Local Commentaries

Easy to get that trophy scored now

For many decades Warren County may have been the poorest trophy big game county in Pennsylvania. No bucks, no bears near the top of the Pennsylvania Big Game Records. It got worse, of course, when comparing local big game animals to the Boone & Crockett or Pope & Young big game records. ...

Creature adventures

This is the time of year for everything – farming, gardening, mowing, planting, harvesting, equipment repairs, house projects, building projects, the list goes on and on. There is so much happening that it is hard to remember to simply take a break and enjoy the world. However, taking that ...

Shed: The focal point of any garden

The garden shed is one of the most charming focal points in any garden. It is in this little building the gardener accomplishes his many garden tasks. A rainy afternoon is perfect for potting up a small plant or cleaning and storing garden tools or flowerpots. The potting shed is also the place ...

Thanks Danny

Danny freakin’ Tanner. God, if I could somehow calculate the number of hours of my life I have wasted watching “Full House” from childhood to right this very moment, I would probably have enough time gathered up to do something really astounding and worthwhile. That being said, I’m ...

No trespassing,’ no more

Esther Newbold, whose spirit might well haunt her pioneer family’s former estate just south of the hamlet of Irvine where Brokenstraw Creek meets the Allegheny River, might be offended that her land is now visited regularly by hikers and hunters since it is now part of northwestern ...

An end or a beginning?

Graduation is upon us. College graduations have already taken place. High school graduations are coming up. Even preschoolers these days graduate so it is a process that all students relate to. I always think - is it a beginning or is it an end? I think that depends on the level of the ...

New parents

Richard and I are expecting. I know that will surprise some people but not our closest friends – they now how much we want this addition to our family. We’ve been waiting patiently for 15 months Finian, our baby boy, is due here next week. And no, I haven’t gained any weight with this ...

What a character!

Ever referred to someone with that term? Ever BEEN referred to like that? I have been, face-to-face, on a number of occasions, and who knows how many other times. I take it as a compliment. People see something unique, quirky, and usually fun in a “character.” And what about character in ...

The Terrific Twos

As I stood there, covered in regurgitated milk, that I can only describe as coming at me from a two-year old’s face at an unrelenting high velocity, I realized, as disgusting as that moment was, how incredible the Terrible Twos actually are. It has long been said that the Terrible Twos, ...

Busy summer? Try these short vacations

Vacations are all about getting away, seeing new things, doing fun things, recharging the body’s batteries. Vacations should be considered essential to a healthy life. Walking a harmonious path through life may depend on it. Vacations can be spiritual awakenings, or re-awakenings. A really ...

Willows

When I was little, I discovered the Flower Fairies. This seemed to be the perfect combination of fantasy and nature, and I was hooked. Still am, actually. I had a figurine of the Beech Fairy that hung from window. Still do. And a calendar of the fairies. And postcards. And a book. All of which ...

An army of ants

Help! I just found an army of ants. At first there were just a few walking across the counter on my Hoosier cupboard. At that point I took care to secure my sugar in a plastic container with a tight-fitting lid. I had battled ants before and lost. I investigated where I keep my chocolate ...

Motorcycle memories

Passing some motorcycles in a construction zone this week jogged my memory. I got my motorcycle license around 10 years ago. My dad had always had motorcycles when I was a kid and I’d enjoyed going for rides with him. But I wanted my own bike. I wanted to be the one driving it. Now, ...

Fun and games

William likes to play games. He also likes to win at games. He has never lost at 'Uncle Wiggily'. You know why? Because it is a game of chance. No skill (other than reading the cards, which he's very good at). I let him win that game, over and over, as often as we play it. Know why? Because ...

Man to boy

I think it was Robert Bly, one of the principals in the mytho-poetic movement, who told an interesting story about a culture’s way of initiating boys into manhood. I think it was a tribe in the Amazon…. When it was time for a boy to transition, the men in the village, dressed in ...

No can o’ corn

We were pitching bags and taking names. Whether it’s volleyball, soccer, stone skipping, or softball, I usually go into athletic competitions with a pretty good feel for my odds. That was not the case on Saturday. My wife and I walked up to the Pine Grove Days ROAR (Revitalization Of ...

We don’t need no stinking crappie minnows

Getting minnows has gotten to be a real pain. We can not take bait minnows across state lines. We can not transport minnows from one watershed to another. Minnow prices have gone up, largely a result of bait shops carrying ‘certified’ minnows. Now here is a jam in the paperwork. A ...

Caddisflies, and moths

It’s coming. The 60th Allegany Nature Pilgrimage weekend at Allegany State Park. Dates are June 1-3, when the Red House area of Allegany State Park comes alive with adults, children, nets, binoculars, buckets and professional nature instructors. They both educate and entertain those who wish ...

I’m definitely not for everyone

Well. I’ve got a jar of teeth started. So you can go ahead and call A&E. I’m ready for my episode of “Hoarders” to begin filming. If you have any kind of history with me, you know that I request the same drugs from my dentist, before he even thinks about looking in my mouth, ...

Wearing white before Memorial Day

After the craziness that is usually December, May is always my busiest month. For us gardeners it’s a close second to the holidays in the excitement of our shopping. But May also brings my mandatory trip to Massachusetts. No, it’s not in any way a burden. Far from it because I love ...