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Direct From Killington: A new face at Mt. B, Downtown Bend valet, more 

New Brass on the Mountain

Three weeks to the day after firing Matt Janney, who served as Mt. Bachelor's president, the ski resort has announced the hiring of Dave Rathbun to take the top position at the mountain.

After what Mt. Bachelor described as a "nationwide search," the result was the hiring of yet another POWDR Corp. (Mt. Bachelor's parent company) employee in Rathbun, who has previously worked as director of marketing, sales, reservations and golf at Killington Resort and Pico mountain, both located in Vermont. Rathbun, who was touted as having more than 20 years of resort experience, will serve as both president and general manager at Bachelor.

POWDR purchased Killington resort as a joint investment with SP Land Co. The pair had plans for a large scale resort development at the base of Killington - not unlike what POWDR has discussed for Mt. Bachelor. However, SP Land backed out of the deal earlier this year over what it said was community opposition, according to the Rutland Herald.

Back in Bend, POWDR is touting Rathbun as the man to lead a turnaround at Bachelor.

"...He brings a collaborative perspective, progressive management style and guest services background that make him an ideal fit for the positive direction in which Mt. Bachelor is headed," remarked POWDR Corp.'s Chief Operating Officer Herwig Demschar in a press release.

While it remains largely unknown what "direction" Mt. Bachelor is headed, Rathbun's hiring is the first public move the mountain has made since letting go of Janney and three other top-ranking employees on May 20.

What's in a Fist Bump?

click to enlarge Image: He can pound
  • Image: He can pound
He can poundAfter finally wrestling a concession out of Hillary Clinton last week, Sen Barak Obama celebrated with a victory speech in St. Paul, Minn., the site of this year's Republican National Convention and a state where Obama had a strong showing among working class and white collar voters. Obama highlighted the long and hard fought primary with Hillary Clinton and the road ahead as the presumptive nominee, but it was a moment before the speech that captured some of the television media's attention. That's when Obama and his wife, Michelle (the America hater) shared a brief moment of solidarity on stage with a fist bump, one of the most common forms of greeting and celebration in contemporary culture. But apparently nobody told that to places like MSNBC and Yahoo, which showed a feature segment on the fist bump moment produced by a network affiliate in Chicago.

Watching this Ron Bergundy-esque piece, Upfront had to check our watch to make sure it was 2008 and not 1978. Among the, "I-can't-believe-I'm-hearing-this" moments during the "news" program, was a assurance by the producer that someone who holds their fist out to you isn't necessarily going to hit you.....they might just be saying "hi".

No Sh*t, huh?

The MSNBC segment that attempted to probe the meaning of the fist pump found its origins in the 'hood where African Americans apparently refer to its as simply a "pound" - imagine that...

Diving deeper, they found that the gesture had previously been described by none other than the New York Times as a "closed-fist high five"

OMG! Was Jason Blair the only black person working at that paper?

Seriously though, FOX "Fair and Balanced" News took the cake with their analysis segment in which a female anchor wondered if the fist bump was a new form of a high five or a "terrorist fist jab."

After all his middle names is Hussein...

We're not making this up, folks.

Park My Rolls in the Jewel Case, Mr. Urban Hiker

click to enlarge This way to the jewel box
  • This way to the jewel box
This way to the jewel boxIt seems like there's always someone bitching about parking in downtown Bend during summer's tourist-infused months and coming to quell the bitching (which is often unwarranted) is the newly unveiled Bend Valet. But before we get all pumped up with Sundance celebrity delusions of cavalierly tossing our keys to the nearest tuxedoed 18 year old, let's slow down a second. Valet in downtown Bend? Is it really that hard to find a parking space? How about that relatively new parking structure in the center of town?

There are a few valid explanations for a valet service downtown, even though most restaurants and businesses are within a few blocks of the parking garage. There's, of course, elderly folks who might not be able to walk far, but we also need to think of our outrageously lazy residents who don't mind dropping cash to have someone park their 1995 Toyota Corolla, Doritos crumbs and all. But also, we need to institute this sort of classy service in the event that P-Diddy, Sean Combs and Puff Daddy roll down Wall Street in an Escalade town looking to mix it up in style.

We're not knocking the entrepreneurial spirit behind this venture, but the company's website ( seems to have fallen victim to a recent and dangerous trend of "over-hipping" which is marked by a near-obsessive effort to present oneself, or in this case, one's business, as cool. The most noticeable case of over-hipping is Bend Valet's practice of referring to its workers not as valets or even car jockeys, but "urban hikers," despite the fact that this phrase is also attached to a Reebok women's walking shoe. The site also lists some "Urban Hiker Lingo" that is almost certainly contrived, as it would be hard to imagine any self-respecting valet referring to a prime parking spot as a "jewel case."

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