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New Course Offerings Reflect Changing Times at TCCC
Written by Helen Hamilton   

MILLBANK – Students returned to classes at Tri-City Community College (“Home of the Fighting Geese”) last week amidst traditional sights and sounds: the Falafel Wagon parked outside the student center, the statue of school founder Philip Tri-City, the raucous pep rallies complete with live geese. But there was something missing, and that something is troubling many alumni and local residents.

“If they take away the phrenology major, what will they take away next, the major in eating and breathing?” asked protesting parent Linda Ovine, 59. When informed that there is currently no eating and breathing major, she answered, ‘There you go. Our young people will be completely unprepared for the real world. I can’t think of anything more important than being able to judge the character of other people by measuring their skulls. Except maybe eating and breathing.”

The protests began on the second day of classes, after a local parent examined the class schedule brought home by her daughter, a student at Tri-City Community College. Said local parent Becca Murray, 43, “I feel like Tri-City is focusing less on the courses that made it stand out from all those mediocre schools around the country. Tell me, does Stanford offer alchemy? Does MIT offer a certificate in blacksmithing and ratcatching?”

Philip Tri-City founded Tri-City Community College in 1909, in order to provide “a practical and useful education in technical fields beneficial to life in Millbank”. The most popular major remains the sofa design and craft major, which funnels many graduates into work at Mr. Sofa Guy’s Sofa Kingdom Warehouse Emporium, but majors are also available in criminal justice, accounting and switchboard operating.

School administrator Kyle Seminole, 34, explained, “This year, we added new courses in computer programming, marketing and business administration in order to make sure our students were ready for the 21st century job market. We only have so many faculty, but I am proud to say that our faculty stepped up and got creative in order to increase our course offerings overall.” For example, Associate Professor Zed Swatter now teaches “Principles of Marketing” and “Social Media: Theory, Practice and Evaluation” as well as “Slide Whistle 101” and “Advanced Techniques in Slide Whistle”.

“The protestors should understand that phrenology was the only major we eliminated entirely, and it was not nearly as popular as it was back in 1909,” added Seminole. “These changes will ensure that our “Fighting Geese” are getting the best value from their tuition and emerging as well-rounded and sophisticated citizens of the world.”

Admits local student Sarah Haskell, 20, “I’m actually excited about the new classes, especially now that I know TCCC has no plans to eliminate the major in slide whistle. Golly, I was really worried there for a second!”

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Anonymous Tip Leads Police to Sticky-Faced Teens
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

Possible Millbank Butterscotch BanditAs the city sits on the edge of civilian unrest due to pudding shortages and the resulting martial law, Millbank Police responded to an anonymous tip of a standoff between a band of hooligans and armed senior citizens behind the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility on Friday evening. The tipster used a hotline established by the City to help recover more than 800 pounds of butterscotch pudding stolen from the earlier in the week.

The anonymous tipster reported seeing “sticky-faced teens all hopped up on sugar” darting in and out of the Senior Facility and carrying bowls. Police said the tipster sounded like a man, most likely elderly, and with a voice “very similar, if not identical” to Arnold Grateau’s, who lives in a single-story home at 1435 E. Main Avenue.

Responding police officers arrived at the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility at approximately 8:57 p.m. to find approximately ten-to-fifteen teenagers hiding in some bushes and throwing plastic spoons and sporks at four senior citizens with rifles and who kept asking someone to turn on a light so they could see better.

“Obviously, it’s bad situation,” said police chief Vern Howard. . “We have a goal to reduce assaults on our seniors with deadly weapons by six percent this year, and this doesn’t help.” Sporks have been banned by City police as deadly weapons ever since the Incident at the 1987 Mill Family Picnic Jamboree.

“We had the situation under control,” said Phil Sheffley, de facto leader of the armed seniors. “We had reinforcements coming. They were just trying to park their Buicks.”

Chief Howard disagrees and said the City is exploring options to take back the guns that police initially gave the seniors to help combat hooliganism. “It’s just, those people have guns now, so they might shoot us if we try to take them back.”

The standoff was diffused when the seniors left the area to stop Taste of Millbank Festival-goers from misusing pickleball courts for dancing to the inflammatory sounds of rock-oompah band “Boogie Buddies / Dangerous Flannel.”

Police detained and questioned the hiding youth. The official report indicates the youngsters were indeed sticky-faced with a “butterscotch pudding-like substance.” However, there was no evidence of theft, and Downhill residents said every youngster was one of their grandchildren and probably just eating tapioca.

The children were released to their grandparents, who said they would bring them inside “for a treat.” Police continue to search for the missing pudding.

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Residents Urged to Remain Calm After Pudding Theft
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

Editor’s Note: The accompanying photo is an artist’s representation of the alleged pudding thief, based on descriptions provided by residents of the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility.

Pudding BanditCity police are asking residents to, first and foremost, remain calm, and second, to provide any information they may have about the overnight disappearance of more than 800 pounds of butterscotch pudding. The pudding is the entirety of what would have been available for the last four days of the Taste of Millbank Festival. Police hope the dessert treat can be found in edible condition, but said time is of the essence.

The pudding was last seen at the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility, in the kitchen where it is produced. As they do each day, an elite team of Millbank pickleball players arrived at five a.m. to pick up the pudding and deliver it under armed escort to a booth adjacent to the temporary pickleball courts in Ottoman Park. However, when the team arrived, residents of the senior facility reported the pudding had been stolen.

Phyllis Leitner, 82, had been guarding the pudding at the Downhill at the time of its disappearance. She said a man wearing a black-and-white striped turtleneck, black hat, black pants and a black mask tiptoed into the facility and conked her on the head with a blackjack. When she awoke the pudding was gone. Police detectives say the description of the criminal matches that of a man who has reportedly stolen hamburgers in neighboring cities.

“Maybe it was stolen, or maybe they just lost it. They don’t play much pickleball at the Downhill, so they have a lot of dementia,” said Doug “Pickleball Maniac” Sheffley, organizer of the city’s pickleball leagues and self-proclaimed “Supreme Leader” of the City’s roving squads of elderly sharpshooters.

While over 700 pounds of butterscotch pudding has already been consumed at this year’s Taste of Millbank Festival, attendees have quietly complained that its distribution has been strictly regulated and only pickleball players were receiving rations. Many city residents hoped that they might get some after the players had eaten their fill, but the disappearance of the last 800 pounds has dashed hopes and angered many.

Police and the armed senior citizens have vowed to work diligently to find the missing pudding, and urge city residents to remain calm and patient.

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Armed Seniors to Patrol Taste of Millbank Festival
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

An elderly citizen protects the butterscotch pudding.Millbank’s self-proclaimed “Pickleball Maniac” Doug Sheffley believes that arming the City’s senior citizen pickleball players has been so successful that he plans to expand their role in supporting the local police.

Although police chief Vernon Howard did not respond to requests for an interview, the police department issued a press release that said only, “Pickleball players, please leave your guns at home.” Some speculate this press release is an official response after six teenagers were sent to the Tri-County hospital with bullet wounds last week after post-curfew encounters and turf battles with armed pickleball players.

“Fat chance,” said Sheffley, when interviewed between sets of pickleball. He said the city has never been safer and that the City’s “Taste of Millbank” Festival, which begins this weekend, is an ideal opportunity to enhance security and crowd control, as well as teach local hooligans about respecting their elders.

The Taste of Millbank event is the highlight of the city’s summer calendar, more popular even than when the public pool auctions off unclaimed items from the lost-and-found box. The aromas of local food booths lining Main Street and Main Avenue and clean portable toilets draw hundreds of people from across the region. Recent years have even lured residents from upscale Chesterburgh Point, who may or may come just to make fun of the festivities.

However, recent Festivals have been marred by riots, hooliganism, accidental explosions, barf-tinged meals, name-calling and feral raccoons. The tragic events have all either been directly or indirectly a result of the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility’s wildly popular butterscotch pudding, described by almost all attendees as the event’s highlight. However, the senior center residents have not kept up with demand, resulting in hurt feelings and anger as many people do not get even a small sample of the pudding.

Sheffley says the gun-toting members of the Pickleball Expert League will ensure this year’s butterscotch pudding is fairly distributed. Although vague on details, he said the plan will be to use force as necessary to enact “merit-based” pudding disbursal.

Residents of the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility, however, said they were unaware of any plans by other seniors to distribute their pudding. “What the hell are you talking about?” asked Greta Furston. “Those uppity fitness freaks are too busy playing with their balls to make any pudding, so now they think they can have ours? Those nuts have another think coming.”

“We know who deserves the most butterscotch pudding, ad who best to distribute it,” rebutted Sheffley as he pointed to the pickleball racket embroidered on his trademark jersey. “Plus, we have the guns.”

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Pickleball League Teams with Police to Fight Hooligans
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

Faced with increasing reports of hooliganism and a beleaguered staff, the Millbank Police have turned to the city’s Pickleball Expert League for help.

“This is a no-brainer,” said Millbank’s self-proclaimed “Pickleball Maniac” Doug Sheffley. Sheffley, 71, is the owner of Pickleball Mania Pickleball Supplies. “Ours sport attracts only the highest caliber of citizen. We’re trustworthy, dedicated, punctual and always display good sportsmanship. Who better to enforce the laws of our city?”

Pickleball Lady with GunPickleball is popular in many senior communities throughout the country. It appeals to the elderly because it is a low impact sport, similar to tennis, but played on a smaller court with a whiffle ball and special paddles. Sheffley introduced the game to Millbank in 2012, and its local following has soared as evidenced by the many T-shirts, bumper stickers and handprinted newsletters around town. The game’s critics say its zealous fans act more like a cult than athletes and harass residents in their efforts to recruit new players. The Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility converted its chapel into a pickleball court, and Sheffley has held weekly rallies to get the city to install outdoor courts in Ottoman Park.

It is at those weekly rallies that pickleball players first encountered the city’s large and shadowy cabal of hooligans. Sheffley said his peaceful rallies were often disrupted by teenagers in ill-fitting pants on skateboards who called them bad names and demanded that space in the park be used to construct a skateboard area, and not “some place for old people to die.”

Millbank Daily-Weekly staff reached out to a local teenager who owns a skateboard and says he speaks for all local hooligans. “Old people blow chunks,” said the teen who asked not to be identified. “Pickleball blows chunks, and that one ancient dude, Pickleball Man or something? He better shut his mouth before someone shoves a paddle in it.”

Sheffley said the hooligan problem at his rallies got so bad that he had to ask the police for help. However, police chief Vern Howard told Sheffley that staffing resources were overextended due to the recent spate of defecations at the community pool. This is when Sheffley got the idea to offer the assistance of the pickleball community to the police. Sheffley reported the police resisted his generous offer at first, but eventually saw the benefits.

“He’s persistent,” conceded Chief Howard of Sheffley. “When he wants something, he doesn’t stop. He called me every day. He got his disciples to call me every day. They jammed up the switchboard, and marched in front of the station with their ping-pong paddle things. I don’t have the staff to fight them, not with all the pooping going on. So I caved.”

Pickleball Ladies with Guns

The resulting partnership between the Millbank Police and the Pickleball Expert League means that all League members are automatically deputized and given a firearm with the authority to use it in the line of duty.

“Duty means keeping hooligans in line,” said Sheffley. “But shooting these youths is not our first priority. It’s our second priority.”

The partnership also means that many of Millbank’s grandparents and grandchildren will be at odds, with the elder generation potentially hunting down the offspring of their own children.

“It doesn’t have to come to that,” insisted Sheffley. “Not if we can get these little punks into a pickleball-intensive diversion program. Eight hours a day with a paddle and they’ll be too tired and happy to cause any trouble. Once they start playing they won’t ever want to stop, and the good news of pickleball will be shared with a new generation. I can see a day when every man, woman and child finds true joy on clean, new outdoor pickleball courts in Ottoman Park.”

Millbank Daily-Weekly staff asked Chief Howard what training or instruction was being given to senior citizens now carrying guns. Howard said, “Let’s just get them all guns and get Sheffley off my back first. We’ll worry about showing them how to use them later.”

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Today in Millbank History

October 9, 1906

Micah Fenword invents a steam-powered doorbell that serenades visitors with a pleasant tune if welcome and drops a 30 lb. weight on visitors if unwelcome.  After the postman gets a nasty shock, Mr. Fenword is asked to refrain from inventing things.


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