Saturday, September 02, 2006

The Oatmeal Festival

I hope you enjoy the slide show I put together to commemorate our trip to the 2006 Oatmeal Festival in our little town of Bertram, Texas.



(If you have trouble viewing the Flash movie here on Blogspot, you can access it directly at http://www.jeffness.net/oatmealfestival.html.)

11 comments:

The Cow Whisperer said...

I love small towns and related pageantry. I'm surprised there were no horses.

I was recently a "wrangler" on a "cattle drive" which consisted of 6 longhorn steers, 9 "wranglers," at least one of whom is a member of the Screen Actors' Guild, and 2000 people on the square in GT wondering "what'd they do with the rest of the cattle.

Oh, and there was the "Sheriff's Posse Mounted Drill Team." This collection of "cowpunchers" was mostly made up of broad-butted women sitting on factory-built saddles, wearing wrinkled up Toby Keith hats that make them feel that they "should have been a cowboy." You can always tell someone is a dink if they wear a Toby Keith hat-it makes them look about as western as wearing a black Regis Philbin shirt with a white tie. As expected, one of these "Knights of the Rotund Table" could not control her horse and got bucked off on her head in the middle of the street.

While I hope she is alright, I was pretty agitated to think her horse was pretty humpy, and therefore a danger to the crowd. She should have gotten off before her paint invited her to....

The Cow Whisperer said...

I forgot to mention that my "Nom de Plume" becomes very important here....we must protect my true identity as though I were Batman...

While I have always dreamed of stampeding cattle through a downtown full of tourists (see comment posted below), I think some of my old workin' buddies back west would give me NO END of grief for the aforementioned "cattle drive."

Denise said...

I laughed and laughed and laughed at this posting! The women with the plungers was absolutely the most hysterical, The Plungettes! Only in a small town and only in a Texas small town! I remember one parade where there was the lawn mower brigade -- a bunch of guys in loafers, black socks and a Hawaiian shirt, pushing running lawnmowers, carrying a Bud. I thought that was the height of a country parade, but this one beats them all! And oatmeal? I didn't know there could be a parade to commemorate mush. Wow. Too funny!

Jeff Hebert said...

There were some horses, actually, and I got some nice pictures, but there wasn't anything funny I could think of to say.

And your secret about the broad-butted cowpunchers, my friend, who can be reached at the address and phone number of ...

Whoops! Almost let it slip!

John said...

Having just yesterday toured historic Oakland cemetery here in Atlanta (http://oaklandcemetery.com/), with it's gigantic obelisk monument to "Our Confederate Dead" and acres and acres of CSA headstones, I believe I can safely postulate that indeed, small town Southern America will probably *always* have a Confederate presence. The South will rise again, mah bruthuhs!

TxGal said...

What a surprise to see coverage of the Oatmeal Festival on the internet!! I stumbled upon your site and laughed until tears came. I was part of my first Oatmeal Festival 25 yrs ago at the ripe age of 5. My parents, two older brothers and I made the 45 min. drive to Bertram each Labor Day weekend for the annual Oatmeal Festival. Oh but we didn't go just to watch. Each year my parents were a designated character. I remember my dad as the box of Oatmeal, mom was a spoon, I was a sugar bowl. They were also the sugar and spice one year. We threw handfuls of oatmeal at paradegoers from our float as we paraded downtown. It was an all weekend affair of good times for me as a child. Ahhh, the memories your site has brought back. I had totally forgotten about that silly old festival until now. It doesn't look nearly as big now (from your photos) as I remember. It was a pretty big deal 25yrs ago and brought people and families out from all over the Hill Country. Ahhhh...back in the day.......when I was a beauty pageant star! Thanks for the funny synopsis of your weekend! This country girl turned city slicker sure enjoyed it. :)

Jeff Hebert said...

Welcome, TxGal, thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a comment! Our Uncle George was telling us the same thing, that the festival used to be a really big deal, and is sadly much smaller now. But that's true in general of Bertram, apparently in the days of King Cotton it was a bustling trade center. But the coming of the Interstate and the decision to add a new rail line a good distance away kind of choked the city off, and today it's barely more than a bump in the road.

I'll bet that in the next 10-15 years it sees something of a resurgence, though, as Austin continues to grow this way. Already we can see huge housing developments moving in on Liberty Hill (the next little town towards Austin) and major road construction going on, designed to make it easier for Austinites to get out this way.

That's good for our property values and probably for the population of Bertram, but Annie and I moved here to get away from all that. Oh well, can't stop progress, I reckon.

Thanks again for coming by, I loved your comments!

the lair of the Evil DM said...

Man, if you had some guys show up at our Granola parade here in California with a Confederate flag there would be hell to pay!

annie'sbuddie said...

When I grow up I want to be a Hill Country Plungerette! Everybody needs goals to aspire to.

The festival looked like lots of fun & I hope to attend someday.

The oatmeal drop from the airplane reminded me of the WKRP Thanksgiving episode featuring the live turkey drop from the news helicopter!

Jeff Hebert said...

That is SO funny, AnniesBuddy, I said exactly the same thing to Annie afterwards! When Mr. Carlson walks in with feathers all over his body and says "With God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly" I thought I was going to pee in my pants I was laughing so hard. And Les Nesman's audio feed from the scene, with the turkeys plummeting down from the plane ... man, that is one of the best TV episodes ever, of any show.

Great minds think alike, I guess!

Anonymous said...

We were JUST talking about the turkey drop this week and that it's probably the funniest episode on television, next to Chuckles the Clown dies. I guess this shows where my sense of humor lies! Today, we were talking about the Taxi episode where Jim is taking the driving test and tries to answer Bobby's question of "What does a yellow light mean..." Between those two, you just can't stop laughing! -- Denise