Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wisconsin Hystory* - Lesson 1

As a public service, I have decided to post an educational series about events, people and places in Wisconsin Hystory*. I hope to pass on some useful, if not humorous, facts, lies and illusions that I have encountered in my travels around the state. Our first lesson involves a place that has been overlooked in our history books, the "Original Pepto Bismol Mine". Legend has it that sometime around 1919 an immigrant Wisconsin farmer, Peppy Bismollya, was digging a pit for his new outhouse when his shovel punctured a hole in a thin layer of stone and out gushed a thick, creamy pink substance. He ran to his wife Lucy, who at the time was in their cabin comforting their baby Poopy, who was suffering from a stomach disorder. In his wild excitement, waving his arms and shouting about his discovery, he splashed the liquid that covered him all around the room. Some of the pink fluid got on little Poopy's face and ran into her mouth. Much to Peppy and Lucy's amazement, little Poopy's discomfort seemed to abate. As the news of the healing qualities of Peppy's discovery spread through the valley everyone, with the crappiest little illness was knocking on the Bismollya door seeking relief. Peppy capped off the "well" and built a shed over it which remains to this day. It's hard to believe that billions of gallons of that "miracle" pink liquid has continued to flow from this location since 1919. In spite of the success of the stomach settler the Bismollya family still resides at the location of the original discovery. They prefer to live modestly, but they have recently added another mobile home to house big screen HDTV. The pink color of the buildings in the complex (or as they like to call it, "The Crampus") is not painted on but rather the results of the flood of '27 when the Pepto pipe popped and coated the countryside with a comforting coating of the soothing pink juice. The depth that the flood reached is visible on the side of the shed which houses the well. I would prefer to keep the location of this hystoric* site to myself thus protecting the privacy of the Bismollya family. If you feel the need to learn more about this phenomenon check with your local pharmacist.

The Bismollya "Crampus".
(Actually the hill in the background is man made
and houses a huge bottling plant.)

*Hystory - Sometimes Historical, sometimes Hysterical.