Local Commentaries

A way with words…

Congrats to all the competitors. Being knocked out of the Warren County Spelling Bee is not a shameful thing. Like any competition with an eventual champion — almost every competitor loses their last game — or, in this case, misspells their last word. Only one speller out of the ...

Flurries in the south towns

It's frequently said that the meaning of craziness is doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different result. The jury is out whether the quote is from Einstein or Mark Twain. It doesn't matter who said actually said it. I still haven't learned the lesson. But it's ...

Quacking at my window

When I moved to Warren in October I was thrilled to hear quacking from my open window and head down to the creek to feed the ducks. I’ve always been a bit of a Birdbrain. Imagine my excitement when despite recent frigid temperatures I discovered what I thought might be a rare ...

No denying I’m a grammar nerd

I consider myself a grammar nerd. There really wouldn’t be any point in denying it. It’s not that I’m the best at grammar, nor that I enjoy English’s many stupid quirks. I have grammar nerd competitions — not arguments — with my grammar nerd wife. I will not call them ...

Marriage vows

At Valentine’s Day, we think of love. Love comes in all forms; love for family, love for friends, romantic love. Those who will become engaged this Valentine’s Day are “in love”. Valentine’s Day is a popular day for engagements and weddings. Since divorce statistics are so grim ...

Ups and downs

We all experience varying degrees of ups and downs in our mood and in our day-to-day functioning. What constitutes a problem with mood? Depression is a difficult thing to grasp. What is the difference between just having the blues and being clinically depressed? Many people struggle with ...

Flurries in the south towns

It’s frequently said that the meaning of craziness is doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different result. The jury is out whether the quote is from Einstein or Mark Twain. It doesn’t matter who said actually said it. I still haven’t learned the lesson. But ...

Who’s your person?

How many times a day do you get asked: "How are you?" How many times do you answer honestly? Most often, in passing, we get asked, flippantly, how we are and we most likely, without thinking, just say "good", "fine", etc. When something bad happens we get asked: "Are you okay"? Again, ...

Clockwork

When I was 15, I entered the workforce as soon as I could. I ran down to my school attendance office and picked up those working papers eager to begin my working career. I worked a little bit of everything in high school, from an ice cream scooper to a cashier at a grocery store, to pizza ...

Here’s to the North American ground squirrel prognosticator

Today marks a long-standing tradition where crowds of people have been gathering since 1886 to witness the “Seer of Seers, Sage of Sages, Prognosticator of Prognosticators, and Weather Prophet Extraordinary” — Punxsutawney Phil — take center stage and predict the future, at least in ...

The farmer’s alphabet (continued)

Last week I began the Farmer's Alphabet as published year's ago in "Today's Education" February/March 1982. I take up here right where I left off. It was written by Mary Azarian, a former teacher from Vermont. Q - Quilt - I have always loved Amish quilts. I know they are expensive, but I ...

Shuffling off this mortal coil

Earlier this week I attended the funeral of an old friend. We silver citizens find ourselves at funerals more often than at weddings and christenings these days. It goes with the territory. One old geezer that I see mostly at funerals said to me, “We have to stop meeting like this.” ...

Shuffling off this mortal coil

Earlier this week I attended the funeral of an old friend. We silver citizens find ourselves at funerals more often than at weddings and christenings these days. It goes with the territory. One old geezer that I see mostly at funerals said to me, “We have to stop meeting like this.” ...

A farmer’s alphabet

Years ago, I saved an article from a magazine about the farmer’s alphabet. It had pictures of everything from A to Z. It was such a neat review of farm life that I decided to use it here. Our farm had most of these things, if not all of them. A - Apple - We always had our own apples. ...

Varying degrees of anxiety

That little flutter in your stomach when you are entering a room full of people, is that anxiety? It is if that flutter turns into a mountain lion of emotion that causes you to run from the room and back to your safe place. We have all experienced varying degrees of anxiety in the forms of ...

Ripple effect

Have you ever tossed a pebble into a pond? Or a stick, or a pine cone… anything really. Those ripples that result continue to go out and out and out. And sometimes back in toward the point of origin. The ripple effect is the idea that one action, or word, emotion, event, and so on, can have a ...

Bugged by humbug

I missed it this time. Oh, I’ve seen it at least a hundred times, maybe a hundred and fifty. I’ve seen the old versions, the VERY old versions, the remakes, the musical version, the animated version... I love them all, but this year, I just caught part of the animated and one of the old ...

I’ll have what they’re having

I think flat-earthers are getting a bum rap. I can hear the eyes rolling, but hear me out. I understand why some folks are eager to go back to when things were “great” or whatever, but flat-earthers want to go WAAAYYY back. There is something compelling to me about pondering the ...

Mother Nature meets the Father of Invention

The best justifications I have heard for winter are winter wonderlands and ‘we have four seasons.’ Yay. When the high is below 10 and the wind chill is well south of bitter, I would happily give up the winter part of the wonderlands and at least a season-and-a-half. But, for reasons ...

Dig out the sleds!

Well, we finally have enough snow for the sleds. Sleds have always played an important part in winter entertainment as far as I am concerned. I grew up with a small sled with metal runners that you could steer. My grandfather built a box for me to ride in when I was small. There are many ...