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6/25/2008 – Editorials

By Richard Peterson


Oberon native Don Knutson of Phoenix, Ariz. is looking for the trophy his baseball team received for winning second place in the North Dakota Class B American Legion Junior Baseball Tournament in Grafton in 1951. The last time he saw it was at the Legion Club in Minnewaukan. It isn’t there today. Does anyone know where it is?


Here’s an item which appeared in this column 30 years ago.

You all remember Clyde, the big tomcat who ruled the roost at my place for seven years? Well, Clyde disappeared last June and hasn’t returned. Perhaps he found a place more to his liking, but more likely he went to the big cathouse in the sky.

The past few months have been extremely lonely for me without Clyde, so I solved the problem by getting married. And as an added bonus, my bride brought with her a tomcat.

Well, he used to be a tomcat. Not wanting another Clyde carousing around the neighborhood smirching my already tainted reputation, I took the new cat, Putz, to the veterinarian.

It was a traumatic experience for us both. The cat and me, that is.

The Mrs. was all for the operation, since Putz had been staking his claim to the house by spraying in strategic spots to attract tabby cats and keep other tomcats from invading his kingdom.

I say it was traumatic for me because Putz is kind of a teenage cat and it seemed unfair to deprive him of his cathood before he even reached it. But the logic my wife used in lobbying for the operation convinced me that she was right. She threatened to wring both our necks if the foul deed wasn’t done.

So, I bundled poor, trusting Putz over to the veterinarian. An operation was performed.

When I returned to the vet’s to pick up the cat, he hissed at me. His eyes were like saucers and the anesthetic still had him higher than a rock group in a marijuana patch. His screams of fury sounded something like Bob Dylan in tune.

For days afterward whenever I came into the house, Putz would hiss and hide. He was mad. I wonder what would have happened if the veterinarian came to visit.

Lately, however, he’s gotten over his anger. Now he just claws at me when I walk in the door.

He’s really a spoiled little cat. Well, maybe not spoiled — just used to the good life. Clyde used to go out to heed the call of nature. Putz will only answer to Kitty Litter. I guess it’s a situation of the younger generation going soft.

Putz goes into his little box, scratches around, digs a suitable hole and performs his functions admirably. But his mother must have spoiled him rotten. Because after doing his dirty work he jumps out of the box and tries to cover everything up by scratching at the linoleum from a distance of four feet. Apparently he doesn’t want to soil his delicate little paws.

Now we’ve got his personal toilet situated near the pantry. And every time I sneak off to the pantry for a drink I have to look at a mess that would take Nixon weeks to cover up.

So I tried my own cover up operation. Every time the cat did a nasty in the box, I’d throw him back in and scratch with his paw to cover up the dirty deed. The lesson seemed to be working until one day the Mrs. walked in and saw the cat and me scratching around in his box.

"If you want to play around in the cat’s toilet," she said, "you can just go ahead and sleep with that cat. I’m not going to have anything to do with a fool who’s going to soil his hands like that."

So now, the dilemma is, should I keep the Putz or take the crap?


A group of Americans were traveling by tour bus through Holland. As they stopped at a cheese farm, a young guide led them through the process of cheese making, explaining that goat’s milk was used. She showed the group a lively hillside where many goats were grazing.

"These" she explained "are the older goats put out to pasture when they no longer produce." She then asked, "What do you do in America with your old goats?"

A spry old gentleman answered, "They send us on bus tours!"


Al (a retired Air Force auditor) and his wife Mary went to the state fair every year, and every year Al would say, "Mary, I’d like to ride in that helicopter." Mary always replied, "I know Al, but that helicopter ride is fifty dollars, and fifty dollars is fifty dollars."

One year Mary and Al went to the fair, and Al said, "Mary, I’m 85 years old. If I don’t ride that helicopter, I might never get another chance." To this, Mary replied, "Al that helicopter ride is fifty dollars, and fifty dollars is fifty dollars."

The pilot overheard the couple and said, "Folks I’ll make you a deal.

I’ll take the both of you for a ride. If you can stay quiet for the entire ride and not say a word, I won’t charge you! But if you say one word, it’s fifty dollars." Al and Mary agreed and up they went.

The pilot did all kinds of fancy maneuvers, but not a word was heard.

He did his daredevil tricks over and over again, but still not a word. When they landed, the pilot turned to Al and said, "By golly, I did everything I could to get you to yell out, but you didn’t. I’m impressed!"

Al replied, "Well, to tell you the truth, I almost said something when Mary fell out, but you know, fifty dollars is fifty dollars!"

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