Summit Up 7-10-09 |

Summit Up 7-10-09

Thak G

Good morning and welcome to Summit Up the world’s only daily column not afraid to admit it eats quiche. You know, there’s that old chestnut floating around out there about how real men don’t eat quiche. Well, we’re here to to tell you it simply ain’t true. Not only do real men eat quiche, they cook it, too. We have it on very authoritative sources that some men actually enjoy cracking and whisking eggs, adding in spinach, ham, bell peppers … Oops, we’ve just given away our favorite quiche recipe!

That’s all about quiche. It’s something we wanted to get off our chests.

MILLIONS OF SUMMIT UP READERS: “Yaaawwn. So what? Tell us something we don’t know.”

SUMMIT UP: OK, how about this: Archaeologists in Germany recently discovered a 35,000-year-old, five-tone flute made out of a hollow griffon vulture bone. The discovery sheds new light on when music became part of the human story. We’re talking caveman days, here, folks. Maybe, instead of just konking each other on the heads with clubs, those Neanderthals had a bit more going for them.

We can just picture it. After a tough day of hunting and gathering, the clan would gather around the campfire. Trogg would pull his vulture-bone flute from the pocket inside his loincloth – the caveman version of the iPod – and play a haunting melody to honor the spirt of the bison slowly roasting over the coals. The other cave people would join in, some gently tapping sticks and stones together for a percussion section, while others blew on conch shells to give the whole ensemble some juicy horns. Everything would go fine until one of them would yell out: “Play In-a-Gadda-Da-Vida!” And you know how it is with that song. Some people love it, others hate it.

MSUR: “Wow – now you’re talking. See, you were holding out on us with the good stuff. Why just the other day, after finishing up a BBQ’d turkey leg at the Dillon Farmer’s Market, we were thinking to ourselves: There’s got to be something better to do with this big ol’ bone than just throwing it away. We started thinking that we could make a wind chime, then we started thinking about how we’d need to find our power drill and some fine piano wire, as well as several other bones of various sizes to get the full range of tones. All that seemed a bit much, so in the end, we just tossed it.”

SU: There’s more. According to the report we scanned in the NY Times, the scale of notes on this flute approximated the first few bars of the Star Spangled Banner.

MSUR: “Man! That sounds so cool. Only where the heck are we going to find a hollow griffon vulture bone? For that matter, what in the world is a griffon vulture? Do we even have any vultures in Colorado?”

SU: Yep, there’s the common turkey vulture, whose wingspan can spread up to 72 inches, so there ought to be some good flute-type bones there. We’re not sure about finding the bones, but there must be some kind of turkey vulture graveyard, where old buzzards go to die, probably out in the badlands north of Grand Junction, near Skull Rock.

And just in case you can’t find a vulture bone, we’ve got some other ideas for homemade instruments, including Aboriginal clap sticks, made from paint stirrers, bottle-cap tambourines, a cardboard-box guitar or even a copper-pipe Glockenspiel!

MSUR: “Hmm, that last one sounds interesting. A Glockenspiel would be right up our alley. Sounds like it would go well with brats and beer.”

SU: You betcha! Just go to for all the info.


We out, building a Glockenspiel.

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