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Opinions

Kismet, karma and clues

Walkin'

Three potholders mysteriously disappeared while Sabra was in the hospital recovering from a stroke. The one and only clue that bears on the case is that over the same time period and in very much the same area of the kitchen I broke three wine glasses.

Why North Liberty needs 1105

As a North Liberty resident, I find it easy to feel insulated from big city problems. I don’t think my neighbors are hungry. I don’t worry that they are abused, unable to pay their bills, or struggling with mental illness
Local statistics shatter those illusions:

Define ‘elderly’

Food for Thought

Elderly; past middle age, (and middle age is defined as between the ages of 40 and 60). My dictionary informs me that the term elderly is sometimes considered offensive. Just sometimes? I’ve news for them. In my book the term is definitely and always offensive– as is nearly every label that groups people into rigid categories and attributes the same characteristics to all of them.

Power of prayer

Walkin'

Does anyone know where the love of God goes when the siren turns the minutes to hours?
As detailed last week, Sabra suffered a stroke completely out of the blue on a recent Saturday afternoon. She called 911 and the emergency dispatchers called me. I arrived at the house just in time to see her being wheeled out and followed the ambulance to the hospital. At first the van with the big red crosses and “emergency vehicle” stenciled on all sides drove at the speed limit but suddenly the sirens and lights came on and it took off at full speed.

Mailboxes and pink snow

Food for Thought

You know how things seem to come in threes? Things like good luck, minor catastrophes, disappointments, and unexpected visitors? Well, I am presently waiting for the third thing to happen regarding mailboxes. I’m hoping this isn’t a three-part run of bad luck involving mailboxes– just something to do with mailboxes in general.

One stroke for Sabra

Walkin'

A few weeks ago on a Saturday afternoon, Sabra swept snow off the deck and suddenly joined a group that draws nearly 800,000 new members in the U.S. each year: people suffering a stroke.
I was running errands in Iowa City at the time but from what I’ve learned since she had several of the classic signs: a sudden and severe headache, neck pain and nausea.

Things I know but don’t understand

Food for Thought

It may not be rocket science, but there are a few things I have to believe but that still definitely puzzle me and I can’t help wondering if anybody else understands them any better than I do. Maybe life wouldn’t be so much fun without its little mysteries but I’ve always thought it was better to have the facts and have everything comfortably explained.

It’s probably an addiction

Food for Thought

I received four new books for Christmas. Two are by authors I’ve read before (though not these particular titles) and the others are identified as New York Times Best-Selling Authors. This, I understand means only that they have had at least one book on that list, but not necessarily this one. In fact, I’m pretty sure about that, as one of the books indicates it was published in 2014, even though it was clearly under my Christmas tree on Christmas Eve, 2013.

Bullying and dissing

Food for Thought

Ask your children or grandchildren for a definition of “dissing” and, chances are, the answer you get will include words like rudeness and insults. Ask what the word “respect” means and the reply will probably be vague or abstract and have more to do with love (or fear) than with high regard. They may claim to respect their parents but feel they are old-fashioned and don’t understand how things are for kids these days.

Fleck’s index

4,086: Number of welfare applicants tested for illegal drug use under Florida legislation passed last year.
108: Applicants testing positive for marijuana use.
2.6: Percent testing positive.
17: Republican Congressman from Florida.
3.5: Grams of cocaine Florida Republican Congressman Trey Radel was arrested for possessing.
5.9: Percent of Florida Republican Congressmen arrested for buying and possessing cocaine.
-20: Degrees Fahrenheit of coldness that must be reached before Alaska school children are held in from recess.

Waiting for spring

Walkin'

My car and I are feeling old this winter.
The Honda Civic’s doors creak no matter how much oil is sprayed on the hinges; my knees ache no matter how much Icy Hot® is smeared on the joints.
I’m a 1952 model; it’s a 1998.
It has 220,000 miles; I’ve drunk as many beers.

An obtuse winter

Food for Thought

When I was in college in Iowa City, I had several art classes each week, from the usual 50-minute length to two-hour studio classes. Some perverse member of the art staff had decided that 7:30 a.m. was a good time for art history lectures. These were mostly slide shows of art works illustrating whatever topic our professor chose to lecture on that day. The lecture room was in the basement of the art building, windowless, dimly lit only by the slide projector, overheated, and stuffy.