9 weeks 2 days ago
School starts back this week for many areas around the country, and I spent time reflecting about my early days in school.
Some kids would rather step barefoot on a rusty nail than go back to school in August. Fortunately, the first bell did not ring until after Labor Day when I was a kid, and I was excited to begin my education.
10 weeks 3 days ago
People often ask how I come up with column ideas. Back in 2007, it was easy. A zillion ideas floated around in my head like yellow jackets on an apple core in summer, but I have written, tossed or forgotten all those. These days my ideas tend to evolve and if I were paid for all the time I spend writing each one, I would be a wealthy man....
11 weeks 3 days ago
There are places in this world that seem magical. The Cliffs of Moher in Ireland, Cathedral Rock in Sedona, and the edge of the Pacific just off Highway 1 near Half Moon Bay in California come to mind. However, there are places like this much closer to home.
Jilda worked late this afternoon, and I had been to a community meeting. On the...
12 weeks 3 days ago
A dream last night about an old Army buddy sparked an idea for this column. We have not talked in over 20 years, but I think about him often.
Doug McGraw and I transitioned out of the Army in early spring 1973. I moved back home that spring and tried to find work so that I could begin the next phase of my life. The phone rang one evening...
13 weeks 3 days ago
Life is messy. The view from the highroad is more scenic, but there are always detours, and I find myself on bumpy roads more than I woud like.
One part of doing right is being kind to Mother Nature’s critters. A good example is when I wrote recently about relocating the chicken snake caught in the nest of the henhouse, instead of...
14 weeks 3 days ago
How is it that machines instinctively know the absolute worse time to break down? I think they have a type of mechanical intelligence that we humans can not comprehend.
We have out-of-town company coming tomorrow, and our air conditioner decided to take vacation.
On Monday morning, I was in the yard tending to our new baby chicks when I...
15 weeks 3 days ago
The cold winter, followed by spring monsoons, teamed up to help me form some new habits. Had they been good ones, I would be as happy as a clam in a gin and tonic, but the habits I developed were only suitable for slugs.
The habit of walking each morning was the first casualty, but the list is long and slothful.
At first, I could not...
16 weeks 2 days ago
One thing I have learned through the years is that farming is not for wimps. In the scheme of things, our farm is tiny, but it still takes a lot of work.
We have chickens, dogs, a small orchard, a nice garden and an impressive collection of Japanese Beetles, cutworms and other vermin. It is a constant battle, but it is worth it.
Each year we...
17 weeks 3 days ago
Summer is here. Back in December, the hourglass flipped and daylight gradually grew longer until this week when it flipped in the other direction.
The meaning of summer for me has changed through the years.
During junior high school, summers meant endless hours fishing, swimming, and floating down the river like a turtle on a drifting...