Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column that forgot to wear a belt the other day, a most unfortunate episode which led to much hilarity and mirth, as we had to do the old “hitching-up-the-pants-dance” for most of the day. Guess you had to be there to really appreciate it, but we are here to tell you that belts are NOT over-rated. They are crucial. We are proud of our boyish and girlish waistlines here at Summit Up, but maintaining these toned physiques means that we really do need belts. Life is not good without one, unless you can replace it with some other stylish accessory that does the trick. We’re talking about things like suspenders, of which we are also proud owners, an especially fancy pair adorned with lovely Edelweiss. But we generally leave those more or less permanently attached to some ski pants, so they are not readily available when we need them. And why is it a PAIR of suspenders, when it’s really just one? And in a related question, whatever happened to the classic single-strap suspender, the Huck Finn look, as it were? Too lopsided? Too country? Too “Deliverance”? We don’t know, but we’d like to bring it back. One last question: We see people who are not wearing belts and they seem to have no problem keeping THEIR pants up. Why is that? Are they gravity-defying wizards? Any other ways to keep your pants up? Inquiring minds want to know!We must tell of another recent fashion faux pas, just the day before yesterday, in fact, when one of our staffers strolled out of the house, on his way to a romantic picnic, wearing his favorite bright-red, rainbow mandala tie-dye T-shirt, feeling pretty good about life in general, strutting like a peacock. “Yeah, this shirt says it all,” our intrepid reporter thought out loud. “This is what I’m all about.”Well, it was about halfway through the grilled chicken course when his picnic partner flicked a caterpillar off the shirt and leaned closer to whisper what he thought were going be some sweet nothings. But instead, what he got was, “Do you realize your shirt is on inside-out?” No wonder the guy at the Conoco gave a funny look! Our roving correspondent reports that he stopped at the same Conoco on the way home, still inside-out, and was eyed up and down by some 15-year-olds on skateboards on his way into the mini-mart. On the way out, one of the kids gave him the universal sign, and we’re not talking about the middle finger. We’re talking about the thumb-and-forefinger-pinched-together-and-held-near-the-mouth gesture, which was followed by a solicitation for a business transaction revolving around what we are pretty sure were some illicit substances. Such are the tribulations of a proud tie-dye wearer these days, inside-out or not. And what IS this world coming too, anyway, when half-baked teens feel brazen enough to stand outside a gas station near a busy interstate trying to sell weed? But these little brain-fart episodes are nothing compared to the Grand Mal of spaciness a few weeks ago, when we managed to lose our cell phone. Not a big deal, you say? Done it dozens of times, you’re thinking to yourself. Yes, but have you ever lost your phone right on top of your desk? We gotta tell you, we searched the Corporate Suites high and low, dialed the number, hoping to hear it ring and even probed the massive puddle outside the servant’s door (sorry, we mean the staff entrance) with a high-tech collapsible ski pole, all to no avail. Our crestfallen staffer then hightailed it over to the Sprint store and was rudely re-introduced to the world of rip-offs when he was told that a replacement phone would cost $270 dollars, plus tax. “That’s your plan, dude,” the friendly salesman said. Needless to say, our staffer returned to his cubicle and actually started lifting up the debris littering the desk, eventually finding the phone face down beneath a pile of books. OK, so all that should tell you that our brain has partially shut down here the past few months for reasons both known and unknown, and not even massive doses of caffeine seem to help. We’re thinking maybe a lobotomy …But there is hope! We say this because we recently learned that some of the skills we learned in college might still pay off. We are especially hopeful that our ability to open twist-off beer bottles with our eye sockets may come in handy if we’re ever invited to compete in the Food Network’s scintillating food challenge shows, such as the one that recently was reported on by a newspaper in Hawaii, wherein we read that chefs competed in, among other things, a fantasy fruit sculpture, as well as a competition to see who could most accurately and with the greatest speed flip shrimp tails into their chef’s hat. We love it! Here’s the quote from the paper: “During the speed round, competitors prepared steak, shrimp, fried rice and mixed vegetables, while also performing three flair tasks, which included flipping shrimp tails into their hat using the spatula, building an onion volcano at least four inches high and flipping eggs into the air and cracking them open with the spatula’s thin side. The competitor with the fastest time, after penalties, won the first round.” So what could possibly be more Summit Up than onion volcanoes? Summit Up is all about “flair.” Not that we have the slightest clue what an onion volcano is, but we’ll keep you posted. We have an inside source on this one, and we’ll let you know when the episode airs.As far as the eye socket trick, we gotta tell you we learned this not in culinary school but from a college roommate whose nickname was “Buff,” the same guy who once poured a shot of flaming Southern Comfort down the front of his shirt. We didn’t try that one. We can’t tell you Buff’s real name because we understand he is now a high-ranking military officer and may be involved in a top-secret mission in Kurdistan – national security and all that. But we will tell you that we often think of him fondly, because we still have never found a better way to impress women than sticking a beer bottle in our eye and popping the top off.***We are stunned and amazed! We actually received a response to one of our little Summit Up quizzes, and we hereby declare Craig Wiedl as the grand prize winner, so stop by anytime to claim your prizes, Craig.Attentive readers may recall that we asked for guesses on how many charms there are in a box of Lucky Charms cereal. Well, Craig guessed 257, and he was so close we reckon he must have gone out, bought a box and counted those tasty bits of sugary goodness on a slow mud season afternoon. And Craig also submitted a slogan for our upcoming anti-mag chloride campaign. Here it is:Mag MeShag MeSicken & Gag MeWe love it!***We out, flippin’ shrimp tails.
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