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Here it is Tuesday, January 8th 2013, and the Old Men of the Mountain had their first breakfast of the New Year at the Home Front Café in Altamont.

It was a good start to the New Year, and some of the OFs commented on the toys they received for Christmas. One OF received a “Dragon” which is device that lets him talk to his computer and the computer does what he says. He can tell it to open up, to locate e-mail, tell it who to send the message to, tell it what he wants in the message, and then tell it to send and the OF has never touched the machine.

Another OF received a new laptop with Windows 8 on it. This OF and a few others that are involved with it, (Windows 8) say what a mess. It is not user friendly, plus unknowingly Windows has created a great advertisement for Apple. The OFs said if any of you OFs will be getting a new computer ask to have seven put on it instead of eight and you will be much happier.

One of the OFs is a state trapper and was, the scribe emphasizes was, the animal control officer for the town of Knox. The state calls on this OF to go all over the area and remove pesky animals from wherever the situation may be. This includes animals like beaver, skunks, possums, and raccoons from locations where they don’t belong. This OF also has his own trap lines. On New Year’s Day he was checking his run and in a small discharge stream from a pond where he had set a trap (under the water) the OF noticed it was tripped.

The OF took his rod and poked around in the snow and the rod hit something soft under the water in the trap so the OF figured he had a small beaver or muskrat. When he pulled it out of the water what he actually had was a rabbit and a mink in the same trap. Now that was a surprise, and a head-scratcher to boot. The OF brought proof of the phenomenon because he took pictures thinking nobody is going to believe this.

In unison some of the OFs said what was the rabbit doing under the water? We never heard of a swimming rabbit. The trapper could only surmise that the mink had caught it and was hauling it someplace for dinner and then got greedy when it spotted the bait in the trap and went after the bait in the trap also. That mink wasn’t going to let go of the rabbit either, he was going to have his rabbit stew and top it off with whatever the trapper had used for bait. The OF said a good lesson learned here about a bird in the hand being better than a bird in the bush, or something like that. For those who are wondering ─ a mink is a nasty little carnivore, they do not eat grass, and they can clean out a hen house in a hurry.

We have an OF that has joined the ranks of the other OFs with having a shoulder (or both shoulders) repaired. The instructions that are given for this procedure are generally the same no matter who is doing the operation. One of these instructions is to wear a shirt that buttons down because the patient will be going home in a sling and some of the slings have a pillow, or bumper attached. This OF had on such a sling…one with the pillow.

The OF put on his button down shirt, and the left arm went in fine. Then there was the one (right arm) with the sling that the shirt was supposed to go over. Well on this the OF related that the buttons on the right lacked eighteen inches from reaching the button holes on the left and now he was about to go out into the world with his gray chest hairs blowing in the wind, and his tummy exposed to greet the new day.

The nurses, after standing in the hallway laughing, felt sorry for him, so they brought in a pillow case and pinned it to the inside of his shirt so a least it looked like he had a T-shirt on. Quite resourceful, these nurses, this scribe thought.

On the way home the OF had his wife stop at Wally-World to get him a couple of cheap size triple-X, or size five-X shirts he could wear for a little while because he would only be a few weeks in the sling. Nothing, the OF said, as they pulled one down that said size triple-X, and to him it looked rather small. Then he looked at a size large and it looked larger than the size triple-X. The OF thought this was going to be a losing battle so no shirts were purchased. Now the OF wears a really good size sweater and looks very dashing. To go along with the sweater with one empty sleeve all this OF needs is a hook hanging out of it, and an eye patch and the picture will be complete.

At the ages of most of the OGs Wills are an important thing and it was another topic of discussion this morning. One OF just had his redone to keep up with the current events. Many of the OFs had theirs done awhile back and it may be a good idea to have them looked at again. Who knows when the ‘Will’ might come into play, especially with the terms OGs, OFs, or the well-used term senior citizens attached to the names of the members of this nefarious group.

Those attending the first breakfast of year at the Home Front Café in Altamont and glad to finally get out, were Henry Witt, Dave Williams, Harold Guest, Frank Pauli, Robie Osterman, Bill Krause, Steve Kelly, Roger Chapman, Henry Whipple, John Rossmann, Gary Porter, Mace Porter, Jack Norray, Mark Traver, Glenn Patterson, Jim Heiser, Otis Lawyer, Ted Willsey, Mike Willsey, Jim Rissacher, Elwood VanDerBelt, Harold Grippen, and me.

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