Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Tails... part two.

Since my first column appeared in News from Broken Springs, I’ve received dozens of emails from readers asking a number of questions. My editor thinks I should answer all reader questions in an article. And since she pays the bills, who am I to argue?

Dear Mr. Cougar,
I read with great interest your first article in News from Broken Springs. I’m wondering where you came from. Many wildlife experts have speculated that you might’ve been someone’s pet let loose in the wild.
-Art Shannon

Mr. Shannon, No. This is a vicious lie spread to diminish my ferociousness to the public. But keep in mind, I’m not mean enough to shoot. Was I someone’s pet? Was I domesticated? Have I ever worn a collar? The answers are no, no, and only that one time when I wandered in an S&M shop quite by accident.

I am merely a distinguished feline with impeccable taste, who’s currently being aided by an editor with Cat Chow, only so I needn’t scavenge on all of your undernourished cattle.

The following three questions are from Ami Hendrickson of Coloma.

1. What do you think of the blistering intellect of Dr. Ruse, PhD, biological investigator par excellence?

Well, I don't know about his intellect, but I think he has delicious looking thighs.

2. Why do you believe that Dr. Ruze declined to do DNA testing on the horse that you damaged when he examined the exhumed body? Don't you feel cheated? Especially when such tests would have conclusively proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that you walk among us?

Well, I have something on Dr. Ruze, you see. I've sworn to him that I won't discuss the details, but if it ever became known, his reputation would be suffering even more than it is now. As it as currently, he's only a scientist who doesn't want to handle cougar feces. Can't say I blame him. So I "Abramoff-ed" him, if you will pardon my political expression. My existence must remain a vague mystery to the county or else all hell will break loose. They'll declare open season on cougars, and Broken County residents will be even more panicked than they already are. As it is now, I'm rather like Elvis. People report sightings of me all the time, some are legit and others are merely intoxicated hallucinations. Some even believe I'm black! Well, I tan a bit in the summer, but I can't be described as black by any stretch of the imagination. Personally I hate that noise they call rap music and I rarely watch BET.

3. Do you prefer white meat or dark?

Back when I ate meat (other than the beef tallow in Purina Cat Chow, of course) I preferred white meat. Dr. Ruze's thighs, for example. However, it always went straight to my hips. My vegetarian diet has made me feel more energetic, less sluggish, and it's improved my sex drive tenfold.

Question: You’re kinda cute. Do you have a girlfriend? Would you like to meet my kitty, Ms. Piddles?
-Love, Amy, 2nd grade.

Well, as flattered as I am at your offer for free pussy, I must respectfully decline. I’m afraid my heart’s been broken one too many times by females who love me, then leave me. I’m a loner now. But don’t pity me. Unlike you humans, we cats can lick ourselves quite easily.

Mr. Cougar, why are you writing for the typo ridden dildo obsessed News from Broken Springs when you could have a good job (with better benefits, like catnip) over at the Broken Springs Straight Shooter?
-Envyingly yours, Sore

For some reason, my editor has told me to ignore this email.

TC, while I thoroughly enjoyed your first piece, I kept wondering to myself what it had to do with the constant shenanigans of Jim Kingston, and the BSOT Police Department?
-Signed, TB

Dear TB, Who is this Jim Kingston and should I eat him?
My editor has just explained it to me. I take back my offer to eat him. He’d only give me a belly ache.

TC, As an animal lover, I wish you luck and applaud your recent decision to pursue a vegetarian diet. Let me know if you ever need a place to stay. I have a spare bedroom.
-Curly Headed Sandy

Dear Sandy, eating animals is so last year. Live and let live, is what I say. Now I know people think I’m a vicious beast, but really I’m just a pussy cat who purrs when you rub my tummy. I firmly believe that both of our species should be evolved enough by now not to eat each other.

Mr. C, does it make you mad that the local cops hired a police dog and not a police cat?
-Jesse Jackson

Mr. Jackson, What?! Hang on a minute, I’m looking up the number to the ACLU.

Dear Cougar,
How has Lucy (from the Journalistic Error) changed your life?

Dear Lucy,
You are by far the best writer on your newspaper’s staff. Every Wednesday I look forward to your insight and wisdom about the intricacies of nature. You’re also quite a looker. Would you care to accompany me to the fish cleaning station in the campground this Friday evening? I know I told Ms. Piddles that I wasn’t interested in pursuing a relationship but only because I’ve never been into Persians. Also, could you ask your owner if she could squeeze me in on Thursday to have my whiskers trimmed?
Xoxo, TC

Oh, Ms. Throat has just informed me that my published answers shouldn’t be so personal in nature. Guess I let the cat out of the bag, didn’t I? Oh well. No one should ever be ashamed of love.

Until next time, peace out.

TC can be reached at berriencougar@hotmail.com

Monday, January 30, 2006

Kingston Defends Bionic Ear

Chief calls it, "Necessary in wartime."

Broken Springs Police Chief Jim Kingston has once again come under fire from local residents and civil liberty organizations for his use of a Bionic Ear listening device. But he defended his eavesdropping in much the same way President Bush has defended his warrant-less wiretapping.

Kingston, who used the illegal device probably no more than 20-30 times tops in the mid 90‘s, according to his wife and Village Clerk Cherry Kingston, recently explained to NFBS that it wasn’t an easy decision to make.

“I did it for the security of Broken Springs. I did it to keep drugs off the streets, and to guard our youth from the drug culture.”

Kingston is referring to the only official time his Bionic Ear was used, to listen in on private correspondence pertaining to drug solicitation. The family whose civil rights were trampled on lived next door to a police officer at the time. According to a source known only as White Throat, the family was also black.

“I didn’t know they were black. They certainly didn‘t sound black. Not once did they say, ‘You know what I‘m saying?’,” explained Kingston. “There were no pink Caddies in the driveway. No washing machine on the porch either. It was only after their arrest that I realized they were nig… er, African Americans.”

According to police reports at that time, Kingston had round the clock surveillance on nearly a dozen Broken Springs houses, and a variety of conversations were recorded. NFBS has had the chance to review those tapes, but heard nothing out of the ordinary for small town small talk. It was all mundane stuff, really, like: Don’t forget to get milk at the store after you get off work. Did you return your library books? Can you believe the price of gas? Over a dollar a gallon! You forgot to pick up my dry cleaning again? You’re sleeping on the couch tonight, mister! What are all these 900 numbers on the phone bill? Is that lipstick on your collar? You’re wearing that to church?

Critics have since accused the Chief of violating the fourth amendment to the Constitution because the eavesdropping was done without a warrant. But according to a random poll of intoxicated patrons in a bar uptown, 65% of Broken Springs residents think Kingston was justified in spying to keep the streets of Broken Springs safe, while only 30% objected to his illegal actions. The other five percent were undecided and/or unaware of anything other than the stein of beer in front of them.

Lonna Jackson commented loudly, “If you aren’t hiding anything, you don’t have anything to fear,” which must mean she doesn’t mind everyone knowing about the strange moaning noises she makes while using her vibrating egg beater in the kitchen.

Asked whether or not he’d use the device again, Kingston said it would depend on whether or not he could get caught. If not, he said, “Absolutely. It’s crucial in wartime. Who knows how many potential Al Qaeda members we have hiding in Broken Springs. Well, thirteen that I know of. They are being closely monitored,” assured the Chief. “But not by the Bionic Ear,” he quickly added. “No, by a completely legal device authorized by the NSA under the Foreign Surveillance Act.”

“You’ve tapped their phones, then?” we asked.

“Naturally,” answered the Chief. “And to those of you with overdue library books, we know who you are.”

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Shame Captures Cougar

Yesterday, blight ordinance enforcer and part time bow hunter, Daniel Shame, captured The Cougar that has been terrorizing much of Broken County for the past several months. Having just recently received a pay raise to $23 an hour, Shame put in overtime to hunt for the dangerous creature. His hard work and dedication paid off when he discovered the cougar in the backyard of a house on Murlock Street. The hero Shame picks up the story.

“I was called to the scene by a neighbor complaining about a trash canister still on the street a day after trash pickup. But the offenders weren’t home when I knocked, and thinking that they might possibly be terrorists, I let myself into their house under direct orders from President Bush. It was while I was searching their refrigerator for dangerous explosives and Budweiser that I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. I peeked out the back window and there it was, just sitting there, staring at me.”

According to the police report Shame filled out after going on duty later in the day, the cougar was very large and intimidating, in a stealth like pose. It’s unclear how long the cougar had been hiding out at this location, but Shame indicated that it looked like the occupants of the house were caring for it.

“Once I saw the creature, I put down my beer and ham sandwich. I pulled out my Tas… er, I mean my pepper spray, and I fixed my other hand on my crossbow. Slowly, I slid open the screen door and quietly approached the beast. It didn’t move as I circled it. And when I looked at its backend, I saw that it was currently unlicensed, yet another violation to the blight ordinance. Suddenly I thought I saw it twitch, so I fired at it immediately. But the arrow only bounced off its hard body. I attempted to tas… er, I mean pepper spray it, but the prongs also just bounced off its tough exterior. So I high tailed it back in the house, making sure to close the sliding glass door behind me, and finished eating my hot ham and cheese, secretly hoping that the cougar would be gone when I finished. But he wasn’t. He just sat there, like he was out of gas or something. I had no other choice but to call for backup.”

When backup arrived, they shot the cougar full of tranquilizers and called a tow truck. The cougar is currently at the impound lot, awaiting its future release in the wild. Scientists who have studied the cougar believe it was born sometime around 1968, judging from the license plate around its neck. According to Cougar buffs, all cougars born in that year are classics with excellent restorative value.

Police Chief Jim Kingston added, “Once again, Officer Daniel Shame has protected the fine people of Broken Springs, possibly saving many lives. He deserves a pat on the back and several strokes of encouragement from the fine young women who often show him their gratitude by bowing before him on a nightly basis.”

When asked about the large cat like animal that was sitting on the cougar’s hood, Kingston laughed and said, “Oh, whatever it was, it ran off once backup arrived. Probably just a stray cat. Broken Springs is full of ‘em.”

Monday, January 23, 2006

Hello there. Allow me to extend a paw and properly introduce myself. I am “The Cougar.” By “The Cougar” I mean, of course, the wild and vicious beast that’s been frequenting your news and papers, sighted in several areas but denied by local officials because they’re worried about inducing panic. Well, really it’s because I’ve cut them a deal, but more about that later.

I roam all around the County but I particularly like the small city of Broken Springs. There, I can live peacefully and type up my memoirs, without so much of a second glance from residents who can’t tell a cougar from a pussy cat. But I cannot belittle their ignorant naivety because that’s the only reason I haven’t been netted by Animal Control yet.

Since I’m sure it’s brooding in everyone’s mind, the horse in Watervliet totally had it coming. Yes, he and I got into a scuffle, but I had no intention of killing him. He got snippy when I started eating his food, then he said the most awful things about my mother. Well, I don’t have to tell you that it’s not decent to insult a man eating beast’s mother. Especially if you’re a species that kowtows to the most monstrous of all species, humans. My mother, bless her tail, was a good cougar. She raised six wonderful children, and donated annually to Red Cross. So when that ignorant horse made the comments he did, I had to protect my mother’s honor.

I had planned on giving him a couple bites to teach him a lesion … er, I mean lesson. But he squirmed too much in my forceful grip and I accidentally bit down on his jugular. Blood began spraying everywhere! So I ran off. What was I supposed to do? Phone the cops and wait there for thirty minutes? I couldn’t exactly drive the poor equine to the emergency room, could I? Well, I felt awful, but I knew that the proper authorities would find the horse before it bled to death. Is it my fault that they decided to gas him the next morning? I didn’t even know he was Jewish! I may be a cruel flesh eating beast, but I’m no killer. Yet, the media gives me only bad press.

It wasn’t until recently that I befriended a friendly editor willing to let me tell my side of the story. Granted, this blog isn’t exactly the Times, and according to its archives, it seems to be a bit too focused on local police procedure. But I suppose, as an official Broken Springs resident, the affairs of the police department affect me too. My editor’s name is Shallow Throat. I purr when I hear that name, just like when I get my belly rubbed. Who can’t love a name like Shallow Throat?

The first thing we discussed was a pseudonym because, according to Throat, it’s not safe to use your real name in Broken Springs. She wanted me to go by ‘Big Pussy’ but I decided on T.C. instead, which she says stands for “The Cougar” but I say it stands for “Thunder Cock.” She said if I went by the latter, I might be mistaken for a rooster. I said I‘d take my chances. But she said she wouldn‘t publish someone called Thunder Cock, even if it was a rooster because that could be considered obscene. Editors… can’t live with them, can’t kill ‘em. I hung my tail between my legs and said “T.C. will be just fine.”

The truth is, I have Shallow Throat wrapped around my little paw. If she makes a change to something I write, I simply growl and she changes it back. She’s also agreed to pay me with a lifetime supply of Purina Cat Chow. It’s a bit dry, but it beats the hell out of catching fish in the polluted St. Joe river.

Well, I’m over my word limit. Plus, my paws are getting tired. I haven’t typed this much since I was back in college writing my thesis on the dietary benefits of being a carnivore. Oh, one last thing. I’m a big fan of Lucy from the Jouralistic Error, and love her closing line. I’ve decided that my closing line will be:

Remember, if you see a large cat with a long tail in your backyard, whatever you do, don’t go, “Here, kitty kitty.”

TC can be reached at berriencougar@hotmail.com

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Potent and Impotent

Hello Broken Springers.

I hope you all enjoyed the seven day minute by minute coverage of Chief Kingston’s suspension. Readership was up during that time and I assume it wasn’t just because of the free donuts.

I can tell you one thing… when the Chief was suspended, I was initially elated. But after updating this blog for seven straight days, I’m hoping the Chief never gets suspended again. You hear that Jimmy Boy? I hope you never get suspended again. My fingers would fall off.

In all seriousness, I must commend the Police Commission’s decision to hold him responsible for his actions. And I mean Curly Headed Sandy and Jan Chaddwick too. It couldn’t have been easy to stick a knife in Jimmy’s back like that, let alone twisting it like you did. Good job, ladies!

Some of you may have noticed that the Picklefest is no more. Either that or they completely forgot about it. Not a whisper was mentioned in the Journalistic Error about it, and most people, when I asked them, said, “Oh yeah, I wonder what happened to it?” Not that I missed it, really. But for a couple years there, it seemed like we wanted it to be our claim to fame. Now we’re turning our backs on our gherkin friends. What gives?

In memory of the Picklefest, enjoy this joke:

A couple moves to Broken Springs and the guy gets a job at the local pickle factory. A few years go by and each year he wins the employee of the year award. One day in the third year, he comes home looking all depressed.

His wife asks him what's bothering him, to which he responds, "I got fired."

"Fired?!? How can you get fired, you're always employee of the year!!" she asked, stunned.

He responds that he had a fantasy that he needed to fulfill... “Well, I always wanted to stick my willy in the pickle slicer. “

"You didn't!" she exclaimed.

He blushed and replied, "Well, yes I did."

Then she asks, "Did it hurt?"

"No, not really," answers the man.

Puzzled, she then asks him, "What happened to the pickle slicer??"

He answers, "Oh, she got fired too!"

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Suspension: Day Seven

The weeklong suspension of Broken Springs Police Chief Jim Kingston ended today with an elaborate cutting down ceremony in the middle of town square. Kingston had been suspended from the traffic light without pay for seven long days after the Police Commission declared his decision a year ago to illegally cash Taser donated checks a boo boo for which he had to be held accountable.

In the weeklong suspension, the embattled Police Chief faced harsh weather conditions, a riot in the streets below him, a potential terrorist attack, and a lost lottery ticket that could’ve won him five grand. But even by day seven, Chief Kingston’s penalty was not over.

The festivities began at seven this morning, when a crowd began to gather to witness Kingston’s last hour of suspension. Some college students showed up in biblical garb, carrying a lance. A pastor showed up to compare Kingston to a crucified Christ and declared it His "Eleventh Hour." Before long, a parade was arranged, and a spread of food that would’ve filled the Clover football field was laid out along Fairy Street. The only thing missing from Broken Springs’s celebration were chocolate covered pickles.

The presence of many small children resulted in one area mother setting up some carnival games for them to play as they waited for school to start. These games included ring toss and paintball. And because the local mother was staunch defender of Kingston, she included him in these games. His right leg served as the peg for the ring toss game, and he was a viable target in the game of paintball for everyone except for a latecomer, a short, grey haired boy dressed up as a cop who insisted on being called Danny. When he attempted to hit Kingston with the paint gun, everyone at Weed Way gas station took cover. A bit later, some of the adults began pitching horseshoes.

By seven thirty, the upside down Kingston had rings hanging from several limbs of his anatomy, a couple horseshoes wrapped around his neck (three points for a ringer), several splatters of paint on his personhood, including several in his nether regions, and he was covered from head to toe, or rather toe to head in silly strung. It was all good clean fun, at least to start with.

At eight AM, not a moment too soon for Kingston, town officials were hoisted up to the traffic light to officially cut him down. The initial plan was to slowly lower him onto the pavement, to prevent injury but when Mayor Chaddwick began lowering her favorite Chief, people from the crowd began counting down from ten as if a big ball was dropping. But in this case it was two small balls. Then suddenly, several intoxicated people from Coyote’s Watering Hole surrounded the Chief’s descending body and began smacking it with pool sticks. For the cost of a couple rounds of drinks, NFBS has learned the motive behind such absurd behavior. Apparently some unidentified male wearing high heels and a pink scarf around his burly neck ran through the tavern announcing that whoever broke the pinata hanging from the traffic light would win a first class one way ticket out of our sorry little town. According to a bartender with extremely big boobs that bounced when she talked, all the fit young males grabbed pool cues and ran for the door.

A minor scuffle broke out, but not between the drunks and townfolk as you might imagine. The scuffle was between Mayor Chaddwick and Supervisor Ernie Hildecrust over a pair of scissors. Hildecrust ended up with the shears but not because he was stronger than his foe. It just so happens that Chaddwick is ticklish. He sliced the twenty pound test line and sent Kingston crashing to the pavement on his head. A brief examination of the Chief showed a strawberry on his bald spot, but other than that, no major injuries. That is, until the sloshed residents continued beating him with pool sticks after he was on the ground. Then the Chief was diagnosed with a fractured rib, a sprained ankle, and two black eyes.

As he was hauled away on a stretcher and hoisted into the back of a Smack Us emergency vehicle, Mayor Chaddwick made this comment in between bites of a fried chicken drumstick, “That goes to show you just how strong Jim Kingston is.” She picked up a roll and doused it in butter. “He’s been to hell and back to show his devotion to this town,” she added between big bites. “He’s escaped this fiasco with his dignity!” she mumbled as she deep throated a hot dog covered with ketchup and mustard.

Because of his extensive injuries, Kingston is not expected to return to work for several months. According to friends of the Chief, he will be using his vacation time.

Monday, January 16, 2006

The Suspension: Day Six

As his sentence winds down, Chief Jim Kingston's days of hanging upside down from the only traffic light in Broken Springs are numbered. That is, if it’s really Jim Kingston up there.

Recent rumors are afloat that the man suspended above Crass and Fairy streets isn’t Kingston, but a stunt double hired by Kingston last night after an unfortunate personal incident with a nearby street sign. According to the medical reports we acquired by FOIA requests, Kingston was checked into Merciless hospital just after eight Sunday evening, and discharged with minor anal bleeding at around 9 PM. Most of the bleeding had stopped, according to his proctologist, Dr. Bob Cornhole, at which time the Chief was released with the instructions to return if his anal discharge returned in the following 12 hours. That story checks out with the information released by authorities in Broken Springs, but some still doubt the veracity of the timeline, insisting that the man wasn’t restrung until much later in the evening.

“I was on my way uptown to get *^%*faced,” said Marge Hanlin (24), a mother of six, “It was nearly eleven when traffic was backed up in the intersection. I got out of my car to see if there was an accident, and the guy in front of me rolled down his window and said they were stringing up the Chief. I said ‘Again?‘ I’d heard he was well hung, but this is ridiculous. Not to mention, an inconvenience. I missed last call for Happy Hour.”

We asked those who live near the intersection if they noticed any unusual behavior on Sunday night.

“You mean other than the guy in his long johns hanging from his feet?” asked Kenny Grounder, who only subscribes to the paper for the crosswords.

“Do you know who that is?” we asked him.

“My guess is David Copperfield, no wait… he doesn’t have that much hair. Maybe David Blaine?”

“Close,” we told him. “He’s a local master of illusion.”

“Well, whoever he is, he’s defecating all over the roadway. Someone should call the cops.”

Taking Mr. Grounder’s advice, we went straight to the source of the controversy. When asked if he was really Jim Kingston, the man who’s supposed to be Jim Kingston said, “Of course I’m Jim Kingston. Who else would the Police Commission hang upside down from a traffic light in the middle of town? They certainly wouldn’t do it to Ernie Hildecrust, would they? No, they won‘t even try recalling that heartless &*^%$#$.”

His use of profanity is another clue to his true identity. Would the real Jim Kingston, a loving, churchgoing moral man, use such vulgar language? Hell yes, we say, but others are unconvinced.

Many of the conspiracy theorists theorize that the Kingston look-alike has more facial hair than the real police chief and is also skinnier. But defenders insist that the physical change is only due to the fact that Kingston hasn’t shaved in nearly a week, and cannot eat properly since everything keeps falling out of his upside down mouth.

“That’s just a happy coincidence,” explained Bonii Didjaseedat. “If that was truly Jim Kingston up there, who’s the dark haired man sneaking into his house in the middle of the night? I have pictures in case anyone doesn’t believe me.”

“And his bald spot is smaller,” added one of Bonii’s supposed offspring. “Don’t tell me that all the sun and rain is helping to fertilize his head. He’s a Police Chief, not a Chia Pet.”

Since Kingston’s sentence ends tomorrow, the Police Commissioners have ruled against extensive identification verification. Fingerprinting and DNA tests could put aside the allegations, but wouldn’t be worth the cost, according to Mayor Jan Chaddwick, as she winked to whoever it was hanging from the traffic light.

Day Seven

Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Suspension: Day Five

Chief Kingston suffered another minor mishap today while suspended from his job and hanging face down from the traffic light in the middle of town. Around five this afternoon, while most good citizens were rooting on the Chicago Bears in the NFL playoffs, Chief Kingston was casually trying to strike it rich with smuggled scratch off tickets from inside a secret canister disguised as a water bottle tossed up to him by a young woman who works in Weed Way gas station. Somewhere between thirty and forty blown dollars, Kingston scratched off three sevens in a row, with a cash amount that read $5,000. But so used to losing, he dropped the ticket before he realized what it was, and it landed far below in the street beneath him.

Panicking, Kingston feared the worst. He was worried that someone else would find the winning ticket. With his luck it’d probably be a sidewalk supervising anti-sewer peanut who preaches against the sin of gambling. Five thousand dollars is a lot of money, especially to a Police Chief serving an unpaid suspension immediately after getting the elbow for 52 ½ hours of unused vacation time. Five thousand dollars would more than cover these two unpaid weeks, and give him a little pocket change with which to play the numbers at the Blue Ship Casino, or at least to blow a few thousand playing Keno in Roger’s tavern. With any luck, he would have enough left over to buy some roses for his wife so she’d forget about all those women at the press conference yesterday claiming that he gives them regular back rubs.

The ticket lay quietly on the pavement, fluttering like a wounded bird with each passing vehicle. A couple cars ran directly over it. A semi stopped for the light with its large dual tires squishing its right hand corner. For hours, Jim Kingston’s eyes never left that ticket.

He thought of calling Cherry, but he’d told her that he gave up playing tickets. He thought of calling Curly Headed Sandy with the emergency phone she gave him. But he couldn’t guarantee that she wouldn’t want a cut. He thought of simply yelling down to the next person walking by, but he knew better than to point out a winning ticket to a stranger while its rightful owner was tied to a traffic light, being punished for illegally cashing $1700 worth of Taser donations, which shouldn’t even have been collected because the Police Commission never voted to purchase Tasers in the first place. But the truth was, even if Kingston had the courage to ask a complete stranger to retrieve his ticket, it simply wasn’t feasible. After yesterday’s terrorist scare, Broken Springs was a virtual ghost town. Almost all vehicles that went through the intersection headed directly out of town. And those brave souls who dared remain, did so only armed with shotguns, behind locked doors, while watching the Bears finish their fluke season with a loss to the Carolina Panthers.

Jim Kingston didn’t pay particular attention to professional football, and not since he was a star player on the Broken Springs Clovers did he manage to perform in the clutch. But this Sunday, while hanging face down from a traffic light in town, Police Chief Jim Kingston had a genius idea. All he needed for his genius idea to work was a small gust of wind, but not so much of a gust to blow away his winning ticket. He closed his eyes, and for the first time since he almost got in trouble with the Prosecutor’s office, Jim prayed. He didn’t pray for recognition, because Lord knows he had too much of that these days. He didn’t pray for good health or for his family, who often could’ve used his prayers. He didn’t pray for his detractors - that was Lonna’s job. He didn’t pray for riches or even a Chicago Bears victory, although prayers for the latter probably weren’t in short supply across southwestern lower Michigan. Instead, Chief Kingston prayed for just one thing: a small gust of wind. Just big enough to get him swinging, but small enough not to blow away his winning ticket. And miraculously, Jimmy asketh and Jimmy receiveth . After the regret of not praying for fame and riches passed, Kingston swung his swaying body forward and backward, until he could almost … almost reach the street sign.

That’s what he wanted to do, of course. If he could reach the street sign, he could use the strength of his upper body to break the twenty pound fish line, scamper down, retrieve his rightful property, collect his winnings, then run for the border. He had friends in Indiana and a full tank of gas in his Chevy pickup. All he needed was a five minute headstart and he knew the Broken Springs cops would never be able to catch up.

But with miracles come devastations and once the wind got going, it rapidly began flinging him this way and that. Pretty soon, despite his best efforts, Kingston was quickly swinging backwards towards the street sign. And when he did, he didn’t quite reach the street post exactly as he’d envisioned.

When discovered, Chief Kingston was stuck in a very vulnerable and intimate position with the street sign that was supposed to aid him in his escape. But it didn’t help him at all. In fact, it nearly rectum.

“Rectum? Damn near killed him,” joked the townsfolk, much in need of a laugh after that Bears loss.

Paramedics arrived, and a nice young fellow named Joe broke the news to Mrs. Kingston that her husband had been impaled anally but luckily the accident caused no permanent damage. With time, his sphincter is expected to tighten back up so that he’ll be the same old tight arse that everybody knows and loves.

After receiving medical treatment, Kingston was returned to his post. Witnesses confirm that he still had tears in his eyes but not from his backdoor violation. He was crying because when he was at the hospital, someone else had claimed his winning scratch off ticket.

Day Six

Saturday, January 14, 2006

The Suspension: Day Four

As Chief Kingston continued his suspended sentence from beneath the traffic light in Broken Springs, Police Commission Chairman Ernie Hildecrust held a press conference in the Township Hall to update the public on the state of the Chief and to mark the halfway point of his weeklong suspension.

He opened his address with Kingston’s current vitals, including blood pressure, body temperature, and heart beats per minute. According to Hildecrust, Kingston’s blood pressure is fluctuating between 140/90 and 153/95, depending on whether anyone is throwing anything at him. His body temperature is a bit on the high side at 99.7 degrees, but Hildecrust noted that he’s always had a bit of a hot head, due to his anger over being held responsible for his actions. His hot head is most likely keeping his overall body temperature relatively constant. His heartbeats per minute also fluctuate between 60 when he’s asleep and 95 when a big bosomed woman is crossing the street just below him. According to eyewitnesses with binoculars, his heartbeat isn’t the only thing to rise.

“The Chief is doing as well as can be expected,” assured Hildecrust as cameras flashed around him. “He’s a bit hungry and cold but measures are being taken to ensure that he doesn’t starve or freeze to death.”

Several disgruntled women stood near the front, anxiously tapping their toes until one spoke up. “Yes, Commissioner,” she said, as she finished freshening her lipstick. “I have a real problem. I went to Left Aid Pharmacy today to buy a personal massage device, since the Chief can no longer come over and give me back rubs like he usually does. And David Slug told me they were all out! If Jim Kingston weren’t strung up from a traffic light in the middle of town, he wouldn’t let this happen!”

Hildecrust, a bit shocked at the woman’s comment, stammered when he responded. “I can’t see how Kingston’s present uh… situation is at all related to the drug store running out of massagers.”

“But it is!” screamed another woman with an emphysema voice. “No drug store within a fifty mile radius has any. There are needy women here in Broken Springs and by punishing him, you’re depriving us as well.”

“Certainly he can’t be giving all of you back rubs,” said the Chairman. But they all nodded at once. “Well then, perhaps you could find another way to pass the time?”

The small druggist with round glasses peeked out from the back of the crowd and piped, “We have a surplus of condoms, if anyone’s interested. Those sales have really slowed down for some reason. And lubricant… we haven’t sold much of that this week, except to Farmer Bob who had to manually inseminate one of his cows.”

“It’s not fair. I don’t think the Commission’s thought this through.” commented Lonna Jackson, a frequent pedestrian of the intersection, and two of the reasons the Chief still had blood running through his body. ‘Isn’t his punishment a bit severe?”

Hildecrust stood his ground. “Maybe it is to a pampered Police Chief used to getting his way, but to the Commission, the punishment fits the crime. We voted unanimously for a week’s suspension. Some of us wanted more, some wanted less. By gosh, some wanted nothing at all… they wanted to give him a raise! Well, we gave him a raise all right, didn’t we?” exclaimed the feisty Chairman as several audience members applauded, while those in the crowd related to Kingston booed and hissed.

“Is it true that Kingston escaped yesterday with the help of an illegal band of terrorists on their way to fly planes into our water tower?” asked a coy man in sunglasses and black trench coat, identifying himself only as a reporter from the Broken Springs Straight Shooter.

“Yes, the Chief was momentarily on the lam, but they were only immigrants, not terrorists. And they weren’t going to fly planes into our water tower,” explained Ernie, shaking his white haired head.

“Bombs, then?” yelled out an audience member, as the place panicked and everybody began running for the door.

Pandemonium broke out as the standing room only crowd stampeded to the exits and spilled out onto Snowflake Road. Several reporters from around the globe scrambled to report the story, or what they thought was a story in a small Midwestern town traumatized by terror and left vulnerable because its Police Chief was strung up with fish line in the middle of town. For the second time in a week, there was mayhem in the streets of Broken Springs.

A woman running out of the Township Hall as if her coattails were on fire stopped briefly to smile at a CNN news camera. Behind her, police sirens wailed, fire alarms were set off, and the parking lot looked like Slaters Supermarket on a Friday night. “As you can see,” she said while adjusting her cleavage, “Broken Springs needs Jim Kingston.”

Day Five

Friday, January 13, 2006

The Suspension: Day Three

Friday came and went for suspended Broken Springs Police Chief Jim Kingston, but not without a bitter change in temperature and an accident that resulted in the Chief being temporarily unsuspended for a brief period of time.

Yesterday’s sun and warmth was replaced with today’s bitter cold and wind as the temperature dropped nearly twenty degrees in one day. To most Broken Springs residents drastic shifts in climate are nothing new. This is Michigan, after all. But one man hoping against such a climate change was Kingston, currently serving a seven day suspension from the traffic light in the middle of town. Where Kingston’s armpits had sweated yesterday under a roasting 60 degree sun there now are clumps of ice, and foot long icicles hanging off of his bald spot.

Due to the weather conditions, Jim’s wife Cherry, herself very frigid, has been permitted to defrost the Chief twice a day. Under strict surveillance she’s hoisted to the same level as her husband, an ice pick in one hand and a snow brush in the other. For ten minutes, she’s allowed to ‘warm up’ her husband in any way she sees fit. But so far her only attempt to adequately warm him up resulted in their lips freezing together, an incident that demanded the assistance of the Broken Springs Fire Department, who hosed the couple until their lips unlocked and their tongues detached themselves from each other’s tonsils. Since that embarrassing episode, Cherry has lived up to her name each time she’s attended to her suspended husband.

Around dinnertime, Kingston faced another problem. The twelve pound fish line which held him by the left ankle gave way and he crashed on top of van full of illegal immigrants on their way to Labor Hill Vineyards. His disappearance didn’t go unnoticed, however, as a reporter from the Broken Springs Straight Shooter saw the entire incident from the window of Dicky’s Restaurant less than a block away. He then notified the authorities and an APB was put out for a frozen half naked Police Chief.

Apparently, when the Sheriff’s Department caught up to Kingston, he was claiming responsibility for the capture of 12 illegal immigrants, which he claimed to nab while unarmed after he pounced on the top of their vehicle passing under his intersection. Clearly delusional, the Chief was promptly returned to his traffic light as onlookers again watched their Chief Law Enforcer strung up against his will. This time, however, he was tied to the traffic light with twenty pound fish line supplied by Darren Gent’s Village Do It Worst Hardware. Many residents assured them that twenty pound test line ought to do the trick.

“If that there line can hold a thirty-nine inch Coho, then it can hold Jimmy,” commented fisherman “Snaggin’” Joe Higbey.

In all, Chief Kingston was unsuspended for 34 minutes, but Police Commission Chairman Ernie Hildecrust doesn’t think the mishap ought to dishonor the Chief, who’s so valiantly serving out his suspension against all odds. “We can’t blame Jim for the fish line breaking,” says Hildecrust by telephone. “I don’t believe he did anything to sabotage his confinement.”

But critics (those who weren’t arrested after yesterday’s riots) have spread a rumor around town that Cherry may have possibly passed Kingston a razor blade orally during their kiss, which he used to slice the line at the precise moment a vehicle was traveling through the intersection beneath him. Most everybody else insists on the Chief’s innocence, claiming that he’s not nearly that clever.

A press conference is scheduled tomorrow to update the public on the Chief’s condition.

Day Four

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Suspension: Day Two

Day two of Police Jim Chief Kingston’s weeklong suspension from the traffic light resumed today in what weather forecasters have labeled the warmest day of 2006. Unfortunately for the chief, the midday sun only served to bring out several pedestrians who chose to observe his punishment as they ate their lunch from the sidewalk. A ten-year-old boy, and future Broken Springs entrepreneur set up a lemonade stand less than a half block away and made $36 before he was arrested for solicitation by officer and Chief for a week, Daniel Shame. The ten-year-old was also slapped around a little to teach him a lesson.

The Chief’s day started out as normal as ever, despite the fact that he woke up hanging upside down from a line of fishing line in the middle of the town square. Shortly after waking up, Big Jim had to attend to Little Jim and some unfortunate tourists from Virginia needed to turn on their windshield wipers for what they assumed were January sprinkles. A bit later in the early morning, Mayor Jan Chaddwick made the mistake of looking up to gauge Kingston’s condition at the exact moment he… well, let’s just say she initially thought a pigeon was flying overhead. According to Kingston’s wife, Cherry, Jim regularly moves his bowels twice a day, at the same time each morning and evening, like clockwork. So measures were put in place for the intersection to be empty at 8:15 until 8:25 AM, for safety concerns. Wednesday’s issue of the Journalistic Error was hoisted up to him for his enjoyment, and also because he isn’t allowed any toilet paper.

The day progressed without excitement until after lunch, when Troublemaker Bob and his cohorts dragged themselves out of bed after their morning hangovers from the celebratory day before. Bob and his SOBs all stood below the swinging Kingston, throwing stones and heckling the poor upside down man. Kingston tried to ignore his antagonizing critics but after several hours couldn’t take it any longer. He decided to call in the reserves. From a cell phone velcroed to his right hip, placed there in case of emergencies by a tearful Curly Headed Sandy, Kingston called his wife and 50 of her closest friends, who came to the aid of the Chief within minutes. These FOJs met the SOBs head on in a modern day brawl loosely dubbed by television reporters as “Rumble in the Springs.” Local new stations, already on hand to report on the Chief’s suspension, reported live footage of the fight all across the nation, and even to a remote village in Bangladesh.

Anthony’s University student Abdur Zuberi was on his way to Banana Valley when the fight broke out. He grabbed the digital camcorder his girlfriend got him last year for Christmas, and caught the entire incident on film. He plans to send a copy home to his family in Bangladesh. “I can’t believe this,” the 21-year-old Junior told NFBS while in the street behind him, a burly man wrapped a little grey haired lady in a headlock and pummeled her dainty glasses. “Everyone always told me Broken Springs was so boring, and that nothing ever happens here. Boy were they wrong.”

By three PM, the only resident unscathed in the brawl was Kingston himself, as he swayed this way and that like a human pendulum. The streets of Broken Springs weren’t peaceful until the BS cops called in the National Guard to assist them in clearing out the riot. A dinnertime curfew was put in order while local cops arrested 263 for assault and search and rescue teams tended to the many wounded. Fairy and Crass streets, empty and dark, looked like a battle zone by the time the sun went down.

All that could be heard in Broken Springs was the sound of a warm splat on the pavement below the Chief. The sign above the Post Office read 9:00, and as his wife assured us, Jim was just like clockwork.

Day Three

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Police Chief Suspended !

In a shocking development after a four hour police commission meeting Monday night, Commissioners voted unanimously to suspend Chief Jim Kingston for a week with no pay. The suspension will occur Wednesday January 11th, to Tuesday, January 18th during which time Kingston will be suspended and hung upside down from Broken Springs’s traffic light in the middle of town, where all can see, spit, or cheer at him as they run yellows and roll through red lights.

The motion to suspend the Chief was made by Commissioner Bob Frugal, who’d been feeling the heat from many of his troublemaker constituents in the Township. According to many Kingston critics, the Chief has had a free pass on several indiscretions, ranging from mishandling of Taser funds to mismanagement of his Christmas Care Bear charity. There was also an incident in which the Chief handed out a lenient disciplinary action against an officer who’d been caught playing William Tell on the job. All of these incidents resulted in poor publicity for the department in the form of letters to the editor in local papers, and underground blog sites exercising those pesky freedoms explicitly spelled out by the first amendment. According to the closed session minutes, commissioners felt as though their hands were tied in the matter and that some disciplinary action was needed. Otherwise, as Mayor Jan Chaddwick stated before she voted yes on the suspension proposal, “Those darn buttinskis will never shut the #$@* up.”

The motion puts in place the following procedure:

On Wednesday at 8 AM Chief Kingston is to be stripped down to his long underwear by his bosses on the Police Commission, then lifted into the air by Farmer Bob Barleykowski’s John Deere Backhoe until the embattled Police Chief is elevated to the height of the traffic light above Crass and Fairy Streets. He will then be hung on the end of 12 pound fish line from his left ankle, during which time traffic will be halted for safety concerns. It was originally recommended that Chief Kingston be suspended from a much more personal region of his anatomy. But it was soon discovered that such a small lower extremity could never conceivably sustain his weight without resulting in serious life altering injuries which could potentially affect the entire female population of Broken Springs. Once lifted into place, Kingston will remain suspended for the next seven days, without pay, although he will be permitted to eat anything thrown at him, and drink water, assuming the weather forecast calls for rain.

After the procedure was put in place and traffic let up, several onlookers gazed up at Broken Springs history in action. NFBS attempted to ask Chief Kingston for a comment as he hung like a bat in the middle of town. But the embattled Chief was unusually silent, possibly unconscious from all the blood rushing to his head.

Meanwhile local buttinskis and sidewalk supervisors celebrated the decision by getting plowed in Roger Jackson’s saloon, the Coyote’s Watering Hole, located just a block east of the dangling Kingston. Troublemaker Boob, adorned in a pink halter top and black Manolo Blahniks bought rounds of umbrella garnished drinks to celebrate what he called, “The first correct decision by the Commission in years.” He was accompanied his harem known only as Sistahs of Bob, or SOBs for short, a group of women and sissified men who prefer to believe in equal justice rather than the strong arm of the law.

“It’s high time they string that b^*&%^ up,” said Sistah Bonii Didjaseedat as she leaned her very pregnant and about to pop frame up against a teetering barstool. “Finally, Daniel Shame’s got a target for bow hunting! He can even put it on his timecard this time, we don’t mind.”

The SOBs sloshed their way over for comment after comment, none of which were fit to publish by this family friendly newspaper, unfortunately. But friend of Kingston and saloon owner Johnson eventually came out, rounded the rabble rousers up, and pointed the way to the door with the double barrel of his long shotgun.

More on this story as it unfolds….

Day Two

Monday, January 09, 2006

Police Commission Meeting

Happy 2006 everyone! 2006 so far is a lot like 2005, only in 2005, the Police Commission meetings started on time.

Before the meeting is called to order, Jan Chaddwick and Attorney Amnesia go in hunt for Ernie Hildecrust, who comes out just as soon as they go in. So then he goes in hunt for them. We can only assume the three people found each other and had a six minute orgy in the back room.

Oops, I meant meeting, not orgy.

Sorry, I have a reputation to upheld. I mustn’t disappoint the Sharon Alexanders of the world.

At 7:06, the three come back in, Amnesia straightening his tie, Jan smoothing out her tent, and Ernie puffing on his asthma sprayer. Good thing Jan brought her cappachino!

The ordinary boring stuff proceeds… meeting minutes (from two meetings) accepted, bills in the amount of 54K to be paid, financial report accepted, Chief’s report unusually dull, as complaints are down but break ins are up.

Bob Frugal asks about possibly getting a year end report. He was answered, but I wasn’t listening.

The Department got their new software, and is working on getting a new server. I wish like hell they’d hurry up. They’re missing quite a few of my blog entries.

The Chief, who once uttered the N word in public, then goes on to describe how two of the four black male suspects for the break ins are in custody. According to his account, the two black males were pulled over by Officers Shame and Polikowski, at which time the two black males were arrested and now the two black males are in custody, about to face “hard core” jail time that only two black males could face.

As a postscript Chief Kingston noted that the suspects are “two black males.”

The son-in-law to Sharon Alexander and a reserve officer, Matt Finns attended a shooter school, which has so far taught them nothing, judging from their aim in the bathroom, according to Sharon’s daughter, Mrs. Tweed.

Rob Fishnet, a reserve officer has taken the initiative to go to Police Academy, a decision to be applauded since not every BSOT officer has taken that same journey. But, turns out that he’s a bit of a tightwad and wants the department to foot some of the bill. “Tax and spend” Chaddwick of course supports it as an “investment in our future” while the other Commissioners prefer to have some guarantee that he won’t up and leave Broken Springs after we’ve helped pay for his edumacation. Chairman Hildecrust asks how much money is in the account that reservists are paid (despite Chaddwick saying before that reservists are NOT paid) to work at the football games. At this time, for no earthly reason, BS official journalist Cathy Pullonhertoeifshehollarslethergo takes a flash picture of the babbling Chaddwick. Kingston answers Hildecrust with his stock answer, “I don’t know” but says he could ask Roly Poly about it, as he’s in charge of things like that. Also, he could ask Officer Daniel Shame how much money is in the reserve fund, because he seems to have his hand in the cookie jar as well.

The question that lil ole Shallow Throat kept thinking is, “Which officer will the BSOT PD fire, once Fishnet is a bonafide officer of the law?” Because surely we can’t afford a 9th full time officer! I have a couple of recommendations, which I’m sure would shock no one.

Chaddwick and the others, after some discussion, think that Fishnet ought to have to work here for a certain period of time, if we are to help him with his Academy fees. In other words, he should have to pay us back with a certain ‘prison sentence’ to be served later in Broken Springs. They never called it a prison sentence but it sure did sound like one.

Attorney Amnesia recommends against making a quick decision, and the Commission promises to bring it up at the next meeting, which will be after the semester starts for the poor lad footing his own bill.

In other department news, there’ve been two duty related injuries in the past month. One involved a woman somehow (daydreaming, sorry) and the other involved Officer Daniel Shame shooting himself in the foot with an arrow. No wait, that wasn’t it. It was officer Tweed being shot in the thigh by the trainer at shooter school. No wonder he can’t hit the toilet… poor chap’s only got one leg to stand on.

There was also a credit card fraudist caught recently. Since he was not referred to as a “black male” we can only assume he was a white honky.

We are currently looking to hire a new crossing guard. Willing applicants must be capable of walking out into speeding traffic armed only with an all too often ignored STOP sign. Pays peanuts but looks excellent on a resume! And the reflector vest wardrobe is yours to keep! All those interested should inquire within the police station. Please someone, anyone: snatch up this position to relieve secretary Diane McDonald from having to risk her life every day.

At this point, when the meeting seems to be winding down like a vibrator with dying batteries, Jan Chaddwick decides to publicly commend Chief Kingston for sending her a memo documenting that he’d not taken 52 hours of vacation time. This, she said, is a tremendous improvement from last year, when he hadn’t taken a bucket load of vacation time. She originally says she just wanted to make the commission aware of this, but when nobody comments, she makes a motion to PAY Kingston for the 52 hours of vacation time that he didn’t use. Curly Headed Sandy quickly seconds the motion, which didn’t surprise anyone.

When Ernie Hildecrust reiterates the ‘use it or lose it’ policy put in place at previous meetings, unbiased journalist Cathy beings frantically tapping her toe.

Kingston explains that he planned to use his vacation time for deer hunting and over Christmas, but he couldn’t because an officer went down with a back injury, so there were ‘extraordinary circumstances’ that prevented his good intentions.

Chaddwick says it’s not fair to punish Kingston for missing out on his vacation time, because no one here is Nostradamus or possesses crystal balls. Certainly hers aren’t crystal. Brass, more like.

An audience member who lives and presumably pays taxes not in Broken Springs but in Eclaire defends Kingston and says we should pay him for unused vacation time, to not do so would be “cheap.” Of course by ‘we’ he means Broken Springs residents, not himself, since he lives in Eclaire.

Cathy Pullonhertoeifshehollerslethergo takes another picture of Jan Chaddwick as she speaks. Perhaps she’s putting together a photo album for the next issue of the Journalistic Error?

Ernie Hildecrust requests a roll call for a vote, so the secretary woman who never usually gets a chance to speak has a moment in infamy as she calls the roll:

Bob Frugal: Nay
Jan Chaddwick: Yea
Curly Headed Sandy: Yea
Phil Ruse: Nay
Ernie Hildecrust: Nay

The Nays have it. Mr. Ed would be so proud.

The meeting almost ends again, until Curly Headed Sandy makes a comment that involves a study over officer deaths, and how that should somehow justify tasers. This is important because it’s the first time that tasers have been mentioned officially in months, since before the August millage. Of course, it’s not going to matter much in the near future since those supporting tasers will be off the commission but it was interesting to hear the topic come up again, even if it was only Sandy saying, “Those who claim to know what they’re talking about really don’t know what they’re talking about.” Meanwhile no one knew what *she* was talking about.

So the meeting was all set to end, we thought, when Mayor Chaddwick decided that this would be a good time to nominate Bob Frugal for Chairman of the Commission. But Bob Frugal, who had to be nudged awake as it was past his bedtime, graciously passed on the offer of riches and infamy. He said he’d prefer to stay what he is, and then he went back to sleep. Smart man.

Was the meeting to finally end?
No, not before Curly Headed Sandy nominated Jan Chaddwick for Chairwomanship. It all happened so fast, I could barely keep up scribbling notes. But nobody seconds the motion, not even Jan, who probably figured it’d look tacky seconding the motion to appoint herself Chairwoman. She may be a Republican, but she’s not an idiot, after all.

At this time the meeting… ends? Well, kinda. They go into closed session to continue the meeting from December 16th, when they were busy discussing “all the problems with the Chief in the last year” which is how Hildecrust put it. This closed session meeting lasted longer than I did. Three hours after the meeting started, it was still going on, and yours truly buggered out because it was past *my* bedtime.

Unfortunately I can only assume that Kingston did not have to “drop trou” to be spanked (hard) by the Commission. If he did, I regret going home too soon. I can just imagine the gracious rub that Jan would give Jim before the coldness of her hand met the quivering flesh of his buttocks…


More than likely it was a ‘slap on the wrist with a ruler’ which is hardly as interesting as described above. But I’ll have to let everyone know exactly how the meeting ended when I find out myself.

Until next time, Toodle Pip!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Critic's House Relocated

Vacationing Bruce Robert, aka Troublemaker Bob, returned to Broken Springs after a weeklong holiday to Hawaii, only to find that his house had been relocated to the city of Puchanan without his permission. The move was authorized by the BSOT Police after frequent complaints concerning Bruce’s dangerous ideas about democracy in local government. The Village Council officially voted to oust Bruce out of the town’s limits after the Township Board elected him to a committee to research the possibility of the Village relinquishing control over the Police Department. The move makes Bruce - now officially a Puchanan resident - ineligible to serve on the committee, thus guaranteeing the Village future representation on the Police Commission.

Troublemaker Bob, upon his arrival back in his hometown, found an empty lot where his house once stood. Neighbors initially claimed to know nothing when he knocked on their door to ask where his house went. Most gave him blank stares and denied having played a part in the dismantling and relocating of his family dwelling. But several neighbors have since claimed responsibility for the relocation, insisting that it has been good for Broken Springs as a whole.

One such concerned citizen is Village Trustee Pete Faygo, who told us with a scary leer, "Bruce is one of the same three people always complaining at the meetings. We're working on relocating the houses of the other two now."

After filing a Missing House report with the local police (who he insisted were of little help), Bruce went ‘house hunting’ himself. “It could have been anywhere,” he told NFBS. “It was like looking for a needle in a haystack, until I realized that my intellectually challenged foes had forwarded my mail, also without my permission. Then it was just a matter of inquiring about my new address in the Post Office.”

Robert’s house had been reconstructed on Blue Bud Trail, stuck in the middle of a patch of woods with no drainage or electricity. “There it was,” he recalled the discovery, “Stuck behind a rusty windmill at the end of a long dirt driveway, not a neighbor in sight.”

According to Bruce, he’s planning on returning his house to its original property, just as soon as he can get the Village Council to approve his building permit. That’s unlikely to occur anytime soon, however, since inside sources tell us that Jan Chaddwick plans to build a three story Mayoral Mansion on the property formerly belonging to Bruce.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Village worried about being ousted off Police Commission

Broken Springs will likely fight any ruling that Onoyoko Township makes to monopolize the BSOT Police Commission, says Village President, and full time Krispe Kreme taste tester, Jan Chaddwick.

“I just don’t understand how it could possibly help me pursue my personal agenda to control every aspect of the town,” claims Chaddwick. “If the department and its lovely Chief are governed by those anti-sewer township kooks, and the Village has no way to sweep the department’s problems under the rug or to influence the media because the commission‘s attorney is our local editor‘s brother, then that is not acceptable to us.”

Last month, the township board created a four member committee to study the possible takeover. Included on the committee are two anti-cop, anti-sewer township trustees, and two ordinary citizens off the street, one of which has a suspect relationship with ducks, the other of which is a closet cross dresser. These four Broken Springs denizens will decide the fate of who will police the police officers, including the trouble ridden Chief.

“If the department is held accountable for its actions, it could be disheartening to the officers and their families,” said Chaddwick. “It’s irresponsible to leave these officers hanging, wondering if they’ll be able to continue to harass and intimidate the good people of Broken Springs.”

Township Supervisor Ernie Hildecrust insists that department operation wouldn’t change much in the event of a power shift. “I envision a commission of three township representatives, and possible village representation, assuming the two ladies give back rubs and promise not to vote,” says Hildecrust with a chuckle. When asked about Mayor Chaddwick’s criticism of the proposal, Ernie Hildecrust comments “I guess we know whose is bigger now, don’t we?”

Although Township representatives claim they are in no rush to make a decision, time is of the essence. The police department’s 4 mill property tax levy expires this year and will be up for renewal in August. Who controls the police department could very well determine whether or not the millage is renewed.

“Most everyone in the village is sick to death of politics,” says the political Chaddwick, “Including me.”

“Does that mean you don’t intend to run for re-election?” we ask her.

She scoffs and answers, “Well I didn’t say that, exactly.”

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Broken Springs Originally a Penal Colony

Recent historic documents have been uncovered which suggest that Broken Springs was originally set up as a penal colony for other surrounding states. The documents, now lodged in the Broken County Courthouse Museum, were unearthed when Farmer Bob Barleykowski discovered them while digging a new sewer pipe line on his property on US 13.

“I thought it was buried treasure,” he says, wiping away a small tear at the passing thought of striking it rich. The historic documents were in an iron chest, its hinges soldered together to withstand the test of time. The farmer, hoping to get rich quick and blow out of Broken Springs faster than the Adventists flock to the soy bean aisle in Slaters Supermarket on a Friday night before sundown, axed open the vault and only found tattered logs of paper inside. “Once I saw how old they were, I thought they might’ve been worth enough to rent a U-Haul, so I called the Broken Springs 1839 Courthouse/Museum Curator, Bob Pliers. He drove right on out.”

The curator comments on the curious story.

“I always believed that Broken Springs built the first courthouse in the state of Michigan because we were the county seat. But as these BS Dead Sea Scrolls have shown us, our courthouse was constructed in order to conveniently sentence the criminals sent here. That makes a whole lot more sense than that crazy county seat theory. It also explains why we lacked a railroad, obviously so the criminals couldn‘t hop on the next train to a normal town.”

The box contained several ledgers, each marked by a location and date of recording, some dating back to the early 1800s, when we used to think that only the red man inhabited Broken Springs.

Not so, according to these newly discovered documents. Although there was a large Indian population already in Broken Springs, from as far back as the 18th Century, it’s now believed that they were killed off by the many convicts, criminals, and dissidents sent here by neighboring states. The aged books retell in grisly description the harrowing history of the founding of the town, and the eventual mutiny of the prisoners to establish the village square. Among the notable citizens of the penal era were:

George B. Kimmerly, who was assigned a lifetime of hard labor near where we now locate the Spanish Adventurer Church, and STD Auto, was sent to Broken Springs from his home state of Pennsylvania for shooting at meddling neighbors, who he insisted were trying to steal some of his 800 acres of valuable property. Unfortunately on 8 September, 1828, he was found guilty of attempted murder of an old biddy named Elizabeth Goodchilde, as she tried to deliver him cupcakes on his birthday. She suffered third degree burns from the explosion of gunpowder near her bosom, and could never breastfeed again, so say the documents. Once he arrived in Broken Springs, Kimmerly was eventually displaced to Quaker Farm Lane, where his penalty of hard labor resulted in the erection of a large Farmhouse later used by a religious sect known only as the Shake and Bakers.

Pitt Black, a saloon owner from Ohio, was transported to Broken Springs after one too many drunken bar brawls over the price of a pint of ale. He was accompanied by his nephew, Horace Freegood, and the two were shackled to one another by chain in the area near the river, below where our present bridge now stands. Horace was eventually transferred to Lake Township, but Black lived in Broken Springs until his death in 1842. He became notorious for sailing Broken Springs first water vessel, the Cirrhosis of the River, to and fro his post office/tavern that he established soon after the Broken Springs convicts all mutinied and established the town as we know it.

Jacob Buffoon, a blacksmith from Virginia, was conveyed to Broken Springs after what he always claimed was a foolish accident with a horseshoe that maimed three Virginia police officers, a woman pedestrian, a mule hauling goods, and the horse the shoe originally came from. Mr. Buffoon was, according to the ledgers, a prolific alcoholic and philosopher, yet was never accessed by a head doctor who didn’t recommend segregating him from normal society. In the penal Broken Springs, he was said to have been a Freemason with a strong belief in the hereafter, especially for stray dogs, for which he had a habit of attracting with particularly placed globs of peanut butter on a certain area of his personhood. He lived a long and totally meaningless life on the Bluff of Broken Springs.

These and other numerous criminals eventually rose up against local law enforcers, who fled out of town quicker than a Broken Springs parade, and established a village government in 1831. A slightly modified version of law and order was recognized by these self appointed government officials, and the trend has continued until our present era, when modern day delinquents sit in rule over our town. Not that we deserve any better, since most of us still living here are descended from dissident ancestors ourselves.