Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Day 7

Friedman Acceptability Measure: 5

After the delicious breakfast that qualified our Lincoln, NE Super 8 as a "Prime Super 8," we left on the road to Casper, Wyoming. On this day we would enter Rocky Mountain time. But before then, we had resolved to stop at the famous "Ole's Big Game Steakhouse," which features, among other things, the heads of a giraffe and elephant, and a fully grown, stuffed Polar Bear with its paw on a baby seal. My "buffalo steak" turned out to be ground buffalo smooshed roughly into the shape of a steak, but the decor beat McDonald's.

Our route took us past renowned Chimney Rock. After spotting it from a distance, I remarked that it didn't really look like a chimney.

The best description I could come up with was that it looked like a Prussian soldier's helmet half-buried in the ground. Luckily, the local autochtons had a more satisfying name:
Elk Penis - "Chimeny Rock's" Original Name:
According to early fur traders, Native Americans named the rock after the penis of the adult male elk
The museum went on to document the ginger steps writers took when addressing the rock in question:
We are now in sight of E.P., or Chimney Rock, a solitary shaft...

One of the cliffs is very peculiar in its appearance, and is known amongst the whites as "Chimney Cliff," and among the natives as "Elk Peak"
Next we stopped at Agate Fossil Bed, which hosts a skeleton reenactment of a scene in which "a large entelodont scavenges the bloated carcasse of a chalicothere." The same museum had some Indian artifacts, including a bow and arrows, accompanied by the following reassuring caption:
Rather than wantonly shooting at passersby, in reality some Lakota bowmen put on exhibitions of shooting skill for the emigrants!
We then continued along the old Oregon Trail, choosing to take bridges as opposed to hiring an Indian Guide or caulking the wagon. Our final stop was Wyoming. With a population of 51,000, Casper is easily Wyoming's second biggest city, and not far behind Cheyenne for top dog. It's so big it has TWO Super 8's. We naturally stayed at the cheaper one. As a special treat, today was the opening day of the Advanced Rookie League, so we got to watch the Casper Rockies come back from down 3 in the 9th only to lose 7-6 in the 11th to the hated Idaho Falls Chuckers. We were treated to a fireworks extravaganza afterward.

The Rockies play at "Mike Lansing field." Early on, I made a sarcastic quip about the infamously overpaid and underperforming Mike Lansing who spent a small amount of time on the Red Sox. Later on, the nice, elderly, female Casper resident sitting right behind me told me, rather beamingly, that a former star MLB player had donated the money for the field. A player who, in fact, had spent most of his career on the Rockies and then had left for the Red Sox. She seemed very happy that two out-of-towners would stop in Casper to catch a game. Friedman was very nice to her, and I did my best.

Before the game, I predicted that, since this was the Rookie League, after all, there would be 8 errors in the game. Here is the final scoreboard:

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