I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So yeah, I’m back from a brief hop up by the Hayward there, one of those work-vacations with some of the fellas so’s we could do more research on the billion-dollar idea Little Jimmy Iodine had a couple, three years back.You may recall, here’s the deal: You take your Highway 27 out of Black River Falls on your way up to Hayward and what do all these bumpkinvilles you pass through—your Augusta, your Cadott, your Cornell—have in common, besides lots of middle-aged white guys planting their butts on a bar stool? I’ll tell you what they got. PARKING, and tons of it. That’s what they’ve got. Little Jimmy says they’re sitting on a focking gold mine and they don’t even know it. So natch’, if we could only dream up a way to export this precious and rare natural resource to your Milwaukee, Chicago, your Hong focking Kong, us guys could all be billionaires living on Easy Street, I kid you not.
So we took the brief jaunt Up North and yes sir, I can tell you’s all that the parking is still just sitting there, but we got back home still without a focking clue as to how to transport that parking to where it’s most needed. Ernie suggested we try this Kick-ass Starter thing where I hear you get free dough to finance a big-time idea, so maybe our dream to make the world a more convenient place still has legs, what the fock.
Anyways, because of the work-vacation I missed out, again, on getting over to sunny Spain for the bull running, which reminds me of a little story about the wisdom of age:
An old bull and a young bull stand on a hillside, overlooking a pasture. The young bull says to the old bull, “Hey man, let’s run down and fock one of those heifers.” The old bull replies, “Better yet, let’s walk down and fock ’em all.” Ba-ding!
And of course, I also missed out on Our Town’s annual Drink Beer in Les Boulevard and Oui-Oui in the focking Street Fest. And speaking of longtime big-time ideas, how ’bout at the French Fest why not periodically let loose a couple, three rampaging bulls at the swell corner of Jefferson & Wells so as to attract the wealthy international traveler bent on confronting death?
And before I forget, a quick message for you moms and pops out there. Just like every year, the answer is yes; even at this late date, there’s still plenty of room open in the much-ballyhooed Art Kumbalek Summertime School of Juvenile Writing. In fact, there’s nothing but room—I know, go figure, ain’a?
So listen, as a refresher, here’s an excerpt from the brochure I was going to have designed and printed some years ago:
Your kids will get the goods on a semi-employable skill, and she’s open to anybody as long as they’re betweenst the ages of “old enough to cross the street by themselves” and “young enough to focking do whatever Camp Counselor Kumbalek tells them to do.” I figure the session will last about a week ’cause that’s about all I’m going to be able to stand. But oh, the times they’ll have!
Campers will contract a full dose of the writing life, from learning to never answer the phone to never acquiesce a knock at the door to never set an alarm clock to never open unsolicited mail from the IRS.
This year’s camp theme: “Writer’s Block, What the Fock.” Each student will be told to think of something to write about. Then, under my tutelage, legitimized by personal experience, the student will be encouraged to take the view that their idea is unworthy to be writ upon, that it’s horse manure, ’cause how could it be otherwise if they themselves had thought of it?
I’ll let them wrestle with that for most of the week whilst demonstrating techniques designed to abide writer’s block: Watch 24-hour TV; stare out the window while hunkered over a full ashtray; pour another stiff one. Then, with an hour left to the week I’ll tell them that if they ever want to see their parents again, they best get their pencil and paper out and make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear the best they can. Writing. Pressure. Deal with it.
But time’s running out. Get your butt in gear and get your kid/kids registered because seating is definitely limited to those who sign up, cash in advance. The fee is half-a-grand per camper with all necessary supplies included: No. 2 pencil with plenty of lead in it; writing tablet; carton of Chesterfields; extra-large can of Maxwell House; quart of Old Crow. No free lunch included.
So, if you’re a parent in need of a summertime break, please send me $500 bucks and sign away your katzenjammer now, ’cause I’m Art Kumbalek and I told you so.