A little bit of nostalgia goes a long way

August 2, 2011 “It smells like county fair time out there!”What my friend said was true. Despite the stifling heat and debilitating humidity, the aroma wafting and wavering from the newly-spread cedar shavings just outside our office was enough to make you want to run out and bid way too much on a calf who was way too small. Or, dig out Gramma’s old recipes in hopes of winning that coveted blue rosette for the best zucchini bread in the county.

Is the post office driving us to email?

August 2, 2011 A man reaches a point in his life when he realizes what he really wants. All I really want is my mail.I opened a post office box a few years ago. I have all my business correspondence sent there.Last September, I moved temporarily to Washington, D.C., to work on a six-month project. I returned to the Pittsburgh area every six weeks and retrieved my mail from the P.O. box.Last spring, I knew the six-month bill would be coming due soon, so I went to the post office to pay it in advance.“You can’t pay until the bill is due,” said the woman at the counter.

A rash discovery in Spa City

August 2, 2011 I have always considered myself pretty lucky in terms of allergies, or the lack of. Except for mosquito bites, I am not usually allergic to anything I run across. Whenever I go to the doctor or hospital and they ask if I’m allergic to anything, I figure I’ve saved them some time because I am not allergic to the usual suspects.But apparently I do have an allergy to something. I just don’t know what.

Batesville’s library to the past

August 1, 2011 Every time I walk inside the Independence County Library in Batesville I lose a few years.Outside the door I’m 27. Inside I’m 10. One great thing about working for the Batesville Daily Guard is having grown up in the area. Raised at Strawberry, Batesville was always the big city, the “gettin’ place,” “town.” Working the education and library beats combine two of my favorite things: school and reading, so I always feel at home when on assignments that involve either one. But going to the library takes it all back.

Burning down the house

August 1, 2011 They’d been smelling smoke for a long time. Every once in a while, he’d pull down his reading glasses and look at her over the top of the Wall Street Journal and say, “Do you smell something burning?” She’d sniff, briefly, and, as she worked there at the kitchen table on her PTA speech, she’d say “Yeah. I asked you about that last week and you were too busy polishing your guns to pay attention.” He’d pull his glasses back up and bury his nose again in the paper.

Remembering Hopewell community, Cord School District 48

July 29, 2011 Established 1885, a school known as Hopewell (at Cord). It was located on the same property as Hopewell Cumberland Presbyterian Church and cemetery. At that time Hopewell was more or less the center of activity in that part of the county.The Hopewell location was established in 1835. It is said that a Presbyterian preacher from Illinois had the major role in establishing the church. A log building made from hand hewn cyprus logs was erected and served the community. Some called him preacher McCord.

Glutton for punishment

July 29, 2011 My boyfriend loves to scare me. I can’t imagine why because most of the time I accidently hurt him. I am the type of person who when scared, I’m like a caged and frightened animal who starts kicking and swinging wildly.Despite getting hit many times, he still continues to scare me and does so at every opportunity. I have learned to be aware as I turn every corner of the house — he might there waiting to scare me. If he is waiting in the car for me, as I walk out, he always honks the horn just as I approach the vehicle causing me to nearly  jump out of my skin.

It’s always personal: Even men cry at work

July 28, 2011 She was absolutely blindsided, sucker-punched. She hunched over the telephone, turned her back on her colleagues and gazed unseeingly at the high rise across the street as Sumner Redstone, the almost 70-year-old Chairman of Viacom Inc., let loose with his tirade.Anne Kreamer, then a 37-year-old senior VP at Nickelodeon, has just completed a huge deal with Sony. Her team was celebrating and she thought Redstone, as Chairman of the parent company, was calling to congratulate her.She was wrong.

Legal guns would make Norway safer

July 28, 2011 How long would the Norway gunman have lasted in Texas or any state where concealed-carry laws are on the books? I ran a survey while on a cruise: in Texas, 3 minutes; in Montana, 7 to 8 minutes; in Arizona, 2 minutes; and in Nevada, 3 to 5 minutes.Had Norway not surrendered to the anti-self-defense nuts, and allowed Norwegians to protect themselves by legally carrying guns, the massacre might well have been prevented. There’s a lot of truth in the old adage that if guns are outlawed only outlaws will carry guns.

Humiliation at its best

July 27, 2011 Foot in mouth, nose in someone else’s business, mouth overloading my ... well, you get the idea.I guess there was no escaping it since it started as a toddler and has plagued me my entire life.While I don’t recall my earliest faux pas, my mom remembers clearly how awkward it was when her friend Mary suggested I get off her lap and play in the floor.“Oh I can’t play in your floors. My mamma says they are dirty.”