This is the end, now
by Than Acuff
Softball detrimental to health of players, fans.
The Talk of the Town too much to handle, drink.
Healthcare shortcomings trickle down to small-town America, Crested Butte.
Recent spate of dry weather turns Gunnison County into tinderbox, inferno.
Local youth running amuck in the streets of Crested Butte, hills.
Crowds render Crested Butte uninhabitable for local citizens, dogs.
Local writer fills space in large paper with made up words, miasmabilify.
Mysterious insert found in local papers, pants.
Provocative statements key to engaging reader, multiple wives.
Provocative statements fall on deaf ears, closed eyes.
Provocative statement paired with repetition results in provetition, malapropism.
“We’re gonna skate to one song and one song only, Lady Hump song by the Black-Eyed Peas.”
“Whatcha gonna do with that junk, all that junk inside my trunk.
“I’m gonna get you, get you drunk, get you drunk on my lady hump.
“My hump, my hump, my lovely lady hump.”
“I’m not skating to anything with references to lady humps, I don’t even know what that means.”
“No one knows what it means, but it’s provocative.”
Well, there you have it, provocativity. Who wants to keep reading?
Typically a great showdown of local softball talent and familial connectivity, the Talk of the Town and the Rent-A-Gades faced off at Gothic field Wednesday night. The Wednesday league, while smaller in numbers than the Tuesday/Thursday league, is no less competitive and the Talk/Rent-A-Gades showdown had the makings of another great game, that is until the players started rolling up, or rather, limping to the field.
Turns out a recent spate of injuries had the Rent-A-Gades squad somewhat hamstrung, mmmm… ham, but the Rent-A-Gades were as ready as they ever are to make it a game. Even better, Andrew “Butters” Butterfield had a new bat for the game and put it to use immediately, leading off the top of the first with a single. Butterfield would go on to score off a single from Brett Palmer but that was about all the Rent-A-Gades had to offer early on.
The Talk of the Town was somewhat slow to start as well, responding with one run when Rob Vandervoort tripled and scored off a sac hit RBI by Rachel Potoker.
While the Rent-A-Gades continued to struggle, the Talk started to wake up with Garrett McBride sounding the alarm. Erik Ervin doubled down the third base line and then jogged home as McBride crushed a two-run shot over the leftfield netting.
Kelly and Dave McGuire followed, as they have as a married couple for 28 years now, with a couple of base hits and then Vandervoort pushed two runs home with a single to center. Things were teetering on the edge of destruction for the Rent-A-Gades until Jeff Banford channeled his inner infielder to make a stop. Banford has spent many of his local softball years in the outfield but has recently made the move to the infield and made the most of it when he smothered a hot grounder and then threw across the infield from his knees for the out.
While the play stopped the Talk in their tracks in the bottom of the second inning, they picked back up where they left off in the bottom of the third inning, scoring five more runs.
Julie Frerichs led off with a single and then scored when Ervin golfed a two-run home run over centerfield. Ali McGuire doubled to center and scored off a double by McBride. Dave singled up the middle to drive in another Talk run and Vandervoort doubled to score the fifth Talk run of the inning for a 10-1 Talk of the Town lead.
The top of the fourth inning proved to be a turning point for the Rent-A-Gades. After three innings of offensive floundering, which is weird because the Talk of the Town is usually the place for offensive floundering, they pulled it together in the top of the fourth inning.
Base hits from Justin Wheeler and Kari Roberts put ducks on the pond for Bruce Winchenbach and he cleared the pond jumping all over Dave’s “hanging knuckler” for a three-run shot over the fence in left centerfield. Lauren Alkire singled, Butterfield continued to feel the power of his new bat with another base hit, Emily O’Cañas drove in a run with a sac fly RBI and Banford pulled the Rent-A-Gades to within four of the Talk with a stumblin’ RBI infield single.
The Rent-A-Gades backed up their bats with some defense the next two innings giving up just one run, another home run by McBride, while continuing to chip away at the Talk lead.
Roberts drove in a run and the Rent-A-Gades were poised for more had it not been for two spectacular plays by Talk left fielder Dakota Wiggins. Wiggins sprinted in on one liner for a shoestring grab and then charged to his left on the very next hitter to make a running grab, robbing Winchenbach of an extra base hit.
The Rent-A-Gades then used a combination of walks and hits to score three more runs in the top of the sixth inning. O’Cañas singled, Leah Fisher singled, Palmer held off at the plate for a RBI walk and Justin scored two Rent-A-Gade runs with a double to pull the Rent-A-Gades to within one run.
But enough was enough for the Talk of the Town as they opened up on the Rent-A-Gades in the bottom of the sixth inning with hot bats and aggressive base running. Brice Harrell and Frerichs kicked it off with back-to-back base hits. Wiggins and Ali followed with back-to-back RBI base hits, McBride connected for an error-assisted RBI triple and Cis Berry drove in another Talk run with a single. The Talk train kept on chugging, not unlike their patrons at the sounding of last call, to drive in additional runs, capped by a two-run home run from Harrell for a 20-10 lead.
With the time limit now met, the game was called following the sixth inning and the Talk of the Town remains just one game out of first place behind defending champions Pita’s OG with the win.