Friday, June 29, 2012

Pechins Perks

  • Whenever I go home, I get groceries and Pechins before I come back to Pittsburgh. So much cheaper, and surprisingly, a lot more variety than Shop N Save.
  • Their cakes have always been praised and I've always thought Pechins cakes were good but not amazing, and then I had the glorious work of art that was my birthday cake. Perfectly soft and moist with amazing icing, and I tend not to be an icing fan.
I did overhear a woman complaining about not knowing where anything is and how none of the employees know, either. Pechins used to be famous for being chaos and never stocking anything in the same place, although this seems to have gotten better, so I don't know what the deal is.

Thursday, June 28, 2012


  • Some Uniontown kids won $4,000 for the district on a quiz show. First of all, awesome! Second, that district is gonna really need that money. Maybe we should ship off all the kids around here to quiz shows and pull a Brady Bunch and manage to win the exact amount of money needed to help. That's probably a very high number, though. Especially since Uniontown just furloughed four teachers and Albert Gallatin furloughed 16. Remember to thank Corbett for caring about jobs and education next time you see him.
  • Someone stole money from a church, which is probably an automatic ticket to hell. He also stole a jersey that had sentimental value for the pastor. This sounds personal.
  • Laurel Highlands is considering mandatory training for coaches to identify concussions. I'm all for this. We all know what happened to Sidney Crosby's brain pan after a concussion, and no, he's not a sissy. The only thing would be making sure the coaches and basically everyone takes the training seriously and doesn't disregard concussions after they've been identified. Brains are more important than sports.
  • is getting with the times and has launched a mobile site!
  • A chick from Brownsville is heading for the opera. She went to my high school for a hot minute.
  • Two men went around stealing emblems off of cars. This reminds me of the time everyone kept stealing those coppers wires that made my internet disappear until the wires could be replaced...with new wires...that were then stolen.
  • A Georges Township man is missing. Please look and notify police if you see him.
  • A man choked a teen. Good job. We also had another shooting in Uniontown, a robbery, threats to a judge, and the most serious charges were withdrawn against a man who tried to run over a bicyclist. Yeah, let's just send the message that running people over is no big deal. As if people don't already think it's not big deal and try it all the time. Similarly, the most serious charge was dropped against a man who got into a fight with police. 
  • There's more! A man convicted of homicide was found with a stolen gun and there was a road-rage shooting. Dude should try driving 376 every day. Some days, I want to stay in bed just thinking about driving to work.
That was exhausting.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Speeding Experiment

My brother and I decided to drive by the crazy dude with the speeding problem while I was in the Nam for the weekend (for the first time in over a month! I almost escaped). Here's a rundown of my final thoughts on the matter.

  • He wasn't out, but I was afraid of him anyway. I don't take well to being yelled at.
  • Because of this and other reasons like it being unsafe and illegal, I decided against seeing how fast I could go on that stretch of road.
  • I wanted to see how fast I could go because even though that section is a straightaway, it's a very short straightaway. A very short straightaway sandwiched between two sharp death-curves.
  • Therefore, his claim that people hit 100 miles per hour on that stretch is even more unbelievable. Unless they do it and die at the end on either curve. Or do it for like a second then slow down for the death-curves.
  • It probably would've been cool if he had been out and I could've scored like an exclusive interview or something. Except, like I said, I'm afraid of him. Actually, I'm afraid of a lot of people here, because they're either bigger than me or have guns--literally and figuratively.
Then we went to Vinny's. They have slushies, which are very tasty and stayed frozen and in a slush state for hours. I wish they'd get some vegetarian sandwiches in that place, though, even though I'm the only one who cares.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Want to Live in Conn Area?

Oh, yes, you do!

The recently sold Conn Area building is being turned into apartments. This is pretty much the only thing that would get me to move back to the Nam, except for the fact that some shady, shady characters are in that area. Other than that, I'd move in in a hot minute.

It actually sounds like this dude's got a pretty good plan for some pretty nice apartments, though. The building was in well enough condition for new owner Gary Colatch to do some renovations--unlike, as he points out, practically the rest of Connellsville. In fact, he was offered one of those buildings for a dollar, but it's beyond repair.

The classrooms, he says, are big enough to become two-bedroom apartments. I don't remember them being that big, but then again, they were often cluttered. What will become of the coat rooms, I wonder? They were our trusty hiding places for "creeper on the premises" drills. All the renovations are expected to start in the winter.

This is a pretty neat idea not just to provide nice apartments for the area but also as nostalgia factor. Plus it's a good solution for an old building, and as we've seen, old buildings in Connellsville don't do so well. If they don't deteriorate, they're torn down to make room for parking lots. And some of Connellsville's old buildings are gorgeous. Added bonus: the building was a designated fallout shelter. That makes for a pretty solid home, I think.

Colatch expects some negativity, but how can someone be against this? This has some much potential and could be such a good thing. The only argument against it I could see is saying that the space should be sued to create jobs. The problem with that is Fayette County actually has decent job openings, but rumor has it few people pass the drug tests to get them. That's another discussion and problem for another day.

Dude's got big plans for the place and he's excited, which is awesome. You don't see that too often around here. He says it best himself--"We need to get off our butts. We need to fix what's fixable and tear down what can't be fixed within a decent time frame."

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sweet Summer

  • Vinny's is open and has been for a while.
  • The drive-in is open.
  • Duda's farm has stands up, but I missed them this evening, which sucks because I really want some tomatoes.
  • Rafting season is in full swing, although I haven't gone.
  • Irrelevant, but gas is 20 cents cheaper here than it is in Pittsburgh.
  • The air conditioner is broken at the Uniontown Carmike. Also, I don't recognize the dude at the box office, meaning they finally hired someone new. Whether or not they still have more than one person working when it's busy remains to be seen.
  • I'm back for the first time in over a month, and when I rode in with the windows down, I smelled pure cigarettes.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Art on the Yough

If you're looking for something to do, check out Art on the Yough this weekend! Check it out then go rafting. Feed some ducks. Are you still allowed to feed the ducks? My grandfather used to take us to the park by the river all the time to feed the ducks.

We don't have very many artsy things going on in the Nam, so check these things out while you can. Contribute, too! I might go tomorrow when I head back to the Nam for my birthday cake. My birthday, by the way, was Thursday, and I have yet to be presented with a personal Fallingwater. Come on.

Anyway, I believe the next art opportunity will be the art show at the fair, and I know there are some really skilled people lurking around here. Get out there!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Get Ready for the Fair!

We're only a month away from the county fair. Are you totally excited? You should be. All that food, demolition derby, and people-watching!

And finally, The Clarks' performance has been confirmed. We can all rest easy. It'll be on July 27. I haven't checked, but I'm going to bet this is opening night. I can guarantee that it will be crowded, they will play "Cigarette" and I will know most of the people in the front row. If I hear that damn "Life Is All About the Ride," though, we're gonna have a problem.

(Side note--that song receives a lot of hate. I happen to think it's a bad song. Then there's the sellout argument, which I don't really care about. I do care about people starting to hate the band altogether because of that song and the commercials, which isn't right. They have some excellent songs, and some product endorsement doesn't change that. Besides, it's not the worst musical advertising crime. And at least it wasn't a stupid jewelry commercial.)

At this point, The Clarks at the fair is pretty much a given. Just like chocolate-covered bacon and rides that are probably in danger of collapsing. Fact: my mom never let me ride anything ever at the fair or any sort of temporary carnival. She once saw boxes of parts laying around at one in Uniontown. It alarmed her, since those parts presumably belong on the rides.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Oh Boy

Okay, so, Zimmerlink is saying she didn't see or discuss housing authority documents that had been left on a restaurant table. First of all, maybe I'm being naive, but I believe her. She's cranky, but I don't think she's lying. I have nothing to base that on, but whatever.

I'm more interested in the fact that someone left a folder containing budgets and personal information ON A RESTAURANT TABLE. Get it together! I mean, there's an investigation brewing now and everything, but really!? When an attorney asked everyone who had copies of this stuff to return them, everyone did except for guess who? The chick who left them on a table. Look, we all make mistakes. Everyone forgets things. But really?

Kind of makes you question the quality of the board members around here. Again. Because everyone complains about pretty much every type of board that exists in this county as it is.

I'm also kind of wondering why this is more about Zimmerlink that the person who left the documents to begin with. Come on now.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Something Familiar

Not all craziness is unique to the Nam.

Remember last summer's ice-cream truck turf war? A similar turf war is happening over in England. One of the driver's smashed the other's window with a tire iron.

I haven't heard anything about the rival trucks yet this summer, so let's hope they've managed to put their differences aside for the sake of giving children (and adults like me) tasty ice cream.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The End of Yet Another Era

Everyone's favorite dive bar, Sherwood's, has closed.

The rumor is yet another fight broke out and this time someone ended up in the hospital, and Sis has had enough. I don't blame her. Sis has been putting up with crazy shit for years, and she was bound to get tired of it eventually.

I shall miss the cheap drinks, the best margaritas in the universe, and even the shenanigans. My earliest Sherwood's memories include someone burning the owner's truck and hearing fights and music. That grew to include getting beers from creepy old dudes and being karaoke champions.

Let's take a look back at Sherwood's through the years. Or, uh, months this blog has been talking about it.

Perhaps someone will buy it, but it won't be the same. The craziness probably will be, but Sis made that place.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

More on the Nam's Favorite Dad

I first heard about this from my brother, who sent me the link from the Kiss FM Freak Show. It's only fitting that I give you Mikey and Big Bob's take on this.

Is he a one-man gang? Could he be our hero? I'd like to see this happen. Get him down on Gallatin Avenue in Uniontown with the prostitutes, go after the drug dealers, take care of the violence and sex offenders...

I mean, few other people seem to do much. Let's get this dude on it! He could be our Batman.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Speeding Saga Continues

The internet is the greatest invention of all time. It allows one ridiculous video to become even more ridiculous.

First, we have GIFs.

Made by Adam over at Pensblog

Made by @Will_Koz on Twitter
And then there's the movie trailer.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

Children of the Nam, remember this Father's Day how awesome your dads are. Like this awesome dad who is just trying to protect his children from fast drivers.

First of all, anytime someone from Fayette County calls any sort of media company, it's almost guaranteed to be pure crazy. And any time those crazy stories are actually picked up and paid attention, it's almost guaranteed to be for mocking or ratings purposes. But don't be fooled--I can also guarantee that if you ignore Fayette County's crazies, they won't go away.

People being concerned over speed is nothing new here. New Salem Road is full of signs in yards telling people to slow down (or watch out for motorcycles). They say things like, "Our neighborhood is not a freeway!" But a nice, professionally made, subtle sign is not enough for this dad. The again, his own massive spray paint and plywood sign--what some would call "gypsy"--isn't enough, either, and neither is his YouTube video. He yells at people, too.

My parents' neighbor yells at people driving fast through their neighborhood, too. The concern is understandable. No one wants a kid to get hit. I'm reading Pet Sematary right now. I get it. But then, why are your kids playing in the road in the first place? Where my parents live, it's a secluded neighborhood where the only people there are residents or visitors, so kids playing in the street is more common than elsewhere and mostly safe. Still, the girl I used to babysit was never allowed to play in the road, and there are plenty of other kids who don't, and they all know what dangers the road brings. Angry Dad says this argument misses the point, but he's the one saying a child will die eventually. It's not really missing the point if he brought it up in the first place.

Sure, drivers really need to be safe and attentive, but signs like this probably aren't going to change much. Neither is some crazy guy with a massive beard yelling in the street. Plus I have hard time believing his claim that drivers go as fast as 100 on that road. How does he know that, anyway? Does he sit with a radar gun in his yard? Probably not, but if he had one he probably would. And if he had one, he would've mentioned it and it would've been in this news report.

All that said, drivers shouldn't be quite as cranky as they are over this. They raise good points, but at the end of the day, they are just signs. They're actually doing less damage than the speeding could.

But at least he cares.

Tomorrow, we'll visit the things the internet has already done to this video. This post is already too long and the internet is too hilarious.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Post Office Problem

Patch hunkies need their post offices. Traveling to another patch for one is unacceptable.

Sarcasm aside, when I lived with my parents, having the Lemont Furnace post office so close (despite back roads) was so nice as opposed to having to go all the way into Uniontown, which was usually more crowded.

In order to keep some of the offices open, others are making some changes. You now need an appointment to get a passport in Uniontown, and many will be changing their window hours. A lot of the smaller offices already keep strange or few hours, so we'll see what happens. All changes being made will take place in phases over two years and are expected to save $500 million a year. They're also offering early retirement to employees.

Seems like at least most of the little offices are staying open, including the one in Dickerson Run with that awesome Jolly Green Giant in the window.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Colebrook News

First and most importantly, today at Colebrook, you get 1/2 pound of fudge free if you buy one pound. Now accepting gifts of fudge. My birthday is coming up, after all. Also, they have chocolate-covered jalapeƱo chips. Those do not sound appetizing to me, but if you're into that kind of thing, you know where to go. Kind of like the fair's chocolate-covered bacon.

Next, help them get a $250,000 grant! They need 250 votes. Just go here, click "Learn More," search for Colebrook in PA, and vote!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Operation Build Me a Fallingwater

Look, Fallingwater is awesome. This is a 100% scientific fact. It's so awesome that I'd love to live there, or at least have someone build me something similar like Brad Pitt is allegedly doing.

The blueprint is up for auction. Bidding opened at $1,000. It'll probably get pretty high--they suspect up to $25,000-- but someone get on this! I'll throw you a party and let you stay in that neat little guest house thing! You have until June 20, the day before amy birthday! And after we build it, we can just resell the blueprints. There are absolutely no flaws in this plan.

I mean, how cool would it be to be sitting around on a hot day and say, "Man, I think I'll go play in the waterfall IN MY HOUSE."

The blueprints also come with a cranky letter all about how the contractor made changes to Frank Lloyd Wright's plan. You tell 'em, Frank! Stay true to your vision!

If this plan fails, I'll be forced to wander Fallingwater in an awed daze. Again.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Adventures in Site Analytics

Okay, so someone got to this blog by searching "best places to have sex in fayette county." I blame the sex offenders for this.

As for what the best places actually are? I have no idea. But if I had to guess...

  • Laurel Mall movie theater projection room.
  • Any other empty part of the Laurel Mall
  • Laurel Mall parking lot
  • Penn State parking lot
  • Sherwood's
  • Casparis
  • Ohiopyle
  • A coke oven
  • The Yough
Conversely, the best places to not have sex:
  • The Yough
  • Eat N Park. There's a security guard on duty.
  • Any of the patches

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Connellsville Happenings as Learned from Facebook

  • Some girl was outside at 7 AM singing. Loud.
  • There was some sort of verbal altercation last night, possibly at Lynn's, that the involved parties found entertaining. Except I don't know what was said. Look, you can't make fun of Connellsville crazies if you don't even tell us what made them crazy! And now I'm blogging about it, continuing the vicious cycle of a lack of information.
  • Mr. Orlando & Mrs. Hillen had their retirement party. They now join the ranks of such Geibel greats as John Riley, Jack Bluhm, and Bob Fedorko.
  • Mr. Bell wrote Mrs. Hillen a song. Some of it, as shared by her daughter:
Dodgeball, kickball, tennis, volleyball, ev'n col'ny ball too, 
It's time for gym class, you better have your clothes with you
If you don't, she will yell, and we'll be scared as hell
But if we buy her a sweet tea, all will be well!
  • Get ready for Fayette Idol 2012! July 27 at 7:15 at the fairgrounds.
  • Colebrook is now serving sundaes!
Don't feel left out, Uniontown. While I have no shenanigans of yours to report, I can direct you to this page full of events in the area. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The End of an Era Pt 2: The Reckoning

Geibel isn't just losing Larry Orlando this year. Gym teacher Kathy Hillen is retiring, too.

Ladies, how could we forget sock checks and Dodgeball Fridays? As much as I lack any athletic skill whatsoever and have always hated gym classes, even I found something to like. In fact, I loved Dodgeball Fridays, which makes no sense since I am the definition of nerdy kids who suck at dodgeball. Except I'm small, I can dodge and weave, and have been the last girl standing more than once.


I also loved crab soccer, but that had a lot to do with my team playing great defense. Oh, and this.

We may or may not have chanted "Crab people" while pacing on our little scooters and making pincers with our hands. We may or may not still find this hilarious.

One of my favorite Kathy Hillen memories is when a friend of mine dressed as her for the Halloween dance once year. To this day, it is one of the greatest costumes I have ever seen. The best part is the costume included her famous McDonald's cup of diet Coke and when security stopped my friend for bringing in a drink, she explained it was part of her costume and that she was Mrs. Hillen. The dude laughed and let her in.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Texts from the Nam: More Retail

My brother has informed me that in addition to an Olive Garden, Uniontown is also getting a Kohl's and TJ Maxx. We're moving up in the world!

Still, such rumors--mainly about Kohl's--have been circulating for a while, so I'll believe it when I'm in TJ Maxx buying four pairs of sweater tights made from bamboo. Again.

Now, if only the rumors of the alleged massive movie theater would come true. I'll take anything other than both terrible Carmikes. Then again, would a bigger, nicer theater really matter? Two have already gone to shit, so a third would just be inviting more shit. Just one more theater for broken seats, a sticky floor, leaky roof, and projection-room sex.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

We Made It

Uniontown was just featured in an article in the Washington Post. There's a lot going on here, but it's definitely an interesting read.

The writer touches on a lot of things that we should probably look at it in a little more detail.

Signs of what Fayette County used to be are everywhere. On one hand, you can still see all the coke ovens, especially in the winter. Take a drive through the Leisenring/Dunbar area near Divito Park (sorry, The Ice Mine!) in the fall or winter and peek behind the rink. There's a whole long row of long-abandoned coke ovens. Connellsville has the remnants of Anchor Hocking.

You can even see it in the houses in Connellsville. So many are big brick houses that are run down now. Connellsville used to be literally full of millionaires.

We've been suffering since we lost the coal and coke industries, and it's going to take a lot of work to fix us.

Politics have always been kind of strange here, and that's just getting worse. We've been a Democrat county for a long, long time--until 2008. Many--myself included--pin this in large part on racism. Whenever I was involved in or even overheard political discussions during the campaign, the issues were never discussed. All I heard was, "Obama's a terrorist." "Obama's dad's a terrorist." "I don't want a Muslim running the country." "All he's going to do is get in there and help the blacks." I received e-mails from relatives blaming the high murder rate in Chicago on Obama, and worst of all, e-mails depicting the Obama family all as chimpanzees. I'm sure some people had legitimate reasons for disliking him, but a person's race isn't a legitimate reason. Religion isn't always much of a good one, either, even if Obama has secretly been a Muslim this whole time. Not all Muslims are terrorists, guys.

Obama did kind of do himself in here with the comment about small-town Americans clinging to their God and guns--to an extent. Half of us said, "Well, yeah. Just look around," and the other half were offended. Fayette County doesn't always seem incredibly religious, but when you take note of all the street fairs and church booths at the county fair, it becomes more obvious. As for the guns? We have a reputation for being rednecks, so there ya go.

Obama aside, though, the county does have a tendency to be socially conservative. That said, I am surprised that it seems like places like the openly gay Club 231 don't really have any trouble, so good job there, guys!

And of course, it's not an anti-Obama argument without crying socialism. No matter where you stand on the healthcare issue, it's hard to deny that a lot of people in this county could really benefit from it.

How much does it matter, though? Recent polling numbers were terrible. No one's voting here. Granted, turnout might be much more impressive for President with such strong anti-Obama sentiments, but beating previous numbers won't really be hard to do.

As for the unemployment rate, I've heard numerous times from numerous people that the problem is with the applicants--most fail drug tests. While jobs in some fields are hard to come by, there are still a fair number of openings. It helps that so many people leave the county for and after college. At the same time, I've also heard accounts of certain areas and businesses prospering due to natural-gas drilling, but that comes with potential health hazards.

There are two big takeaways here:
During the era of King Coal, trolley cars linked the patches and you could zig-zag by rail all the way to Pittsburgh. The steel mills on the Monongahela River were fueled by the coke.
WHAT!? That sounds so awesome! See what happens when you destroy a major industry? You get the FACT bus and you lose the ability to publicly snake through the patches.
“We’re getting an Olive Garden,” he says, and laughs. “We’ve made it.”
WHAT!? Since this is in the Washington Post, I'm gonna believe it. And yet, rumors of an Olive Garden have been circulating for at least 10 I'll remain skeptical. I'll believe it when I'm stuffing my face full of breadsticks.

That statement, though, says more than the entire article in some ways about Fayette County. We actually do have a lot of restaurants, mostly in Uniontown, but we don't have something as simple as a massive Italian chain. Even in jest, many of us measure Fayette County's success by its businesses, and so Olive Garden coming in is a big deal. Finally, an Olive Garden! It symbolizes progress. It's going to take a lot more than an Olive Garden to fix us, but you know things are bad when that's still something with celebrating.

Monday, June 4, 2012

For Young Theater Nerds

Although Scottdale isn't technically the Nam and therefore the Geyer Theater isn't our turf, it's usually the closest the county gets to community theater, except for that one time a bunch of people organized a production of Grease in Uniontown. Other than that, as far as I know, not much else goes on.

Anyway, the Geyer is doing a theater camp for kids called Camp Curtain Call. And not just for kids who want to perform--they'll have kids doing set and costume design and lighting, too and will learn all about the ins and outs of theater. The theme is School House Rock.

It's for kids ages 5-15 and will be done in two week-long sessions, the first running from June 11-15 fro 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The second is June 18-22. Students can choose one week or participate in both, although the second one does build on the basics from the first week. It's also still good for kids who have participated before. Participation costs $225 for one week or $350 for both. Kids from the Southmoreland School District will receive discounted tuition for $125 thanks to a grant from Scottdale Bank and Trust. Other scholarships and parent volunteer discounts are available.

The camp will end with an open house the evening of June 22 which includes a tour of the theater, refreshments, and a performance. The Geyer usually serves ice cream, and I love it.

It sounds like a pretty good and fun opportunity, especially if you're like my parents and start yelling, "It's time to go back to school!" once the kids start fighting all the time because they're around each other all day every day for three months. 

Reserve a spot by calling 724-887-0887. You have until Friday.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Slow News Day

While most county news is completely ridiculous, sometimes it's pretty silly, too.

From "The Swedish flag flying in Gen. George C. Marshall Plaza in Uniontown was knocked down Wednesday afternoon when a passenger vehicle and an 18-wheel tractor trailer collided. No injuries were reported and Uniontown police are investigating the cause of the accident. Police said the damaged flagpole was removed."
Let's have a moment of silence for the flag. The plaza must look weird without it. The good news is now everyone knows what the Swedish flag looks like.

I'm interested in the details of the accident because you never know around here.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Texts from the Nam: I've Ruined Us All

That's high praise. And from my little brother, too. The retweet in question could be one of the following:

Task force raids Fayette County pharmacy.
6/1/12 12:26 PM

Police have taken man into custody after he was caught performing a sex act in a South Union retail store today. #Fayette County #HS
6/1/12 1:39 PM

I don't know which one, and the mystery makes this more enjoyable for me.