Time to touch some end-of-summer bases:
- In his Aug. 31 column in The Wall Street Journal, columnist Daniel Henninger credits Sen. Al (no relation) Simpson with dubbing the Republican party “the Stupid Party,” and the Democratic party “The Evil Party.”
That's good stuff, but it brings to mind a kitchen table debate that occurs at our house. Harking back to the “Leave it to Beaver” sitcom, my wife says the Democratic party is the Eddie Haskell Party, in that they are complimentary to June Cleaver's face - “You're looking particularly beautiful today, Mrs. Cleaver” - but laugh at how gullible adults are when she turns her back.
Up to something. Contemptuous of those who disagree. Spendthrifts. Evil.
I say the Republicans have a lot in common with Eddie Haskell too, promising to cut spending at election time but never actually doing it. I'm say Spendthrift Eddie is in both parties.
I say the Republicans are the Lumpy Rutherford Party, always a day late and a dollar short, slow on the uptake, putty in the hands of cynical Eddies.
The Stupid Party.
(You'll recall that Lumpy's father always called him Clarence.)
- You know Cabin Season in the Upper Snowy Range is on its last legs when the hummingbirds disappear. Time to take the feeders down as my 42nd summer up here sadly comes to an end. (Come March, there will be eight feet of snow on the ground.)
It has been a wet and cold summer, and rain cut short our annual Labor Day Picnic. I've never seen the forest so green. Deer sightings have been rare, due apparently to last year's rough winter.
- Folks up here complain that the ability to send text messages is decidedly worse this year, so you have to find a good spot, stand on a stump, face the right direction and think good thoughts to send a text.
We are told our service is worse because they're jiggering things around to make service better. (!) Towers are being switched, and maybe they're getting ready for 5G. (I'd prefer fewer Gs and more dependable texts.)
Still, I recall the day 30 years ago when the old guy I bought my land from had to drive 22 miles from Elk Mountain to my place, to let me know a motor had failed on the press at the little paper I ran in Illinois, and they needed me to approve expensive repairs. So then I had to drive 22 miles to Elk Mountain to call work.
There's a world of difference today, even if you have to stand on a stump to send a text.
- I maintain that the two best deals in Wyoming are the Hobo Pool in Saratoga – open 24 hours a day 365 days a year – and the awesome Rec Center in Gillette. Hobo Pool is free to everyone, and the Rec Center in Gillette is free to old coots like me.
A dip in Hobo Pool or a visit to the steam room at the Gillette Rec Center are both good for what ails you, relief to your tortured rotator cuffs, comfort to your bulging discs, emergency care to your cramp-prone chicken legs.
It's as good as a trip to the physical therapist.
- I had the best BLT of my life at The Saratoga Inn last week, and a tall glass of Headlamp Lager at the Snowy Mountain Brewery and Pub. The BLT was three decks high, and even featured avocado strips. It was so good I was rendered speechless. And the beer was awesome.
Speaking of good food, I always stop at Penny's Diner in downtown Bill when on my way to Gillette to see my granddaughters. A Penny's Burger hits the spot, and the fries are great. On the way home, it would be a crime not to stop at the Chugwater Soda Fountain for a classic malt or shake.
- I look at these politicians in Washington who work into their 80s, even 90s, and think what they're missing. They deprive themselves of the retirement joys of a regular coffee group at some hometown greasy spoon, no meetings to attend, nowhere you've got to be, and plenty of time to set a spell in great little towns like Saratoga, Bill, and Chugwater.
And every day is Saturday.
Dave Simpson can be reached at: DaveSimpson145@Hotmail.com