Summit Up 9-28-09 |

Summit Up 9-28-09


Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column that’s knitting up a storm and laughing about all the silly things we learned Saturday night about old-time mining rascals from Breckenridge history.Mary Ellen Gilliland, a local historical buff and author, put on a lecture at Colorado Mountain College’s new facility Saturday, providing photos, pictures, and tamed-down tales of old-time Breckenridge debauchery. We were charmed and giggled a few times to say the least.We’ll share two things we learned – the term “flop house” came about because men who were too inebriated to ride their horse home, or something, could pay to “flop” on the floor of the saloon. Apparently squares would be drawn on the floor with chalk and drunkards could pay for a square. Ick.And the term “bit the dusk” came from drunken miners simply falling down onto the floor of the saloon and sleeping it off. (Saloon floors were covered with saw dust).We feel a lot smarter now that we know this. Thanks, Mary Ellen, for such a fun evening, and for wearing a period Victorian costume. Now, that was awesome!***In knitting news, we’re back in the saddle, click-clackin’ away. And we’ve never felt better about it.For those who’ve been following Summit Up religiously, you may recall our vow to knit a hat and mittens this winter.Well, we haven’t done either. But, we’re knitting a scarf to get back into the swing of things. After all, it’s been about 12 months since we picked up some yarn. Saturday afternoon was spent sorting through our knitting needles (passed down to us by our granny who has a nasty case of arthritis that keeps her from knitting herself). We picked out a shiny, red pair to start Saturday’s project – they’re long and bright, and just perfect for our present state of mind. E-mail us at if you have any special knitting tips to share.***In other news, Liz Clawson recently wrote it about getting lost in Summit County. This is a funny one! Read on:”Dear Summit Up, I LOVE your column!! Random humor is the best and most ridiculous. Anyway, here is my story of being lost in Summit County. My first summer in Breckenridge, I was out hiking with a dog and didn’t want to take the boring way back – back-tracking – so I took a trail that looked like it paralleled the main trail. Well, it didn’t!!! Pretty soon we were running into ‘No Trespassing’ signs and multiple little trails – ‘Which way to go?’ ‘Where will this lead?’ ‘What direction do I even want to go?’ ‘Pooch, lead us home!!’ I cried in desperation. I couldn’t see any landmarks, just trees and more trees and trails. I looked down at my cell phone. No signal. GRRREAAAAT!!!! We were running out of water and I starting wondering how I could signal to the airplanes up above, ‘HELP!!’ I made a mental note to ask for flares for Christmas. We kept walking and finally when I had a cell signal, I called a friend who knew the search and rescue crew, so she called them. Just when I received their call, I spotted a house. There were people sitting outside on the porch, and they directed me home. Praise the Lord! Once I dropped the dog off, I still had probably five more miles to my car. I had to be at work soon and was exhausted, physically and mentally. So I started running and soon realized, ‘This is going to take FOREVER!!’ So I did something I’d never done before – something that would put my grandma into a coma. I stuck my thumb out and hitchhiked. I was desperate and figured I didn’t look too threatening in my tank-top and visor. A kind family pulled their Jeep over and squeezed me in. Within a few minutes, I was at my car and learned my lesson: It’s better to be safe than sorry. I haven’t gotten my flares yet, so I’m still back-tracking. Hope you can get out and enjoy our Indian summer day today!”Wow! Thanks for sharing your epic journey with us. What a crazy adventure. And we’re glad we weren’t with you. ***OK, we’re still trying to get some participation in our Local Lessons & Lore contest, and we have some nice gift certificates for the Dillon Dam Brewery to give away, so get crackin’, Summit Up readers! What we want is just a short few sentences detailing your own anecdote about something Summit County-y. Like that epic snow day and how you got stuck on Guanella Pass for a week and had to eat the stuffing out of your car seats; or something about how you got lost trying to get back from that alligator farm in southern Colorado. Send them to us at and you may realize a small modicum of fame for your efforts.***We’re out, knitting something pink and green, with tassels. And we like it.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.