For those not familiar, Ft Wayne has become the latest community swept up in this "creepy clowns attack" thing that is going on across the nation. (NOTE: This is not a political post, and has nothing to do with any current election race that I know of.) First, we had an apparent actual sighting by a bus driver of some brain dead costumed idiot scaring kids waiting to be picked up. That was all it took to set the more "creative" amongst the local student body to posting fake "attacks being planned by clowns. Classes were disrupted, teachers frustrated, and a climax came Monday when several local schools were "locked in" (i.e. not allowed to leave the building) because of these manufactured threats. Hope they enjoyed losing out on their occasional breaths of fresh air.
But kids were not the only idiots at work on the case. Someone set up a Wordpress blog using the logo of local TV station WANE to create a fake news story that quickly spread across the internet that one of these clowns had taken a bullet to the head here in town, and was in critical condition. It took a fair bit of talent to fake this false story as well as it was done, and frankly the "reporting" was of a caliber that WANE finds harder and harder to achieve anymore. Thus it was that they were soon fighting a losing action of trying to get the post removed from Facebook, even as it was being reposted from as far away as Georgia.
So we have clowns on the streets, clowns in the schools, and clowns with blog sites. But the worst clowns are those who cannot be bothered to check things out before re-posting.
- Check the link. I did, it isn't hard to do.
- Check the original source. Is there such a news story on the site?
- Do NOT use a potentially fake post to solicit information on its veracity. Another recent FB post- from an elected official in the area- showed a news story of dubious actuality, and asked basically, "EES EET TRUE?" And anyone scrolling down their FB feed will see such a thing and say, "Wow, the Mayor of Podunk posted this, it must be true." In this case, a FB buddy of mine took the official to task. Were they grateful? Did they say, "You are right, this looked bad. I shouldn't have posted this, I should have done my research"? Nooo.... They said in reply:
I was only asking for information. I'll be sure to not ask again. Seems everyone is an authority today.
"Asking for information". Uh huh. When I want to know if a story is true, I always re-post it, commenting, "Explain this!!!???" So now, I will crawl back in my hole and never show my shamed face again, boo hoo. And this person is a local Mayor. Sure glad I don't live there.
Having said that, let's move on to more pleasant stuff. Like the big rain Scrappy and I got caught in last Wednesday. So we had just come out of the woods, and the sun was setting.
To the east, a great rainbow rose up. It had just started sprinkling. We were close to a group of small, close together trees, and at least a hundred yards from any defensible shelter. Then the deluge hit.
Kids on the soccer fields scrambled for cover as the rain went from "oh, we won't melt" to "holy crap" in about 2 seconds. I clambered between two trees- trying to get my dimwitted companion to join me- and called Laurie. She looked at the radar and pronounced (falsely, as it turned out) that we were going to be stuck for a while. I said, maybe you should come get us, and told her where to look.
Within about five minutes- she wasn't out of the complex yet- it slowed enough that we could make a break for the old barn. By this time, Laurie had found out that they had picked this rainy afternoon to close one lane of Washington Ctr to tear up a sewer deal and that traffic was at a complete standstill. I told her to abandon the trip and we'd hoof it, because by this time it had stopped altogether. Outside of two flooded out areas we had to cross- and one dimwit picking up someone at the Plex that thought a parking lot full of cars was a good place to fly past at about 50 MPH- we made it home wet and limping but alive. My shoes were pretty much a total loss, though,but I was replacing them Saturday anyway.
Today we took a walk around our usual path. We saw three kitties (all in windows), two bunnies, seven doggies, and this guy:
Also, near the bark park a couple pulled over to visit with Scrappy. They had just recently had to put down their 13-year old beagle mix and wanted to say hi. They travelled with their last bag of doggie treats (same kind Scrappy gets), and Mr Piggy got double his usual nightly allotment of treats- and before dinner, yet! Did it spoil his dinner?