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Opinions

What I did on my summer vacation

Food For Thought

From the time I was about 8 or 9 years old, I spent a week or two each summer at my grandparents’ farm. I don’t know what my sisters did during that time, or if our parents farmed us all out so they could have a week or so to themselves, but I doubt it. With the ambitious gardens Dad planted, and all the canning and freezing Mother would have done, that wouldn’t have been the best time for them to claim vacation time alone.

Summertime in days past

Walkin'

While growing up in the suburbs of Chicago in the late 1950s and early ‘60s, the last place in the world you wanted to be on a hot summer’s day was in the house because there was no air conditioning, much less video games. Besides, if you were around, Mom might find a chore for you.

Up north with Elle King

Walkin'

This week’s column is written in the Dancing Bear Community room of The Lodge of the Whispering Pines on the edge of the Boundary Waters near Ely, Minn.
I have heard some murmurs in the trees, but mostly it’s been the rain that has managed to work its way into camp conversation four of the five days here.

When I grow up, I want to be a...

Food For Thought

One of the television stations I watch is having another one of their summer essay contests for kids. This one is about their dreams and ambitions for the future. They are to write about what they want to be when they grow up. I’m sure there will be the predictable themes of fireman, nurse, policeman and doctor– people they have learned, early in life, to admire, as well as some of the glamorous occupations– movie actor, astronaut, cowboy, athlete, rock star.

The journey continues

Walkin'

I’ve always considered myself a Christian.
Mom made sure we attended Sunday School, church and confirmation class at Trinity Lutheran Church of Rolling Meadows, Ill. While I didn’t have anything against religion in my earliest years, I resisted with vigor giving up my Sunday mornings for something I saw as inconvenient at best and torture at worst. Flash Gordon and Sky King were on television at the same time, and Ming the Merciless and Penny were more interesting than hymns and sermons. I especially disliked getting dressed up. Neckties made me choke and wool pants made me itch.

Someone needs a hug

Food For Thought

I’ve nearly resolved to stop watching the newscasts lately because a person can absorb only so much bad news without suffering from depression. No, I’m not referring to the political circus going on– that’s probably a good thing. It provides some much-needed comic relief from the increasing pile of tragedies beleaguering the American public these days. I’m talking about all the tragic losses and unpleasantries being thrown at us lately.

Take a deep breath

not so much

At approximately 9:41 p.m. on Saturday, June 25, a white 2013 Hyundai Sonata was southbound on Highway 1, near 210th Street, when the driver apparently failed to see a 2005 Dodge pickup, which had slowed in anticipation of a left-hand turn across traffic.
The Hyundai struck the rear of the pickup truck and the two vehicles careened across the center line. The impact sent the pickup through the northbound lane, with the front bumper of the Hyundai embedded in its back.
The compromised Hyundai found itself in the path of a northbound 2015 Ford Fusion, and the two collided nearly head-on.

Persistent memories

Food For Thought

Most people look a bit doubtful when I say I can remember when my sister Betty was born. I was a mere two years and three months old at the time, and I agree memories don’t usually go back that far. I do think, however, when something really momentous happens in our lives at such an early age we are likely to remember at least parts of it. I have lots of what I call “implanted memories,” that is memories of things I have been told about either so often or so dramatically I think I remember them.

Corrections

Walkin'

I didn’t tell the story exactly right in recent columns.
Sabra joined the bell choir at our church, like I said, and she’s been a rising star, being promoted to two bells in a matter of weeks. She wasn’t demoted, however, because of trouble walking and ringing at the same time. No, the demotion came about because she missed a practice. As a result, she got dropped from third to fourth chair in the four-person ensemble. In turn, that meant she had only one note and one bell to play in the closing number.

Priceless fishing trip

Walkin'

A bonus chance to going fishing with Dad popped up last week, and I grabbed it.
Both brother Bob and I were pleasantly surprised to hear the old man was thinking of picking up his rod and reel again. A couple years ago, a bad case of gout flared up in his hands, making it almost too painful to put on his own clothes much less reel in a Bluegill.
But the gout eventually subsided and Dad let it be known he’d like nothing better than to get out on Bob’s new Lund fishing boat on Father’s Day.
Have I mentioned the boat?

Fall on the sword GOP

Not so much

It’s been morbidly fascinating to watch.
First, full disclosure: I’m a registered Democrat and I skew to the socialist side. I have my gray areas, but I’m mostly shading toward the line in left field.

Mother, may I go out to swim?

Food For Thought

Yes, my darling daughter, hang your clothes on a hickory limb, but don’t go near the water.
My aunt Opal would recite that verse and laugh as if it were the funniest joke she’d ever heard. I couldn’t see anything funny about it. I loved to swim and thought it tragic anyone would go out to swim but never even get wet.