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April 18, 2007


Your free association word of the day is festival.

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David: The Cutthroat World Of Small-Town Americana

“Howdy!” said the man selling the tickets. “Welcome to the Podunk County Harvest Festival!”

I looked over my sunglasses at him. “One, please.”

“Why, sure!” he exclaimed. “There’s a corn husking contest over to the popcorn stand at four. And you won’t want to miss the Miss Honeydew Melon pageant on the midway later on. Enjoy your day!”

“Thank you.” I looked at the site map, locating the livestock show.

I entered, struggling to ignore the stench as I passed the pens holding goats, cattle, and sheep, until I found Farmer Jorgenson’s sow.

The injection was quick, the contract fulfilled.

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Jeff R.: Huddled Up

The festival was mostly indoors that year, within the great halls of the Countess' keep. Winter had come early, ruining much of the harvest. The Countess had had to open her woods to hunters, to keep down the wolves and give the commonfolk salted jerky to suppliment their stores.

Nonetheless, even in cold, cramped halls, it was the festival, the last feast before the long winter, a chance to say goodbye to neighbors who would be unseen for months, if the survived at all, and the last chance to find a wife or husband to bundle with against the cold.

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Dave: Pot Luck

"So, what do folks do for entertainment around here?"

The night manager kept right on playing cards with her friend.  "There's a bar down the street.  And there's the festival going on tonight at the church."

"Bar sounds a lot more fun."

"Festival puts on a nice spread.  Lotta folk stop there to eat, head over to Buttons for a drink after."

He considered.  Home-made cooking sounded good.  "Thanks."  He sauntered out.

The other woman clucked her tongue.  "Course, most folks need to get drunk after what goes on in that church.  Especially to strangers."

The manager shrugged again.  "He's paid up."

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Ted: The Night of the Wicker

Susan held Uzay's hand as they walked up the path. She could hear the cries of the crowd, see the flames.

"Honey, explain this to me again? What is this all about?"

"Susan, trust me, this is just the first night. If you don't have fun, we don't have to come back. But it's tradition."

"But Uzay, why have a Furniture Festival in the first place?"

"This community is populated by folks from the Old Country. They went through hardships aplenty to survive and make their way to these shores. The festival commemorates their flight from the evil Ottoman Empire."

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