June 14, 2002
Dear Subscriber:

My dad used to call it "getting slicked." It was his term for
an underhanded act designed to get into your back pocket without
giving a whole lot of value in return, but making you feel good
about it.

There's an ad running on national radio right now for a vehicle
anti-theft system. The ad says if your car is ripped off and the
alarm doesn't chase away the perpetrator, return the unit and
the company will refund your money.

Heckuva deal. Very slick.

If the company was selling nothing but empty plastic boxes that
they were passing off as anti-theft devices, the chances are
the overwhelming majority of them will never be put to the test
by a thief.

If the anti-theft device IS put to the test and fails, how are
you supposed to return it for your refund? IT'S IN THE STOLEN


Have you noticed the graphics being painted on the sides of new
pickups nowadays? Those swirls and twirls that strut and fret
and signify nothing. What's THAT all about? It makes you
wonder if the manufacturers aren't trying to substitute art for

I saw a brand new pickup going down the road this morning with
what looked like paint spattered all up and down its side.

Upon closer inspection, the "damage" was actually a design.
The owner BOUGHT it that way...and probably paid extra for the
junk on the side of his new pickup.


Last week as I was driving down the highway I had my Slickometer
turned on high sensitivity and I heard an ad on an El Paso radio
station touting a big concert coming to town. Some of the
biggest names in entertainment would be on the same stage, said
the ad. Hours and hours of the best and most talented. It
would make Woodstock look like a county fair talent contest.

In the last sentence of the ad, the announcer mumbled: "Acts
subject to availability."

It other words...pay your hard earned scratch for these tickets.
We're going to have all these great acts...maybe.


Doctors aren't above "slicking" their patients.

You have an appointment. It is for 10am. Bring a book. You
might be sitting there waiting for your 10am appointment at

Look over there...over the receptionist's desk. There's a sign
that says, "If you're 15 minutes late for your appointment, you
will be canceled and charged for the office visit."

Have you ever wondered how many hundreds of thousands of
productive man-hours are wasted sitting in doctors' offices?

Perpetual motion may have been discovered by a dweeb working
for General Dynamics but no, he wasn't at work. He was sitting
in a doctor's office, reading a 5 year old copy of Children's
Highlights and waiting on his prostate exam.

I actually witnessed a lady with the nerve to get mad after
sitting in the doctor's waiting room way past her appointment

She demanded of the receptionist, "Who does this guy think he

"No," said the receptionist, "but he and God are members of the
same country club."

I'll bet the receptionist had been waiting years for the chance
to deliver that punch line.


Slicking used to be frowned upon and could even land you in
jail. Nowadays it's an art-form. Politicians know all about

They teach slicking in some of America's best universities. It
is better known as "business law."

Don Vanlandingham

Warm and not a lot of moisture. Highs in the mid to high-70s.
Lows in the mid-40s. Forest restrictions still in place due to
high fire danger.
A new fire station has been opened in the village, on Glorietta
Fun for kids of all ages!!! Located in Alameda Park, 1991 N.
White Sands Blvd in Alamogordo. Open Wednesday through Sunday
12:00 noon to 5:00 pm. Our 16 Gauge Train Ride runs every 30
minutes. Visit our Model Train Display and Museum!
(505) 437-2855
For the serious amateur astronomer.


Q - Has the cherry harvest been good this season?

A - Not bad. I was informed by a local resident that has been
around for a while that, even in marginal seasons, the Cherry
Festival in High Rolls is always well stocked with cherries,
even if they have to "import" some of them.

The Cherry festival is this weekend.
June 14-16 -- Western Roundup. Parade, pie auction, BBQ.
Street dance Saturday 7-11pm.

June 15-16 -- Cherry Festival. High Rolls. Arts, food.

June 28-30 -- Bluegrass Festival. Music all day.
Open Air Pavilion, Camp Chimney Springs.

July 4 -- Celebration of Independence Day in Cloudcroft.
Check with the Chamber of Commerce for events. (505) 682-2733.

July 6 -- July 4th weekend celebration. Zenith Park

July 7 -- Crystal River at Cloudcroft United Methodist Church.
One service only on that day which will begin promptly at
10:30am. This will be a patriotic service with the Holloman
Honor Guard participating by posting the colors.

July 7 - Crystal River Return Engagement. Pavilion in Zenith
Park, 2pm.

July 12-13 -- Melodrama. Covered Pavilion.

July 13 -- Founder's Park memorial dedication. Alamogordo.

July 13-14 -- July Jamboree.

July 13 -- Flower Show at the Community Center, l-5pm.

July 14 -- Street Dance. Burro Avenue.

July 19-21 -- Weed Blue Grass Festival

July 27 -- Train Load of Talent. Covered Pavilion.

July 27 -- Chili Cook-off. Ski Cloudcroft.

August 16, 17, 18 -- Singing in the Clouds.

August 31-Sept. 2 -- Labor Day Fiesta.

August 31 -- Street Dance. Burro Avenue.

Cloudcroft Art Society meets the second Sunday of each month,
2-4pm, in the Old Red Brick School House. Call (505) 682-2494
for more information. (Note day of the month change.)

Cloudcroft Gallery & Gifts is offering Pastel Workshops by
Norma Riley June 3-7, June 10-14, and June 17-21. For more
information, ask in the Gallery in the Burro Street Exchange
or call (505) 682-2630.

Mountain Garden Club meets every third Monday of each month.
Call (505) 682-2910 for more information.

Senior Van from Timberon to Alamogordo leaves the Timberon
Lodge promptly at 8:30am every Tuesday morning.

Free Vitals Clinic. Second Saturday of each month, 11am to 1pm.
James Canyon Fire Department, 2346 Highway 82.

If you have news of public events in the Cloudcroft area, email

For an online calendar of area events, click the Events Calendar
link in the left column of our home page:


Dear Newsletter:

What a great day when I found your newsletter on my new
computer. My husband and I have spent the last twelve years or
so at Cloudcroft--seven weeks last summer.

Your newsletter is a breath of fresh air and believe me we need
it here in Central Texas. I sit down after printing it out and
read it to my husband. It is the next best thing to being there.

Thanks for the good reporting.

Janice Holmsley
Comanche, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

I want you to know that I think you and Peggy are very good

As you may have guessed, I am a dog lover also. No matter how
bad your day has been, when you get home, a dog will cheer you
up and only asks for a little attention. I do not like or trust
anyone who does not like dogs. My opinion is, if a person
doesn't like dogs, they don't truly like people either, because
it doesn't take much to like a dog and treat it properly, and
if a person can't do that, they can't do it to other humans

I realize my next statement isn't politically correct but I
believe God created dogs, cats and pets to comfort and be
enjoyed by humans. The acts of kindness towards these animals
by you and Peg, will be rewarded someday. God bless you both. 

Mike Gerrick 

Dear Newsletter:

The last real fight I had (long long ago) involved a guy trying
to dump a German Shepard at the roadside park adjoining our

When he told me to mind my own business, I took umbrage and
amused myself by teaching him the error of his ways in a most
direct manner. I hope the b$#!* still breaks out in a sweat
when he sees a maroon Chevy pickup. I found a home for the dog.

G. Munson
Angleton, Texas

PS, We have 6 dogs, all of which we found.

Dear Newsletter:

I enjoy your animal stories, I'm 75 years young and there's been
a lot of animals in my life. I have three sons and one daughter
and they are better humans for the love and care of animals and
the love they received in return.

One of my sons is a State of Texas animal cruelty investigator,
he's a Vietnam vet and spends a lot of his disability check on
abandon and crippled animals, some people might scoff at that,
but he has a big heart. He thinks a kid that would mutilate and
torture an animal could kill a human next, could be....

The wife and I spend at least a month in Cloudcroft every
summer, it's our favorite place to get away from the heat down
here in Kermit Texas. We have a 12-year-old whippet hound and
she loves it up there too, don't know if you are familiar with
the breed, she's like a miniature greyhound, same temperament,
same love of running....

It pains me that she's getting arthritis and can't run like she
used to, but still wants to chase anything that runs. Well, as
I've heard said, you and Peg love animals and you'll do to ride
the river with.

John And Melinda Armstrong & Mindy the whippet

Dear Newsletter:

Radio Stations! DJ's! It's enough to make a guy’s blood boil!

After I graduated in 1973 from a military electronics class at
Lowry AFB, I ended up in Alamogordo. A coworker friend of mine
air-staffed at an AM in town and invited me down one morning to
give it a try. I was awful that day, but got better. I don’t
even remember the call sign, but there were only two AM’s in
town. The only FM had gone under years before, I believe. Now
there’s about 12 stations listed in Alamogordo! How time flies!

I eventually ended up at “K-A-L-G, 1-2-3-0, Alamogordo.” Hear
the jingle in your head? I can never forget!

I worked mostly weekends. I played Don Ho till I wanted to puke,
but it was an easy hour with a big record set. No tapes. No
CD’s. Just 33 1/3 albums. The wildest album I could find had
a jazzy Muzak version of Sprach Zarathustra, the theme from
2001, A Space Odyssey. After I did the news, I played the
original cut from a soundtrack album, and then faded the jazzy
one in at the end. I personally thought that was SO cool (geek)
and a couple of people actually called in and said they liked
it! I really hope they are not your newsletter readers now, but
what in blazes was someone doing actually listening to my show
back then? Why were they “cranking” to KALG when they could
have been in Cloudcroft? Outside, even? Washing a car, burying
a skunk, anything else?

Normally, the only excitement at KALG came from staring at the
latest Olivia Newton John album cover. One of the other DJ’s had
taped a note on it saying “Down Boy.” I don't remember a coed
DJ staff at the time, so the Don Ho album was probably intact.

I had the station-manager-from-hell there as well, as some of
your other newsletter folks have experienced. Maybe he
moonlighted in every AM in the Southwest to cause us all grief
and anguish. Overall, he was OK when he was sober, just a pain
in the keester. But when he came in drunk one Saturday, and
screwed with the transmitter, I got very defensive. After all,
it was my FCC license at stake if Big Brother was listening to
KALG that day. Who was I kidding? I was SO naive!

The next day, I brought a .45 with me to work and set it by the
turntable, in plain sight through the window. He came in again,
drunk and heading for the transmitter. He glanced through the
window and caught a glimpse of the .45 - that was enough. He
wasn’t THAT drunk. Never bothered me again when I was on-air.
By the way, I don’t recommend this approach today. But what can
I say? Young and dumb!

My final radio announcer experience occurred circa 1976. I
worked very part-time at a college station in Parkville,

I met the main program director, a student like myself, and
after a while I realized why he wasn't on the air. He stuttered
more on his best day than any 'ol country cowboy like Mel
Tillis did on his worse day. I went through the interview
(very painfully) and then noticed the extended long-play album
on-air was coming to a close. I looked around for the local
personality to announce the song.

To my surprise, he walked over to the mike! He looked back
saying, "Ju-just a min-minute...I'llll be riggghtt backk." I
was baffled! How could he seriously make this call?

The red light came on and out burst, “That was Iron Butterfly
In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida. It’s 3:25 PM.” He switched off the mike.
“Howwww wassss tthattt?” he asked me. I was floored! I had
never met a person who responded to a red light that way,
except, well, you know. Time passed. I graduated.

I never went back into DJ work again, but what a great
experience! Forget the sales jobs, give me airtime!

Katy, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

Please keep on sending this newsletter. You have a real way
with words - it is a gift and you should continue to publish
your views to those of us who look forward to Thursdays!!

My husband, Ben, and I have recently returned from vacationing
in Cloudcroft. We found it to be very friendly. A special hello
to Karen who works for Gloria in the gift shop with the great
pottery & wind socks on Burro Avenue...you made us feel so

I treasure the memories of our trip and the great times we had
shopping at "Off the Beaten Path" (Berle - you probably don't
remember us, but we shopped in your store 3 times in one day--
and found out we were staying just down the road from you).

Green Mtn Real Estate folks were great to deal with and the
woman at the Turquoise Shop who sold us all of our Kokopelli
wares & jewelry...I felt as if I were shopping with a friend.

Thank you all for sharing your wonderful town and introducing
us to Mountain Life. Hopefully, one day, we will be able to
return...dinner with Rebecca was great!

Jeanne Pursell

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Copyright © 2002 Cloudcroft Online
The Travel and Visitor's Guide to Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
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