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Summit Up

Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column that defies any of its readers to tell us there ain’t culture in Summit Up Land.

You probably noticed the story on the front page of today’s paper about American Indians and African royalty sharing their culture with each other. And while that may be quite an exception, there’s still plenty of culture to be found, even in the least likely places.

Friday night, for instance, we did our American duty and went to a local watering hole to stimulate the economy (yes, that’s right: It’s patriotic to drink beer and shoot pool). And if we hadn’t done this, we wouldn’t have learned how to say “eight ball in the side pocket” in Spanish (“el ocho en la muchaca al lado”). We ended up playing pool, obviously, with a couple of fine fellows from Mexico, and while we didn’t reach any resolution on mutually beneficial reforms to NAFTA, we did rock out to the band with the Greek-sounding name (even though they sounded like a mix between INS and Van Halen – that’s good, by the way).

The only problem with this cosmopolitan soiree, however, was our choice of refreshment: the Irish car bomb (and if you don’t know, don’t order it). Let’s just say that bit of Gaelic culture almost came between our overtures to the Latinos and the Greeks.

***

Though our good readers have probably put election business as far out of their minds as moon cheese, we’re already getting flooded with pre-November schmooze here at the Hindquarters. All cracking on politics in general aside, we have to wonder, though, how some of these positions came to be elected in the first place.

For instance, this next election will ask you non-felons who you want as your county treasurer. Either there isn’t much difference between people qualified to handle such legalese finance (thus making it a popularity contest), or nobody is qualified to tell if these people are qualified.

Then there’s the coroner. Why, exactly, do we have to elect this person? And just what should it tell us that someone wants to run for this office?

JUNIOR: Gee, mom, I really love politics, but I’m also drawn to autopsies.

MOM: Don’t worry, Junior, you could always run for coroner some day.

And can you believe our state tried to term limit this position? As if there’s a ton of qualified people out there who are willing to take this job …

OK, we vented. We feel better now.

***

Speaking of venting, we got two bits of feedback on Saturday’s column about invading Canada.

An e-mail: “I’m afraid that your political acumen is about as poor as the information given the U.S. pilot who bombed Canadian forces in Afghanistan. Although sharing the same initials as the Canadian prime minister, Jacques Chirac is, in fact, the president of France. The Canadian prime minister is Jean Chretien. Good luck with your invasion (if you really even know where Canada is!) and don’t forget the mosquito repellant. And wear a helmet because everyone up there has a hockey stick.”

We hope readers will forgive our electoral error. One caller, at least, will not, though:

“This is absolutely ridiculous and in such poor taste,” the caller told us. “I don’t know what you guys are thinking or how you could print such a thing.”

We recognize everyone’s right to comment, and if you feel the need, reach out and touch us at summitup@summitdaily.com, fax at (970) 668-0755 or leave your metaphorical brick-through-the-window on the voicemail at (970) 668-3998 ext. 237.

***

It’s Sunday, so hopefully you bought your “culture” yesterday. We’re out being worldly, which is to say, spinning around in circles, heating up and giving everything a good shake once in a while …


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