be hot, so if you’ll be going on any digs, remember to stay hydrated and never go alone. Also remember that private property is still a thing, and the idea of “better to ask forgiveness than permission” is not a good defense against trespassing charges.

This issue of the Community Bulletin made possible by a financial gift from Big Paul, who laughed and said “…maybe you should have written that I DID eat those kids. Would have made for a funnier story and maybe served as a warning to others, you know?”