Friday, September 28, 2012

HIGH-FLYING LUAU

HAIL, PELICUS!

EAST MIDS EXCHANGE IN PROGRESS

Rich Boyer, Jordan Bruno and James Hinkin are with our friends in the East Midlands all this week. While you are at your desk this week, think of what it could be like for you right now – add eight hours and imagine what they are doing.

Whatever it is, it beats working. We’ll look forward to reading their reports.

RUGBY PLAYERS NEED REFS

These folks depend on us in order to get the most out of their rugby experience. And of course we depend on them for precisely the same reason. Please let us know if you can referee any or all of these events:

Saturday, September 29:
St. Mary’s Sevens – eight college teams
Two women’s league games

Saturday, October 6
Three alumni games at Chico State
Two women’s league games

Sunday, October 7
All Blues - New York game needs ARs
Two alumni games at Stanford need refs

Friday-Saturday, October 12-13
Fiji Day Sevens on Mare Island in Vallejo

Saturday, Oct. 13
Stanford men's Sevens from 9 - 5
Three-team round-robin at UOP from 10 - 2

Saturday, Oct. 20
Donkeyfest in Ukiah
Men’s Slugfest at UC Santa Cruz

Sunday, Oct. 21
Stanford-Cal women's sevens - six games or so

GAME SEPTEMBER 15

SF Fog Women 0 –BELMONT SHORE 15 Referee: James Hinkin
ARs: David Newport, Eric Rauscher

My last tune up before the England Exchange saw SF Fog Women v Belmont on a postcard day at Treasure Island. Leaving the Hinkin Castle 2 hours before game time seemed like a good plan to relax a bit before the match and all seemed well until Hayward... until a massive accident on 880 closed 3 of 4 lanes. Traffic stopped. What to do? As soon as I could I turned back and took 92 across the bay and motored up the peninsula side but the damage was done. I arrived at TI about 30 min before game time to find... a wine tasting expo, a wedding and a dragon boat race in progress forcing traffic in all directions and blocking off most of the familiar pathways. Finally getting to the field 15 min before noon (match time) I was happy to see 2 ARs and both teams ready to go.

A quick talk and apologies to the captains later we were underway. The Fog were ill disciplined early and gave up a few quick penalties that Belmont capitalized on to score an early try. After that the game settled into a pattern of hard rugby and solid phases capped by a lack of finishing. 5-0 at half.

The second half was a repeat of the end of the first half with lots of active yet futile rugby. Belmont had a couple of brave goal line stands that kept the Fog out by the slimmest of margins. Eventually the Fog’s lack of releasing and rolling away in the tackle saw a team yellow and the tourists turned the one lady advantage into a score. The Fog hit back and put a mountain of pressure on that resulted in a 5 meter lineout that was stolen by Belmont. The clearing attempt was charged down and pounced on by the alert Fog flanker... about 6 inches over the dead ball line. The lady advantage in the resulting scrum was too much and Belmont stole the scrum and cleared their line. Belmont added a late try to make the final score 15-0.

A fine run on a great day. Many thanks to both ARs who helped tremendously – including when both teams attempted to sub in all of their backs and were surprised to find out I wouldn’t let them and that front row subs must be front row subs. Timely backup by Eric the Wizard was appreciated.

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 16

Sunny Day and Roy Riegels
NORCAL TRIPLE THREAT 32 – Belmont Shore 17 Referee: Rich Boyer
The game of Belmont Shore women v. Nor Cal Triple Threat began at an electric pace, with Belmont Shore drawing first blood after great back play. I find it interesting how the women very rarely hold the ball too long seeking the extra yard, instead preferring to let the ball do the work.

Both teams focused on strong forward play, setting a few rucks then spinning to the backs. Numerous times both teams had overlaps but the defenses were quick enough to cover. The new scrum cadence was well received.

Triple Threat's eight became very prominent at the breakdown and off the base of scrums as the game wore on. She must have poached a dozen balls. After the game her coach informed me she is the Women's Eagles hooker.

Belmont initially looked to have the advantage in the backs due to strong incisive running by #13. But she couldn't quite get free on many occasions to link up with her wings, such was Triple Threat's rush defense.

Triple Threat scored the next three tries, both converted by #13, Erica, as well as a difficult penalty kick. Two of the tries went to #11, a very fast wing who took advantage of overlaps. 24-7 Triple Threat at halftime.

In the second half Belmont's workhorse #8 tried to offset her Triple Threat counterpart and poached a number of balls herself. But Triple Threat continued in waves and wore down Belmont, who had played a full game v. Fog the previous day. Belmont's 8 was rewarded after numerous successful picks and drives with a strong rush for a try.

Triple Threat capped off the scoring with another penalty kick and a very strong try by the prop running at pace near a ruck near the try line, carrying three players with her in goal.

Final score 32-17, Triple Threat.

Are the readers familiar with Roy Riegels? He played football at my alma mater, Cal, and in the Rose Bowl as a lineman scooped up a fumble and rambled 70+ yards the wrong way until he was finally tackled by his teammate at the one yard line. Well, an Amazon player, new to the game, did the same on Sat. She ran for 20+ yards, encouraged by the opposition then, realizing her mistake, threw what she thought was a backwards pass that was actually a forward pass. This was a new development for me after 32 years in rugby.

SEPTEMBER 22 AND 23

No games that we know of took place.

ANNUAL REGISTRATION WITH USA RUGBY DUE NOW

It is time to register with USA Rugby for 2013. Old registrations expire on August 31.

https://membership.usarugby.org/default.aspx

You need to register here. Your 'club' is the NCRRS. Print out the waiver, sign it, and mail it along with $10 dues to:

Jim Crenshaw
c/o Delta Supply
1248 East Oak Avenue, #D
Woodland, CA 95776

Then you'll be current with NCRRS and USA Rugby for the coming twelvemonth.

NCRRS AGM AND FIRST 2013 TRAINING MEETING

REO Preston Gordon has announced that our first meeting for the 2012/13 seasons will be on Saturday, November 17 at the SFGG clubhouse on Treasure Island.

Ed Todd will be a guest speaker, and the ever-popular Coaches’ Panel will also be featured.

Mark your calendars now, starting at either 9 or 10.

BEGINNING REFEREE COURSES ANNOUNCED

We will be hosting Level One match officiating courses at the following dates and places. Spread the word!

Sunday, October 7 in Dixon
Sunday, November 4, in Moraga
Sunday, December 2, in San Jose

Registration is available at www.USARugby.org, click on Officiate the Game.

THIS WEEK’S PHOTO


Last Saturday the Pelican’s Nest in Salinas hosted a luau, with a number of the flock driving down from the Bay Area to eat Spam musube and watch the Thunderbirds fly overhead! (It was the Salinas California Airshow weekend.)

The Big Kahuna graced us with his presence.

HAIL, PELICUS!

For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

WANING SUMMER

HAIL, PELICUS!

Your scribe is off to Aspen first thing Wednesday morning, for the tournament that wraps up the summer and kicks off the fifteens season for much of the country. We have a lot of dear friends among the Eastern Rockies cohort, and a lot of fond memories of tournaments past.

Referees in California now have the women's clubs and the college sevens seasons to satiate our rugby jones for the next few months.

TRI-TIP SEVENS

One of the most rewarding Sevens weekends on the calendar found ten California refs in lovely San Luis Obispo Saturday, September 8.

For Eric Rauscher and Bruce Carter, who carpooled down from Salinas, the weekend started out as Occupy SLO. We were told we'd be staying at a place that shall remain nameless, different from where the other refs were. Desirable location - two blocks from the first stop on Saturday's pub crawl (which we would miss), and when we pulled up we saw a very nice B&B.

We also saw that the office closed at 8 PM. Some guests in the reading room let us in. They said, the open doors are the rooms without guests.

Four rooms had open doors. Two of them had invoices and keys on the bed, with names that didn't match anyone in the rugby universe. So we slept in the other two rooms and, not wanting any uncomfortable scenes, made sure to be gone before breakfast was laid on.

The Tri-Tip goes back at least thirty years, when it was called the Pismo Beach Clambake. It was neither in Pismo, nor at the beach, nor were there any clams involved. Since then, as the Tri-Tip Sevens, there is plenty of both tri-tip and Sevens.

Almost too much Sevens, if there could ever be such a thing. Thirty-seven teams had eighty-one games scheduled. Remember: ten refs. And then there were half a dozen friendlies among the teams that didn't advance to the knock-out rounds.

Some of the - ahem - more experienced players stepped up to ref these add-ons, plus one of the official games, so the refs ended up with exactly eight games apiece.

SoCal: Mike Adams, Schalk Erasmus, Marquise Goodwin, Cullen Lowe, Mark Richards and Neville Smeda

NorCal: Bruce Carter, James Hinkin, Pete Smith, Eric Rauscher

Hosts SLO won the men's bracket and the Seahawks won the women's. After everyone had played or reffed a lot of games on a long day (8-5:30), the poor tri-tip didn't stand a chance.

SATURDAY GAMES

NorCal Triple Threat 24 – SEATTLE BREAKERS 26 Referee: Lee Salgado
Very exciting game that went back and forth, especially in the second half. Both teams had a few players that have sported the USA rugby jersey so it was a fast paced, hard hitting game. Nor Cal started off strong, but the Breakers fought back all game and finished strong up the middle.

BERKELEY ALL-BLUES 20 – San Diego Surfers 17 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
Assistant Referees: Preston Gordon, Jen Tetler

Opening day of the 2012 WPL season. Warm, sunny day at Morton Field in Vallejo. New laws in effect. Exciting, back-and-forth game but both teams squandered scoring opportunities. San Diego led 8-10 at half and Berkeley scored an opportunistic try off a botched San Diego drop-out to eke out the narrow win with 2 minutes remaining. With no time remaining, San Diego worked multiple phases and almost scored, but Berkeley forced a knock-on just short of the goal-line to preserve the tense win. Much thanks to Preston and Jen for their help as AR's.

SUNDAY GAME

SF Fog 7 – SEATTLE BREAKERS 12 Referee: Jen Tetler
The Fog Women squared off against the Seattle Breakers (not the Mudhens) this Sunday at high noon (the Breakers has played NorCal on Saturday...apparently eeking out a win).

Both teams started off with a few unlucky knock ons in the first few minutes...the start of quite a few scrums and a chance to really practice the new engage call. There was some great back and forth, but both teams supporting strong runners and getting it out wide.

Seattle scored the first try about 15 minutes in with an outside run to score in the corner, which led to an unsuccessful conversion. They scored again towards the end of the first half off of a kick into the endzone that was chased and touched down by their 9. The first half ended 12-0 Breakers.

The Fog was not to be dissuaded though. They had held Seattle with some excellent defense, especially off of some tactical kicking, and they held up at least 3 potential tries. The Fog came out in the second half with a beautiful piece of continuity to score and convert in the first few minutes.

That was the last time anyone would score, though there were a few more close opportunities by both teams. Fog's 13 almost cherry-picked a couple of passes that were subsequently knocked on, and Seattle botched a penalty kick for touch very close to the tryline that ended up as a 22 drop.

Overall, it was an exciting and well-played game with some fantastic moves and great defense by both sides. A much better showing for the Fog than the last time they played Seattle.

Final score Fog 7 - Breakers 12

REFEREE OPPORTUNITIES

Saturday, September 15:
Sacramento Lions Tens tournament, with women’s teams playing either tens or sevens. Four refs so far. Need another three or four.

Saturday, September 29:
St. Mary’s Sevens – need four or five refs
SF Fog hosting Emerald City Mudhens

Sunday, Sept. 30:
NorCal hosting Mudhens in Santa Rosa

Saturday, October 6
Three alumni games at Chico State that need refs

Sunday, October 7
All Blues - New York game needs ARs
Two alumni games at Stanford need refs

Friday-Saturday, October 12-13
Fiji Day Sevens on Mare Island in Vallejo

Saturday, Oct. 13
Stanford men's Sevens from 9 - 5
Three-team round-robin at UOP from 10 - 2

Saturday, Oct. 20
Donkeyfest in Ukiah - needs three to four refs

Sunday, Oct. 21
Stanford-Cal women's sevens - six games or so

ANNUAL REGISTRATION WITH USA RUGBY DUE NOW

It is time to register with USA Rugby for 2013. Old registrations expire on August 31.

https://membership.usarugby.org/default.aspx

You need to register here. Your 'club' is the NCRRS. Print out the waiver, sign it, and mail it along with $10 dues to:

Jim Crenshaw
c/o Delta Supply
1248 East Oak Avenue, #D
Woodland, CA 95776

Then you'll be current with NCRRS and USA Rugby for the coming twelvemonth.

NCRRS AGM AND FIRST 2013 TRAINING MEETING

REO Preston Gordon has announced that our first meeting for the 2012/13 seasons will be on Saturday, November 17 at the SFGG clubhouse on Treasure Island.

Ed Todd will be a guest speaker, and the ever-popular Coaches’ Panel will also be featured.

Mark your calendars now, starting at either 9 or 10.

BEGINNING REFEREE COURSES ANNOUNCED

We will be hosting Level One match officiating courses at the following dates and places. Spread the word!

Sunday, October 7 in Dixon
Sunday, November 4, in Moraga
Sunday, December 2, in San Jose

Registration is available at www.USARugby.org, click on Officiate the Game.

THIS WEEK’S PHOTO

No photo. Penelope Pelicus took the camera with her to Zion National Park. The economists among you will understand the principle of maximum utility.

HAIL, PELICUS!

For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

REFEREE GRADE NAMES CHANGING AGAIN

ANNOUNCEMENT
The Referees and Laws Committee changed USA Rugby referee grade nomenclature at its AGM in August, 2012.

RESULT
The net result is that we will revert to C and B grades, such as existed until four years ago.

L3, 2 and 1 will now be C3, 2 and 1. All T referees will now be B referees.

RECENT (August) GRADE NEW (September) GRADE
L3 C3
L2 C2
L1 C1
T B

What follows, for those who are interested, is our rationale and the alternatives that were considered.

RATIONALE
Confusion has reigned for the past few years because of the following:

Referees are graded L3, L2 and L1 (this L stands for Local)

Referee courses are L1, L2 and L3 (this L stands for Level)

For assignments and grading purposes, matches are L1 through L7 (this L stands for Level)

Reports written on referees are L1 and L2 reports (this L stands for Level)

[These are formally known as Coaching Reports and Evaluation Reports, but even those who write them often refer to them as ‘level one’ and ‘level two’ reports.]

Beginning referees often assume that completing the L1 course makes them an L1 ref. Who could blame them? Those contemplating becoming referees are often confused by the whole nomenclature.

People at the national office who have to field these confused phone calls complained. Those of us who deal with the confusion at the local level (that word again) across the country sympathized.

It was accepted that the L designation had to go. What to replace it with?

ALTERNATIVES
S was suggested, meaning Society. But the territories are also Societies. S seemed random.

L-level referees referee Community Rugby. Why not C referees? It made sense for thirty years to call those working in the first few grades C referees. So this decision was made: the first grade awarded will again be C3, with the first two promotions being to C2 and then C1.

    Note: criteria for promotion are unaffected by this change. These changes are strictly limited to nomenclature.

That left us with C1 referees who earned promotion joining the T panel. The problem with that is that some Territories have already dissolved and others soon will. The T could be left as a vestigial designation, standing for something that only used to be.

Here’s the problem: the rugby playing organizational universe is moving toward having two divisions of administration. Geographical Unions do not belong to Territories. They belong to USA Rugby. Two levels.

Referees continue to need three divisions, corresponding to the three divisions of grades. There are those awarded by the local society, now called C, and the various Panels awarded by USA Rugby, with those referees capable of doing matches above the GU but below the national in between. We still need a T-Panel equivalent.

Hence: C for Community, B to be alphabetical and in line with what used to be, and then the national Panels, Squads and Groups. Plus, C and B are not tied to particular words used to designate organizational levels such as GUs or Zones, which may change in the future.

APOLOGY
We of the R&L are aware that we may look foolish changing this back after changing it with such fanfare only four years ago. We feel foolish. We also feel compelled to make this change, and feel that it will serve us well in the future and will minimize confusion.

For the Referee and Laws Committee
Bruce Carter, Chairman

SEPTEMBER SEGUE

HAIL, PELICUS!

We'll be back and forth with sevens, fifteens and tens for the next two months at least. Check the calendar on Pelicanrefs and make your plans.

ANNUAL REGISTRATION WITH USA RUGBY DUE NOW

It is time to register with USA Rugby for 2013. Old registrations expire on August 31.

https://membership.usarugby.org/default.aspx

You need to register here. Your 'club' is the NCRRS. Print out the waiver, sign it, and mail it along with $10 dues to:

Jim Crenshaw
c/o Delta Supply
1248 East Oak Avenue, #D
Woodland, CA 95776

Then you'll be current with NCRRS and USA Rugby for the coming twelvemonth.

REFEREES ALWAYS NEEDED

Time to boil your whistle and step up to the plate; let us know if you’d like to sign up for any of these.

Sunday, September 9:
NorCal hosting Seattle, 1 PM, in Chico

Saturday, September 15:
Sacramento Lions Tens tournament, with women’s teams playing either tens or sevens. Two refs so far. Need another six or eight.

Saturday, September 29:
St. Mary’s Sevens – need four or five refs
SF Fog hosting Emerald City Mudhens

Sunday, Sept. 30:
NorCal hosting Mudhens in Santa Rosa

NCRRS AGM AND FIRST 2013 TRAINING MEETING

REO Preston Gordon has announced that our first meeting for the 2012/13 seasons will be on Saturday, November 17 at the SFGG clubhouse on Treasure Island.

Ed Todd will be a guest speaker, and the ever-popular Coaches’ Panel will also be featured.

Mark your calendars now, starting at either 9 or 10.

BEGINNING REFEREE COURSES ANNOUNCED

We will be hosting Level One match officiating courses at the following dates and places. Spread the word!

Sunday, October 7 in Dixon
Sunday, November 4, in Moraga
Sunday, December 2, in San Jose

Registration is available at www.USARugby.org, click on Officiate the Game.

REPORTS

August 18
THE LONE REFEREE: Chico Sevens Tournament
Report by Anthony Nguyen:

I had an excellent time at the tournament up in Chico. Here's how it went.

I was able to make it up to Chico for this relaxed tournament and was expecting no other referees except myself. I found that there were two other non-society referees who were able to relieve me when needed. The 94 degree weather made the relief much appreciated.

The games were scheduled to go from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM. I unfortunately had to leave a bit early but was able to get many games in. A good number of teams were there, some from Bay area and some from Sacramento. The general tournament atmosphere was relaxed and friendly. All the teams wanted to enjoy themselves playing and have a nice day under the sun. I racked up some 6 games, some good, some ok. Apart from the fact that I was somewhat lacking in fitness, I felt I did a nice job.

When it was time for me to leave, every player from the hosting team was very gracious to me. Chico definitely gave great hospitality from the moment I got there to the time I had to leave. Will be hoping to return soon!

August 25
RENO RUGGERFEST

The Lazy 5 Regional Park was the site for the newly-moved-to-August Reno tournament, which has been a feature of the autumn calendar in the NCRFU in one guise or another for at least thirty years (with stops in Truckee and Gardnerville along the way).

Four men’s teams and five women’s competed on two pitches.

Referees were Rich Boyer, Bruce Carter, Rob Hammack from SoCal, Lee Salgado, Jen Tetler, Stephen Valerio and Giles Wilson.

September 1
SF Fog – NorCal Triple Threat Referee: Preston Gordon
No report received at press time.

Scottish Games in Pleasanton, with 3 one-hour games.

“I would like to send out a huge thank you to Jordan Bruno and Stephen Valerio for officiating three matches at our 4th Annual Scottish Scramble Rugbyfest at thePleasanton Scottish Highland games held at the Alameda County Fairgrounds.

“The teams included: SFGG Se├▒ors, Modesto Harlots, SF Fog, Diablo Gaels, the Ptown Ruggers, and many more players from various clubs. The matches were handled with good solid leadership, keeping control of the game at all times, and proving themselves experts in our sport! Great job gentlemen!

“Ken Burnthorn”

NCRFU POLICY

John Compaglia has announced a new set of procedures that clubs are to follow to demonstrate compliance with the various operational guidelines that keep our sport responsible, safe, and growing.

Note that the referee is involved in ascertaining that the clubs involved have the requisite materials.

In conjunction with the new NCRFU GU - Constitution and By Laws, the Union is establishing policies and procedures for member clubs. These will commence September 1, 2012 with the operation of all matches. Each club must display items a - d in a binder to the referee prior to the match.

If, a - c (USA Rugby mandated), d (NCRFU/NCRFRS mandated) is not provided to the referee or not complete, the club is to be reported by the referee to the NCRFU Disciplinary Committee, Harry Batten.

This is in compliance as mandated by USA Rugby requirements for referee and players safety. Match Safety Protocol is mandated by both NCRFURS and NCRFU.

Important, if a club is not current in dues, the Union will notify the Society not to assign a referee to the match.

Policy:
A Club, not in good standing, delinquent dues after specified dates in Interim Match Policy 1.1f, will be considered a match forfeiture, points deduction and points awarded will be determined by the DC.

1.0 Interim Match Policy

1.1 Men's & Women's Clubs - Competitions

1.1a. A Club must have ( 5 days of match, a current USA Rugby CIPP Roster with 15 CIPP registered players and paid USA dues
1.1b. A Club must have a Designated Coach shown on USA Rugby CIPP Roster
1.1c. A Club must show a Certificate of Insurance for the match venue from USA Rugby Insurance carrier
1.1d. A Club must show Signed Match Safety Protocol
1.1e. A Club must have a Signed Game Management
1.1f. A Club must pay NCRFU dues by September 14, if Women's Club and December 31, 2012, if Men's Club.
1.1g. A Club is ineligible to compete in an NCRFU competition or request referee services, if dues not paid in full.
1.1h. A Club is ineligible to compete, if it has not paid NCRFURS dues.

EYE ON EUROPE

Here’s something that may be of interest to our HP audience from Preston Gordon

I've been watching some of the early season games in the European professional competitions, partly to get a look at how the new 3-part scrum engagement commands are working. Here's an interesting note I found: in one of the Top 14's second round games last weekend, Castres-Grenoble, there were 46 penalties awarded. That's a record for the French season, and it sounds like the game was pretty ugly, with 2 penalty tries and 5 yellow cards (2 of those actually went to the same player, turning into a red). An article is here: http://bit.ly/PnqJiR

The penalty counts in that league's first two rounds seem to be higher than usual, but from the games I've seen, the referees aren't looking for penalty offenses at the scrums any more than they used to be. The 3-part engagement ("Flexion-Toucher-Jeu" in French) works just fine, and the front rows are not left waiting an excessively long time to come together. Crouch-Touch-Set ought to be no problem; we'll find out this weekend with the start of the English Premiership season.

However, the French broke another record by issuing 22 yellow cards in their competition's second round of 7 games - http://bit.ly/OpRO7D - let's hope that this trend is just a result of early-season adjustments.

READY, SET, GO: THAT NEW CADENCE

You will have seen that the French use the word for ‘play’ as the call to engage. They don’t say ‘s'├ętablir’ or ‘attendez’ or anything as counterintuitive as ‘set’.

It’s not that long ago that we were all saying: crouch-touch-engage. It’s what the players want to hear.

At the Reno tournament, my first experience with the new cadence, I found it easy to say, and the players of course engaged at the first audible anything that came out of my mouth.

But watching other refs do games it seemed ridiculous: ‘Why are they saying set?’

If the players are going to engage at the next word after ‘touch’, why can’t that word be ‘engage’?

Oh, well. In tennis love means nothing. In rugby, ‘set’ means ‘don’t stay set’.

HAKA DELIGHTS

Ron Myers forwards this link of New Zealand soldiers honoring a fallen comrade:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xI6TRTBZUMM

Your editor believes most rugby people think of the Haka as having specifically to do with rugby, only because that's the context they first saw it in, but of course it's a much bigger cultural ritual.

When I was peace-keeping in Egypt the out-going New Zealand contingent welcomed their replacements on the tarmac with a Haka. I asked one of the guys whether they had to practice it - he said no, not really, they learnt it as schoolboys.

I saw the second-funniest Haka I've ever seen last Saturday. (The first was a 'gay haka' done by the Hoodz, a SoCal touch team that was dressed as the characters from the Village People.)

The Highwaymen were at the Reno tournament. (The highway in question is I5.) They had about thirty guys, most wearing kilts (no underwear) and face paint.

Before their first game they had a haka - a Polynesian fellow took the lead, the rest arrayed behind in the usual fashion.

He would say something threatening in what sounded like Maori, and then the chorus would repeat it. It slowly became clear that it was gobbledy-gook: he began slobbering and stuttering and looking like Joe Cocker in full cry.

They would all slobber and stutter and spazz out behind him.

They then all put their hands on their hips and started gyrating as the leader sang out:

"Da le a tu cuerpo alegria Macarena..."

THIS WEEK’S PHOTO

Lee Salgado, Rich Boyer, Stephen Valerio and Jen Tetler enjoy the day at the Lazy 5 in Sparks, Nevada.

HAIL, PELICUS!

For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris