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Ain't no mountain high enough;
ain't no bathroom boy enough

01/19/12

Tuesday was a banner day for me for a couple of reasons.

One, I am one step closer to standing atop the summit of Mount Trashmore.

Mount Trashmore is located here in sometimes sunny Iowa Park, but for all the luck I’ve had getting to the top of it, it just as well be in a remote island in the Pacific.

And two, I got to read the Leader in a men’s restroom.

Yes, on the same day.

The Bobby and I went to lunch Tuesday at Rafter J’s Barbecue, Iowa Park’s first full-service barbecue and cajun restaurant and my newest addiction.

Rafter J’s has great barbecue and a better-than-average selection of beverages, and is owned by Jim and Jeremiah Stevens.

After we sat down to eat, IESI’s head man in charge, Merle Rodgers, came in with some other guys.

I have been lobbying Merle in a crusade that’s lasted over eight years, to get to the top of Mount Trashmore.

At first I wanted to use Iowa Park’s landmark as a luge training camp to qualify for the Olympics. Merle said, “Um, no.” for the better of five years. Then I had a weird stroke of luck, which included having a head-on collision with one of his rollaway dumpsters.

Meaning my face collided with a dumpster, which resulted in my first broken nose and super glue between my eyes. It also came in pretty handy as a bargaining chip.

After that, Merle said during the next snow I could go to the top of Mount Trashmore, but I had to leave my custom luge suit – complete with windguards and loose trash deflectors – at home.

Well, that never happened, because every time it has snowed here IESI closed down. How convenient.

But I’m no quitter.

I called Merle over to discuss why, oh why? I still hadn’t gotten my photo taken on the summit, and he promised me I could go to the top next week for a photo shoot.
You heard it here first.

I was so happy, I had to go to the bathroom.

I had never been in Rafter J’s women’s restroom before and I have to say, it’s pretty nice.

I mentioned that fact to Jim, and he and The Bobby started talking about the wonderful accomo-dations the men have in that restaurant.

Then Jim made the fatal mistake of telling me that they have framed Leader articles hanging on the wall in the men’s room.

Of course, being in the newspaper business, I had to verify.

In fact, several framed football stories and pictures from 1977 – a year Jim, Bobby and my brother Kevin, were varsity Hawks – graced the walls, including one next to the urinal.

This captivated me for reasons that will remain private, as they should.

But I will say this: It was fairly surreal, standing in a men’s restroom looking at pictures my late dad took and stories he wrote 35 years ago and thinking, “well, this is one way of living in infamy.”