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Safety engineers shocked the Blacksburg community yesterday when they announced their conclusions on the collapse of Blacksburg High School’s gymnasium roof. It appears the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back was a pair of old Converse sneakers tossed atop the roof by a bored student. The pair was but the newest of hundreds uncovered in the rumble along with mounds of assorted teenager trash from the last thirty odd years. “In essence what we had up there was a landfill, well, a rooffill, where students had been casually winging stuff for years,” said inspector Walt Unger. “Plastic crap was... Continue »
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The future Muggles’ Bar castle on Progress Street continues to impress gawking townsfolk despite protests by the property owner, a local dentist, that the structure is actually his family’s future home. “I have a permit for a house,” he said, exasperated, as several students pedaling past him on bikes waved and shouted: “Go Dumbledore! You’re the man!” The imposing stone-walled castle bar will undoubtedly be welcomed by a generation of Tech students who grew up reading the Harry Potter sagas and enjoying the movies, but have moved beyond children's magic fantasies to stone-cold drinking reality. When students are asked their... Continue »
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*Titans threaten Bruins in Price's Fork Road turf war, West Side Blacksburg Story The recent collapse of the BHS gymnasium roof has forced the Montgomery County school system to relocate the high school’s refugees to Blacksburg Middle School for afternoon and evening classes. But such a move was bound to create tension between the colliding hormonal age groups, and it’s been a rough first week for Blacksburg’s senior citizen teens. The BMS kids are not giving up their Smurf turf without concessions, shin-kicking the older kids for lunch money, cell phones, breath mints, and warning the older boys not to... Continue »
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Two weeks after Virginia Tech’s Commission on Student Affairs backed off in its confrontation with the Collegiate Times over the student-run newspaper’s anonymous letters policy, the school's least reliable Commission on More Anonymous Stuff has targeted the Hokie cheerleading squad for its policy allowing members to shout anonymous cheers. *Typical cheerleader squad from fun days of the past, before anyone cared about cheers. Instead of the usual whoops of “Go Hokies,” the squad members have been urging Cassell Coliseum's faithful to their feet with cheers received as text messages from their friends. Cheers such as “Kick Tar Heel ass!” and... Continue »
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Brother Wendell Beckett, the somewhat less famous twin brother of popular British art critic, Sister Wendy Beckett, stopped in town recently to critique the local Hokie Bird statues. Brother Wendell, who sports a goatee and dons a nun’s habit just like his sister (for reasons The New Yokel didn’t ask), spoke gently and kindly of the local artists’ curious Hokie Bird mascot creations. “This one delights me as did the golden sarcophagus of the boy king, Tut Uncommon,” Beckett said, clasping his hands very Wendy-like while a camera crew recorded the scene outside the National Bank of Blacksburg on Main... Continue »
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Denny Hamlin, a Nextel NASCAR driver, 11 (his car's number, not his age), has been test driving his newest engine on Drill Field Drive, the road which circles the Virginia Tech campus's large open space. Hamlin, a native Virginian and Hokies fan, drives a FedEx-sponsored vehicle for the Joe Gibbs racing team. A least reliable source says university officials were okay with the popular driver's car, as long as Hamlin displays a visitor's tag somewhere in his window. Drill Field Drive's oval short track, which resembles many of the stock car racing circuit tracks in the south, should prove an... Continue »
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Virginia Tech campus police were on high alert this week as the well-known bronze statue of the school’s first student, Addison Caldwell, tried once again to walk home to Sinking Creek in Giles County. The crook-armed cadet was stopped on North Main Street outside the YMCA Thrift Shop by an excited store customer who tried to purchase him for ten bucks, but an alert patrol officer recognized the statue and intervened. Addison was then returned to his pedestrian pedestal in the upper quad. The story of the first student to enroll for classes at what was then Virginia Agricultural and... Continue »
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Blacksburg’s not-so-famous Yellowhenge site has secured an archeological grant from the Virginia Association for the Preservation of Odd Peoples. The prehistoric yellow markers, located in the old Annie Kay’s Whole Foods parking lot across from Backstreets on Main Street, are perhaps two-thousand years old, and were erected by the Crayola Creek Indians, a people who worshiped a color, canary yellow. Also, the strange native's Petri glyphs, or rock art, show the crayon colorists had, well, a really, really hard time staying inside the lines. Continue »
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The U.S. Census Bureau Director has cited Blacksburg for over-reporting 10,389 household peeps as yellow, pink and blue. The U.S. Census Bureau Director reminds local families: allowing "the kids" to fill out the census form is a BAD idea! Please do not entrust any household member under the age of 18 with the census forms. Try again. Thank you. Continue »
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Despite huge new letters and spruced-up grounds, BLACKSBURG MOTOR CO. has yet to sell one automobile. A receptionist at the building replied: “What?” when asked about sales figures. A local citizen headed to the nearby Town Hall to complain about her water bill alluded to the building as housing “town offices or something.” However, least reliable sources doubt this is so, because, well, because whoever heard of municipal offices with NO SIGNS! out front indicating what is in the building, but GIANT letters which indicated it was a MOTOR COMPANY? Locals remain skeptical. Tourists and visitors, baffled. Continue »
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Blacksburg bar patrons were entertained Wednesday night by local Tar Heel fans and alumni, all cheering "Final Four! Final Four! Repeat! Repeat!" The Easter Egg blue-clad Tar Heel faithful of Blacksburg hooted and hollered and stuck out their chests, still not understanding the Tar Heels are in the NIT, the tournament no one in America follows except the schools invited, if that. The UNC men’s basketball (26-16) team will play in the NIT finals against the mighty Dayton Kite Flyers, or the Almighty Akron Zip Locks, who have agreed to substitute if the Dayton team bus misses their exit ramps... Continue »
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Virginia Tech has completed the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminstration’s National Pretty Day Warning for locals, PrettyDayReady® The new Hokie Hotline (not too hot, but pleasant, balmy), will warn Montgomery County citizens when the weather is far too beautiful outside to show up for their jobs stuck under sickly florescent lights. **PrettyDayWarning locales have a 100% compliance record. Big surprise. Blacksburg Weather Service groundhog forecaster Dr. Neal Hammond [see previous Feb 4th post] took a moment from cussing and digging out his water-logged home on Kraft Drive to provide an overview: "When Tech employees or locals need to use a... Continue »
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President Obama has followed up his surprising announcement about oil exploration off Virginia’s coast by also declaring onshore drilling at Virginia Tech's Drill Field. “Vent the future!” shouted VT drilling proponents, many who gathered in front of Burruss Hall to cheer the new geothermal and oil well markers staked on the former Frisbee green space. Nearby Ultimate players cursed the pro drill folks and vowed to use Green Peace “anti-whaling tactics” to thwart the drilling. How that will pan out remains a mystery. Meanwhile, students protesting the school’s present dirty coal usage seem baffled at being upstaged. Lastly, the rarely... Continue »
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The impressive new Blacksburg Market Square and Farmers’ Market off Draper Road had its grand opening Saturday. The site immediately attracted the attention of UFC mixed martial arts promoter Foghorn Egghorn, a rooster who plans to sponsor a real birdcage fight under the timber frames on a future Saturday. “Feathers will fly!” boomed Egghorn, stating the obvious chicken cliché. “This will be a totally organic, controlled cage fight, staged in an egg-shaped, eggtagon cage,” added the big-breasted, fancy-tailed promoter who owns Chanticleer Productions, a pay-per-view fight network. (Egghorn appeared unruffled by local vendors clearly eyeing him for their own egg-laying... Continue »
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The folks who publish Scrabble, the popular word score game, announced that H-O-K-I-E is indeed an allowable game word. Recently, several online PEDANTIC WAHOO players complained the Virginia Tech mascot name was too hokey to be a real word, but Grandmaster ZOT, Scrabble’s mysterious the-word-of-god enforcer, allowed for inclusion of the unique name. Zot, however --- with a thunderous chortle -- dismissed Highty and Tighty as sounding too silly to be taken seriously. Continue »
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If there is actually anyone out there reading the New Yokel beyond Blacksburg, this is for you. Barger Street, the curious yellow brick road of Blacksburg, which lead to nowhere, is being torn down for what I believe is a parking garage. That crazy brick bungalow on the corner, no more. The Spanish style stucco house, no more. Just so you know. Continue »
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Hokie Hoodies have been approved for spring graduation by the Virginia Tech BOV members who signed off on the idea before anyone really new what the heck was going on. "What's a hoodie?" asked BOV member and mountain top removal coal baron, Conrad T. Scoop, when contacted about the new garb. ****Hoodies as seen from behind: The traditional black-colored hoodies will replace the cumbersome and preposterous flat mortar boards of the last century. The hoodies are destined to be a big hit with students who will be able to nap and text undetected by their parents during the g-day ceremonies. Continue »
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Local Huckleberry Trail enthusiasts bumped, jostled and cursed each other this week as they navigated the controversial new roundabouts. The Town of Blacksburg installed roundabouts at various mileposts in an effort to calm the bikers, joggers, and walkers who pass each other on the heavily used narrow exercise trail. While traffic has slowed, the whining has increased: “I was rear-ended by one of those young mother-jogger types pushing a monster stroller,” whined retiree and avid walker Stan Barksdale of Blacksburg. “She was going way to fast around the circle. We got into it. And her snooty toddler even gave me... Continue »
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In an effort to increase fares on the town’s public transit system, the BT, the transportation department has installed night club lighting and is encouraging dancing in the aisles. The new Bollywood Transit began service last week. Bollywood Transit drivers, referred to around the office as "steering wheel artists," rap stop destinations. Bus Driver Wendy Berger, who also answers to her new transy name, Brake4no1, worked on lyrics recently before starting a noon shift: Hand me your money, now dance to the beat. No complainin,' booty-up to your seat. Okay we’re full on the Club BT, So sit your ass... Continue »
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A local real estate agency representing an out-of-town home owner lowered the monthly fee -- not just the first month -- of his sketchy sub-divide on Lee Street. Asked to explain, the rental agent responsible said the price was always too high and he was only being fair. However, the student renters refused to pay less, convinced the change was some sort of "landlord trick." The rental agent then evicted the students for failure to pay less. The rentals remain empty because the town's "inspector of student stuff" condemned the housing as "too reasonable in price." "Can't we all just... Continue »
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