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Red Letter Day

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A RED-LETTER DAY

Or a red something, anyway.  As I have said before, you can’t make this stuff up.

It seems that in Sheboygan, WI a group of brewers has got together to raise money for charity by being featured—mostly in the buff—posing in a calendar which will be sold online or at numerous bars, liquor stores and groceries in Wisconsin and northern Illinois, proceeds to be directed to the Movember Foundation, a non-profit organization focused on men’s health issues, including prostate and testicular cancer.  ( They may be the instigators of the “No-shave November” that was happening on some media outlets.) These dudes, brewing professionals, tend to be big, brawny and bearded; they are associated with 3 Sheeps Brewing, 8th Street Ale Haus and Plymouth Brewing Co.  The idea for the project was hatched while they were, ahem, product-testing.  Luckily, considering the weather in that neck of the woods lately, the photos were shot in October.  Each month depicts a different step in the process of brewing.  

I keep telling the folks at the James A. Garfield Historical Society that we should come up with more imaginative fund-raising projects  for years when the Christmas Walk is not on.  Everybody (Get it? Every body.) could be in the month of their choice, tastefully highlighting some historical feature (Heck, some of us could just BE the historical feature designated; the wrinkles are primary evidence.) in the district.  Out in a sugarbush in March…at the Ledges in August…Oktober-festing at the Mill…the SummerFest in June…the possibilities abound. I could volunteer to be Miss July.  It’s my birthday.  I have the suit!  There’d be plenty of former students who’d pay good money to see me in my skivvies peeking out from behind the Clock Tower or waving from a window at the old Park Avenue school.  There’d probably be even more upright citizens who’d pay even more NOT to see such a sight.  Money to be made!  Let’s get on this!  Start volunteering.

And speaking of money….  Neiman Marcus has, once again come out with a holiday list of items available for purchase by the filthy-rich:  Say you’d like to go to the Academy Awards after-party sponsored by Vanity Fair(not the awards themselves, you’ve still got to have an invitation for those), a cool $425,000 will get you there.  Save up a few more box tops–$475,000–and you could find yourself in Paris, with five-star accommodations and a near-lifetime supply of custom-designed perfume(Do not steal the towels).  Newly wed? How about a set of Leontine Linens home trousseau of custom cottons and linens for the entire home (probably excluding the workshop) at a measly $55,000.  The classic “his and hers” gift this year is a “Vilebrequin Quadski”, described as a cross between an ATV and a personal watercraft, which will take you very rapidly across either land or water( The switch takes five seconds), $50,000 each.  These are grouped among the “fantasy gifts”; a portion of the proceeds from each of these will be donated to the Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation, which supports youth arts education.  On my list, for sure!

Other excitement that could be coming our way is a new product currently being tested by PepsiCo and reported to an online news dealer called Reddit by a KSU freshman named Steve Barnes.  What is it?  It’s Mountain Dew combined with Doritos—Dewitos—a nacho-flavored soda (which sounds perfectly dreadful, if you ask me), said to have an orange taste with a nacho after-taste.  Weird!  Since carbonated beverage sales are trending downward, the major names in the industry are frantically searching for “the next big thing” .  Other combos up for consideration have been lemon-ginger, mango-habanero (Why is everything getting a boost of heat lately?) and rainbow sherbet, which has been reported to taste like medicine.  Can hardly wait until that hits the shelves!

Then again, it might just hit the spot at another idea popping up in Chicago, the combination church and McDonald’s.  The group trying to organize this enterprise is called Mc Mass (Catchy, eh?).  The item in the AB-J mentions that the dude putting this together works at a church-branding agency (Churches got brands?) named Lux Dei and is trying “crowd funding” to raise $1 million to build the first McDonald’s church.  Contributors can get stickers and shirts with the hashtag #Feast4Jesus or even their names on a donor wall at the first McMass church.  You want fries with that?