Out West '97

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Rush is everywhere

No rest for the wicked

Rush is everywhere

Peter Kohlsaat
Saturday, August 16, 1997
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Fort Peck Reservoir, Fort Peck, Montana -- Mostly, you are safe in the mountains. AM radio does not travel around mountains well. Along the northern tier, Rush is hard to find. Surprisingly, you can get Rush on 770 AM out of Calgary. Imagine…Canadians being subjected to Rush’s diatribes on liberal America. I got into Williston, ND late.. I assume he is on the airwaves somewhere here.

Definitely in Minot..

Fishing Report -

True fish story:

This guy was on Rock Creek fishing. He isn’t a huge fisherman, but he goes when he gets a chance. And it just so happens while he is out there the hotly anticipated first hatch of the season begins. They are catching big trout, (he holds his hands a good way apart) from every pool. The fact he’s out there during the hatch is pure luck.. He gets his fly caught in a tree and decides to go after it- climb the tree.

And it also just so happens that there are millions of caterpillars everywhere and when he climbs the tree he is squishing caterpillars as he goes. He releases the fly from the branch and on the way down, loses control of his descent, sliding down all the caterpillar goo. At the base of the tree are some snapped off little sapling shoots. He lands smack on top of one of them and it goes right through his foot. Now this guy has felt pain before, but never like this. He let out a howl (he howls for me.)

He wriggled the sapling shoot out of his foot and was taken to the emergency room at the nearest hospital. He’s lying on the table when the doctor comes in. The doctor goes to the sink, washes his hands, looks at the chart, puts on his gloves, never once looking at the punctured patient.

The doctor applies a local anesthetic and begins to sew up the wound. The fisherman begins to describe the experience, mentioning the tree and the caterpillars and the goo and the hatch that was going on. The doctor speaks to the patient for the first time- "There was a hatch going on?" The patient replied, "Yeah…out of every pool we were catching all these big trout …" He spreads his hands. The doctor puts down his needle and thread, takes off his gloves, tells the nurse to finish the suturing, and runs out the door. True story.

Fort Peck Reservoir, Fort Peck, Montana --

From The Blaine County Journal (Chinook, MT):

An opera star visits home, seismic exploration is going on, the area rodeo results, the obligatory dinosaur fossil discovery,
Zeldino Zeldino
the Chinook Golf Course clubhouse burned down, more public wedding invitations, some Thank yous, "Thank you Fisher Seed For buying my lamb and supporting 4H" (why don’t they just give the kid the money and keep the lamb alive?), two "yards of the week", and some poetry. Personally, I think there should be more poetry in newspapers. This from Madeleine Gilmore:


We’re offering a reward today,
For this specimen you see.
A few of them are hiding out
Right here in Blaine County.
They’ve grown as large as small jet planes,
From slurping mosquito spray
Their stingers are humongous
Two could pack you away.
We actually had a photograph
Of what you see sketched here.
But a bigger one strolled in among us
As we gawked at this huge skeeter.
"Your blood or that there snapshot,"
Is the choice he gave us…HONEST!
So we sacrificed that living proof,
Actually, he sucked it from us.
I’m warning you, be cautious,
These skeeters are flying syringes
And they’re slurping up all the skeeter spray
They can get their sucker into.
For those of you who wrongly think
That spraying is a wasted effort,
Better look real close in you own backyard,
You’ve got one hiding somewhere.
I believe there really is only one way
To halt these thirsty bustards,
That is to change the spray tanks contents
To FULL STRENGTH Milk River Water.

or this, one of the two, from Em T.:


You may have to wait forever
Some goals are so hard to attain.
Forever sounds better than never
And with negatives you’ve nothing to gain.
Some people say, "That’s impossible to do"
They will never get things done.
Or they say, "The impossible just takes longer"
Seems like they even have the most fun.

Zelda meets her first buffalo

Zelda meets her first buffalo 

And from the outlying communities:

Amongst the Hogeland Happenings:

  • -Doris and Leonard Zellmer were out Tuesday morning and had coffee with Ed and Kathy Zellmer.
  • -Leonard and Doris Zellmer were out Tuesday afternoon and visited at the Adrian Olszewski home.
  • -Jenny Zellmer is spending the week at home visiting family and friends.
  • -Lillian Nace and Shirley Erickson visited Saturday afternoon at the Dick Hamilton home.
  • -Doug Hamilton spent three days in Michigan this week doing ski lift repair work.
  • -Florence and Dick Hamilton hosted a barbeque Saturday evening for friends and gave everyone a chance to visit with Dixie and Mike Teague.
  • -Florence Hamilton was among the birthday party guests of Helen Maloney’s at the Maloney home on Monday
  • -Bill Beck of Havre spent the weekend at the Hamilton home
  • -Jim and Helen Billmayer visited at the Hamilton home Saturday night.

From the Agriculture section:

From: Don’t Blame The Farmers

"A Geraldine farmer today was getting $2.94 per bushel for his wheat. In comparison, a box of Wheaties on a Great Falls supermarket shelf today worked out to $192 a bushel for the General Mills product. Similarly, Shredded Wheat was $192 and Wheat Chex was $182."

And, finally, one of the Jokes of the Week:

As the sweet thing looked at some "cucumber hand cream," she murmured, "I didn’t even know cucumbers had hands." (That’s for you T.S. Montgomery)

Culberston, MT -

About 12 years ago I was hitchhiking west on Hwy 2, on my way to San
Highway 2 mile 667 Highway 2 mile 667
Diego, when, in a rare hitchhiking blunder, while with a ride, missed my turn off. My planned route took my from Hwy 2 in Williston to Hwy 85 South to Hwy 200 West and from there west, south to California.

To correct the error then required me to continue on to the next town, Culbertson, Montana, and catch Montana 16 South to Sidney and catch Hwy 200 there. My ride drooped me off a short way from the "business district" and I hike into town. It’s hot. A hundred degrees. Midday. I’m wearing a big straw hat, carrying a substantial backpack.

Once I get to town, I decided to pop into a bar, have a cold one, and regroup. I walk into this tavern, it’s dark, rustic, only a couple people bellied up to the bar on this hot weekday afternoon. One of them was the then-coach of the Oakland Raiders and Bud Lite pitchman, John Madden.

It seemed his train- he is afraid to fly- was forced to stop at the town of Culbertson due a train derailment down the line. I shook his hand and he bought me a Bud Lite. He was as affable a man as his public persona indicated. We chatted for a bit. When he learned of my hitchhiking endeavor he was quick to offer me refuge on his train. I thanked him but declined.

I was adventuring, and besides, he was going east and was going west. After two beers I was ready to continue on the road. I put on my hat, my backpack, and disappeared into the blazing light of the opened door. That’s my John Madden story.

Yesterday I realized I would once again pass through the town of Culbertson. I thought it might be a kick to revisit the same bar and see if anyone there remembered the occasion. The details of the bar were hazy.

All I remembered is that upon entering, the bar itself was on your right. It was a long bar in a spacious barroom. The atmosphere had been refreshingly cool. The bar had been situated near the middle of town.

Once in the center of the town I saw no bar that fit my remembrances. I entered the only bar I saw, the "Montana Bar- best drinks in town." It was immediately obvious the Montana Bar was not the bar I was searching for.

There was one patron at the bar and the lady bartender was leaning over talking to him. I explained my mission and my version of the story. Of course they were supremely aware of the appearance, so many years ago, of John Madden.

The bar I was searching for was the Stockman Bar. The name struck a chord. I remember taking a number of match books as souvenirs and, as possessions, they floated around my various apartments for a number of years. I was informed the Stockman Bar had burned down some time ago. So it goes.


US Hwy 2- the Hi-Line- lends itself to ramblings. Even the Roadside Geology of Montana can’t make this stretch of road entertaining. So I’ve been listening to a lot of radio. A couple news stories have me disturbed, both from Paul Harvey.

The first: If I got this right, it seems there was this high ranking military officer who was arrested after soliciting sex from a man dressed as a woman. The man dressed as a woman was an undercover agent. The military officer is facing prison. Now the military officer might have a perfectly legitimate explanation, but it’s the undercover agent, FBI? MP?, that intrigues me. So, what kind of duty is this? Does an agent report to work some Monday, look at the assignment sheet, and go, "Damn. Transvestite Hooker duty again." Or is this volunteer duty? Can this agent trade duties like waitresses trade shifts? "Hey, Alec, you want to trade for my Drag Hooker duty?" "Yeah, man…right on."

And the second, between personal testimonial ads for Pur water filters, AllergyFree air filters for the home, and Cooper Tires- "So special, the workers put their name on each tire." The American Medical Association has offered their endorsement for products for a fee? It’s a great country. And the first seven products endorsed? All Sunbeam products. Right off the bat, legitimacy.

And this: In Dakar, Senegal, vigilante mobs, convinced that foreign sorcerers can shrink a man’s genital with a mere handshake, have killed eight people in the last week. Wild. But is this any wilder than employers being convinced that two weeks vacation can make for a contented employee?

Allow me one more self-indulgent ramble, please: What is with the radio ad: "We can show you the money. You can earn $20,000, $30,000 or more, maybe a lot more, working as little as five hours a week. Don’t spin your wheels. Stop the excuses. You can do it. You can change your life. Call now 1-800…..and learn about this revolutionary new marketing opportunity."

This ad has been running nationwide for six months? A year? Do people really think the revolutionary opportunity is still available? What is it? The Dark Star-sounding announcer is rather vague. If any of my faithful out there is privy to what exactly this amazing, sure-thing money-making scheme is, I invite them to email me and I promise to share it with my audience.

Fort Peck Reservoir, Fort Peck, Montana

Fort Peck Reservoir, Fort Peck, Montana 

The website of cartoonist Peter Kohlsaat
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Rush is everywhere
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