TIM CHITWOOD: The splash so fast that it's hard to see

May 26, 2013 

Working for the man every night and day, it's Monday Mail.

Remember when

Here's hoping you have a meaningful and relaxing Memorial Day, and that you needed a three-day weekend as much as I and many others did, after last week's graduations, murder pleas and various whitewater activities.

White death

Today's opening of course is from the song "Proud Mary," with its signature refrain "rolling on the river." Pick whichever rendition you like best.

Speaking of rolling on the river, how's your whitewater photography?

If their abrupt acceleration may be gauged by the difficulty I had keeping rafters in focus as they hit the final rapid Saturday, then it's a good thing we don't have any white sharks in the river here.

They would have a hell of a time trying to catch up with the rafters who get thrown out at Cut Bait or Heaven's Gate, because they're already moving faster than my iPad's automatic focus.

The name "Heaven's Gate" still reminds me of the 1997 suicide pact in which 39 cultists went off to what they were told would be a higher evolutionary plane.

Such drastic action is hardly necessary, at our elevation, so we probably ought to change that name. I don't see why we can't call it "Powerhouse."

"Heaven's Gate" also is the name of a 1980 western starring Kris Kristofferson. The "Rotten Tomatoes" movie review website calls it "a notorious artistic and financial failure," so that doesn't help either.

Speaking of theatrical reviews, Springer Opera House Marketing Director Scooter MacMillan sends this email regarding a Friday piece detailing the new whitewater course:

Excellent writing in today's article about the whitewater course. Of course that goes without saying because your writing is always so deft and enjoyable. However today I was impressed because over the years I've read so much writing trying to describe rapids and I can't remember any better.

Dear Scooter:

Thanks for using the word "deft." Now I can say "Yeah" next time my wife thinks I'm not listening and asks, "Are you deft?"


Here's another nice message regarding that article. It's from Rick McKnight, who may have left the word "you" out of his last sentence, but I'm not sure so I'm not putting words in his mouth:

What a great piece on what to expect in the river! You captured the fun, the calm-before-the-storm, the adrenaline rush. Made me want to jump back in. See on the river!


Dear Rick:

Thanks. I would like to see on the river, but my glasses get all splashed up as soon as the raft hits Turner's Tumbler.

Tim Chitwood, tchitwood@ledger-enquirer.com, 706-571-8508.

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