10 Odd Town Festivals


Announcer

Welcome to Stuff You Should Know from HowStuffWorks.com.

Josh Clark

Hey, and welcome to the podcast. I'm Josh Clark. With me as always is Charles W. Light as Meringue Bryant.

Chuck Bryant

I've never heard that term, light as meringue, until you just said it before we recorded.

Josh Clark

I think I made it up.

Chuck Bryant

It is light.

Josh Clark

Oh yeah.

Chuck Bryant

It beats light as a feather. That's old.

Josh Clark

Yeah. So Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

Yes, Josh.

Josh Clark

Do you remember when you started a podcast with punkin chunkin, punkin chunkin, punkin chunkin?

Chuck Bryant

I do remember that.

Josh Clark

We've been talking about that a lot and I don't know exactly when this podcast is coming out. But I imagine it's going to be right around the time that the show, Punkin Chunkin and the Road to Punkin Chunkin premiers on the Science Channel.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

Which was the day that was formerly known as Thanksgiving?

Chuck Bryant

Sure.

Josh Clark

Until the Science Channel took it over with Punkin Chunkin.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

Now it's Punkin Chunkin day. Right?

Chuck Bryant

Indeed.

Josh Clark

Do you have a clue what punkin chunkin is?

Chuck Bryant

I do.

Josh Clark

Well let's talk about it.

Chuck Bryant

Well let's talk about a lot of unusual town festivals, Josh.

Josh Clark

That's fine with me because I've got a whole list of them right here.

Chuck Bryant

Let's do a podcast where you don't hear words like hypothalamus and hypocalamus and hippopotamus.

Josh Clark

Okay.

Chuck Bryant

Let's do a fun one.

Josh Clark

Okay, or Clovis police.

Chuck Bryant

Or Clovis police. I got in a Clovis argument with a guy the other day, by they way.

Josh Clark

Did you really? Did you decimate him?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, sort of, and he was kind of like no, I thought people came over from the Bering Land Bridge, and I was like well, they did, but not before home boy come up from South America.

Josh Clark

Exactly, idiot. Did you thump his ear with your forefinger?

Chuck Bryant

I did.

Josh Clark

Good.

Chuck Bryant

So, punkin chunkin, Josh, takes place in Sussex County, Delaware, right? Am I right?

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

Okay.

Josh Clark

Why were you looking at me?

Chuck Bryant

Well I don't know. You looked at me like I had it wrong.

Josh Clark

No, I just zoned out for a second.

Chuck Bryant

And I believe it's a benefit for St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital there.

Josh Clark

Yeah, I didn't know that before, and I was glad to find that out.

Chuck Bryant

Sure, me too. And they've been doing this since 1986.

Josh Clark

Yeah, and they've gotten pretty serious about this, actually.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, and I was staggered at how far these things go.

Josh Clark

Well actually, the world record for a chunked punkin, right, is like 800 feet shy of a mile.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, 4,483 feet, dude.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Can you imagine seeing a pumpkin going that far?

Josh Clark

Well, you wouldn't. It would go out of your field of vision, like halfway there.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, that's a good point.

Josh Clark

I don't think you can see a punkin or a pumpkin go a mile.

Chuck Bryant

Well, if you're out in the middle of the desert or something, you probably could.

Josh Clark

Maybe. Man, there's some pretty plowedfields around there.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, it depends on how big your punkin is.

Josh Clark

Right, or what you're using. And there's actually, I think, seven different categories or seven different contests in three different categories. There's centrifuges, which spin around real fast and then release them.

Chuck Bryant

Okay.

Josh Clark

There is the catapult.

Chuck Bryant

Sure, tried and true.

Josh Clark

And then there's the air cannons. And the air cannons are the ones that everybody shows up for.

Chuck Bryant

Are those the ones that win?

Josh Clark

You want to shoot a punkin a mile, you use an air cannon.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

Have you seen these things?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

Did you go onto the DMC and check it out?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, yeah, I watched it. It was pretty cool.

Josh Clark

There were some that are, what would that be called, vehicle based.

Chuck Bryant

Okay.

Josh Clark

So you drive these things up and they look like howitzers.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

And they will shoot a pumpkin a mile.

Chuck Bryant

Wow.

Josh Clark

It's pretty cool because you think like okay, they're going to shoot a punkin out of an air cannon and it's going to go a mile and then we'll all break for 20 minutes and go get a drink while the next guy loads up.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

This year, at Wheatley Farm, they shot 2,000 pumpkins.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, so there's non-stop action, I would imagine.

Josh Clark

Yeah, it's pretty cool.

Chuck Bryant

And there's all kinds of other stuff they do there, like pie making contests, of course and music. Most of these festivals we're going to talk about have music and food ingestion as part of it.

Josh Clark

Yes.

Chuck Bryant

Because what's a festival without music and food ingestion?

Josh Clark

I don't know.

Chuck Bryant

It's not a festival.

Josh Clark

I don't know that we should spoil who won because we've got the results right here.

Chuck Bryant

Oh yeah, sure, we probably shouldn't.

Josh Clark

No. So let's just not talk about that any more.

Chuck Bryant

what was it they flung on - did you used to watch Northern Exposure?

Josh Clark

Uh-huh.

Chuck Bryant

What did they fling on that show?

Josh Clark

Poo.

Chuck Bryant

No, they flung - oh, a piano.

Josh Clark

Yeah, they used like a catapult or something, right?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, something like that.

Josh Clark

It was awesome. I forgot all about that. That one was almost as good as the one where Chris grabbed all the lamps in town.

Chuck Bryant

Oh yeah.

Josh Clark

And strung them up downtown. He just lit the whole down - oh, it was awesome.

Chuck Bryant

He was a great character. I wonder what happened to that guy.

Josh Clark

He was. He really could have gone over board with it, but he didn't.

Chuck Bryant

Mm-hmm.

Josh Clark

Okay, so that's Punkin Chunkin. It's held in early November every year, right?

Chuck Bryant

In Delaware.

Josh Clark

In Delaware, right. Let's go elsewhere, Chuck. Where would you like to go because we've got a bunch of these?

Chuck Bryant

I know that you're going to stone me for going straight to Nederland, Colorado.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

But why not talk about the Frozen Dead Guy Day's festival.

Josh Clark

This is so weird.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah. This is an actual festival in March, in Colorado, so it's already cold.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Started in 1994. Is that right? No, 2002 is when the festival started, but it's roots go back to 1994.

Josh Clark

Well it actually goes back to 1989 when Grandpa Bredo Morstoel died.

Chuck Bryant

Sure.

Josh Clark

And Grandpa Bredo was a member of a family that was very much proponents of cryogenics.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

So they shipped grandpa off to California, where he was entombed, cryogenically.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, for four years.

Josh Clark

Right. And he, I guess, got a little homesick. His family got a little more confident that they could maintain him. And so they shipped him back, in 1994. And he's been in a Tuff shed, T-U-F-F brand shed since 1994.

Chuck Bryant

Yes, and now they have built the frozen dead guy day's festival around him and his frozen body.

Josh Clark

It's been described as cryonics Mardi Gras.

Chuck Bryant

Hi frozen body.

Josh Clark

Yeah, nice Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

And what goes on there, Josh, besides clearly some drinking is probably happening.

Josh Clark

There is Grandpa's Blue Ball, which is the dance.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

That they have every year.

Chuck Bryant

The cotillion, if you will.

Josh Clark

Right. They have antique hearse shows.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, they have coffin races. That's kind of fun.

Josh Clark

Which I take to be like a toboggan races.

Chuck Bryant

Oh, is that what that is?

Josh Clark

I think so. I mean it's frozen. There's lots of snow. It's Colorado in early March.

Chuck Bryant

Sure, so just throw some blades on a coffin and go at it.

Josh Clark

Then they have some, I guess, non-death events too, like salmon tossing. Although, if you're a salmon, it's a death event!

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, I guess so.

Josh Clark

And frozen beach volleyball, too.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, I'd like to see that.

Josh Clark

It's just an all round odd thing.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, and they also do a polar plunge, which is if you're brave enough to jump in the lake there.

Josh Clark

I am not.

Chuck Bryant

You don't do that?

Josh Clark

No, have you?

Chuck Bryant

I've done that before. I did a frozen lake jump.

Josh Clark

Did you really?

Chuck Bryant

When I was in high school.

Josh Clark

That's insane.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, it was. It's one of those deals where you jump in and you can't breathe. You run back out and warm up and tell your friends about it for the next 30 years.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

But I'm never going to be one of those polar bear guys. Don't worry.

Josh Clark

Yeah, I don't get that. Okay. So Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

Where to next?

Josh Clark

Let's go to Montana.

Chuck Bryant

I like Montana. One of my best friends, Rad Smith, lives in Montana.

Josh Clark

Well hey, Brad Smith.

Chuck Bryant

Rad.

Josh Clark

What?

Chuck Bryant

Rad, it's short for Radford.

Josh Clark

Oh, okay. Hey Radford Smith!

Chuck Bryant

I think he listens, too.

Josh Clark

Okay.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, Rad was the OG. He was my best friend when I was like 15. And we're back in touch again, which is nice.

Josh Clark

Cool. Facebook?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, originally, but immediately, when we found each other, we were like let's just e-mail like normal adults.

Josh Clark

Yeah, e-mailing over Facebook is weird.

Chuck Bryant

I don't do that.

Josh Clark

So Chuck, we're in Montana and we're at the Rock Creek Lodge in Clington, Montana.

Chuck Bryant

Uh-huh, Clinton.

Josh Clark

I think that's how you pronounce it. Is it Clinton?

Chuck Bryant

I think it's just Clinton.

Josh Clark

Oh, okay. I was doing the Kang and Kodas pronunciation.

Chuck Bryant

President Clinton.

Josh Clark

Right. And every year, in September, they hold the testicle festival.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah. Rocky Mountain Oysters, as most people might know this by.

Josh Clark

Or Montana Tender Groin.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, I like that too.

Josh Clark

This is one of the funniest festivals I've ever heard of in my life.

Chuck Bryant

It is. Chris Pollett probably goes every year.

Josh Clark

I'll bet.

Chuck Bryant

And everyone knows that the Rocky Mountain oyster is a nice way of saying that you eat bull's testicles.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

And it's a real thing. It's really on the menu in a lot of restaurants.

Josh Clark

Apparently, came off of the trail, off of the cattle drive trail, where, I guess Cookie would take recently castrated bull's testicles and toss them in a fire. And I guess they're really easy to cook because they just pop open when they're ready.

Chuck Bryant

Oh wow.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

I just got a chill.

Josh Clark

I have a confession to make.

Chuck Bryant

You've had them.

Josh Clark

I have not.

Chuck Bryant

Oh, okay. You really want to go?

Josh Clark

I am definitely going to this next year. I want to try this.

Chuck Bryant

Well, plus, Montana is awesome.

Josh Clark

Yeah. It looks like a great time.

Chuck Bryant

What else can you do there, Josh? I know you can have - there's music, of course. There's a hairy chest contest.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

Which I'm not sure what that has to do with bull's testicles.

Josh Clark

I guess they put hair on your chest.

Chuck Bryant

Hair on your chest. I guess that makes sense. A wet T-shirt contest, which is always fun at a bull testicle contest, and a bull chip throwing, so I guess like a cow pie sometimes can flatten out and harden like a Frisbee.

Josh Clark

Sure.

Chuck Bryant

I guess it's the same thing.

Josh Clark

We can only hope so. It's a big one. There's 10,000 people that eat about 4,000 pounds of bull testicles. I'll be one of them next September.

Chuck Bryant

Dude, that's great.

Josh Clark

And it's not the only one, though. It's not the only Rocky Mountain Oyster Festival in the U.S.

Chuck Bryant

Oh yeah, there's another one in Texas, right?

Josh Clark

It is, yeah, Throckmorton, Texas.

Chuck Bryant

In Clinton. And they do the same thing there, Josh.

Josh Clark

I know. The one in Throckmorton, actually has if you don't like bull's testicles, so if you're like 99 percent of the human population, there is a taste like chicken cook off competition, where you can cook any weird thing you want.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, but if you're not in to bull's testicles, you're probably not going to -

Josh Clark

You're not going to be in Throckmorton in May.

Chuck Bryant

No, you're not going to be eating out the taste like chicken line either.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Because I guarantee it ain't chicken.

Josh Clark

No, no, no. Although, that would be delightfully ironic if somebody cooked chicken for the taste like chicken competition!

Chuck Bryant

Does it taste like chicken? Yes, because it is.

Josh Clark

Yeah, exactly.

Chuck Bryant

That's what I would say.

Josh Clark

That's the testicle festival and the world championship Rocky Mountain Oyster Festival.

Chuck Bryant

I want to go overseas now, to Spain, Espana.

Josh Clark

Do you? Okay.

Chuck Bryant

Because this one is something that we podcasted on recently, the near death experience.

Josh Clark

Yeah, yeah.

Chuck Bryant

There's actually a near - the Festival of Near Death Expereince.

Josh Clark

Yes.

Chuck Bryant

Which is crazy?

Josh Clark

Chuck, this one is held in -

Chuck Bryant

Fiesta de Santa Marta de Rebarteme.

Josh Clark

Nice one, Chuck, which also translates to, as Chuck said - actually doesn't translate to it, but you can call it the Festival of Near Death Experiences. The way Chuck said it would be the Festival of Saint Martha of Rebarteme.

Chuck Bryant

Rebarteme, actually I think I pronounced it wrong, but you got it right, Rebarteme.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

It's in July, July 29th every year.

Josh Clark

Saint Martha actually is the Saint of Death.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

Right?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, and this festival is actually for people, specifically, who has had near death experiences.

Josh Clark

This one is - I'm glad we talked about the frozen dead guy days. It's not like that.

Chuck Bryant

No.

Josh Clark

Although, the people who are, I guess, the celebrants or the center of this festival, the people who've had near death experiences are carried into the main church in the town. What is it, las nieves?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

And in coffins.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, they're carried in coffins to a service, a church service, from what I gather where they get up and they tell their stories to everyone.

Josh Clark

Right, which, apparently also sound very much alike. There's that light at the end of the tunnel, all that stuff that we talked about in the near death experience podcast.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

But, I guess if you want to go meet a bunch of people who died and come back, this is your chance.

Chuck Bryant

I think if I went as an imposter, which I'm known to do, I would be one of the whatever small percentage of the people were that had the hellfire experience, just to spice things up.

Josh Clark

I think that's a good idea.

Chuck Bryant

Remember, there's a small percentage.

Josh Clark

One percent, according to that 82 Gallup poll.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, because everyone is like oh yeah, white light, white light. And I would get up there and say I saw fire.

Josh Clark

You'd get up there and go you don't want to die.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

You're all doomed.

Chuck Bryant

And get me out of this coffin.

Josh Clark

Right, so that is the - what's it called? Say it again, Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

The Fiesta de Santa Marta de Rebarteme.

Josh Clark

Nice. Was that Italian or Spanish accent?

Chuck Bryant

They're close.

Josh Clark

Where do you want to go next, dude?

Chuck Bryant

Well we can't not talk about wife carrying!

Josh Clark

This is a lot like the healthcare podcast, the last one, where we went all over the world.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, in a balloon.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

But this one is far less informative and educational in nature.

Josh Clark

Sure. Yes, let's talk about wife carrying. That would put us squarely in Finland, specifically Sonka Yarva, Finland.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, they have letters that don't even look like letters.

Josh Clark

They have letters that don't even exist.

Chuck Bryant

And it is exactly as it sounds. There's no weird play on word here. It is actually there are races where a man picks up his wife and carries her in whatever way you choose, whatever way you think is the best way to get across the finish line the quickest.

Josh Clark

And the one that's held in Finland is world championships, but these have popped up elsewhere, including in the United States.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, but the one in Finland, dude, 1,000 people attend this thing.

Josh Clark

No, it's like the one. People who win in the United States or Hong Kong or Australia go to Finland to compete for the champs, right.

Chuck Bryant

Okay. Gotcha!

Josh Clark

The championships. So you would think the Finnish are the best at this. And actually, a couple did win the 2009. But I am wont to point out, they were not married.

Chuck Bryant

Really?

Josh Clark

As far as I know, they weren't married. The 2009 winners were, I'm about to butcher this, Tisto McTiene. So sorry Tisto! And Christina Happenin!

Chuck Bryant

She's one happening girl.

Josh Clark

So different last names, and it said their cities, two different cities.

Chuck Bryant

But see, there aren't many rules to this. But there are a couple. And one is that she must be over 17.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Over 108 pounds.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Meaning that she qualifies in the weight class. And if she doesn't weigh that much, they actually tie things to her to make her weigh that much.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

If your wife comes in at 100 pounds, they'll put an eight pound weight around her waist.

Josh Clark

She's got like a set of silverware around her or something.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah. Let's talk about the methods.

Josh Clark

Actually, as I was saying, you would think the Finnish are the best. The Estonians are so good, that they have their own method of carrying, named after them.

Chuck Bryant

Called the Estonian method.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

And I've seen pictures. Have you ever seen pictures of this?

Josh Clark

Uh-huh.

Chuck Bryant

It looks like, clearly, the way to go because you can do the piggy-back, but everyone knows that's not the way to go.

Josh Clark

No, because the center of gravity is lower. The weight is toward your back, the carrier's back. The Estonian method is upside down, like that, right?

Chuck Bryant

Well, yeah, it's your wife would put her legs around your head, upside down, so her face is kind of around where your lower back is, and then she'll wrap her arms around your waist.

Josh Clark

Right. So the bulk of her weight, like the trunk and the bottom are up on your shoulders.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, it's like a human backpack, essentially.

Josh Clark

Very much so, yes.

Chuck Bryant

And that's clearly the way to go because, I believe, wasn't that the method used when they broke the world record?

Josh Clark

I believe so.

Chuck Bryant

So Estonian is definitely the style you should, if you're intent on winning. And you should intend on winning because this one, actually, has a nice little prize attached.

Josh Clark

It does. You get your wife's weight in beer.

Chuck Bryant

I love it.

Josh Clark

I love it, too. I would love to drink that much beer.

Chuck Bryant

And I imagine if she weighs less than the 108 pounds, they don't give you the weight of the silverware that she had around her waist. If she weighed 80 pounds, they'd probably give you 80 pounds of beer.

Josh Clark

I guess so.

Chuck Bryant

But if I were in Finland, I would beef up my wife to a cool 220 and see if I could win and get 220 pounds of beer.

Josh Clark

I'd ask if I could trade the beer in for an equal amount of vodka instead.

Chuck Bryant

They might do that.

Josh Clark

Maybe.

Chuck Bryant

That's a lot of vodka.

Josh Clark

Chuck, we are exiting Finland now.

Chuck Bryant

Goodbye Finland.

Josh Clark

Let's go back to Spain. We probably should have just stayed in Spain while we were there, right?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, but we're racking up frequent flyer points here.

Josh Clark

We're going to La Tomatina in Buno Spain.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, this is a cool one.

Josh Clark

In a province of Valencia.

Chuck Bryant

A.k.a. you probably know it as the largest tomato fight in the world.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

And that's what it is.

Josh Clark

That's exactly what it is. It began in 1945, and not everyone is entirely certain why.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, there's different theories like these two friends got in a fight and it escalate to a food fight. And then everyone around them said this is kind of fun. Let's food fight with them! And then that escalated to the next town over. But that doesn't sound likely to me.

Josh Clark

No.

Chuck Bryant

This isn't a Farrelly brother's comedy.

Josh Clark

Right, exactly. But however, whatever its origin, it's been going on every year, as far as I know. And for an hour, on the last Wednesday of August, everybody grabs as many tomatoes as they can. Apparently 140 tons are trucked in these days. And everybody just starts whipping tomatoes at one another.

Chuck Bryant

I want to do this one, man.

Josh Clark

Oh yeah. I would turn on you like that.

Chuck Bryant

Are you kidding me? Before they said go, you would have a tomato in my face.

Josh Clark

I would not, Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

Or you would bring in your own rotten tomatoes.

Josh Clark

I would not.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, you would.

Josh Clark

I wouldn't.

Chuck Bryant

I would. Oh, that's me I was thinking of.

Josh Clark

Oh, okay.

Chuck Bryant

I would do that. And it sounds like a lot of fun.

Josh Clark

Well yeah, it's a huge tomato fight that lasts an hour. So that is La Tomatina, which takes place when, Chuck, the last Wednesday of August, right?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, and it's pretty dang popular, 20,000 strong.

Josh Clark

That's a lot of tomatoes thrown.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

Chuck, our last stop you could call a whistle stop.

Chuck Bryant

Yes.

Josh Clark

If you were a jerk that liked to make stupid jokes, you would call it a whistle stop, wouldn't you?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

It's - what is it? Laguna Nigel, California.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, Laguna Nigel, it's in Southern California.

Josh Clark

Well, not all of us have lived in California.

Chuck Bryant

Well, I'm sorry.

Josh Clark

So Chuck, ever since 1980, once a year, and I think it's in July, right?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, I'm surprised I haven't heard of this.

Josh Clark

Once a year, people line up along the railroad tracks, along the side, not actually on the railroad tracks. That would be Hands Across America.

Chuck Bryant

Sure.

Josh Clark

And they moon passing Amtrak Trains.

Chuck Bryant

Yes, and for those of you who don't know what mooning is, that is a practice of pulling down your pants and showing somebody your butt.

Josh Clark

Your bottom.

Chuck Bryant

It is an old tradition. I wonder where mooning started? I have no idea.

Josh Clark

Oh, that's a -

Chuck Bryant

But at one point or another, if you were growing up in high school, you probably mooned somebody at some point, pressed ham.

Josh Clark

Would you like to hear my mooning story?

Chuck Bryant

I figured you had one.

Josh Clark

Yeah?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, let's hear it.

Josh Clark

So in sixth grade, I was the crossing guard, as most sixth graders were.

Chuck Bryant

Okay.

Josh Clark

And I was at one post, bored, out of smokes.

Chuck Bryant

(Inaudible).

Josh Clark

My flask was dry. At the other end of the block were a couple of girls, both of whom I was friends with and liked. And I was like Kelly, Joellen, and they looked over and I mooned them. And they started screaming and pointing and telling everyone who would listen that I just mooned them. And I'm like no, shut up, shut up.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, mooning is private.

Josh Clark

Long story short, I end up in the principal's office, and I lose my right to go to Cedar Point as the sixth grade class trip that year.

Chuck Bryant

You're kidding me.

Josh Clark

No, and I got kicked off the crossing guard, which is actually my point because I was tired of being a crossing guard.

Chuck Bryant

You know what? That's a crappy punishment. Your principal was a jerk.

Josh Clark

Yes.

Chuck Bryant

He should have just kicked you off the crossing guard. But to not let you go to Cedar Point!

Josh Clark

No, I agree.

Chuck Bryant

That's cruel.

Josh Clark

It seemed a little much. This is the same principal, though, who was about to paddle me once and as she was getting the paddle down, I was like I think you might want to call my parents first.

Chuck Bryant

Oh really?

Josh Clark

And she was like what, and called my parents. And my mom was like you do not hit my child with a paddle.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, see, you're a little younger than me.

Josh Clark

I was like, I'm indulged.

Chuck Bryant

Capital punishment was kind of on its way out when you were coming around.

Josh Clark

She had the paddles.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah. Well my dad was my principal, as you know.

Josh Clark

I know. And I bet he paddled you relentlessly.

Chuck Bryant

He paddled me one time in school, as principal.

Josh Clark

Wow.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

I guess he kind of had to do that just to say I'm not above doing this.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, isn't that crazy to think about now, though, the principal actually hitting your child with wood.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

It seems like something from the 18th Century.

Josh Clark

And they even had manufactured paddles with the air holes drilled in them.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

So there was less drag.

Chuck Bryant

That's what he had. His was all taped up too.

Josh Clark

What is wrong with the older generations?

Chuck Bryant

I don't know, man.

Josh Clark

They're all nuts.

Chuck Bryant

It is weird to think about.

Josh Clark

And they're about to put a huge strain on our healthcare system.

Chuck Bryant

Thanks a lot for that. So back to mooning, every year, since 1980, they do that for some reason. And the police have good humor about it. They let it go, as long as you don't take it too far and you don't expose other body parts. They say you can moon the trains. They moon every train that goes by. Is that right?

Josh Clark

Yes, as far as I know. And the cops are there.

Chuck Bryant

Just to make sure it's peaceful.

Josh Clark

Well in 2008 - no, to make sure people don't show their genitals.

Chuck Bryant

Well, and make sure it's peaceful.

Josh Clark

In 2008, the party got broken up because, apparently, people were like it's not enough to bare my bottom.

Chuck Bryant

We'll just get naked.

Josh Clark

Yeah.

Chuck Bryant

And that's not Amtrak Mooning Day.

Josh Clark

Hey man, it's Laguna Nigel, California.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah.

Josh Clark

I'm stripping down to nothing but my Tevas.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, when was that, 2008, that they said enough's enough.

Josh Clark

Yeah, and I like their website. There's a series of questions, like when, where, why, that kind of thing. And there's one that says who's in charge. And the answer is no one.

Chuck Bryant

Right.

Josh Clark

No one organizes or is responsible for this annual event.

Chuck Bryant

You just show up and pull your pants down.

Josh Clark

Right.

Chuck Bryant

Pretty cool.

Josh Clark

So if you happen to be there in Laguna Nigel, not to be confused with Laguna Niguel, its sister city, elsewhere, on July 10, 2010, you just ask where the Amtrak mooning party is.

Chuck Bryant

Yes. Boy this was a good one.

Josh Clark

So, Chuck.

Chuck Bryant

I feel like we're all just a little smarter.

Josh Clark

I've got some places I want to go.

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, me too, Rocky Mountain Oyster Festival.

Josh Clark

Yeah. Do you want to go?

Chuck Bryant

No, just drop me off in Laguna Nigel and I'll be mooning trains.

Josh Clark

Okay. So that is unusual town festivals. And actually, if you type in festivals in the search bar at HowStuffWorks.com, it will bring up all manner of stuff.

Chuck Bryant

Yes.

Josh Clark

There's some pretty good stuff on there.

Chuck Bryant

And we're anticipating about a million e-mails about your town's festival, too.

Josh Clark

Yes, we are, which you just saved me the ending. So Chuck, let's get just right into listener mail, shall we?

Chuck Bryant

Josh, I'm just going to call this - what am I going to call this? I'm going to call this boarding school e-mail and it made me laugh.

Josh Clark

Gone wrong?

Chuck Bryant

No, gone right. This is from Natalie in Massachusetts, and sometimes you just get these e-mails that are just kind of cute and you think I'll just read it. What the heck.

Josh Clark

Okay.

Chuck Bryant

Guys, I'm a boarding high school student in Massachusetts. I sent an e-mail a few months back about listening to podcasts at camp and now I listen during silent study. At my school, I have silent study.

Josh Clark

Wait; is this your Natalie impression?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, sure. From 7:30 to 9:30 and to make things interesting, I listen to your podcast. It is the highlight of my day. I'm currently listening to the podcast that came out today, and I feel so much cooler than my roommate who is listening to the Pussy Cat Dolls.

Josh Clark

Oh yeah.

Chuck Bryant

So good for you.

Josh Clark

We are definitely cooler than the Pussy Cat Dolls, I assure you.

Chuck Bryant

You guys are way cooler than them.

Josh Clark

See.

Chuck Bryant

She just said so. I really enjoy your podcast on science, history and music, but the economy and politics are not my fave, something you seem to enjoy. Josh, why do you want to chew on babies? Sorry for the interjection there, ha, ha. He clearly doesn't really want to chew on babies. There's just that gnaw like ma, ma, ma, give me that, that kind of thing. Now I supply my English teacher with extra credit questions with things I learned from the podcast. And I got the chance to teach the class and taught them about MK Ultra.

Josh Clark

Awesome.

Chuck Bryant

Pretty cool. Could you give me a shout out on the podcast so I could show the girls on my dorm how awesome I am? This is the shout out Natalie. That would be the highlight of my life.

Josh Clark

Yes.

Chuck Bryant

Which is kind of depressing? Other than the time I saw a ghost. Another ghost story!

Josh Clark

Natalie is just full of stuff, isn't she?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah. I'm going to tell my ghost story at some other point, but I did see a ghost once. I'm going to save that one for our ghost podcast.

Josh Clark

All right.

Chuck Bryant

The weekend activity a few weeks ago was a ghost hunter who uncovered a ghost in the history wing, suggestion ghost hunters, is what she says.

Josh Clark

Yeah, we're not going to do ghost hunters. We'll do ghosts. I have a ghost story, too.

Chuck Bryant

And then she followed that by saying that was spontaneous. This girl's adorable. I do not know how that train of thought went. Thank you for reading my rambling. You have won Twinkie points. Natalie, from Massachusetts!

Josh Clark

Nice, Natalie. Natalie, clearly, has a firm grasp on her stream of consciousness.

Chuck Bryant

She does.

Josh Clark

Well, if you have a firm grasp on your stream of consciousness, or you've ever seen the film, Drugstore Cowboy, you can send us an e-mail to StuffPodcast@HowStuffWorks.com.Announcer: For more on this and thousands of other topics, visit HowStuffWorks.com. Want more How Stuff Works? Check out our blogs on the HowStuffWorks.com home page.