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October 20, 2011     Lovell Chronicle
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4 I The Lovell Chronicle I October 20, 2011 I have no confidence in my teams...or do I? I'm not a very confident sports fan. Never have been. Partly, it comes from being a Wyo- ming Cowboys fan. With the heart- ache my beloved Pokes have given me over the years, it hard to be boastful, even confident. I'm loyal and even "fa- naticar' - but always nervous. Thus, I am no fun and not much of a sports antagonist when it comes to team vs. team matchups. I'm not much of a chest-thumper and sneering David Peck boaster. Why would I be? The Pokes may Observations advance to the occasional bowl game in football, but they've been generally mediocre on the gridiron, or worse, over the last 20 years, subject to embarrassing blowouts, and the men basketball has been abysmal, although I have hope for the squad un- der new/old coach Larry Shyatt. The Broncos have been terrible in recent years, and there is little reason to think it will change any time soon. And so as my Cardinals enter the World Series, as thrilled as I am, I am still a nervous Nellie. Maybe there a reason my favorite Winnie the Pooh character is Eeyore. "You're going to lose," a Texas Rangers fan might tell me. "You're probably right," I might reply. "Have you seen our starting pitching? You will shell us." A colleague told me, "You talk more bad about your fa- vorite team than anyone I know. I always think the Rangers are going to win, even when they suck." It true. I fret, worry and doubt. But rll watch every pitch I can, and rll leap up, shout and run around the house when Albert Pujols hits a home run. A know-it-all on Fox Sport Radio - Seth Everett - was rip- ping on Cardinals fans as I drove to Laramie Saturday, say- ing they are among the most obnoxious fans in America, right up there with Boston Red Sox fans (his words, not mine). He said it because Cardinal fans think their teams are the absolute best and can do no wrong. Well, he doesn't know me - and he clearly doesn't know Cardinal fans, who are some of the most polite and knowl- edgeable fans on the planet - but not arrogant, except when it comes to the hated, pitiful Cubs. Case in point: I have worn Cardinals gear to Coors Field and have been heckled by Colorado Rockies fans and even a Red Sox fan - at Coors Field! One Rockies fan, nearly fall- ing-down drunk, waded into the throng of Cardinals fans at a game I attended and tried to start a fight. Now that class. Conversely, when my brother wore his Cincinnati Reds gear to Busch Stadium for a Reds-Cardinals series this spring - and this is as heated a rivalry as there is in baseball - he didn't hear a peep from any Cardinal fan. No heckling, no snide comments, no derogatory comments. People think I'm a sports fan. I'm not. I'm a team fan: Wyoming Cowboys, St. Louis Cardinals, Denver Broncos and Los Angeles Lakers. I watch few, if any, other games. I do not waver, I do not change teams, I do not lose interest. But I AM nervous...all the time...especially when games re- ally count - like the playoffs. What those who have to listen to my whining don't re- alize is that with it comes a tremendous power. Longtime colleague Karla Pomeroy and I have often said that we can cuss any team to victory. Many a time you'll hear me say something like, "That guy doesn't deserve the money he wants, he terrible." And then, boom! He blasts a home run. I sometimes wonder what it would be like to be a Steel- ers fan or a Yankees fan or an Alabama football fan - ex- pecting to win every game. Would it be as fun? The closest I've come is being a Lakers fan. The Lakers have had a lot of success over the last 30 years, and I've enjoyed their suc- cess. And nearly everybody who isn't a fan absolutely hates them, hates them with a passion. I guess what it boils down to is that success breeds con- tempt among foes and confidence, and sometimes arro- gance, among fans. Fans are, well, fans - fanatics. But I don't think I will ever be arrogant or hateful, except when it comes to the Cubs, Celtics, Raiders and the Sheep (Colorado State). Those are chief rivals of my top teams. Hopeful? Always. Confident? Rarely. And so I am hoping, praying, wishing and keeping my fingers crossed that the Cardinals won't get swept by the Texas Rangers in this year World Series, while secretly be- lieving that they just might be a team of destiny and that this year is their year. There, I've said it! Gaaa! I've just doomed them. They can never win. Really. (Wink, wink.) Letters to the editor Fuzzy math for politicians only Dear Editor, Some 70 years ago as I went through elementary school and high school -there was no middle school at that time- I learned in math class that 2+2=4. Later in high school algebra and trigonom- etry, I learned that you can have a negative result in math. Today only in politics, a neg- ative result can be claimed as a positive gain. As I did not go to college and get a degree in high- er math, I must conclude that this fuzzy math must be taught in po- litical science classes. I will try to explain my think- ing. In a recent speech the pres- ident claimed that 185,000 new jobs were added to the economy. A few days later the labor depart- ment stated that for the same pe- riod, only 117,000 new jobs were added. A few days later, the un- employment report for the same period said 400,000 jobs were lost. Now if you add the new jobs claimed of 185,000 and 117,000 you still come up with a less- er amount than the jobs lost by 98,000. Only in political fuzzy math is this negative considered a posi- tive gain. To me this type of add- ing is a stretch of the facts and an outright lie. But in politics they say, "Oh, I just misspoke." Now on the claim of jobs saved, in one month you have 400,000 jobs lost and the previous month you had 460,000 jobs lost. That is considered as 60,000 jobs saved. Again viewed in politics as a positive gain. Now on a more personal lev- el without all the huge numbers, let's say I have $20 and go into a Store to buy a shirt. Shirts are on sale and a $25 shirt is on sale for $15, saving me $10, which by po- litical fuzzy math I now have $30. The shirt was not available in my size, so I did not buy one. Political fuzzy math says the $15 I did not spend added to the $30 now gives me $45. Oh, I forgot the 5% sales tax of 75 cents I saved by not buy- ing the shirt, which now gives me $45.75. I am still looking for the store that will allow me to spend the $25.75 the government's fuzzy math now says I have. I guess I will have to go to Washington D.C., as only they seem to accept this kind of adding. Of course they will tell me to keep shopping at sales and I will eventually build that $45.75 into hundreds of dol- lars or more and if I go to sales and do not buy anything, some- day I might be a millionaire. Only until the tax man will say hand it over and I will give them all my fuzzy math savings except for my $20 I started with and probably go to jail for tax evasion. Jim Szlemko Adventures in a smart dog's life Dear Editor, Like many people around town, I've been getting} the house all ready for winter. With such beautiful fall days, I was even able to complete a few projects that were on the list for next spring. Ah yes, the list, my best friend. The list keeps me out of trouble as it reminds me of all the things I have to do each day and for those other projects. Life is good as long as it is on the list. "Yes dear, it's on the list!" Actually, my best friend has al- ways been a German shepherd. I always chose the runt of the litter as I figured they had to get smart- er faster to survive. So, as of late, I have been thinking it's time for a new puppy. My best shepherd was named Justin and what a smart dog he was. When one of my friends' wife had a baby and he told me they had named the boy Justin, I told them how honored I was that they named their son after my dog. For some reason, he didn't think that was funny. Just how smart was Justin? Justin was trained to be the nic- est dog around yet at the snap of the fingers and a word;:he would attack. One fine weekend, I had a female companion stay the night and the next morning, as I had to head to work, she exclaimed, '/hat about your dog? I'm afraid of dogs." I told her, "No worry." I snapped my fingers and said, "On the bed and you protect." Justin hopped on the bed and laid down. She said, "That's it?" I said, "Yep" and headed to work. When I got home that night and came walking around the house, who comes attacking me? Yep, good ol' Justin. That is, until he saw who it was. Smart dog. I asked my friend how it went and she said, "Your dog is amaz- ing!" "How so," I asked. She went on to tell me how they took a walk together and how Justin would not leave her side all day long. "Well, I told him to protect." "No, you don't understand," she said. "Even when I went to the bathroom, he opened the door and sat there!" "Oh yeah," I said, "I forgot to tell you he can open doors." No, when I went and took a shower, he opened the door and laid there and watched me and wouldn't leave." I looked at Justin and said, "lucky dog." One night, after I had let him out to do his business, I noticed he didn't come back right away. I waited and whistled and called and no Justin. It got late and so I finally left the door open and went to bed. The next morning, no Justin. I drove up and down the neighborhood but no Justin. So I had to head to work. I got home that night and there he is, lying by the back door, wagging his tail. "You're in trouble, son," I told him. "Get in the house!" Well, 8:00 rolls around and it's time for him to go out and he gives me that look and wags his tail. So I look at him and tell him, "You best be home by 10 o'clock mister." Five minutes to 10, there's a scratch at the door and he was home. What a smart dog. Yes, Justin was like a son to me. I remember how he used to make me so mad whenever he borrowed my truck. Why? Be- cause he would never put any gas in the tank, but then that's a story for another time. You know, I bet that if I was half as smart as Justin was, my parents would have been proud of me, too. At least he listened. ..... :'; '-. Gary Noth Questions about the dead horse Dear Editor, The article in the last week's Chronicle concerning the "dead horse" leaves us with two puz- zling questions. The first being why anyone who was "attached" to an animal, and responsible for its care and well-being, would not respond to information that the horse was down for a WEEK! Leaving the animal open to the elements until its body was eaten on and "mangled" is a lack of re- spect I can't relate to. The second puzzling aspect is why the first suspicion and as- sumption as to the cause of death was "wild animals." Far more like- ly is one of the many ailments that can bring a horse down, especially an animal that is not checked on often, such as lack of worming, or twisted bowel, which is an excru- ciating way to die. Also more like- ly is death by a two-legged preda- tor, which happens far more often than is reported, and I have yet to hear of any that are actually tracked down and prosecuted. Wild horses are shot for sport by drunken cowboys who consider them a nuisance, and I served on a jury here a few years ago where the case was indirectly tied to the shooting of twenty-some head of horses in a field. The killers sat on top of a hill and shot them for the heck of it. So before we assume some four-legged predator is to blame, which I realize is preferable due to the possibility of making a claim on the compensation fund, let's look at the more likely causes first and involve the authorities who are trained for such investi- gations. Sandra Scouten-Ford Thanks to the interpretive center Dear Editor, We just wanted to thank Christy Fleming and the en- tire Heart Mountain Interpre- tive Learning Center for opening their doors to us recently. The sophomore class from Lovell High School toured the center as a way of kicking off a non-fiction literature unit about World War II. Christy did a great job of pre- paring for us and making the experience interactive. The stu- dents - and teachers - learned a lot, and hopefully the students will take home the bigger mes- sage of tolerance. The center is a great as- set to our community and if you haven't been out there, it's worth the trip. Carissa Camp LHS teacher Letters to the editor The Lovell Chronicle welcomes letters from its readers and will make every effort to print them. Letters longer than 400 words may not be printed. Letters must be signed and in- clude the address and telephone number of the writer. Unsigned letters will be discarded. Writers are limited to two letters in any 30 day period. All letters must conform to the law of libel and be in good taste. They may be mailed to The Lovell Chronicle, Box 787, Lovell, WY 8243 I, or delivered to our office at 234 E. Main St., Lovell. A strict 1:00 p.m. Tuesday deadline will be enforced. UPSP321.060 234 E. 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