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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Fringe Benefits

I have lived in nutty places most of my life and still do. Actually, I live just outside of a nutty place -- Brattleboro, Vermont -- perhaps you've heard about it. They've been all over the news because of the recent successful petition drive to vote at Town Meeting on March 4th for the following resolution:

Shall the Selectboard instruct the Town Attorney to draft indictments against President Bush and Vice President Cheney for crimes against our Constitution, and publish said indictments for consideration by other authorities and shall it be the law of the Town of Brattleboro that the Brattleboro Police, pursuant to the above-mentioned indictments, arrest and detain George Bush and Richard Cheney in Brattleboro if they are not duly impeached, and prosecute or extradite them to other authorities that may reasonably contend to prosecute them?

Never mind that the measure has no legal standing, is extra-constitutional itself, and would be directing town officials to commit a felony. Those are details best left alone. They only ruin the fun.

Homer, Alaska, where I lived most of my adult life, passed an ordinance some years ago making it the nation's first Nuclear Free Zone. That means if you were, say, the commander of a nuclear powered attack submarine and needed to lay-up in the Homer harbor that you would be looking down the double barreled justice machine that is the Homer Police Department. Laugh if you will, but the measure has so far worked. The US Navy got the memo and have prudently steered clear. Just as I'm sure that George Bush and Dick Cheney will be steering clear of Brattleboro.

If you find this whole business distressing, disgusting or treasonous you are missing the point. The point is there is no point. I could get you 500 signatures on a petition in Brattleboro requiring all men to wear bowler hats, tip them when I walk past, and call me Charlie. This is the place that last year hired strippers -- uh, excuse me, professional dancers -- to stand naked on a street corner behind a banner demanding people stop wearing fur. The simple fact that somebody thought of that makes life here worth living.

By the way, if you're thinking of visiting, I see in the paper there is a Psychic Fair taking place this Saturday featuring aural photography, mediumship, creative transformation and shamanic healing. It starts at 11a and goes until 5p. As if we needed to be told.




3 Comments:

Blogger Cionaodh said...

Never mind the psychic fair, when's the next nude cow parade?

;-)

I love Brattleboro -- both with & without nuts -- and have been visiting once or twice a year for more than 20 years from nearby Massachusetts.

Bratt's like an eccentric aunt/uncle -- generally pleasant despite the occasional loony moments.

10:17 AM  
Blogger Edmund Meinhardt said...

So, Mr. Bodett----do you attribute this to a knack for locating nutty places? Or does your adoption of a community bring out every resident's inner nut?

Sounds like a colorful place. I'll have to have a look after I get back from Homer.

1:59 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

hey tom-
do you still consider yourself a michigander (not michiganian...speaking of votes...i wasn't asked when they switched the demonym)? i live in a conservative little resort town on lake michigan where it's considered quite radical when the "democrats for peace" stands in front of the post office with signs to stop the war in iraq. i definately miss the quirkiness of the west and it appears the east (maybe it's the extremes? can't have that in the middle?). i lived at the south rim of the grand canyon for ten years where folks really knew how to take a stand! i returned to this state for the lake- i felt sorry for it too...everyone's leaving.
at the risk of sounding like a groupie- i've been a big fan since "webster cummings". i miss your voice on "wait wait" this morning.

12:53 PM  

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