Leave it to a boring rodeo to provide a forum for news of the county. It was a perfect storm for local gossip Saturday night as we sat in the bleachers at the Bonner County Fairgrounds trying to watch the worst rodeo I've ever attended. We went to the rodeo because last year's was one of the best we'd ever seen. I know the people in charge worked hard to bring us another one, but it fizzled.
Besides the fact that the roof to shield the sun was left atop the unused east announcer's stand, thus blocking the view of the calf roping and bulldogging chutes from at least one-fourth of the crowd in our section, we didn't miss too much action anyway. It all happened too fast.
Most calf ropers missed their calves before reaching the center of the arena, and most bulldoggers jumped off their horses and either missed or successfully wrestled their steers out of our view. Some people went home with kinks in their necks from sitting too long in fetal positions trying to see the action or lack thereof.
I think one cowboy out of the whole lot of contestants successfully rode his bull. We could see that action because it was directly across from us, but most bull riders and cute little mutton busters fell off just outside the chute gates.
There was, however, a glut of information about all the queens, coming from the mouth of the announcer who had a high-pitched singsong somewhat irritating approach to dispensing details. We did enjoy the barrel racing because at least the girls stayed on their horses and kept the barrels intact during their runs. The clown was pretty good too, and his grandson did ride his sheep for eight seconds.
What really made us yawn, however, were the long delays between action, much in contrast with last year's event where lively country tunes played continuously and loudly as just seconds passed between competitors. In Saturday night's case, the announcer revved up his voice, yelled out the contestant's name, rank and serial number----and then we waited, and waited, and waited. Needless to say, these unpregnant pauses (pregnant pauses occur when something big is about to happen, which was rarely the case Saturday night) allowed plenty of time for information exchange within the audience.
I heard some information at the rodeo that I'm gonna throw out today, just to see if it's true. And, please, please don't use it incorrectly; I'm not trying to spread it. I'm just trying, as a good journalist, to see if it's trumped-up rumors or if we will soon be the peasants occupying "Pleasantville."
I did hear Saturday night that our former house will not be rented after all. This news came after all the stuff (blood, sweat, money and tears) we put forth to respond to the inspection report. Hearing this ruffled my feathers a bit, to say the least. I resolved to get to the bottom of that rumor. We drove by the place after the rodeo to get an ice cream cone at Dari Depot (which at $1.39 was a much better deal than the $8 rodeo ticket). The house lights were on, so the rumor aspect looked more plausible.
Later, I asked a person directly responsible for our house if the rumor was true. I was told that the possibility of leasing the place for a while is still in the mix, but that some issues of access to the land behind the place for at least two entities are on the table too. So, the verdict's out on that piece of rodeo news.
Now, the other two BIG rumors have remained as such. I'm hoping today that someone "in the know" can verify or deny them with cold, hard facts. So, let me know. Once I'm satisfied with what I've heard, I'll pass along my findings. Here goes:
Rumor No. 2: Tim McGraw and Faith Hill have purchased land on Baldy Mountain and are building a house. If the hills up Baldy way, where we used to ride our horses and the kids had their keggars, are suddenly alive with music of the high-priced country variety, please tell me. Maybe when the story got told, the purveyor of hot information meant Baldy Mountain at Sun Valley. We can only hope.
Rumor No. 3: Harrison Ford has purchased Memaloose Island at Hope. Last I heard the price was $14 million, so if this is true, non-profits, take heed: there's one rich realtor walking around trying to figure out how to donate one third of his or her earnings to beat the taxes. I have heard about Harrison and certain plane purchases and Harrison opening the door for someone at Jalapenos a few weeks ago, but as far as purchasing the Indian burial ground for his own private Idaho, that's a new one.
Could it be that a new Indiana Jones is in the works? Will it be filmed on a remote island in the Idaho Panhandle? I don't know, but, like the enquiring minds all over this county, I want to know the truth.
I asked in my heading: Iz it myth or nightmare? I think I'd prefer myth because the more celebs that move in here, the more nightmarish our peasant lives are bound to be. I've been told the woods are buzzing with Hummers, and I'd take a muddied-up Ford 4 by 4 any day.
So, write in what ever facts and new rumors you know that can be verified. We'll all solve these together.
Idaho Panhandle International Film Festival this week: Jeff Bock wrote us a note last week and explained how people get tickets to "Jenny's Journal," set to begin around 5:30 p.m. this Thursday at the Panida.
Jeff: Now, here's the info for people buying tickets. It's a
bit confusing...but here goes.
1) They are ten dollars each.
2) You CANNOT get them right before the screening of
"Jenny's Journal," which is at 5:30 pm on Thursday Aug
24th. You must get them prior at the box office which
is apparently at WINE SELLERS or maybe at the PANIDA
itself. Anyway, you must get tickets before the BLOCKS
of movies start. So as TREVOR (he who runs the
festival) told me, you can get them at 10:30-11:00am
or at 3:00-3:30pm on THURSDAY. I know, they don't make
this particularly easy, do they?
3) You DO NOT have to sit through all the screening in
the WILDFLOWERS block (in which "Jenny's Journal" is
included). They will have short intermissions between
films, and people will be allowed to enter prior to
the next film starting. So you can let your family and
friends know that showing up by 5pm will be
fine...it's just that they have to get tickets ahead