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On the Beat

I love the holidays. I really do. But every year when Jan 2 rolls around, the kids go back to school and we can start putting things away for another 11 months I'm so relieved.

It just seems that the holidays, for all their sparkling, twinkling fun and merriment, add a layer or 12 of stress to everything.

Suddenly a simple little weekly newspaper deadline is a mad-dash race against the clock with a holiday thrown in the middle. Or two or three holidays.

So here we are, one more celebration opportunity to go before something resembling normalcy returns.

Enjoy it. Responsibly.

Ski for Heat

When Bob Stannard and Martha Robertson said they wanted to come by and talk about their Ski for Heat fundraising concert a few weeks back I thought it was going to be a straightforward interview.

Was I ever wrong.

Right off the bat, Bob kicked back in his chair kicking up with his fur-lined leather boots while wearing a serious bluesman fedora pulled low over RayBans. Then there was the sports-coat of many colors that seemed to come right out of a Dolly Parton song. (It was actually pretty cool.)

Then, there was Martha, a lady so straight and demure you wanted to feel sorry for you until she started letting Bob have it right back and suddenly you didn't know who to feel sorry for.

An hour after they arrived I had been treated to a comedy routine I would have paid to see.

In the between the wisecracks, one-liners, and rimshot-cymbal crashes, however, they also got their message across.

The annual Ski for Heat fundraiser for heating aid will return to the Eagles Club on Jan. 12 for a 19th year. You'll read more about this event in an upcoming article.

The concert features Bob and Those Dangerous Bluesmen, a group I've been told has wowed visitors from the big city and beyond for its high level of polish and high-quality musicianship.

I've been told this is a heck of a party with great music and the price is $20 or what you can afford and all the proceeds will help keep people warm this winter.

Plus, I hear Bob may sit in on the drums for a song or two reliving his youth while his drummer takes the mic.

Any truth to that rumor Bob?

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If it's true, you don't want to miss it.

Truck photo

We ran a photo of a semi truck crash in last week's paper.

The truck seemingly burrowed its nose into the dirt after it ran off the road and hit the side of a driveway.

The photo took off like wildfire on Facebook when I posted it there. I've never had Facebook post spread so far or so fast.

Now, I'm not one to get into how well my posts do, but this thing has received 100 reactions, commented on 114 times, and shared 551 times.

I only have 273 friends.

I understand the photo's interest. It really looks like the truck buried its nose in the dirt.

They say a magician should never reveal the secret of his illusion, but here I am to reveal the magic. As least as it was explained in a comment I read somewhere by someone who knows more than I do about semi trucks.

First, it was a pretty good impact and the nose of the tractor did impact the side of the driveway pretty square.

But there was no burrowing.

What happened was that when the tractor stopped moving suddenly, the trailer sheared off the kingpin — let's just call it the doohickey that attaches truck to the trailer. The trailer then hit the cab, pushing it forward.

The visual impact of all of that was to make it appear as if the nose of the truck was buried in the frozen tundra of Mount Tabor.

Best news from all of this is that the driver walked away with pain in his lower back and a cut on his hand.

Happy New Year

What resolutions are you not going to keep this year?

Let me know. I may just run some of them. Share them by email, on Facebook or attach it to a $20 bill and send it to Ski for Heat. Or you can let me know when you see me out there on the beat.

Darren Marcy is the editor of the Manchester Journal. He can be reached by email at or by cell at 802-681-6534.


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