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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
Saturday, May 26 2001

A tourism-and-teeners modest proposal

Kidding around in yesterday's entry about an assignment to watch American Graffiti and relate it to youth in Nanty Glo, combined with thoughts about youthful hanging out and boredom, got me to thinking, a dangerous situation....

And this line of thinking combines two of my longtime passions: the Valley's youth, and the promotion of Cambria County tourism.

I've been around the world and to Europe on five tours (which is nothing compared with many business executives working with international conglomerates, like one I know; but I digress). I combined some traveling experiences with some remarks a member of the Postcard list made a few days ago (whether she was speaking on authority or just guessing, I don't know) about today's teenagers having nothing to do in Nanty Glo compared with our (1950s-'60s) generation that had as many as three record hops to go to a week, movies every night at the Capitol, canteens in Twin Rocks and Vintondale, and more.

Without knowing whether a real problem exists, I'm ready to suggest a solution anyway. My solution: a combination youth hostel and canteen for Nanty Glo. You could think of it as a poor kids' alternative to a YMCA, which may be ironical in light of the history of the Y, which started out as a solution for poor kids but has grown into a tax-exempt swim and fitness club for middle class families...but I digress again. But my proposal isn't nearly as ambitious as a local YMCA branch.

Youth hostels are tourist dormitories that provide beds (bunks, often) for travelers at rates about half the lowest now found in Cambria County motels (even in San Francisco, which has one of the most expensive living standards in the world, hostel beds can be found for $14 to $16 per night). I've stayed in hostels from Moscow to Dublin to, well, San Francisco, and they work and fill a need. I think Cambria County's aspiring tourism business needs several hostels, one of which should be a short walk from the main entrance to the Ghost Town Trail (and I'm an enthusiastic supporter of Joe and Karen Gordon's steps toward providing a hostel at Red Mill).

I don't know that anyone else has ever considered combining a hostel with a canteen, but it seems a natural to me (and in it's heyday, the Y was virtually that, though it was limited to big cities so far as I know...Tyrone, Pa., being the smallest town with a Y that I've ever seen). The door to my seeing this possibility was remembering that in the Petersburg, Russia, hostel my brother Bob and I stayed in, we saw strangers gathered in a darkened room watching a feature movie on videotape. Such a room in a canteen/hostel would give an alternative "theater" for today's generation of valley youth for negligible expense. A hostel/canteen could have dormitory rooms upstairs and a self-catering kitchen, TV room, and rec room or rooms downstairs. The upstairs would be off limits for local kids, but the downstairs facilities could get use every evening year-round if made available as a canteen as well as serve hostel guests. This could be fit into a normal house or downtown Nanty Glo business building, of which I believe several stand idle today.

Thoughts? Questions? Verbal bouquets or brickbats?

For more information on youth hostels, click here.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

False accusations

A police officer pulls a guy over for speeding and has the following exchange:

Officer: May I see your driver's license?
Driver: I don't have one. I had it suspended when I got my 5th DUI.
Officer: May I see the owner's card for this vehicle?
Driver: It's not my car. I stole it.
Officer: The car is stolen?
Driver: That's right. But come to think of it, I think I saw the owner's card in the glove box when I was putting my gun in there.
Officer: There's a gun in the glove box?
Driver: Yes sir. That's where I put it after I shot and killed the woman who owns this car and stuffed her in the trunk.
Officer: There's a body in the trunk?
Driver: Yes, sir.
Hearing this, the officer immediately called his captain. The car was quickly surrounded by police, and the captain approached the driver to handle the tense situation.
Captain: Sir, can I see your license?
Driver: Sure. Here it is.
It was valid.
Captain: Whose car is this?
Driver: It's mine, officer. Here's the owner's card.
The driver owned the car.
Captain: Could you slowly open your glove box so I can see if there's a gun in it? Driver: Yes, sir, but there's no gun in it.
Sure enough, there was nothing in the glove box.
Captain: Would you mind opening your trunk? I was told you said there's a body in it.
Driver: No problem.
Trunk is opened; no body.
Captain: I don't understand it. The officer who stopped you said you told him you didn't have a license, stole the car, had a gun in the glove box, and that there was a dead body in the trunk.
Driver: Yeah, I'll bet the lying s.o.b. told you I was speeding, too!

Sent by Mike Harrison

Remember when?

When being sent to the principal's office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited the student at home. Basically, we were in fear for our lives, but it wasn't because of drive-by shootings, drugs, gangs, etc. Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat! But we survived because their love was greater than the threat.

So send this on to someone who can still remember Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, Laurel & Hardy, Howdy Doody and The Peanut Gallery, The Lone Ranger, The Shadow Knows, Nellie Belle, Roy and Dale, Trigger and Buttermilk...as well as the sound of a real mower on Saturday morning, and summers filled with bike rides, baseball games, bowling and visits to the pool...and eating Kool-Aid powder with sugar.

Sent by Trudy Myers
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