Summit Up 1-13-10: Where we believe we’ve earned a 21-gun salute | SummitDaily.com
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Summit Up 1-13-10: Where we believe we’ve earned a 21-gun salute

by Summit Up
Members of the Colorado National Guard fire a volley during a 21-gun salute during the inauguration of Gov. John Hickenlooper at the Capitol in Denver on Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2011.(AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
AP | AP

Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column that’s wondering when we’ll get our 21-gun salute. In coming across the above photo from yesterday’s inaugural doin’s down in the state capitol, we couldn’t help wonder what the deal is with the cannon-fire tradition. And why 21? If our new governor got that many, what would, say, the president get? A vice presidents? The chancellor of the exchequeur? Howzabout the dog catcher?And yes, it does appear the higher up you are in the chain o’ command, the more guns you get. Consulting Wikipedia, we learn that the original practice of the gun salute came from the navy (and probably the British navy at that). Sez here:”The custom originates in naval tradition, where a warship would fire its cannons harmlessly out to sea, until all ammunition was spent, to show that it was disarmed, signifying the lack of hostile intent.”That doesn’t sound quite right to us, naval historians that we are. Shooting up all the ammo on your ship back then would’ve taken some time, and then what if some jerks show up over the horizon spoiling for a fight? You don’t want to be like “Oh, crap! We shot up all our ammo honoring the doge of Mauritania” or something.Anyway, it goes on:”As naval customs evolved, 21 volleys came to be fired for heads of state, with the number decreasing with the rank of the recipient of the honor. While the 21-gun salute is the most commonly recognized, the number of rounds fired in any given salute will vary depending on the conditions. Circumstances affecting these variations include the particular occasion and, in the case of military and state funerals, the branch of service, and rank (or office) of the person to whom honors are being rendered.”So if John Hickenlooper, as the King of Colorado, gets 21, what would we get on our first day as a new reporter at the newspaper? How about, say, the manager at an Arby’s get on his first day on the job? Perhaps it’s measured in pumps of the ketchup squirter thing: a manager gets five, a line cook three and the guy at the front taking the Beef & Cheddar orders gets just one (unless he’s part time, in which cases he simply is gifted one of the recently expired kid’s meal toys).Moving on … and speaking of Arbys we have this note here from Pat Getz, who writes thusly:”I am a new manager of Arbys in Silverthorne. We are holding a fundraiser to benifit LAPS on Wednesday, January 19 from 5-8 p.m. During this time anyone who comes in and presents a flyer with their order we will donate 20 percent of our sales. We at Arbys are very happy to help our community and would like to set up many more fundraisers with any charity.”Sounds like a pretty good deal! We’re not sure where you get the flyer, but we bet if you just mention the deal they’ll take care of it. Thanks for the info, Pat, and since you were recently named a manager at Arby’s, please let us know what honors were afforded you on the first day. Was it Roman candles in the parking lot? A videotaped showing of an actual 21-gun salute from an old film about the Battle of Trafalgar? Or was it the aformentioned ketchup squirter dealio (although, granted, we sorta made that one up).Speaking of animal fundraisers, we also have information here to suggest that Noodles & Company is donating 25 percent of what they make on your dinner this Friday, when you mention Swan Center Outreach.Nice. You can help the horses at Swan Center Friday and local dogs and cats Wednesday at Arbys. Go nuts! We out.


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