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When we discover the raisins

There are a lot of pictures on Facebook that I didn’t really understand until I graduated from college. They are usually shared by people around my age, which shouldn’t come as a surprise.These pictures usually say things like, “I’ve decided that I no longer want to be an adult … If anyone needs me, I will be in my blanket fort, coloring.”They say human nature wants what it can’t have, and that perfectly describes growing up. Whe...

1 days ago | | | Email

This has been the best one yet

My birthday on Saturday has been the best one yet.Of course, over the years, my standards have changed a bit, too.Once upon a time, my thoughts were on the gifts that would be brought to my party, a party that I always shared with my sister and my cousins.You see, one of my little sisters was born on my second birthday, and my two cousins, also sisters, were born two years apart on the same day, which happened to be two days before me and my sister’s bir...

2 days ago | | | Email

Bad weather means basement shouting

When there’s a possibility of a tornado, as there was here in Highland County over the weekend, I feel much safer than the average potential tornado victim.Why? I hoped you would ask. It’s because I am blessed to have as a spouse someone who is terrified of tornadoes, enough for both of us.To be clearer, or more clear, whichever you prefer (I refuse to check the AP stylebook on this point, or any other point) Lora is not just petrified of tornadoes. She is mo...

3 days ago | | | Email

A lady in black and some pigeons

So there I was, sitting at my desk Thursday afternoon going through my normal routine when the phone rang. “There’s this lady walking down Route 50 dressed all in black. I’m curious and I think it would make an interesting story,” the lady on the other end of the line said.I’ve received several similar calls over the years. Sometimes the walker, or runner, or biker, turns our to be doing something for a worthy cause. Just as often though, they’re...

6 days ago | | | Email

For the people who love licorice

On July 21, 2007, people across the world dressed in wizard’s robes and waited for the final installment of the Harry Potter series.The tale of the boy wizard came to an end seven years ago this past Monday, and I can’t help but see that as significant because in the books, seven is the most powerful magical number.And yes, I know that because I was a part of the Harry Potter generation. I was a “Potterhead” and quite proud of it.Seven ...

8 days ago | | | Email

Endless criticism has little impact

When we judge or criticize another person, it says nothing about that person; it merely says something about our own need to be critical. – Attributed to Winston Churchill.Spiritual philosopher Emmet Fox once said, “Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting.” Which is another way of saying that the only way some people lift themselves up is by tearing someone else down.

11 days ago | | | Email

Country roads seem to take me home

Not long ago one of my colleagues here at The Times-Gazette, Angela Shepherd, wrote a column about how much she likes her hometown of Greenfield. I like Greenfield, too. In fact, I like just about every little community in Highland County and each one holds memories that make it special.I’ve often thought I could write a column about each of them. Take Greenfield, for a quick example. I worked there for a number of years – actually two separate stints – and grew f...

13 days ago | | | Email

A 20-hour lesson well-learned

In his children’s classic “Winnie-the-Pooh,” A.A. Milne once wrote, “Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”Of course, such an idea is easier said than done. It is very difficult to wait patiently when phone calls need to be made, deadlines are approaching, and dinner should have been done 20 minutes ago.But patience, as the old adage goes, is a virtue, mainly because it is something we must, reluctantly, use every...

15 days ago | | | Email

Our View: HPD officer’s actions reflect on others

Hillsboro police officer Brian Butler was honored at Monday night’s city council meeting for his courageous action in rescuing a woman from a house fire.Chief Todd Whited described how Butler risked his life on June 18 to run into a smoke-filled home, locate the reportedly suicidal woman in a back bedroom and carry her to safety, despite her efforts to resist.We join city officials and the public at large in thanking and commending Officer Butler for his heroic act...

15 days ago | | | Email

Yeah, I get a kick out of soccer

It is with heaviness in my heart that I deleted the shortcut to Watch ESPN off of my browser today. I am sure many of you, judging by the comments I am more than used to but especially prevalent this last month, don't give a hoot that the World Cup is over as the final was played Sunday. As I wrote in a column at the beginning of this mas...

16 days ago | | | Email

Another thing I hadn’t planned on

Hello, Highland County and beyond, I’m back. Yes, I’ve been absent from this page for three weeks, but I ran into a busy stretch and then had to help a son move to Rhode Island.Somehow I drew the assignment of driving a Uhaul all the way there, a 20-hour trip straight through, minus about a 90-minute nap at a roadside rest somewhere in New York.Before I left one of my co-workers said he figured my first column when I got back would be about the Uhaul drive. H...

20 days ago | | | Email

Lions, and greasers, and witches – oh my!

Jack Kerouac once said, “The only truth is music.”But, to expand on that, I can’t help but think another truth is this: It’s nearly impossible to find someone who doesn’t like music.There are different kinds of music-listeners. There are those who use it as a companion on the drive home from work; those who take it seriously with classical pieces and operas; and those who use it as an emotional outlet, whether through listening to a favorite...

22 days ago | | | Email

‘Bombs bursting in air’ made me feel like a kid

Every year, no matter where I am, I watch a fireworks show on the Fourth of July. This year, as I made the trip to my mom’s in Indianapolis, I thought about how this would be the first year without going to see an organized fireworks show.You see, my sister said we would just hang around mom’s and watch the fireworks set off around her neighborhood.After the week I’d had, and bone-tired as I was, I didn’t argue.And you know what? I ende...

23 days ago | | | Email

Should Facebook toy with moods?

The news last week that Facebook recently conducted an experiment designed to test whether the emotions of its users could be manipulated brought about a firestorm that is bewildering.A Wall Street Journal article on the topic explained, “To determine whether it could alter the emotional state of its users and prompt them to post either more positive or negative content, the site’s data scientists enabled an algorithm, for one week, to automatically omit content that co...

24 days ago | | | Email

Life from the tips of one’s toes

In my 22 years on this Earth, there are a few things I have gotten to know quite well: chairs, stepladders and the tips of my toes.Long story short (pun intended), I am what you might call “vertically challenged.” At my fullest height, I am 4 feet, 11 inches.So, I’ve had to stand on my tiptoes to dance at every prom and homecoming. I’ve had to push the seat up whenever I get behind the wheel of a car. And I’ve had to maneuver chairs around t...

29 days ago | | | Email

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