Thursday, April 10, 2008

NEVER! I Will Become the Martyr of Blogdom First

It has come to my attention that a few News organizations are keeping tabs on this blog. Let me say that if you read it here there is some truthiness in it. I do not make stuff up, maybe augment it a little but if you rip off a few layers of the onion you will find truth.

How do I know they are reading?

When I get an email from the Lieutenant Governors Office asking me to reveal my sources that's how.

NEVER - what did I want to say to him? I wanted to say "TEAR DOWN THAT WALL MR. CHAPPELL!" Well - that is what I wanted to say but that is what I said to Nancy Reagan once and then we all know who got to say it FIRST!! grrrrrrr! Plus . . . . it really made no sense at all in this situation.

I will never reveal my sources - I will go to jail and become the martyr of blogdom. Children will sing songs of me before I tell them a friend of a friend who knew a guys brother that he worked with told me!
I attended a few meetings last night and this is the blog where people will say "Let's not invite him anymore" and the Town of Columbus will pass a law saying "Rod Melotte will be forced to wear the following t-shirt at all times when he appears in public".

The Auditorium is in a bad way. The roof is NOT just a shingle problem, it's actually the part that holds UP the shingles. Meaning the roof can come down at any moment. This building could be the center piece for Columbus and I urge the city, from a "used to be outsider" point of view, this place HAS to be fixed.

The Auditorium Committee has to wait until the City fixes the roof and they are dragging their feet because, well, some people seem to think a new building would be more cost effective. Long run this building is a gold mine for Columbus! MANY MANY towns would beg to have a structure like this!!

Lots of nice people in the groups that were in attendance and it was a joy to listen to you guys! Well done and if I can help in anyway you know how to contact me in the city jail.

Then I went to a sparsely attended open meeting to discuss how Columbus can reap the rewards of Public Enemies. I say sparsely because there were only 2 or 3 business owners from the downtown in attendance. Were they invited? I would think each one would have gotten a phone call or email telling them to attend. Not sure if that happened. If they WERE invited and did not show up. SHAME ON YOU GUYS!

There were lots of ideas but many that I knew immediately "that will never happen". Not because they were bad ideas but no one wanted to actually put the effort into actually DOING it.

One thing that was proposed by Bob, Photography the way you want it, O'Brion that I think is an outstanding idea is to have Antique Fire Truck Days.

Every town has an old firetruck right? Why not have a day where all the towns bring their antique firetruck to Columbus for a parade and a meet and greet. Kids love firetrucks (I wanted to be a firetruck when I was young), this would bring in families from all over southern Wisconsin.

Bob if you need help, let me know!

Then the next week we could have Antique Car Days, the next week Antique Tractor Days. The infra structure will be there. We just need people to get off their butts and DO IT! If we can have back to back to back Saturdays we can advertise this - it will be BIG!! People will look forward to that stretch of weeks. Full page ad's in newspapers advertising 3 big weekends for Antique STUFF.

Antique is the KEY to Columbus - THAT is already in place! Just expand it.


What Columbus has to do first is do the simple things! If you have an idea that is really involved it'll never get done. So you MUST do the easy things. For instance. Downtown. One simple thing to do with all the empty but beautiful buildings is put up large photos of Public Enemies. People are coming to town to look at the buildings. Photo Bob has 8x10 photos of the movie in one store window and people are ALWAYS looking at them.

I propose, make posters for every vacant window. Give people something to look at. A 30x40 inch photo quality poster is $20. There are a lot of 6meg photos that would work and we could even have smaller photos. Make people NOT look at the empty buildings but at the photos!

Then there was a Master Gardener in the group. Those guys are amazing!!! There were two 5x5 foot gardens boxes across from where I work made by Master Gardeners and they were the most beautiful easy to take care of gardens I had ever seen. Let them put a few of those up in the downtown area.

Start with the easy stuff and once you see the smiles the more complicated stuff will soon not look so hard.

We need people grab onto an idea, grab it by the horns and run with it. Not sit around and discuss it until it's too late. The longer you wait the less chance it will happen.

For instance - The photo book for Public Enemies. I'm not even sure if I can publish it but if I just let it ride waiting for an OK - I am sure it will never get done.

Stop talking and start doing!!
I received this from Darksmile (I think in the future we will all have names like "Darksmile" and no longer have Rod and Mary style names, plus we will all have HUGE thumbs from the younger people text messaging).

Think about it, your sons son will have a name like "Skates" and will have thumbs the size of a cucumbers!

Click on it and use it as wall paper.

WARNING - ANYTHING with Dillinger on it that is sold YOU WILL be sued! The Dillinger people are being REALLY HARD!!!
Kitty B'gosh reporting from a frenzied state!

There is a complete whirlwind of activity today as Main Street is nearing the finalization of the transformation. People are heading downtown in droves. It's been decades since we've seen this many people on Main Street.

The billboards have been applied to the wall hiding the sundial (yes, Rod. I have seen photos of that arch you featured today. Maybe our hideous sundial isn't so bad after all.). Final touches are being added to many of the store fronts as well as their window dressings. And the Exclusive Company/Walgreen's is looking FANTASTIC!

I spied some interesting set dressing as I nosed my way in places I don't think I belonged. There were some olde-tymie looking phone booths stashed inside of the Limelight Studios. I would imagine those will be coming out on to the street for filming. Also found a old-style STOP sign. And I found where they have the trolley car parked that came into town yesterday.

Main Street will close at 3 am April 10th. Placement of the cobblestone street is supposed to take place on the 10th or 11th. Reports on whether or not foot traffic will be allowed vary depending upon who you talked to. Some say they will allow foot traffic if they are not filming; others say no type of traffic at all, no matter what.

Finally, on to the Tids and Bits Corner. AngelinaSmurfette says that her other half is to report for his haircut and fitting on the 10th. He will be filming on the 16th, 17th and 18th. My guess is we may be seeing a bank robbery take place on one or more of those days.

Kitty B'gosh is going for a cat nap!
Check out this video - it was filmed in Oshkosh in 1912 as the "first" home movie.

I have a bunch more but it's getting long!

You might notice a small change in the filming schedule. Also - JD WILL sing in the movie!! Only one song and maybe not the entire song.

You guys with a script might want to confirm that.

Talk at ya later

Grinder . . . oops Rod


  1. The state actually has people that all they do is read blogs,newspapers, etc to make sure that people that are employed with the state aren't talking bad in editorials and such or revealing any important stuff.

    Perhaps I better change my name :)


    The next generation will have lots of acronyms in use along with their big thumbs.

    Thanks much for the laughs ~ you've brightened my day immensely.

    If you need a visitor whilst sitting in your lonely cell, holler.

    kaylinne (not my real name, of course)

  3. was that a dig on people with the name "skates".....??????
    lol...keep fighting the good fight.

  4. JD will sing? Who's your source for this information? Tell me now or I will have the governor on you!

    I think you're right about starting with the small things. If you put this huge mammoth task in front of people, nobody wants to even try. I hope that you guys in Columbus will be able to use this to your advantage. I know I would love to come visit...especially while they're filming again later this month. :D

    Thanks for continuing to keep us updated and standing your ground!

  5. Rod, oops I mean Grinder!

    YOU CRACK ME UP!!!! Food strike anyone? should we chain ourselves to the Auditorium? Don't worry, we'll each send a dollar towards your bail = )

  6. PS: I am an elbow grease kind of girl and I love a project to get behind... = )

    Thanks for always brightening my day!

  7. "we'll each send a dollar towards your bail"

    yea - seeing how THAT is working I'm not really encouraged.

  8. From what I have been told!? Johnny is suppose to be staying at the Copper Leaf Hotel. I was assured that this is 90% correct?!?!? Just thought I would let you guys know.

  9. Lynn—this post is not aimed at you personally—but I really hope people do not plan on either following or stalking Johnny Depp at whatever hotel he is staying at. He has been MORE than gracious to his fans and the least we can do is to give the man some space already.

  10. That was not my intent. I respect this group of people and noticed others commenting on suppossed places and thought I would mention what I heard as interest only. Mr. Depp is very thoughtful and generous and should be respected. :)

  11. Lynn—absolutely that's why it was not directed at you!! :-) I just know of a situation where two cars of people actually followed Johnny from Columbus to his hotel in Madison. Not a good thing.

  12. Believe me, I was never thrilled with "Mary" either. Even my husband doesn't use it; he says I'm no Mary. (What he does call me I will not divulge.) 1960s Catholic parents toeing the line on major saint namesakes, whaddaya gonna do.

    I love Bob's idea. Do they still have the old car show in Iola? When I lived up in that part of the state, it was such a huge deal. I'd go, even though I'm not into cars, because it was an EVENT. Antique vehicle weekends have the potential to bring in the whole fam, if there's enough on the sidelines to keep the noncar folks entertained. Music. Food. Specials at the antique emporia. This is a great idea!

    I don't vote in Columbus, but I do recall the mess last year (aired heavily on Madison TV) about the faction that wants a new municipal building more than anything. Things got kinda messy, as I recall. You're right-- other communities would give every strip mall and cinder block they have for what is really Columbus' signature building. Cool outside AND in. (You'll be glad to know that, Rod... although I wasn't a guest of the court, just picking up some evidence from a crime we were the victims of.)

    Stay warm, Oshkosh peeps!


  13. Hi Rod and all you fans! This is my first time leaving a comment. Took me long enough. When my husband was spending 4 days with Johnny Depp and being a movie star (hee hee--always teasing him), I read your site to keep up to date. I was stuck at home with a broken car :-(
    My hubby has been keeping in touch with the other Columbus extras. Some of them even went out to "The Bar Next Door" in Madison (If anyone knows the Dillinger/Capone connections to the bar--let me know).
    Thanks Rod for a great site to read!

  14. Our fearless leader here is way too modest - when he introduced himself at the second meeting, people gasped, heads turned. Really rather dramatic. Quite the celebrity in town!!!

    Shakenbsis - I know where there are keys to the Auditorium - and can get chains. :)

  15. Love your site Rod I live 2 miles from downtown Oshkosh I went down there at 930 am the streets were not all the way closed yet. I was standing next to (Exclusive) Walgreens when Micheal Mann walked by the bank. I knew it was him right away, he went down an alley where a white semi was unloading behind the bank.

  16. Rod,
    I will send two bucks.

    Keep up the good work. Great sight!


  17. Graham - maybe I'll see you next week in O-Town - my brother-in-law

    wink wink.

    All of this...your blog, the comments, it is making my day!

  19. bale...

  20. A comment to where Johnny
    could be staying.
    Grinder said that thousands of people
    all over the globe are reading
    everything that's written here. Good people and not so good


  21. Ty,
    Love the pictures of Christian Bale! Were those from chicago or oshkosh? Wish I could make it to Oshkosh, I was in Columbus on the first day of filming and have been wanting to see more! I love reading the blog and comments to keep me up to date on the movie!

  22. Regarding your comments yesterday about the Texas situation. I hope that people gathered from your comments that it's so important for each one of us to stand up to injustices in the world, especially when it involves human lives. Just one person can make a difference, as in this case with the 16 year old. Thanks for dicussing it.

    Next, being a resident of this fine city, I highly agree that something needs to be done to grow from this entire experience. What a rare opportunity and I hope more business will be involved in the future. Grab onto it while you can people! And who cares about a "new" Auditorium???? Anyone can build that! Treasure the one we have and fix it (well, as soon as the funds come flying in...or are they there but just hidding?)!!

    Rod, thanks for rallying. Keep it up! Any suggestions for what your readers can do to help, in addition to the Auditorium fund?

  23. Ty! Awesome pictures of Bale! Thanks for sharing! :D

  24. The Bar Next Door, from my understanding was once a stop for some Chicago gangsters. I don't believe it was a bar at the time, but I am unsure. I have been there a few times as I just work down the road. Very small and nice. I have enjoyed my times there :)

    Glad to see everyone is doing well today :)

  25. So there's no point in going down to Oshkosh on Friday.......?

  26. I was concerned when I saw posts about where Johnny might be staying.
    There are people in our society whose grip on reality is tenuous and have celebrity obsessions. You don't know whether such a person is reading this so you should not tempt them with information about Johnny's private location.
    I agree it can be interesting to know where he stayed but better to keep that information quiet until after he has left.

    Rod, thanks for all your work on the blog.

  27. "There are people in our society whose grip on reality is tenuous"

    Was that aimed at me???
    Casting NEWS

    Shawn Hatosy has scored a gig as FBI agent John Madala in Public Enemies

  28. The person who has the Rory pics from several days ago also has two pics of Shawn, from 3/26...

    Well today's weather certainly does suck, at least up here around Oshkosh. It's bleepin' cold and flippin' windy along with the rain. I almost hope there isn't anything happening yet so people can feel ok with their decision to leave Hope it's better tomorrow!!

  29. Hey,
    Thanks for the reply about Milwaukee before, I'm somewhat nervous and hopeful.
    HOWEVER! I have another question! Where exactly will the filming in Oshkosh be tomorrow? I'm hoping to attend a bit, and would like the address (or near it), thank you in advance!


  30. I'm wondering about filming this weekend as well. Anyone know what scenes they're filming, and when? I'd like to bring my Grandma out to see some of it.

  31. there is a live webcam for Pioneer Airport in Oshkosh

  32. *watching webcam*

    There is equipment, guys working on something...perhaps changing the name on that hangar?

    Cool. I'd forgotten about this webcam. Thanks for the reminder.

  33. blah...not another antique car show. There are SOO many of those in this state. There has to be something else that can bring people into this town.

    I wish more business owners would of showed up for the meeting. I think what the leaders of this town need to do is figure out what Cedarburg, Sister Bay, Port Washington and other cities in the state with thriving downtowns have done keep up their downtown.

    We have talented artists in this town. We have a man who makes lovely pottery, painters, photographers. Couldn't there be an arts and crafts weekend.

    Make it easier for a photography or painter to open a shop downtown and sell their artwork. People love stuff that is unique.

    This town also needs a larger farmer's market. Keep people from going to other communities to buy fresh produce, meat and eggs.

    Just some ideas. :)

  34. Rod, do you realize that you are now a public enemy yourself? Cool! The 'powers that be' may be in a tissy about this site, but anyone who visits it knows that everything is HEARSAY & RUMOR, AND FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY!

    Please don't go to the Big House, Rod. Who would keep this going? I sent the fund some $$$. Enjoy the snow everyone! :)

  35. Just came back from washington street downtown oshkosh...trolly car is now there and some of the brick road put down with the trolly rails...they are having a hard time with the wind and rain. Names have changed on the airplane hanger but see no activity going on.
    Cant we all just get along and share in the excitement. I love this blog and I dont think anyone wishes to cause problems.

  36. Just wanted to let you guys know that Johnny Depp and a huge posse left the Outagamie Airport in Appleton a little after 5:30. Not sure if they flew in on a private or commercial plane. Surprisingly, people for the most part kept a distance although some groups of people yelled things like "we love you Johnny!", and I think I heard someone say "I want to have your child". Not sure if they're heading down to Oshkosh right away or not. Multiple people saw Michael Mann in Oshkosh this morning so it's already known that he's getting things ready to roll. Now we have to keep an eye open for Bale.

  37. Well I just emailed the Mayor of Columbus some of my ideas for the city.

  38. How come the renevation of the auditorium hasn't come up as a referendum in Columbus? Shouldn't the residents have a say? I'm sure everyone would agree to fix it up! It is one of Columbus's most prominent landmarks. Why should only the first floor of the building be useable? I am personally very disappointed the city government has been dragging their feet for so many years. Many residents of Columbus don't even realize that there is an abandoned auditorium on the 2nd/3rd floors of City Hall. The auditorium could bring so much to the city and the Mayor and city council is just allowing it to rot away.

  39. Rod, if you end up in jail we'll all visit; or better yet, be sittin' there with you! LOL I like
    the idea of a big arts & crafts show! The one that Beaver Dam has every year is a BIG money maker and draws huge crowds!! I had written down the address for the auditorium fund but misplaced it! I'm writing it down again and sending a check!! Columbus' architecture is what drew THIS film crew there in the first place; why would the city allow such a fabulous building fall to ruin or be torn down???

  40. Maybe people should start protesting outside city hall...

  41. The Columbus auditorium situation sounds like the Rothschild Pavilion situation in Rothschild, WI. Government didn't want to pay to refurbish the building, so concerned citizens ended up doing it. The citizens got behind a leader and the building is now usable, soon to be fantastic again! If you can't find the info and you want to know who spearheaded the project, let me know and I'll get the info for you.

  42. how about some good local music:

  43. I totally agree with 7:15pm Anonymous and Sue. I moved to Columbus 2 years ago and I didn't even know there was an abandoned auditorium until my husband and I happened to stumble upon a sign which read "free auditorium tours" one Saturday while we were out walking around. Then we learned that it had been allowed to waste away all these years. It is really sad that the city has ignored it all this time. It could bring so much life to the city. We could have plays, concerts, movies, dance recitals, and all sorts of stuff. It would bring more entertainment to Columbus and the surrounding communities.

  44. I love the idea of the antique trucks and tractors and also the arts and crafts show..I know there was a craft show last year around July 4th, at Fireman's Park, but how about more of an art fair like Madison has, only on a smaller scale of course!

    I think we can include both the historical and the arts in making Columbus a great place to visit!

    I think it would be so cool to go to a concert at the auditorium!! There has to be something to make people WANT to go downtown! I think a usable auditorium is definately a start!!

  45. Again - the problem is that people talk but no one DOES anything.

    We need to let leaders know that citizens are behind fixing the Auditorium. Seriously - there are some that think it would be better to demolish the building and have a knew building - that makes me SICK.

    If you REALLY want to help contact

    Her husband is the main dude in the Audi Committee. There really is strength in numbers against city hall - I know first hand.

    When I was a kid Fort Atkinson wanted to cancel our Orchestra when I was in 3rd grade and my parents went to war with the city (hmmmmmm - that IS curious isn't it. . . . I just learned something about ME).

    Strength in numbers and LET THEM KNOW!


    Periods of rain. Highs in the middle 40s. Northeast winds 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 80 percent.


    Periods of light rain...sleet and snow changing to all snow during the evening. 1 to 2 inches of accumulation expected. Lows in the lower 30s. North winds increasing to 15 to 25 mph. Chance of precipitation near 100 percent.

  47. Hey Rod, I put my check in the mail today for the Auditorium...

    bummer on that weather report!

  48. Kris - i like how you think = )

  49. I don't know if anyone stated this earlier, but I just got back from downtown Oshkosh and noticed people still working on the inside of the First National Building - duct tape all over the floors, etc. In fact, one of the workers even broke my umbrella - hehe. Went to Pioneer and there are semis there, but you can't see anything due to the rain and winds. Radio stations keep saying things like "Hope Johnny likes rain" etc. Good luck to anyone that's making the trek up to Oshkosh - I don't know if there will be taping this Friday because street lights (stop lights) are still up on Main St and they didn't end up closing it today.

  50. Rod
    As a former Columbus resident and graduate of CHS for Mr. Coughlin's History class we toured the auditorium. Which was in 1993.It was beautiful,but in need of repair, they had a committee working since then...
    I vaguely remember the city at one point in time wanted to build a new city hall...or rumor had it.
    I could go on about "columbus politics" but I won't
    I do have to say that Mayor Osterhaus is doing the best job I I've seen in years--
    Goods luck with your ventures
    Keep up the great blog!!!

  51. I would love to take the trip to Oshkosh, but with the weather, I dont know if they will even be filming..anyone know anything?

  52. Maggie,
    Don't know if they will be taping, but Rachel, I, and Kathy will be making the trek from Madison to meet up with Vickie and see what we can! Hopefully the weather will be a little bit more cooperative...although I see it is supposed to be just as rainy! UGH! Well, we might catch one of them coming outside for a breath of fresh air...and rain :)

  53. Anybody heading back to MadCity around 6ish - stop off at the Kurth!!

  54. Thanks Lindsey, I think I will just suck up the weather and go. I have about a 2.5 hour drive, not too bad..but it is a long drive to see nothing. I went to columbus one day of filming and it was very cool to see it all going on..Wouldn't want to miss a chance to get a close-up of Johnny!

  55. Nothing at all going on here except a typhoon. But I got to hang out with Vickie, Angie, and Ty tonight and we had a great time at the New Moon. While we were there some of the movie big wigs were discussing things at a table not too far away from us. Didn't hear anything but I remembered the guy as being labeled important in Columbus.

    Hopefully, tomorrow will be better :)

  56. Rod, you really MUST do something
    about your weather reports!! lol
    Hoping those of you going to Oshkosh today will get to see SOMETHING! I'm sure the weather will cancel/postpone some of the filming that was planned.

  57. Thanks for all of the great comments and support for the Auditorium. Perhaps on a slower news (Yeah Oshkosh!!) day Rod will allow me to post a "State of the Auditorium" speech. If anyone wants info sooner - I'd be happy to answer any questions - ( The roof work does need to be addressed before the Auditorium work can begin. No one is in any danger, the trusses just need more support for heating, a/c, fire suppression, etc.

    Jenny and Josh - you are missed greatly! Hope to see you both at the summer flea market fund raisers!

    Shakenbsis - I think we have a lot more in common (pre-adoption). We could talk it over over coffee and chains some day. :)

  58. thanks Kris *emotionally* check your e-mail!

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