Nicky Hilton, cleanliness and earthworms from outer space

Since not much is going on today I am looking at small-town newspapers on the Web. Being an ex-small-town editor myself, I know that real news isn’t always easy to come by. So, sometimes you wind up writing about things such as large vegetables or a 500-pound ferral hog that some yahoo killed.

In our small-town round-up today:

Modeling finale “a blast,” Perry says
No the headline from The Ashley News Observer in Crossett, Ark., (population 5,900) does not refer to every Texan’s good-haired Gov. Rick “Get My Hair On Down the Road” Perry. The story is about 15-year-old Stevi Perry from the burg of Hamburg, Ark., who was one of the 12 “Cosmogirl” finalists. Alas, Stevi did not win but did get to meet the likes of Jaime Pressly and Nicky Hilton. I also found it odd her dining choices that were paid out of her own pocket:

“My main thing was Burger King and Starbuck’s, she said.

I thought models ate things like — air.

From the West Liberty Index in West Liberty, Iowa, (population 3,500), disturbing news from local government:

“Yard waste changes for city residents”

It is sad but true. West Liberty City Manager Chris Ward announced that:

“From now on, residents who want to get rid of their yard waste must separate their sticks and twigs from grass clippings.

With big government on the march like that, the next thing you know they’ll be wanting residents to recycle.

It appears cleanliness is also next to godliness in Broken Bow, Neb. (population 3,350). Chief Publisher Deborah McCaslin of the Custer County Chief reports that cleaning up the town was the main topic at a town meeting that she said brought out a quarter of the city’s population.

What else is there to do on a Monday night in Broken Bow, Neb., one wonders? But it was apparent the “quarter” of the town’s population was hell-bent on town cleanliness:

“Doug Campbell, Broken Bow Economic Development President was asked by Stockall to field the question. He answered with a question.
‘How many of you put community cleanup as your number one priority?’
Nearly every hand in the room shot up.
I guarantee if every one of you went home and called your elected officials, and then if you all showed up at the council meeting they would listen.
‘You have power,’ said Stockall. ‘You created that power tonight because of the list you created with over 100 of your people.'”

I found the “I guarantee … ” line a little editorializing but I guess if you are the chief publisher you can do that. But if the group had the power with 100 people, and nearly a quarter of the population was at the meeting, then I suppose the other 700 or so folks who were reportedly there, were powerless.

Finally, from the Independent News Herald in Clarissa, Minn., (population 608), it seems the reporter is likening an earthworm onslaught to an alien invasion:

“Almost everyone has seen a sci-fi movie where a spaceship lands and horrible alien invaders disembark and cause chaos on the planet earth. Now, imagine a spaceship landing and earthworms emerging. They mean us no harm, not intentionally anyway. But nevertheless, they can cause chaos to the ecosystem of Minnesota.”

Somehow, I just cannot picture a spaceship landing and earthworms coming out of it. But I have to give writer Karin L. Nauber the award for the weirdest lead (or lede if you are a newspaper person) of the day.

I assure you that my examples above and my subsequent commentary are all in good fun. Sometimes finding something to write about can be slim pickings, or is it Slim Pickens? Oh well, Yeeee Hawwwww and have a great weekend.

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