By Alvin Engelke

The Creston auction will be Saturday, March 7th so mark the calendar and plan ahead.

While during the week there was warmer weather in the Creston area, Saturday evening brought more snow & Sunday morning it was a winter wonderland with slick roads although they got better during the day, even with flurries on & off. Some church services were called off.

Eva G. Pennington has been on the sick list as a result of her treatments.

White nose syndrome, a fungal infection, is infesting bats in eastern West Virginia. The experts fear the disease will spread throughout the state.

Prominent Grantsville oil and gas man Walter E. (Emory) Smith passed away after a long illness. He had wells in the Creston area.

James J. Morris, Todd Rhodes and a friend from North Carolina were attending to business in Creston. Also attending to business locally was Grantsville businessman Lyle Kerby.

Donna, Carl, Jeremy and Brandon Ferrell and Janet Jett were Sunday visitors of Denver & Tammy Macfarland. The group went sled riding and built a fire outside. Donna and Tammy rode together on an inner tube, which got out of control, and ended up in a brier patch. Donna had brier scratches above her eyes, and Tammy's head hit a log. The two couldn't get out of the brier patch because they had the giggles. The group enjoyed homemade vegetable soup, cornbread and hot chocolate.

One Creston news reader said the writer was beyond stupid and despised by all his neighbors. Another reader noted that his having to think about what he read was causing liberal brain strain for the poor fellow.

A number of local residents attended the big Mardi gras event at the posh Blennerhassett Hotel in Parkersburg. Among the notables there was State Sen. J. Frank Deem.

The proposed large increases in property values suggested by the state tax commissioner have caused quite a bit of discussion. One county commission, when presented by the commissioner's proposal to increase taxes about 10 fold (x 10), was met with laughter. It seems that they have new maps that show valuable coal, uranium, etc. underlying vast areas. The folks down at the Mouth of the Elk also have new rules requiring the reporting of any mineral rights owned by citizens & taxpayers. In an era of decreasing real estate values and decreasing prices for raw materials of any sort the idea of huge increases in real estate taxes is a sure formula for ruin.

With the continually deteriorating economic conditions and the apparent effort on the part of George Soros's sock puppet to make matters even worse, many have concluded that gardens should be planted this year even though such has "pretty much gone out of style". That way at least local folks will have food to eat regardless of whatever wild hair is going on. At the moment seeds, fertilizer, etc are more or less reasonable and hyperinflation has not yet started. The suggestion that the government take over banking has many worried and might explain why a credit union opened in Elizabeth which currently has two banks. The "democratic socialists" support credit unions along with socialized medicine, the ACLU, etc. and the credit unions are part of an international organization.

The 'messiah' indicated that fraud, swindles and flim flams wouldn't be tolerated but, then again the folks who ran the biggest flim flams, Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac are in the government and, judging from all the new ads that have appeared for the gullible who are 'looking for help from the porky stimulus bill' one might conclude that the Nigerian internet fraud group is running the show.

The Big eared one's AG, Eric Holder, continues to make news. He was the one who did the paperwork for the pardon Mark Rich purchased from the Clintons. Rich, who hides out in Switzerland, was the one who caused all the trouble with the now closed Ravenswood Aluminum plant and he pulled off a multimillion-dollar income tax fraud. As a result of the plant's closure electric rates are to go up and the gas that was used at the facility will now be routed to Spencer where it will go into Columbia's line "H" to Cobb Station which already is full of gas for which producers are paying "firm transport". Of course the company that will be sending the new gas into the line was formerly known as Enron - when one has Robert Rubin as a lawyer, well one gets the picture. The "little people" will just have to make other arrangements.

Chesapeake Energy's spokesperson said, "We are actively drilling throughout the basin to capitalize on the rising oil and natural gas prices." Their man then said that [if folks didn't do as they commanded] they would have the state do "forced pooling" and there would be no royalty payments until the entire cost (as determined by someone) of the development is recovered. Of course, such is not the case - apparently these folks believe that West Virginia residents are both illiterate and dumber than a box of rocks as well as being easily intimidated by those who are friends of the big boss Down at the Mouth of the Elk.

Meantimes, Chesapeake announced that they had a fourth quarter loss because of the crash in oil and gas prices. Wholesale natural gas price for March is about $4.53/dth (dekatherm) and mountain high test (drip) is in the $1/gallon range. Local Penn grade crude oil is $32.75/bbl.

W. Harrison Schenerlein IV was visiting his grandfather, Wilbur H Schenerlein II, who recently underwent knee surgery in Columbus and is now on the mend. The youngster was glad to get back to Creston to get to call the cats, play in the snow, carry in firewood, etc.

Mountain lions have been captured on game cameras in the area again. Some years back one local resident, who was working at the time in Ritchie County, watched as the DNR turned one of the big kitty cats loose. Creston Well Service's pumper caught one of the big long tailed critters snoozing on the Hodgen #5 location one warm March day which, of course, was somewhat of a thrill for both cat & pumper. The big cats were to help control the out of control deer herd. Now the "wise ones" have turned out wolves. Now, no doubt these "new" wolves will be bred to dislike lambs, calves, domestic animals & children.

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