Monday, December 23, 2013

Man impersonates Texas Ranger

It's like Fayette County knows it has just over a week left in 2013 and wants to go out with a weird bang.
A passing motorist called police at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday to report a man using a hammer to strike the hood of a Jeep Wrangler in a parking lot on South Mt. Vernon Avenue in South Union, Trooper Adam Janosko said in a criminal complaint.
When the cops caught up with him, he claimed to be a Texas Ranger.
Baysinger “explained that he damaged the vehicle because he believed the owner of the vehicle stole it from his mother,” Janosko said in the complaint. “He further related and continuously related that he was a member of the Texas Rangers Law Enforcement department and that he should not be charged.” 
Janosko said Baysinger “had the strong odors of mouthwash on his person and breath, spoke incoherently and repeatedly spoke about random events that did not and have never occurred.”
Got to do what you can to avoid trouble when you get caught, I guess, but this excuse had been ruined by the best of us.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Mall Throwdown

I have zero context for this, but does it really matter?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Jury Duty

Whatever it takes, right? Frankly, Fayette County jury duty has to be a glorious experience.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

PennDOT employee accepted bribes

Back when me and all my friends and peers were learning how to drive, one man in particular had a reputation for being difficult. I think everyone I knew that had him failed at least once, usually for very minor things that most of us licensed drivers are guilty of doing on occasion that won't get anyone killed. Why, just the other day I was driving with my emergency brake still on. Woops.

It's a tad frustrating to know that had we been foreigners with a couple hundred extra bucks to spend, we could've just bribed our way into a license.
Vanderbilt man is facing bribery and other charges after state police alleged he administered driver’s license tests to foreign license applicants at the local licensing center and accepted between $100 and $700 to give them a passing grade — and a Pennsylvania driver’s license.
 As potentially dangerous as this is, I laughed. And as usual, it gets better! His son insists he's innocent.
“My father has never, and never would have accepted any form of payment in exchange for desirable results for any examination or service offered at the DMV. The criminal charges brought against my father are preposterous and completely false,” Mills Jr. said.
You know, I get standing by family, but sometimes you have to believe the evidence instead. Like the fact that cops kept an eye on him and his fellow employers and superiors were suspicious of the fact that he always insisted on testing foreigners, even when they told him not to.
On June 19, supervisors at the center knew that several people of Bhutanese descent were coming for the driving portion of their license test and specifically ordered Mills not to administer the tests. However, he did so, police said. 
In July, police watched covertly as Mills tested one Bhutanese driver and wrote in the complaint that the driving portion of the test included Mills having the man drive from the licensing center lot to the PennDOT lot next door “with no other road skills or route taken,” Nied wrote. Four minutes after the test started, Mills gave the man a passing grade and he was issued a license, police alleged. 
A second applicant drove from the licensing center to a nearby church parking lot, police said. Mills and that man stayed in the lot for three minutes and returned, according to court documents. That man, too, was passed, and his license was issued, police said. 
On July 24, police again conducted surveillance and watched Mills talking to a man who brought several people of Bhutanese descent to the building to take tests, according to the complaint. That man, identified by police as Deu Tiwari, and Mills were seen frequently talking and exchanging documents, police said. 
During a Sept. 6 interview with police and an agent from Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, Mills reportedly acknowledged failing to give proper road tests but denied accepting any money or benefit for doing so, according to the complaint. 
Many of the drivers Mills tested had previously failed their road skills tests at other licensing facilities across the state, Nied indicated.
And then there's the numbers.
Between June 2009 and August 2013, police allege, Mills tested 346 Bhutanese drivers and passed 339 of them. 
PennDOT sent out notices to the 339 drivers Mills passed and made them come in to be retested. Of those, 218 failed the retest, and their licenses were recalled. Another 32 others failed to show up, police said. 
Three of the drivers who showed up for their tests told authorities that they paid Mills between $300 and $700 to get their passing grade, police said. 
Police said one of the applicants, Ganga Timsina, said Mills told him, “You give me money, I give you license.” 
Timsina told authorities he paid Mills $400. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: Tattoos

I found this lovely screencap lurking on my computer--apparently, I forgot to post it. Enjoy.

I also have a friend who has the outline of Fayette County tattooed on her thigh, which she had done by a man just learning how to tattoo out of a living room.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

County Crime Roundup

It's been awhile.

So basically, we're really gonna break in that fancy new prison by the fairgrounds!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Help Save Fayette Friends of Animals!

Caring for the rescued pets of the Nam is no cheap or easy task--especially considering the habit of abuse around here, but we'll talk about that some other time. A rough economy and expensive but necessary vet bills don't help, so now Fayette Friends of Animals has turned to the community to make up the difference.

They've started a campaign to raise $50,000, including the ultimate goal of expanding the shelter. It's already received over $1,000 in its first day--and trust me, as soon as I get paid or sell more of my old junk on eBay, I'll be adding to that total. FFOA is the only no-kill shelter in the county, but it's also where my family adopted our two dogs. Dandy has since died, but despite diabetes and cataracts, Duke is doing very well. We all love him. He still runs and smothers me with kisses when I go home, at least until I've been around for a few hours and he's used to me and goes back to his usual routine of ignoring me (and everyone else) until I have food or get up off the couch so he can go steal the warm spot.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: Full Moon

This would would be dramatically enhanced by an epic anecdote, but for now, that's all she wrote.

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Pickle Parrot

If you're not from here or are having a brain lapse, then "Pickle Parrot" is confusing as hell. Don't worry! The parrot is just the mascot of radio station The Pickle. And there's a good reason it's a parrot and not a pickle, excitement and potential lewdness aside.
“We started to make it look like a pickle, but it didn't look right,” Baker said. So, based on the Froggy 94.9 mascot Mr. Froggy, station officials decided to make The Pickle mascot an animal and chose a parrot.
But that's not the point. See, the Pickle Parrot was stolen on Friday and was promptly found on Saturday.

The costume was stolen from the porch of a woman I'm pretty sure is a friend's mom who plays the mascot after she'd hung it out to dry. Let this be a lesson to us all--while our random junk is totally safe on our porches, cool things like the Pickle Parrot are not. Neither are your Thanksgiving leftovers, but that's another story that involves using the cold weather to your advantage and hungry raccoons.

Props to the thief, though, for not only getting the Pickle Parrot but a freshly laundered one at that.
The radio station responded by going on Facebook to alert fans in the area. “The Pickle Parrot's ‘body' has been stolen! This is no joke! It was lifted off the porch of someone in the Connellsville area. Be on the lookout for it and if you see it notify the Connellsville Police Department.”
So everyone was on the lookout for this parrot, because seriously, unless you're just hiding it in your house, someone was bound to know something. I mean, why do you steal a Pickle Parrot if you have no intention of wearing it, even if wearing it is guaranteed to get you caught?

And what better place to get caught than Sheetz in Connellsville?
The parrot was taken into custody at Sheetz.
However, the male teen wearing the costume was not the thief. 
The juvenile told police he didn't know the costume was stolen. He was at a friend's house and that juvenile asked him if he wanted to wear it. 
That friend, a 16-year-old male, admitted to police he took the costume from Mitchell's porch. He said his friend took no part in the theft. 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: Freeloading Feces

This is part two of a previous rant about the welfare system, and we all know we're not getting out of this blog post without me telling you a welfare check does not laziness make, but people defecating in public is a thing we're good at around here. So we have a shiny new "feces" tag for the blog!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Geibel Student Suspended for Racial Bullying

Details are pretty much unavailable, but a Geibel student was suspended for racial bullying after an African-American student filed a complaint against said bully for using racial slurs multiple times.

I'm not particularly surprised this is coming out of Fayette County, especially considering the things I've heard people say in person (and that one time I witnessed blackface at a party), but I am surprised this is coming out of Geibel. I'm curious as to who it is, but if anyone knows, they're not telling me--not that I'd share, I'm just wondering if I know them and if they're someone I know to have a reputation for bullying.
“It’s unfortunate that this happened, but it does not reflect the student body or the student culture at Geibel Catholic,” said Principal Don Favero.
Hence my surprise. Granted, Geibel is by no means immune to bullying--as I said, I know of a few reputed bullies, and experiences with my fellow Seniors '07 weren't always great. I once spent an entire volleyball game having to listen to a classmate make fun of me right behind me the whole time. The last time I saw him over the summer, he tried to hug me at a party. I'm told he's a much nicer guy now and I don't want to go holding grudges, but I'm not about to be all BFFs with someone who was mean.

Favero says the incident was dealt with per the Safe School Act of 1995, which requires an immediate 10-day suspension, a call to state police and a note on the actor’s permanent disciplinary record.
The school also went a step further and asked its religious education teacher to add a discussion about racial bullying to the lesson plan.
“We wanted to put a component in and reemphasize the sensitivity to each other, mutual respect, mutual tolerance, loved and concern as Christians for one another,” said Favero.
 Definitely good to see the appropriate steps were taken. The bullied student has since changed schools, which is unfortunate, but I can't say I blame them.

So here's the deal, my fellow Fayettenamese: be kind to each other. I'm not going to give you a reason to because you don't need one.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Just Some Quick Updates

1) If you haven't been to Nguyen's since, say, summer, you might want to head back--they've changed their menu. There's all sorts of neat new stuff on it, plus a bigger selection of lunch dishes, including my beloved pad thai. Just don't do what I did and rationalize that since the lunch portion is smaller than the dinner portion, surely you can eat a little more. Nope. You'll still tap out way too early and have pad thai for days.

2) If you're on the prowl for a good but reasonably priced psychic for shits and giggles, look up Charanne at Magic Treasure Box in Uniontown. She didn't blow me away, but she did know some freaky things she couldn't have. And if her predictions come true and my boyfriend and I both get new jobs and are engaged this time next year, I'll be more impressed. She does fill up fast, though--I went with a small group, and we made our appointment about a month in advance and I overheard the woman answering the phone when we went Wednesday that she's booked until sometime in December.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Nam on Tumblr: Melody Motor Lodge

My friends and I used to joke about renting a room at the Melody Motor Lodge and the sorts of frightening things that might be in it. Apparently, the motel houses this gem.

By Tumblr user cykling2013.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Football Losses and Bullying

Well, it's good to know that there's a football team in this country that actually lost worse than Geibel's 81-0. A Texas team lost 91-0...and then a parent filed a bullying complaint against the winning coach. Geibel, take heed! You could probably file a complaint against Mark Madden, too!

I really don't see a good case for calling this bullying--and trust me, I'm quite anti-bullying. It was a horrible, horrible loss, sure, and it brings up similar issues addressed with that infamous Geibel game regarding both coaches and the teams, but I wouldn't call a win bullying.

Meanwhile, the rumor mill is churning out that Geibel's last home game of the season was canceled, effectively also canceling senior day, but I have no confirmation or explanation of this beyond some angry alumni tweets. Like, "ashamed to be a Geibel Gator" angry. Now, the canceled game certainly does suck if it's true and Geibel actually has a good reputation and I have mostly good memories from my time there, but when ranking shameful things about the school, a canceled football game would be at the very bottom of the list.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Errors

Well, the paper does get its fair share of criticism.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Our New Claim to Fame: Bear Poaching

A Smithfield man just might be the first person in Pennsylvania history to be convicted be a jury of poaching a black bear. Great job!
“As far as we know, this is the first poaching case ever to go to jury trial,” said Travis Lau, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
It's the first time the DA has seen a poaching case even go to trial, because apparently, most hunters plead guilty.
“Most hunters are so embarrassed by the fact they illegally harvested big game, they simply don't go to trial,” Grimm said.
The man shot the bear when it wandered into his garden, unlike my grandfather, who I'm told used to roll visiting bears apples. Then another man called the game commission after the poacher kept bragging and showing off picture of the dead bear on his phone. Because pics or it didn't happen.

But wait, there's more! Meaning this is my new favorite Fayette County news story of 2013.
“Immediately after beginning my search of Swaney's backyard, I located two marijuana plants in a plastic container, as well as hair and paws from a black bear,” Bonin wrote in the complaint. “At that time, Swaney confessed to killing a black bear ... and also to growing the marijuana.”
Bonin found the bear's head in a stream near Swaney's house, according to court records. The bear carcass was recovered from a friend's freezer.
This dude just sounds like a bear serial killer. Bears of the Nam, beware!

He says he shot it because it was threatening kids getting off a school bus, but no one else complained. The man also tried to say the bear had an old arrow wound and the meat was no good, yet he still cut it up and put it in his freezer. Meaning either he was wrong or I'm right and he's a serial killer.

The man will be sentenced Wednesday morning. The marijuana charges were dropped as part of a plea offer, which included fines and this serial killer to lose his hunting license for five years. Now, call me crazy, but I can't see taking a hunting license away from a man who illegally shot a bear as a very effective punishment, though for some around here, it's probably worse than jail time.

Moment of silence for all the dead bears out there, including Rupert, who resides in my cousins' house.

Also, shout-out to my mom, who--spoiler alert--was offended by the movie Brave after I suggested she watch it.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Uniontown High School Announces Distinguished Alumni

Like I always say, don't ever say we don't produce good things and good people. Granted, the problem is they all leave this mess behind them, but whatever.

Uniontown High School has announced a Hall of Fame for distinguished alumni, which they plan to update annually. The list includes those in athletics, academics, and the arts.

You may not recognize some of the names, but you'll recognize their achievements--there's a woman who helped prototype the first anti-lock-brake system, a chief of cardio-thracic surgery at UPMC, numerous musicians, and plenty of athletes.

Pretty neat stuff, and some good news to keep in mind.

Monday, October 7, 2013

When the Nam Can't Watch the Pirates

Oh, the beauty of this rare Pirates winning season and what I can only assume was a slow news day and excuse to find some crazy rednecks to put on TV: WTAE ran a segment on Fayettenamese being unable to watch Pirate games on TV because local cable providers don't have the station.

Don't get me wrong, not having access to watch your team play certainly sucks, but why is it news? Why is anyone going to Dino's ever news? Seriously, did someone just get word of this and decide to run with it because of the possibility of bizarre, quotable people? If I'm right on that, they went to all the wrong bars. You need the dives to deliver on that.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Ferry Options

Did you know there's a ferry in the Nam? Neither did I. And that might be because it's just sitting idly in the Mon and no one talks about nice, cool things around here. I try, but y'all are more interested in crime. Can't blame you, though.

Anyway, the commissioners are trying to decide what to do with it. I'll spare you the long musings and get straight to the point: get this shit running!

Or, you know, I'll hop in a raft on the Yough next summer and ferry people myself and sneak you alcohol and stuff and you can pay me in Bud's pizza...or more alcohol.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Where the Duck in Pittsburgh Really Belongs

Photo by Jason Cohn
I'm a big fan of the giant rubber duck currently floating in Pittsburgh. Most people on social media are, too, except for a few Negative Nancies who say they're tired of pictures, it's not news, or they don't care. It's a 40-foot rubber duck! Like it or not, it's certainly not normal, therefore making it news- and photo-worthy.

But what if the duck visited the Mighty Yough?

I'm sure then the naysayers would settle. I mean, think about it. Sure, it would probably be vandalized almost immediately or used as a jumping-off point into the river or would be damaged by river debris and rocks. But think of the joy it could bring to places like Connellsville or the Adelaide campground!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Nam in the News and on Facebook and Basically Everywhere Else: The Standoff

Working 3 1/2 hours of overtime on a Friday night isn't much different from being under a rock for the whole day. Imagine getting home, taking your pants off, starting to drink and cook dinner, and checking your Twitter feed to find tons of new organizations live-tweeting a standoff in a house in the Nam.
The coverage was all pretty good, by the way, but at this point, you can just read the news articles. And some of the photos are insane. But the short version: cops got suspicious when they saw two people camping in Dunbar (camping in the Nam is equal parts normal and suspicious), which led to suspicions they were trying to make meth in a trailer. Then they took off in a pickup truck, and a chase ensued that went through Connellsville then around Uniontown, when the truck wrecked and they went into a house, where said standoff started.

Now, I didn't see any of this until it had already been going on for several hours, so by the time I got to it, they were mostly tweeting updates on the situation but not discussing the actual location. And then I saw where the chase ended up.

This is a post from my friend Bianca. Obviously, my first reaction was, "Oh, shit, scary that this is happening so close to B and her family!" My second reaction was, "Wait a second. My parents' house is pretty close to that, too." Not nearly as close as Bianca's and therefore not as much cause for concern, but still alarming. Unless you're my mom.
My parents had actually been out of town, didn't know anything was happening, and tried to take the Gallatin Avenue exit off of 119 to get home, which basically leads you straight into the cop cars and SWAT team.

A few schools were closed, including Laurel Highlands high school, which is basically right up the road. In fact, Laurel Highlands High School traffic in the afternoon is a major reason why this intersection totally blows. The other reason is hills and bad drivers. Why is this not a three-way stop!?

In the end, two people were taken into custody and the man who barricaded himself in the house was found dead inside.
And I don't think it's a coincidence that this all happened on the same day Michael's opened in town.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Nam on Tumblr: The Connellsville Arsonist

So, Pennsylvania, what is our shame? Arson, of course! But perhaps some events several years ago tipped those numbers in our favor...

Want to follow me on Tumblr? Be warned, it's an accurate depiction of being inside my brain. How much more of the Nam will we see on social media, anyway? Anyone have a Fayettenam board or pictures of barns for their wedding or moonshine recipes?

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Have a History Lesson in Fayette County Violent Crime

Now, I'm not a fan of twisting a tragedy that made national news, like the Naval Yard shooting, to make it about people and places it's not, but hey, at least we've got an interesting story now that we don't have to pay for (full disclosure: I mostly support some sort of payment for news sites to see content. Mostly.)

It's actually a pretty interesting story that my fellow youngins might know nothing about--a shooting at Anchor Glass, AKA that big abandoned thing in the middle of South Connellsville right down the road from my creepy old house.
The former police chief, now mayor of South Connellsville, vividly recalls what he says was the worst day of his professional career — a quiet Saturday morning that was suddenly marred by violence when a man opened fire, killing four and injuring one, at Anchor Glass Container Corp. in South Connellsville. 
Mansel “Sonny” Hammett was considered a quiet, private, hardworking man prior the day he walked into the glassware production plant, where he worked as an hourly employee.
Casini’s crime scene photos bear out the widely reported accounts of the event, that Hammett stalked and killed his supervisors, Donald Abbot, 48, Paul Gabelt, 52, John Coligan, 31, and Ralph Tomaro, 52, before fatally shooting himself.
The article goes on to say that the shooter had been sent home the day before for breaking a company rule and told people in line at the Pechins cafeteria that he was going to the plant "to kill bosses." I know most of the time people are exaggerating and cranky, but we really all need to listen when people's talk turns violent.

The full piece is a very interesting glimpse into the county's past, when its heyday was closer than it is now.

This makes me wish even more that I would've taped my grandma telling her infamous story about the shooting at her school in third grade, and these two shootings do have a common thread--no counseling was provided for victims and witnesses, they just picked up and went on the next day.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

New Prison Planned...For Right Next to the Fair

I've been busy and out of town and I'm just catching up on county shenanigans, so thanks to Marybeth for pointing this gem out!
A group exploring options for a possible new jail in Fayette County has narrowed its recommended location down to a 77-acre Dunbar Township parcel, according to two of its members.
Yes, good. I mean, I'm not exactly sure that we need a possible new jail--in fact, I think we'd be better off trying to prevent some of these problems like oh, you know, drugs before the prison sentence actually happens, but hey.

But wait, what's this?
The county-owned site is behind the Fayette County Fairgrounds, said Jim Killinger, leader of the prison working group's architectural team.
Just what everyone wants--hanging out at the fair with children and our finest right next to a prison, even though they say you won't be able to see it from there. But I guess the plus side is when someone inevitably gets arrested at the fair, they can just throw them right in there. And it would be a great way to get us on the Freak Show some more. I mean, the fair and a prison in close proximity to each other just begs for Fayettenamese comedic gold. Talk about county stereotypes, right?

Thursday, September 19, 2013


  • Sweet Frog basically has some sort of special going nearly every day. This weekend, they're also doing a food drive, so take a canned good in when you go to get your froyo! I will be tomorrow!
  • Pechins has added a whole new store for all your pet needs--but, like, cats and dogs and such, not you crazies with wild animals and shit in your basements.
  • The Firehouse also has a new special where you get a free appetizer with the purchase of two entrees. Try the gnocchi...and their strawberry shortcake cocktail.
  • Check out the arts festival at the fairgrounds this weekend! Sunday features familiar names Girls in Black Hats, Sammy Brooks Band, and Abacus Jones.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

People of Uniontown Walmart

Who doesn't love lengthy texts from their brother on a Saturday night about a horrible Walmart experience?! He pretty much sums up my thoughts, too, in the following guest post, possibly because I made some of these points in my texts--and remember, he's a former Pechin's cashier, which he is still very cranky about. Enjoy. And important life lesson: the shortest line is occasionally the worst line.

If we can take away anything from the always enjoyable, it’s that the best way to understand Americans is to visit your local Walmart. In the case of the Uniontown Walmart, not only is it a great way to study Americans, but it truly allows you to assess the people of the Nam, as well.

A friend of mine and his girlfriend needed a ride to Walmart. My girlfriend and I took them, and they shopped and got what they needed. We made our way to the registers, and the ones open each had a long line (as per the norm, since they only have like five registers open at a time). We found the shortest line, only to discover shortly afterward we had made a bad decision. Walmart’s policy about matching any other stores’ prices was in full effect here, folks. This lady had advertisements from Shop ‘N' Save and Giant Eagle and made damn sure the cashier matched the prices of every single item she had. The cashier needed a price check, and so the waiting game started as someone had to run back and check the price on whatever needed checked.

After some time, a line was forming--a long, annoyed, pissed-off line. I was standing next to my girlfriend, and she whispered to me about an elderly couple behind us complaining. I hadn’t heard anything, but as soon as I started listening, there came the F-bombs. Side note: they were with their grandson who was maybe four years old at most. “I am paying to stand in line!” said the grandmother; “We only have 5 items!” said the grandfather. Those were pretty much the only lines said that did not include an F-bomb. Classy, right? At some point, the grandmother stormed off to the nearest bench, still dropping F-bombs along the way. I couldn’t tell what else was said, but I heard a lot of snickering and bickering coming from behind us. Luckily enough, the price was finally discovered and we were out the door. I just hope that cashier didn’t receive hell from anyone in the rest of that line.

 I have a couple of observations/comments to make here:

1) If you can get your groceries somewhere cheaper, why bother making a trip to Walmart? You just wasted your time and everyone else’s. If you don’t like the prices, go somewhere else.

2) No one pays to stand in a line, so shut up. The cashier was simply doing her job and things happen. It isn’t her fault whatsoever.

3) If you only have five items, why the hell did you not go to a damn express lane?! If you would use the time and energy you put into complaining to instead find an express lane, you would have been home in minutes.

 You stay classy, Fayette County.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Random, Or Cool Stuff to Buy

I recommend reading this post while listening to this nice song from Geibel grads now playing music and calling themselves The Lowliners.
  • Geibel '07 Caroline makes custom jewelry. Check it out!
  • Cincinnati expats! Tee Minus 24 is at the Cincy Comic Expo this weekend. Check them out, buy the Princess Bride shirt, and beg them to reprint every single Lost shirt. All of them. Then send me one of each, size small.
  • Fat Angelo's now serves breakfast. Also, their vegetarian pizza is amazing.
  • All dogs over one year old at the SPCA this weekend can be adopted for just $25.
  • Busy expat Rob Hensley now has a radio show!
  • Bonfire and drum circle today from 6-9 p.m. at Yough River park. Say hi to everyone for me!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Getting Out Alive

So close to making it out of Fayettenam alive.
9/9/13 9:33 PM

Aren't we all? I know Washington isn't a large step up, but I managed to not enter the Nam once for a whole month. Ruined it on the weekend with trips to Toyota and Sweet Frog, but at least I got Duda's produce and cheap Pechins groceries out of the deal, too. 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Tales from Toyota

So, I'm sitting in Toyota getting my car inspected and shit is getting interesting.

10:15: I'm not at Toyota anymore, but I don't come home for a month and we have a Michael's and Five Below and the Starbucks in Target serves sandwiches? What is happening?
9:48: I missed half the story, but there's something about a flood and fish everywhere in Grindstone, so people went by filling wheelbarrows up with fish. "It looked like Pechin's on a busy day."
9:46: Allegedly, the longest underground beltway in the world runs in the Nam from I think Smock to Brownsville.
9:45: Dude used to deliver beer in Republic and was told to lock his doors and take his clipboard with him or that beer would be gone.
9:36: Crime in Upper Middletown is bad, which apparently is because no one wants to work.
9:34: Dude's uncles wrote a book about coal mines in Smock and Grindstone.

-Allegedly, WMBS was on the air recently discussing a county credit card that was lost and had $30,000 worth of charges on it but was still paid on time by the commissioners. A cop allegedly confirmed the story.
-Someone used to work at the Summit and told county politicians that when they're dead, he's gonna write a book about them but won't do it before then so he doesn't get sued. Similar sentiment was shared from someone who used to work at the State Theater and dealt with country artists coming through. I pointed out that they can't be sued if it's true.
-Man used to work night shift at Walmart. Some kids once played baseball in the store.
-Woman says county judges don't like her after some custody hearings with her ex-husband years ago when they were siding with him. He was ordered to pay about $7.50 a month.

The mantra "only in Fayette County" keeps being repeated.

Stay tuned for more...

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: The Perils of Working at Bud's

I mean, I know it's only six bucks, but as my great-grandma used to say, a penny saved is a penny earned. Right?

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

So, Uh, Mark Madden Destroyed Geibel Football Today

So, remember how Geibel lost 81-0 over the weekend? Mark Madden took that and ran with it. As you might imagine, he didn't have much good to say.
That’s embarrassing to everyone involved. Zero fun for Geibel. Zero fun for Frazier.  
That’s not a football game. That’s a clown act.
The full link also includes a recap of sorts for those more interested in the game itself. Reaction from Geibel alumni is mostly along the lines of, "Well, dude's got a point." Like I said, I graduated six years ago already (how is that real?!) and we never had a winning team, and as far as I know, neither have the other graduating classes since. Now, I'm not football expert, but something's off somewhere if a team keeps on being this bad. And look, I get it--it sucks to have your alma mater on the radio because of something bad, but you can't look at an 81-0 loss and think all is right with the world. I feel bad for the kids on the team, though. Can't feel good to have that loss discussed on the radio like this.

Heard @MarkMaddenX ripped Geibel football to shreds. I went there, played football for one year. Huge mistake, everything he said dead on
9/3/13 3:53 PM

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Water Main Break

Well then.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Some Things Never Change...Like Geibel Football

I don't know what it's like to come from a high school with a winning football team. Apparently, bad football is like a Geibel tradition, kind of like Mr. O's Christmas workshop, Pi day, and awkward announcements from Mr. Mascia.

Geibel is losing 81-0. At half time. Oh my.
8/30/13 9:02 PM

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Case for Crowdfunding to Save the Drive-Ins

So, as has been well-established, there's a bit of a contest going on to help save local drive-ins. Some familiar faces are on there, including Connellsville's Comet, but the one getting the most attention is Brownsville's. I'm guessing this is because the owners keep saying this contest is their only real shot at staying open, but because this is the internet, a commenter on my last post had a different point worth exploring: the merits of using something like Kickstarter or Indiegogo to save the drive-in themselves.

For those of you who don't know, Kickstarter and Indiegogo both basically allow people--usually artists trying to make an album or a movie or something--to raise money to fund their project. Backers choose what level they want to fund, and each level has different perks. Sometimes a few bucks gets you a thank you or some sort of public credit, but generally, throwing in 20 bucks or so will get you some cool stuff. I've backed two Kickstarter campaigns (technically four--one Indiegogo that didn't reach its goal and another that was pretty much just to help someone out, no perks other than good karma). One of them got me a very beautiful CD package (other options included vinyl, art books, the singer coming to my house to perform...). The other is still in progress. Sure, there's a small risk--you are putting your faith in the person running things to deliver a good product when they say they will, but mostly, things work out.

This is something that I think could work really well for a drive-in, especially if one gets creative. My fundraising abilities are lacking--otherwise this blog would be my job--so I'm sure some of you guys could come up with some really neat perks. But even just thinking small-scale, potential perks could start off with things like coupon books, free admission, discounts, vowing to pretend there aren't people hiding in the trunk (no, Comet, I have not done this...), free/discounted snacks. Hell, you could even go so far as having the granddaddy of all perks where if you pledge so much to the campaign, the drive-in is yours for the night. Does that logistically pan out, at least without some strict guidelines? That's debatable. Would it be fun as hell to basically rent a drive-in for the night and have a party?  Hell yes.

Also, drive-in owners, I don't know what the logistics of this would be or how much of a market there is, but anyone ever think about all-night marathons? Anything from a genre theme like horror or rom-coms to Harry Potter until all movies are over or viewers run out of stamina and go home, whichever comes first.

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Nam in my Inbox: Fairchance

Many thanks to reader Marybeth for sending this in!

What you see here is what's left of the Colonial Tavern in Fairchance. The top floor burned a few months ago, and in July, two "bo hunk" hillbillies started to tear it down. Word is the owner plans to save the first floor and build a bar, but this thing looks like it should just come down completely. Sure, it could make a great dive, but I don't think it could withstand its first bar fight. Apparently, zoning says it's okay, though, and following code. Hypothetical, they would know more about this than residents and bloggers, but I think we all know how well politics and authority go down in this county.

Ah, Fairchance. I believe Fairchance is the place my grandfather used to complain about, allegedly in the form of saying to people who lived in Fairchance, "Get the hell out of Fairchance." My boyfriend says it has a name out of a fantasy novel. If only...

Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Nam of Facebook: Robots

I haven't seen The World's End yet so I may be totally wrong about this, but Uniontown being taken over by robots might actually be a good thing.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sunday, August 18, 2013


  • Sweet Frog is running an ad in the paper that includes a coupon. Please clip and mail to me. You can also take in your church bulletin and show it at the register for 10% off. Too bad I'm a godless heathen, at least according to some.
  • Go to Bud Murphy's and get one of their huge, goblet-sized specialty drinks if you need a good cocktail. A picture of one came across my Facebook feed, and now I'm thirsty and the alcohol in my fridge doesn't have a cool name like Hurricane or River Water.
  • The Nam and Pittsburgh Dad collided over the weekend when some for Geibel kids ran into the man himself at a wedding. I'm jealous.
  • Sammy Brooks Band will be playing the Italian Festival at the fairgrounds on August 23 at 3 p.m. You should go if you like Sinatra and a good time.
  • You can now download all issues of Cross Worlds Nexus.
  • Fayette Friends of Animals will be holding a spaghetti dinner at the Sons of Italy in Perryopolis on September 12 from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Adult tickets are $7.00 and children $4.00. Dinner also includes salad, drink and dessert. Take-out available if you bring your own container. Tickets are available during the week from 1-5 p.m. except on Thursdays and Sat 12-4. Help the animals!
  • Always weird to hear people say, "Good to be back home" in the Nam when so many of us keep trying to leave...ah, the perils of such bizarre roots.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Save Brownsville Drive-In!

If you're a fan of the Facebook page, you've seen this a lot, so you can probably ignore it. Unless you want to keep voting.

The film industry is upgrading from film to digital, which poses a problem for little drive-ins around America--the cost of upgrading their equipment is $80,000, and I'm sure you can guess that little Brownsville drive-in doesn't have $80,000. So Hona has launched Project Drive-In, which will donate projectors to five drive-ins and you can vote for which drive-in gets one. You can vote for Brownsville here, and you can do so once per day. My Facebok page normally reposts the link once daily when it rolls across my news feed, but today I reposted it three times. #SorryNotSorry.

The project also takes donations via an Indiegogo campaign. All proceeds go to continue saving drive-ins across the country.

Need some incentive? Only a few hundred drive-ins remain around the country, and Fayette County boasts two with Brownsville and Connellsville's Comet Drive-In. We don't want to see one disappear, especially when this is something good that sets us apart. People talk all the time about wanting to do something good for the county, so here's your chance!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Nam on Vine: Demo Derby

I don't really get the purpose of Vine. I also said that about Twitter and Instagram, and it's pretty easy to figure out how long that sentiment lasted. But generally, Vine seems pointless. Sure, it could have some really good use, but it just seems full of silliness. And I like silliness, but I'm just not seeing much on Vine convincing me that this is something I need in my life.

Or at least I wasn't until the fair happened and I couldn't make it to a demo derby until the end.

These do not do the noise justice, though.

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Nam on Twitter: Hangin' with the Mayor

All to build volleyball courts behind Rite Aid, so check that out! But hanging out with the mayor is never that simple.
But even so...

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Tweets from the Nam: Fair Rides

Anyone going on fair rides is a far braver person than I. I'm pretty sure most of my fear of fair rides comes from my mother and the fact that my brother and I were never allowed to ride them growing up (we also were very rarely allowed to play games, so basically I spent childhood fairs eating and going to demolition derby, until high school and college, when friends won goldfish who were promptly named after Geibel teachers and knives). Then again, I do have a slight fear of roller coasters and rode the Wild Mouse at Idlewild twice and said the second time, "Why did I want to do this again!?"

My mom's paranoia stems from a Uniontown Mall carnival, though--she walked past boxes full of gears and figured they probably belonged on the rides and not in boxes.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Sometimes, News Is Personal

Much as this blog thrives on Fayette County's crime (among other negative things), I actually don't like reporting bad news. I like it even less when I know the person involved, like anyone else would when reading a newspaper or watching the news.

Jenae Marquez was killed last night in a car accident.

I haven't seen or spoken to anyone in the Marquez family in years, but I was friends with Jenae's sister, Carine, while my brother was friends with Jenae herself. In fact, he's the one who told me of her passing. It's always upsetting to learn that someone has died young.

My prayers and love go out to the entire Marquez family tonight.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Nam on the Web: Fourth of July

It may be August, but that doesn't mean we can't share some Fourth of July memories, right?

Over at Mongo Angry! Mongo Smash! there's a nice post--albeit over a year old--about buying fireworks from some random dude in Connellsville. It's a fun little tale, and it offers a neat different perspective of Connellsville long ago. Check it out.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Music from Fayettenam: Cait Cuneo

Chances are you've already heard some rumblings of Cait Cuneo, especially if you're in Connellsville or have watched KDKA recently. Her debut, Violet, came out back in December. The music is great, so you should listen to it, especially if you're into stuff a little more on the soulful side.

She writes all of her own music, which I'm a fan of. You can buy that music in Atkins or online on iTunes or her Bandcamp page.

For more on Cait, check out this video from her CD release show in Pittsburgh.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: Yolanda

This is an old one I had saved and forgotten about, but here ya go! Meet Yolanda, an ill-fated Barbie at a Geibel dance.

Yolanda's caption reads, "She went hog wild. Curiously, no one commented on a disgusting Barbie doll named Yolanda sticking out of the ice tub. Not the teachers, not the upperclassmen, not the parents. I guess that's the kind of school Geibel was."

Especially curious considering just a few years later, another Barbie was allegedly found in the cafeteria, and a former teacher allegedly yelled, "What is this bullshit!?" but that Barbie was also allegedly naked and maimed.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Attorney caught in drug deal

This might be one of my favorite Fayette County stories of all time. And there's really no way to get into it other than to just get started.
Uniontown attorney is facing drug-trafficking charges after police allege he brazenly delivered heroin and other narcotics to a man in custody at the Uniontown Police Department on Thursday night.
I could justifiably end this post right here because what else could I possibly add to that!? But actually, it kind of does get better. Because you're all wondering by now why this even happened, right?
City police Officer Matthew S. Painter said the charges were filed after Salisbury, under the guise of speaking with a client, delivered heroin, Xanax and Suboxone to Aaron L. Yauger, 30, of Lemont Furnace, after police picked Yauger up on a bench warrant Thursday.
Painter said Yauger, who had been wanted on drug-related charges, told officers that he had a prearranged agreement with Salisbury that should he be arrested, Salisbury would deliver heroin to him so Yauger could “avoid becoming dope sick.”
That sounds like a great arrangement. I mean, what could possibly go wrong with delivering drugs to the police station just after an arrest!?

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Nam on Facebook: Let the Fair Posts Begin!

That's right, tonight is the first night of the Fayette County fair. I'll be there at some point this weekend, possibly liveblogging if I can get decent phone service, unless I forget like I did last year. One of the most entertaining parts of the fair, though, is the social-media posts, from Nam princesses--and I mean that in the prissy sense, not the authoritative one--being above the fair to interesting Instagram sightings to Tweeting during The Clarks' set (it's tomorrow night). This is a great start!

Have fun listening to an encore of "Cigarette," winning knives or new pets, and eating various fried cuisine!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Larry Orlando Calligraphy

I'm all for support local business, especially when that local business also involves local art and is awesome. Oh, and is done by your former geometry teacher, who came as close to making you good at math as one can when dealing with a girl who went on to get an English degree.

That's right--to add to his website and Etsy store, Larry Orlando has entered the world of Facebook pages!

I've mentioned a few times before that I own this beautiful piece of his, which I bought at last year's Geibel auction and looks great in its temporary home on top of my bookshelf, until I can get it hung on my living-room wall.

Well, that's a fitting piece for a writer to own.

Most recently, I bought his lovely Les Mis card and gave it to my best friend and her husband for their first wedding anniversary, and Mr. O sent a nice little note with it. He says he reads all my Facebook posts, which immediately makes me think, "Oh, God, what have I been posting lately!?" And that reminds me of when MySpace first became a thing and the teachers were creeping on our MySpace profiles and vice versa, but that's another story for another day. Someday, I'll explain why "Laffy Taffy" was requested at prom.

Basically, I endorse these calligraphy products and highly recommend them for a beautiful, inspirational, and more personal gifts and cards. In fact, I almost never actually give people cards, so that alone should tell you something.

And no, Mr. O is not paying me for this post.