Primaries to determine fall message

May 10, 2010 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — Are Arkansans going to see Lt. Gov. Bill Halter’s coach a few more times this fall, or watch Gilbert Baker carry around a blue plastic tarp? How many times are we going to hear Sen. Blanche Lincoln described as “one tough lady,” or see Congressman John Boozman helping people try on eyeglasses? And will Jim Holt’s ambulance keep rolling around the state, with or without its flashing lights?

Martha’s big adventure

May 7, 2010 I started out in life being unable to state what I wanted and then head straight for it. Instead, I’d try someone else’s suggestions or demands first and hope for the best. Maybe they knew better. As a result, there’s really been very little of my life that happened in an orderly fashion.

Weirded out by the ‘L word’

May 7, 2010 People are weird about love. Everybody wants to be loved, but nobody wants to talk about it. We’ll tell a stranger how much we love our iPod. Yet we find it difficult to look into the eyes of our parent, spouse or child and proclaim the same thing. One place we’re really weird about love is at work. We want our customers to love our products, we want our employees to love their jobs, and we want the market to love our stock. But bring up the “L word” in a management meeting, and people will start to get uncomfortable. I used to be weird about love.

Spreading laughter

May 6, 2010 I handed my debit card to the owner of a barbecue restaurant. He saw my name on the card. “Is your mother’s name Elizabeth?” he asked. When I nodded, he burst out laughing. And then proceeded to confess to a prank, motivated by my mother, that he’d pulled on my family 30 years ago. My mother, you see, is a little bit “out there.” People would refer to her as “eccentric” if she were as wealthy financially as she is wealthy otherwise. Her greatest wealth is her art of laughter.

Leave it to professionals

May 5, 2010 Regular people who have time to stand outside of a television studio holding a sign do not have anything interesting to say. While that might be too general of a statement, I challenge anyone to find a single instance where a TV show host interviewed one of these sign-waving yahoos and something compelling resulted. Let’s take the “Today” show (by far the worst offender) as an example. Usually, Al Roker will venture outside to interview a group of people from some woebegone town who are inevitably wearing hand-printed matching T-shirts and/or poorly made matching hats.

You be the judge

May 5, 2010 Who is the best candidate? What do people look for in deciding who will hold office? How important is accessibility, trust and experience? Those are some of the questions voters mull over as they decide who will get their vote in the May 18 primary. Many times the only information voters have is the meet-and-greet events, advertising they read touting the candidate’s experience or the information from the challenger.

Law re-opens immigration debate in state

May 4, 2010 ROGERS (AP) — Another state’s controversial law cracking down on illegal immigrants is renewing a familiar debate in Arkansas about what the state should do with those who are here illegally. The issue is an attractive one for election-year politics, but whether it will translate into a major policy shift in Arkansas is a cloudier question.

Out with the old and in with new

May 4, 2010 I am thrilled to say Gary and I finally have a new grill. It’s been more than 10 years since we got our last one, and the simple fact that our old one last that long is amazing to me. Of course, Gary usually takes good care of his stuff, so perhaps that is not that surprising. I feel fortunate to have a spouse who does keep the maintenance up around the house, even if he is known for leaving dirty dishes in the sink. I’m not complaining about that because he is very punctual taking out the trash and mowing the yard. I figure it all evens out, anyway.

HB2339 concerns

May 3, 2010 J. Randy Young, Executive Director of the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission (ANRC), is correct in his April 30 letter to the Guard that if water rights were “transferred” to the ANRC “it would be unconstitutional. However, I question his Clintonian assertion there is no such language in HB 2339 Act 631 that transfers water rights to the ANRC. I also do not agree with his statement that the expanded ANRC powers will have no affect on the water rights of Arkansas land owners. I read all 21 pages of the act and have many concerns. For example, page 15 states: