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Summit Up

Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column saying “Happy birthday” to Leap Year babies – all those folks who are born tomorrow, which should be Feb. 29, and not March 1.You know who you are. We know one, Bob Netherton, will be celebrating something like his 12th birthday.***Frequent writer Dan Streeter pens:”The following is in defense of one of my hometown, Fort Wayne, Ind., which Men’s Health magazine listed as the Dumbest City in America. The article was penned by the vice president of a company that is very proud of its accomplishments.”Upon finding ourselves listed in your magazine as the Dumbest City in the Nation, we of the Allen Business Exchange, a group of ‘stupid’ business people in Fort Wayne, Ind., decided to help you clear your offices and homes of all those pesky products that were invented in Fort Wayne. By return mail, or even fax, (if you haven’t already unplugged it to ship back to us) please advise us of a convenient pick up date for the following items:– All your television sets– Your turntables– Every fax machine you own or lease; we even want the broken one in the storage room.– Hand over your hand-held calculators; the inventor never meant to be ridiculed, so figure it out for yourself.– Get the screwdriver out and remove your garbage disposal. Once called Bill Morrill’s electric pig.– And while we are working in the kitchen, dig out those three cans of baking powder. Biscuits just won’t be quite so fluffy and tasty, but you’ll survive.– Before we leave the kitchen, clean out your refrigerators and freezers for shipping. They too were invented in Fort Wayne.– While we are cleaning up, we will take all your washing machines. Our Horton Washing Machine Company invented, produced and sold the first self-contained cleaning appliance, which nicely replaced the corrugated washboard. We may be able to find three or four of those washboards in our antique shops, so you won’t have to be without clean clothes. Where shall we drop-ship them?– Now, let’s see all the products you have with magnet wire in them. Yes, we’re the world’s magnet wire capitol. Invented here, manufactured here. We’ll need you to box up your computers, radios, and the engines and motors of your automobiles, SUVs, airplanes, boats – even your hearing aids. Next we’ll take the wiring harness from your vehicles, as well as all the motors in your electrical appliances.– Oh, yes, we need your Public Address System-magnet wire you know. It’s just everywhere nowadays.– Carefully pack all your hi-fi equipment, now known as stereo, plus all the transistor radios, TVs, and watches. Ask your parents how to wind a wristwatch, because we are hauling away all those nifty little self-winding jobs.– It won’t bother you so much to give up your automobiles when you learn that you can no longer fuel them easily. We are taking all your gasoline pumps, too.– Oh-almost forgot, those kiddy cars that are battery operated. Crate them up too. No Slattery’s Battery for you! Entertainment has always been big here. So get all your jukeboxes packed up, and all your video games, and all copycats of our original Pac-Man.– Now we want the lights from the tops of your tall towers – the ones that notify the maintenance group and the FAA when they burn out. Of course you won’t even hear about the new Zoom product that feeds information about traffic hazards and road conditions to the GPS system, that is another story. You’ll have to read about it in the newspaper, as soon as the Pony Express gets your edition to you, that is.– How soon can you get solar powered lighting for your city? Yes, municipal lighting systems were invented here, and the first night baseball game was held here, too. Give up your nighttime sports? Uh-huh. We will just make a clean sweep of it.Well, thanks for all the goodies. Send a messenger down to let us know when you have reinvented all the items you no longer have available, and we’ll see if we can find someone to get you back into the current century, whenever that may be.”***We out, blowing out the birthday candles.If you have any fine thoughts yourself, give us a jingle at (970) 668-3998, ext. 237, e us at or fax at (970) 668-0755.

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