Author

Ludwig Schnee

Ludwig Schnee has 59 articles published.

Ludwig Schnee is the illegitimate grandson of Adalbert 'Adi' Schnee, the World War II submariner who won the Knights Cross with Oak Leaves for his gallantry as a U-Boat commander. Born in June of 1976, Schnee has lived in Fort Collins since the early 1990s and is the quintessential Focopolitan.

Protests in Boulder Subside as Alfalfa’s Announces Sale on Organics

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This last weekend, Boulder residents joined other outraged Americans in taking to the streets to protest the killing of yet another unarmed African-American- this time at the hands of Minneapolis Police officers.  Taking banners, signs and the righteous rage in their hearts, these virtue-signaling citizens of the Boulder People’s Republic converged on the Boulder Police Department’s building at 33rd and Arapahoe.  They took the bus, carpooled as best they could, parked their hybrids and bicycles wherever they could, and some even walked because the environment can’t be ignored, even during pandemics and times of racial tension. Protestors even donned masks and showed respect for social distancing requirements.

The composition of the crowd could best be described as consisting of only a few people of color, with trustafairans slightly over-represented.  As cries of “Black Lives Matter!” “Hands up don’t shoot!” and something like, “This is what hypocrisy looks like!” got a little out of hand, a mass text hit the people of Boulder, including the protesters.  “Grand sale of organics at Alfalfa’s!  Limited time!”  Apparently, that was all it took for the protest to run out of puff.

Reporter Ludwig Schnee caught up with a blonde, dread-locked 20-something hippy chick who declined to share her name, “Yeah, black lives matter, but 50% off of organic, fair trade, locally fermented Argentine kombucha?  I think I’m going to Alfalfa’s.  It’s only like a mile away.”  Karen Kretschmer, 59, of Eldorado Springs, also granted us a word, “I support the Black Lives Matter movement, but I also support local business, and the vegetarian bulger and bean porridge [at Alfalfa’s] is to die for!  And the wheatgrass lemonade too.  Oh, and my iPhone tells me that they got a discount on patchouli that only lasts ’till 6PM.  I gotta go.”

As everyone left, recycling their signs, they left behind one man, Letravious Martin. “Where the fuck did everybody go? I mean this is important!”

Stimulus Checks Bounce

in Business and Economics/Politics by
US Treasury stimulus check examples

At his suburban Fort Collins home, area resident Larry Mason drops his jaw as he checks his mail.  Opening an envelope indicating an ‘Insufficient Funds’ notice he says “What?  (…) How did that happen?”  While an insufficient funds notification is nothing particularly new, what makes this matter noteworthy is where the check came from and who wrote it.

The check in question was a stimulus check.  It was emitted by no less than the United States Treasury with the name Donald J. Trump somewhere on the bottom left.  “What the…? How can that even happen?  How’s that even work?  It don’t get no lower than that!  I ain’t paying no $12 fee.  No way, Jose!”

Mr. Mason is not alone in getting bouncy checks from the Unites States Treasury.  Alejandro Medina, also of Fort Collins got one too.  “I got an ISF notification from my bank online.  When I looked, it was the stimulus check!  What da fuck?!”

Your reporter took a deeper look into this matter, by doing what Bob Woodward did back in 1973-74.  The Focopolitan Tribune ‘followed the money.’  To our utter astonishment, we have concluded that our government spends more money than it takes in!  So we called the United States Treasury in Washington, DC, and this is what a phone bank secretary told us, “What?  We sent y’all a bounced check?  Oopsie daisy!  Let me call Karen in accounting and she can get this sorted out.”

Something tells us that things will be just fine… especially since there’s the name of a guy on those checks who’s been bankrupt no less than six times!

 

City Planning Employees Hone Skills with SimCity amid Corona Furloughs

in Health and Fitness/Local Flavor/Politics by

The Coronavirus Pandemic has caused much disruption in Northern Colorado as everywhere.  With layoffs and furloughs everywhere, not only are people finding themselves unemployed, our more skilled workers are also faced with the following dilemma regarding their skills: if you don’t use it, you lose it.  But not so with one Northern Colorado town…

At his upscale home near the Ptarmigan golf course, Deputy-Assistant-Vice-President for City Planning and Management for the town of Windsor, Mohammed Smith, bides his time.  Speaking from his patio couch, Mr. Smith granted your reporter, Ludwig Schnee an interview.  “Truth is, there just isn’t much we can do right now in the real world.” He went on, “But we can’t just let ourselves get soft.  We have vital skills that we can’t let go by the wayside. We gotta practice.  That’s why I play SimCity.”  The town of Windsor employee referred to the 1989 computer game made for the Commodore 66.  He went on, “It’s EXACTLY the same thing as my actual job.  It involves zoning, taxation, managing a city within a budget, electric grids, roads, rail lines, policing, crime, housing… and the occasional disaster!  I’m telling you, it’s just like managing a real city… and I can do that from the comfort of my own couch!”

Disturbed by the flippant overlooking of a critical factor, your reported inquired about the most critical thing of all in managing a city: the human factor- citizens, city councils, county commissioners, cops, workers, et al…

“Naaah!  No problem there.  If SimCity doesn’t have that problem factored in, then reality won’t either.  Simple as that.”  He changed the subject,  “It’s too bad I can’t get paid to play this game… err… keep my skills honed during this pandemic, but maybe the city might come up with some Donald Trump dough for me… and maybe my family too.”

Campus Area Businesses Quietly Lobby Government for Continued Student Loans

in Business and Economics by

It came in the dark of night, discreetly and quietly, around 2AM on a cold Northen Colorado Tuesday: a white Gulfstream private jet.  I couldn’t make out its callsign.  It’s destination: Washington, DC.  The passengers: Fort Collins campus-area business owners and developers.  Their purpose: to persuade congress to provide students with continued student loans.

Your intrepid reporter could sense something was afoot at a normally sleepy Northern Colorado Regional Airport (NCRAP).  Seeing so many representatives of our local economy awaiting a private jet at that ungodly hour led me to ask… and they told me, albeit on condition of anonymity.  “We just want to tell our friends in Congress to keep on keepin’ on!” said an area businessman.  “The area around CSU campus is experiencing an economic boom.  It’s safe to say, we have a secular bull market here.  What we’re going to DC for is first off to give them a hearty thanks!  Second, we want let ’em know that we’re rollin’ in dough from these student loans, and for them to keep on  ‘makin’ it rain,’ if you know what I mean.”

A developer added, “How do you think we’re gonna pay for the construction loans that we have up the yin-yang?  I’ll tell you: we’re not!  THEY’RE gonna.”  I asked him who ‘they’ were.  “The students!  I’m so glad they’re as financially illiterate as they are, ’cause if they weren’t, I couldn’t make the payments on my construction loans.  Come to think of it, I couldn’t make payments on my Porsche or my second home either!”  When I asked him to clarify what he meant, he replied with unusual candor, “What do you think these broke-ass 18-year olds pay their rent with?  Their piss-ant $10-an-hour jobs?  They pay rent with their student loans.  You see, we’re really pro-education here.”

The plane arrived and didn’t even shut down its engines.  A ramp went down, and in went the group of business leaders.  I thought I’d give the other side of the story: that of students.  A visit to Ink Inc, a local tattoo parlor proved revealing.  Freshman Mindy Roedenbacher agreed to an interview.  “Yeah, I got Student Loans.  It’s like, an investment in my future and stuff.  I’m putting my tattoo on my loans, ’cause YOLO!  Besides, it’s gonna be a part of me forever, like my college experience.  I think I’m gonna put my next flirtini on it too, ’cause you know… YOLO!”  She concluded, “No, I’m not worried about it, ’cause you know, I’m gonna like… get a really high-paying career with my Gender Studies degree… and if I like it, I might even get a Masters.”

We at the Focopolitan Tribune see NO problem whatsoever with student loans.  They have provided our town with a virtual third wheel in our economy.  They finance everything from tattoos, to meals, to rent, flirtinis, beer, ganja AND a good education for our student community.  There really is no visible downside to them.  Dear Washington and students, MAKE IT RAIN!  Fort Collins’ economy needs you!

State, City, County Riot Police Mobilized for Montava Community Meeting; National Guard Held in Reserve

in Business and Economics/Local Flavor by

After repeated cancellations, delays and enough insipid excuses to make the board look like a bi-polar girlfriend who lost her lithium, yet another meeting for community input on the new Montava housing development is scheduled.  Given the controversy that the proposed new housing development has caused, meeting planners are taking no chances.

“We’re pulling out all the stops,” Ben Dover, project spokesman told Focopolitan Tribune reporters, “to show that the safety  of everyone attending the meeting is paramount. So no, we are not going overboard. In fact, we might just be underestimating things.”

So what does pulling out all the stops mean?  A task force of riot police from the city of Fort Collins and Loveland, Larimer and Weld counties, and the state police will be setting up the event. “I talked to governor Polis, and he’ll be putting the National Guard on alert, so they’ll be in the barracks, until such time as they’re needed.  These Country Club Road residents are royally pissed.”

To recap: the Montava development seeks to develop some 900 acres of agricultural land near the Budweiser plant.  This will cause massively increased traffic in Ft. Collins’ Northeast corridor.  Meetings over this matter have gone from Methodist post-sermon coffee and fellowship to Jerry Springer-like behavior over the space of mere months.

A resident of Country Club Road, Celeste Krieger, spoke with your reporters about the development. “I paid $950,000 dollars for my little 3500-square foot shack and I can barely leave my driveway as it is! Now you want to build more stuff and house poor people where they have to drive their hoopties past our houses? I’ll have to use my husband’s helicopter to leave the house; that’s not fair when all I want to use is the Rolls!” she wept. “This is war!  We’re on!”

With more people moving to FoCo and housing as tight as it is, we find it self evident that building more housing, particularly for our lower income residents is paramount.  That said, the interests of the residents of Country Club Road must be heard and taken into consideration.  After all, they were there first.  We call upon citizens’ civility, but just for caution’s sake, if you don’t live in the are, avoid these meetings like you would avoid a riot.

Elvis Disguised as Sasquatch Behind Mystery Drone Flights

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Over the past three weeks, Eastern Colorado and Western Nebraska have been dogged by flights of mysterious drones.  It was unclear what exactly they were doing or why they were flying where they were flying.  That is, until The Focopolitan Tribune investigated.

A cursory look at a random drone over Julesburg, and a noting of the frequency of the drone led your reporter Ludwig Schnee to hone in on the signal only to find a small shed.  Thinking it might be a Unabomber-type scenario, your reporter opened the ramshackle gate of the place.  There, I encountered what I can only describe as a large, hairy, stinky beast.  Startled, I dropped my jaw and said, “Bigfoot?!”  At that point, the hideous creature took its mask off revealing itself to be none other than… Elvis Presley, “The King” himself!

Flabbergasted, I could hardly believe my eyes, so I had him sing “Love Me Tender.”  If I couldn’t believe my eyes, I could believe my ears.  It was Elvis.  For the next two hours, we just hung out and talked music, but as a professional journalist, I just had to ask him one question, “Why are you dressed up as a sasquatch and flying drones here in Colorado?”

“Lookin’ for Jimmy Hoffa’s body. Jesus said it be around here somewheres.”

 

Foothills Fashion Mall Provides Refuge for Non-Shoppers this Christmas Season

in Arts and Entertainment/Business and Economics/Local Flavor by

For yet another Holiday shopping season, FoCo’s oldest mall has paradoxically provided Focopolitans with a venue to hang out and not shop.  With Old Town taken over not only by stressed-out shoppers, the usual rabble of hipsters, hippies and homeless, overwhelmed people are looking for some peace of mind and a warm place to just take a walk on a cold winter day.  Enter the Foothills Fashion Mall.

Built back in the 1980s, the FFM used to be a place for people to hang out and shop, but ever since the revival of Old Town and the subsequent rise of online shopping websites like E-bay and Amazon, the mall lost its shopaholics appeal. Yet its usefulness still remains due to the one innovation that Old Town lacks: central heating.

Invented in the 19th Century, central heating consists of a large heat source- nowadays natural gas, but historically wood, coal or bunker crude oil- that is then relayed throughout an enclosure by means of radiators or ventilators.  This simple technological evolution has given the FFM an edge over Old Town for best place to hang out and not shop.

Nearby resident Ralph Anderson attests to the appeal of central heating, “I’ll tell ya… this central heating thing here is pretty amazing.  Ain’t no way I’m gonna go to Old Town to hang out and not shop anymore.  Nothing beats the mall for going to a place and not shopping. It also is a great place to exercise in as I won’t run into ANYONE!  Top that, Old Town!”

New Belgium Brewing Sold In Cash Deal; Armored Truck Delivers Small Bills To Kim Jordan’s Residence

in Business and Economics/Local Flavor by

Focopolitans were surprised last week to find out that our beloved local institution, New Belgium Brewing has been sold to the Japanese beverage mega-conglomerate Kirin Holdings.  Mourners were seen in Old Town wearing black sheaths and carrying a large mock coffin symbolically marking the end of an era of exceptional beer drinking and capitalist leadership in our beloved Fort Collins.

While Focopolitans mourn and wonder about the future of Tour de Fat, and whether or not we have forgotten Pearl Harbor, New Belgium’s biggest stakeholder, and co-founder, Kim Jordan, has received her payment of the cash deal.  A Brinks armored car arrived at Ms. Jordan’s residence together with a beefed-up contingent of armed security men this morning with its hold full of greenbacks, and knocked on the front door of Ms. Jordan’s home.  As luck would have it, your reporter was there to see it all go down…

This development came as a surprise to Ms. Jordan who appeared somewhat flabbergasted.  She had this to say, “Wha-?  It was a cash deal, but I wasn’t expecting this!  I’ve never seen so much dough in my life!  How in the hell am I supposed to get all this green shit??  I’m gonna need a forklift, and those are all back at the brewery.  A– and where am I gonna put it all?  It’s not like I can put nine figures and change of moolah in my pocket!  What the…”

Brinks driver Al Moore, the guy in charge of the delivery, had little to say about the whole deal, “I dunno.  I ferry cash around all the time.  Sometimes in bags, sometimes on pallets, like today.  It’s usually to banks, and this is a residence, so that’s a first.  Other than that, I’m just doing my job.  Ms. Jordan, can you sign for this, please?”

Wildlife Field Work Ends in Grill-off

in Environment by

Hiking at Lory State Park this last Saturday afternoon, your reporter chanced upon a merry band of wildlife biology students at the picnic tables.  Seeing the festive, joyous band of youngsters, your reporter approached and noticed they were grilling.  This, at least on the surface, seemed rather unremarkable…  Except when your reporter, otherwise having a grand old time not working, inquired about their presence.  One junior who asked not to be named sheepishly replied, “Uuuhhh… we’re wildlife biology students on field work.  We were supposed to just catalogue and classify all species of wild birds here, which we did… but we kinda got hungry and decided to do a little grilling…with a few subjects of our studies.  Seriously, why should we let perfectly good, tasty cormorants go to waste when nature gives us this delicacy?”

She went on, “You know, our prof kinda turned a blind eye to us.  Either that or she just didn’t notice the shotgun, birdshot, spices, the camping grill and the propane tank we toted along with us on our way to Lory [State Park].”  Another student interjected, “Or the keg of beer.”

Apparently the co-incidence of a field expedition at the same time of college football primetime caused resentment among the students who obviously showed tremendous ingenuity at taking matters into their own hands.  “You know, nature just gives us SO much to choose from!  Just here we have geese, ducks, rabbits and our VERY favorite: cormorants!  Here, have a try.”  Your reporter politely declined.  She continued, “C’mon, don’t be snooty!  This is better for you than the nasty chickens that Swift and Company gorges with GMO feeds and stuffs with growth hormones.”  Your reporter grudgingly tased the grilled cormorant, regretting the experience immediately.

Even though this expedition was strictly a bird cataloguing trip, it appeared that the students also had a taste for rabbit meat.  “Here!  We’re grilling a wild rabbit too.  This one’s a little tough and gamey, but it sure beats the ones that the CDC does bubonic plague research on.  They think that they dispose of them, but… hey, waste not, want not.”

Fort Collins Book Festival Welcomes Surprise Guest: Pat Buchanan

in Business and Economics/Health and Fitness/Politics by

It was an utter surprise to all attendees of the Fort Collins Book Festival when conservative Republican author Pat Buchanan crashed the party.  With a theme of “Food For Thought” this was an unusual event for Mr. Buchanan too, who up to now has not been known for being a foodie.  “This festival is great!  I thought it was going to be just pure mudslinging at me, but folks here really gave me a warm welcome,” commented Mr. Buchanan.

One of the Book Festival’s organizers, Tracy Echevarria-Smith granted your reporter a few precious moments of her time on this busy weekend.  She had this to say about Mr. Buchanan, “First off, we’ve been criticized for having the same authors, the same ideas and basically the same show every year.  When Pat Buchanan essentially invited himself here, we were overjoyed. Second, we have a really diverse group racially; we have a Native American chef, a Latina, an African American woman and all sorts of folks from disadvantaged and/or minority groups talking about what food means to them.  This may be a racially diverse group, but let’s face it: we all think alike, we all vote alike and we’re all progressive.  Having Pat speak makes us inclusive, in more ways than just race.  Not only that, but here’s the real advantage: it makes our foodie fest original.  We’ve seen and heard all the organic-local-fair trade people have to show and say.  Let’s hear what other people have to say.  Pat’s gonna be talking about big ag- the unignorable food provider without which we would mostly starve.  Let’s see people in Boulder top that for inclusiveness!  So, we don’t fall in love with Archer Daniels Midland or Monsanto, but are you really gonna tell me that these people who have done more to save Africa [agribusiness] from starvation than 1000 Bonos [referring to the lead singer of U2 who is also known as Paul Hewson] are evil?  Well, that’s what all the food pharisees at Whole Foods would have you believe.  Not just that, but don’t you want to hear what a white, rich, Christian man has to say for once?”

To our utter surprise, Pat Buchanan granted your reporter Ludwig Schnee a brief comment!  “Oh, I’ll tell you, I LOVE agribusiness.  It’s the most efficient form of growing food.”  When your reporter politely told Mr. Buchanan that it takes roughly 13 pounds of grain to produce one pound of beef, and that it took some 100 gallons of water to produce one pound of feed, and that lots of efficiency is lost in the process, Mr. Buchanan retorted, “Meat is therefore the best, most effective way to eat vegetables and keep hydrated.”  he added, “You eat cows, and what do cows eat?  Vegetables!  It’s like you’re going vegan, just more efficiently.  You know what else?  Fried meat is good for your heart so long as you fry it in vegetable oil.  Okay, I gotta go.  All this food talk and these books made me want to write.”  Asked what his book  was going to be about, the Republican author replied,  “It’s title is going to be Agribusiness: It Sucks Less Than You Think.”

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