This Week in Milford

February 23, 2021

This Machinery Is No Joy.

Filed under: Gil Thorp — tdrewhardin @ 12:01 pm

As long as Thorpiverse is going to throw William Blake our way, I just thought I’d shoot back a repartee. As I read it, Father Vittorini quoted Blake in Ray Bradbury’s classic, “Are we not God’s Machineries of Joy?” to which Father Brian responded “God never lived in Milford”.

And there is no joy in Milford, at least for Butt Muench as he is relegated once again to the bench cheering on his Mudlarks to victory. And Tilden has been generally willing cannon fodder whenever people like Doug Guthrie have their heads stuck up the fuel pump and Milford needs an event-person-rent a Messiah to kickstart what should have been kickstarted two months ago. Eating at The Diner can only go so far as to working out possible glitches in the playbook or plotline. Finish those oversteamed green beans, leave Maureen a generous tip and let’s play some basketball without detouring to Talladega. Damn, that might beat Tilden.

Today’s headline in the Milford Enquirer

“Investigation Ongoing As Probe Deepens At O.J.’s Condo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Detective Friday: ‘Our stakeout has hope but we need more Milford Lotto tickets if we’re going to build a case.'”

Gang, don’t you remember Pin the Tail on the Donkey at those birthday parties we all went to when we were kiddies? Sure you do. And those were fun times and a part of our past. It’s a shame that Pin the Tail on the Action is part of our present. As in right now.

Let’s start with Muench’s attire. Frank Ramsey, one of the UK greats, continued his basketball savvy in the NBA, being a formidable 6th man for the Boston Celtics in their Championship runs. When John Havlicek was a rookie, Ramsey showed him the best way to drop your warm-ups when Red Auerbach, the Hall of Fame coach called your number. Didn’t want to look like a dimbulb when checking in. If you couldn’t get your joggers off cleanly, what made Auerbach think you could guard Elgin Baylor or Hal Greer? Don’t EVEN think of stopping Wilt on a 3-on-1 at the other end. Made sense.

It looks like Muench is in a Frank Ramsey position so if Gil actually wants to start coaching and Doug or somebody else is stoned like Syd Barrett, Muench can rip that halogen-infested jogger right off even if the ankle is a little tender. Hey, William Blake never played for the Celtics. I bet HE didn’t have to face Jerry West when West was shooting a career night. Just go easy on the instep and you got those sweats off all over Kaz’s head and you’re out on the court in no time flat.

And you’re going to need sweat-pants-doffing aplomb if you want to deal with Waffle Iron Head. Does he comb his hair with a welder’s torch? One thing’s for certain, his defense sucks as Ditzy Doug palms the ball and really should be called for it but hey, if he’s headed towards the basket (the jury’s still out) , I’m sure the refs will cut him some slack. We ARE at Milford after all, where Homer got its origin (not Late Latin like some of you readers keep insisting on) . And WHAT is Muench gazing at when he’s not goin’ Frank Ramsey on us? The ball is in front of him but I guess if you stare at the basket long enough, you’ll start scoring. Yeah, think positive. So THAT’s what Wilt should have done when he was fronting Russell all those years. Lord knows he was fixated on Hershey’s rims the night he scored 100.

And maybe Frank Ramsey can teach Waffle Iron Head how to rip his cap off so hair doesn’t get stuck on the bill of the cap. Don’t want Coach Auerbach to know we can’t take off our cap without having to back ’em down in the paint.

If ya comb yore hair with a strainer cuz ya gotta git all the fleas ‘n’ tics ‘n’ gnats ‘n’ flies offa yore scalp that yore bloodhound passed off ta ya, ya might be a redneck.


Oh, it’s just Gil telling Curtis before he became Kurtis Blow to get his butt in the game, Doug’s at the raceway, literally and figuratively. We learn a valuable history lesson, a Funkmeister became that way because another player on the team was calling the shots and, duh, it hurt that player’s game. Funk was famous because someone else refused to take one for the team.

And Cato, er, Gil, when is this charade with Doug going to end? No player on the face of the planet tells his basketball coach when he can play in a game, let alone show up at practice when they durn well please, like the other day. What did you expect, Gilberto, a laser-like focus to fix Tilden’s wagon after a conversation with Joe Friday over what happened at Daytona this week? I doubt Kurtis Blow was performing in Minneapolis last night before he got in his uniform right as he got off the plane. Not even Frank Ramsey can perform miracles. What do you tell the stewardess? Is there a dressing room, I’m the starting center tonight and somebody needs to be there for the opening tap. Sure, Kurtis, right down the hallway to the right. Mr. Ramsey used to use this room when the Celtics went to overtime.

And if Muench ever needed the extra space, he can always open the window. Hang suspended at 10,000 feet while he’s working his sweats around the sprain, talk about Machineries of Joy. About the ONLY joy so far. Do we have to cling to the fuselage to get it?

Special Edition to the Milford Enquirer

“Sting Operation Goes Awry At The Milford-Tilden Game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

sub headline

“Detective Friday found that Doucette had no record and that the concession stand was only trafficking hot dogs and relish.”

8:17PM-It was getting close to halftime and Gannon and I hadn’t sniffed out a pretzel. Captain was pressing the issue to get this oversized cheeseburger blown open but the closest we could get to Doug was to razz him when he blew the layup. This stakeout on the bleachers was only getting us a program with tonight’s starting lineup.

DOUUUGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ARLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


We got our break. What idiot would cheer on someone when he needup target practice 2 feet near the basket? Gannon and I had to move fast

“Police officers!!!!!!!!!!!! Just hold it right there!!!!!!!!!!!”

“Sir, I have to announce the winning number for the Brunswick Bowling Ball, hang on.”

“Yeah, they said the same thing last week when they were carjacking Marty Moon at Mudlark Lake Resorts!!!!!!!!! Spread ’em and don’t try anything funny. Read him his rights, Bill.”

“Hang on, Joe, I have a couple of questions. Son, why would you cheer on a bad play? And do you realize that Arlo is under suspicion for reckless driving and drug possession? When he shoots free throws by bouncing the ball off his head, don’t you think he’s a bit stoned? Or does he do the same thing with the rubber mats against the wall?”

“You gotta understand Doug. He needs encouragement. He gets down on himself when he makes a bad play. So I egg him on, good or bad. And sometimes he needs to get refocused on basketball, especially if he gets cooped up in a go-kart all day. He’s just bonking himself to get his bearings. I mean, he was doing The Charleston every time he’d inbound the ball after his 17th-place finish at the Indy 500. And he did the King Tut Dance during a 20-second time out after the Daytona weekend.”

“Don’t get funny with us, punk!!!!!!!!!! Okay, we got nothing on you although I could nail you on Milford City Ordinance Code 12 Article 73 Section 734 “Public Falsification of Reasonable Occurences with Intent for Malicious or Unpalatable Advantages” but the ref just called for everybody to get back on the floor. But stay clean until we meet again if you don’t want a night with Otis!!!!!!”

“I understand. Want some nacho chips? The dip is still warm.”

“No, Son, Mr. Friday just had his upper plate drilled this week. Just keep your nacho dip and your reputation in the same paper tray.”

Somber music wafts in the gym

“Dr. Pearl, these Coed Gym Class Reports-2015 are burned to a crisp.”

“Ohhhh, I apologize, Gil. I told my student aide not to use the waffle iron this time.”

Now wait just a cotton’ pickin’ minute, Gil. You talk about the pot calling the kettle Mudlark. Coming from the same guy who was on the same poetic wavelength in the trainer’s room when he should have been out on the floor blowing the whistle and conducting something called PRACTICE. That’s that thing where you work on plays and defensive sets so you don’t get caught with your buffon hairdo down like what occurred with Oakwood. I know some things seem strange and unfamiliarity results when players set their own agenda and you set YOUR OWN AGENDA by not showing up half the time. What did you expect Spacehead to do, go out and deftly lead the team to victory in a Rocky setting? Rocky can only do that if Mickey Goldmill is around for the match. It does no good for Rocky to be chasing that chicken all over your verandah in those workouts, Mickey, if you’re non-existent. To paraphrase Rocky, Doug would be a Kentucky-Fried idiot. There is no way he can beat Apollo Creed in a game of H-O-R-S-E when those chickens are in your trunk and you’re chickening at the Milford Lounge. Wake up, indeed.

When Rocky was running in a final flourish at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Doug was running his mouth in a final flourish. Like coach, like son.

Speaking of the place, it has become a tourist attraction with the Rocky statue at the base of the steps. And the 72 steps of film history are naturally called the Rocky Steps. Hmmmmmmmm

At a State park near Milford

“I am Spartacus!!!!!!!!!!!! I can conquer anything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Creed is mine when his team comes to town!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

“Goodness, Gil’s been a beast since they named that entranceway to the outhouse ‘The Gil Steps’.”

There’s plenty of machinery in P3. How much joy is debatable. I can spot the obvious first. The placard holder is arguably the most conspicuous and with the most resolution. He doesn’t resemble the house slippers your dog used to chew on when you were a kid like most of the rest of P3. And even THAT is not really encouraging. For all we know, he’s advertising for Milford Diner. Well, shoot, Maureen can’t be there, SOMEBODY has to be there to take the order of Lobster Claws and Salisbury Steak Buffet.

And I can say without fear of contradiction that that is Kurtis Blow checking into the game for Doug the Head Butt-er Upper. I’m still scratching the noggin a little why he is facing straight ahead when Larry the Placard Guy is pointing his “Milford Diner-I’m Lovin’ It” towards the end of the court where the basket is presumably located but let’s not get greedy here. I learned that as a coach.

NOW who is the Tilden dude talking to on the left side? Does he want Vic to get some more napkins after he spilled ketchup on his uniform? Is he calling Milford Exterminators to remove the bed bugs from the floor? Is he telling the ref to watch the shoves underneath? The fact that I have to sort through some sordid scenarios is making this dearth of machinery OR joy that much more gloomy, Gus.

And what is the Tilden player doing spreading his legs? I thought Joe Friday already attempted a bust. He can’t be taking a whiz but with the way the artwork has been transcending the barriers of reality, you can never answer with 100% certainty. Maybe his jock strap itches and he’s just trying to get more comfortable. Who cares about the crowd? You can’t tell them apart anyway. Scratch away, the crowd’s in Jackson Pollack form anyhoo, they’ll never know.

I mean, I never knew I could be Pac-Man and run from Inky, Blinky, Winky, and Clyde and form several escape routes and that would be my drawings for today’s audience. The Tilden contingent I believe is on the left side of the smudge marks. But check me on that.

Today’s Black History Month entry is Tom Rucker who was an NCAA Man’s Basketball official for 30 years, mainly in the Big Ten Conference. He was one of the first African-Americans to don the zebra stripes and did so with class and a high standard of professionalism. He never played organized basketball but started officiating in the Detroit School System while attending Wayne State University to make ends meet. A University of Detroit coach liked what he saw and Rucker found himself officiating a Detroit game when one member of the officiating crew didn’t show. He eventually worked his way up, becoming a fixture in Big Ten action, including postseason. He had to shake off racial slurs from the hecklers for a few years but people saw he was for real and the loudmouths disappeared. He worked several NCAA Regionals plus 4 Final Fours and 2 National Championship Games. Referees dream to work ONE Championship Game but Rucker doubled the dream. He must have done something right.

I always thought he was fair and honest and HUSTLED to get in position for the call; plus anybody who can hang up the whistle and still have a conversation with Bob Knight, a noted battler with the zebras, when all is said and done deserves everybody’s respect. Please join me in saluting a man who proved you can be upright in your decisions regardless of your color. Thank you, Tom Rucker. You did the Game proud.



“The story you just read is true. The names have been changed to save further embarrassment to this farce.”

“On October 25th, trial was set at the Milford Superior Court, Judge Melvin Q. Snerdly presiding. In a moment, the results of that trial.”

In the back yard of the Shaw residence, Coach Shaw locked in his Civil Defense shelter

“Honeeeeeeeyyyyyyyyyy, I’m hornyyyyyyyyyy. Why are you shut off from the rest of the world??????”

“Damn, Mrs. Shaw, how’d you find me?”

“You left a trail of toilet paper.”

“The price I pay when I am securing myself against the curs of this planet. They’ll never find me here!!!!!!”

“Honey, what are you talking about?”

“Damn, Woman, don’t you read the papers????? Milford Men’s Clinic was caught ethical un-outsourcing with other countries. They had to go to some dictatorship in Panama to ship its sexual chemical stimulants. If I have to hike the jungles of Costa Rica after their President shot dissidents in the head, I’ll stay right here in my shelter until it blows over.”

“I’d like things to blow over and they will once you open the door.”

“NO WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!! I ain’t gettin’ pumped up by a company that does business with Crete. I understand they have sweatshops do their dirty work. I don’t buy pills from foreign child labor. I’ll take my Pals from the good ol’ USA anytime.”

“And I’ll take my Pal once he opens the door.”

“It’s a cruel world, Mrs. Shaw. I won’t make it any crueler buying from a place that foments riots in the streets. That incident in Helsinki was a conflagration made in Hell. My Significant Other will do business with other legitimate establishments of business if that means I gotta buy from a hot dog stand.”

“I also came to tell you that The Clinic Board of Directors fired their CEO. They retracted all his transactions. I saw the film at 11 on WDIG-News.”

” I guess I had to open the door. When they were willing to cut their losses, I had to cut mine. And they did have treatment programs that work. With a staff that is certified Gold by the American Medical Association, isn’t it time to inventory your own sexual outsourcing? Me and Mrs. Shaw have been outsourcing under the sheets for several days and it’s funner ‘n’ barrel of diet pills. Come do your own outsourcing here at Milford Men’s Clinic.”

“The Milford Superior Court found a one Douglas Guthrie guilty of 3 counts of Reckless Abandonment of Player Responsibility which is punishable under the Milford Penal Code by a fine of $15,000 or 3 years probation or both and with 2 counts of Unlawful Usage of Oversized and Unaccounted-for Vehicles and Unwieldy Usage Thereof which is punishable under the Milford Municipal Code by revocation of driving privileges set for a period no more than 21 months but less than the period designated by a committee which duly appoints the hours leading to the demarcation as outlined by the statutes henceforth stated in the committee recommendation that expresses said penal measures.”

“Doug Guthrie is currently serving his probation working at Grease Monkey as an oil changer.”


  1. Gil sez “’s like you’re in a fog out there..”. That could be said about Gil and Kaz too for football, baseball, golf, Tiki Jansen, Marty Moon, pick-up baseball games, Double-D, etc. Oh?…and Dougie feels bad because a cop stopped him twice and not the inverse of that? This is dumb af…bring back PP

    Comment by franku2016 — February 23, 2021 @ 12:56 pm

  2. Kurtis Blow is in the house. Nice. Ol’ blameless Gil. To quote Charlie Chan, who was quoting Confucius: “A wise man questions himself, a fool, others”. That’s Gil in a nut(sack)shell.

    Comment by Jive Turkey — February 23, 2021 @ 2:45 pm

  3. The Freak Hands of Buzzcut Godleski just want to play Hook ‘m Horns on the shofar.

    Comment by Downpuppy (I, me, mine) (@Downpuppy) — February 24, 2021 @ 2:18 pm

  4. The stupid ‘hook-em-horns’ hand looks like something Beavis ‘N Butthead would do as well

    Comment by franku2016 — February 24, 2021 @ 2:59 pm

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