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Byline Burton

Lynn Burton

From the Technology Runs Amok and There’s Nothing Anyone Can Do About It Department, comes the following item from Carbondale Town Hall.If you call over there very often, there’s a good chance the phone has rung and rung and rung without being answered, prompting you to ask yourself, “Is today another one of those nuisance holidays,” or “Did everyone flee in panic,” or “Is the designated phone answering person sick?”Well, none of those scenarios is true, as near as I can figure out. Here’s the deal, as explained by someone “in the know” and possibly even “in the loop.”After Carbondale had an Internet trunk line installed at Town Hall, incoming calls sometimes don’t come in at all. Callers hear the phone ring, but the Town Hall’s 963-2733 phone doesn’t actually ring. In theory, if one line is busy, callers are automatically routed to an unbusy line, but it isn’t always happening.The Internet service provider doesn’t know why the calls don’t go through. The phone company doesn’t know why the calls don’t go through. Nobody knows why the Carbondale Town Hall phone system is fouled up. It’s an unsolvable mystery.It seems as if there are more and more of these unsolvable mysteries, or computerized systems that don’t work as they should, as technology keeps racing forward faster than our ability to keep up.As for the problem in Carbondale, let the phone ring six times before hanging up and trying again … and again … and again.The Hell’s Angels are coming!The Hell’s Angels are coming!The Hell’s Angels are coming!Maybe.That’s the current speculation, as Gunnison gears up for hundreds of Hell’s Angels motorcyclists to come roaring into town for their annual summer get-together. The celebration of beer, Harleys, greasy Levi’s, beards and loud pipes hits its zenith the last weekend in July, which happens to correspond with Carbondale Mountain Fair.No telling whether the Hell’s Angels will stick around in Gunnison, but you’d think at least a few would hop on their scooters and blast in an easterly direction through Black Canyon on Highway 92. Then it would be over to Joe Cocker’s Mad Dog Cafe in Crawford, on to Hotchkiss to catch Highway 133, north over McClure Pass, then on down through Redstone and Carbondale, before cruising right down Grand Avenue in Glenwood Springs, where they might be tempted to park their bikes in front of a number of downtown bars or restaurants.Actually, Hell’s Angels have come to Glenwood Springs before. In the early 1980s, a few of them parked themselves at Doc Holliday’s for the better part of an afternoon. Jon Klusmire and I were working at the Free Weekly at the time, so we wandered over to check things out. The only thing I remember is one of the older Hell’s Angels was pretty well broken down and had trouble getting around, so his pals brought him beer and such. A younger Hell’s Angel hung around outside and watched the bikes.There’s probably not much cause for alarm if the Hell’s Angels hit town, but it might be a good idea to remember what I’ve been told is their only rule. It reads, “If a Hell’s Angel gets into a fight, all the others WILL get involved.”-A friend sent me the following items on the state of the United States in 1902.-A three-minute phone call from Denver to New York City cost 11 cents; the average worker made $200 to $400 per year; the average wage was 22 cents per hour.-Most women washed their hair only once a month, and they used borax or egg yolks for shampoo.-The crossword puzzle, canned beer and iced tea hadn’t been invented.-More than 95 percent of all births in the United States took place at home.-One in 10 U.S. adults couldn’t read or write.-Arizona, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Hawaii and Alaska hadn’t yet been admitted to the Union.-The population of Las Vegas, Nev., was 30.Lynn Burton is a Post Independent staff writer. His column appears on Thursdays.


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