Columnists
  • As we face the hottest part of a hot summer, it worthwhile to recall a time when summers were longer, but less of a trial and more of an adventure.
  • In an impressive new book entitled The Mosquito: A Human History of Our Deadliest Predator, Timothy C. Winegard argues that the lowly mosquito is the ultimate predator for humans, having been responsible for the death of fifty-two billion of us, nearly half of all humans who have ever lived. He also calls them "the ultimate agent of historical change." To understand his argument we first need to establish some basic facts about this insect, found in Wikipedia.
  • If Elvis Presley were alive today he would be 84 years old, twice the age he was when he passed away at the age of 42 on August 16, 1977.
  • When all the first Christians were only Jewish, a Gentile (non-Jew) had to convert to Judaism first to become a Christian; but the Apostle Paul convinced his fellow Jewish converts to the new faith that the Church was a "spiritual Israel" open to all—including women! His metaphor of one’s "heart being circumcised" opened Christianity to being gender and ethnic inclusive.
  • The Texan Theater in Greenville, Texas reminds you of stepping into one of the famous Las Vegas theaters years ago in downtown Las Vegas. The sound, lighting and seating structures are just awesome.
  • Here is some more Sho' 'Nuff Official State Stuff. And, to borrow from Robert Earl Keene, "...the road goes on forever, and the party never ends."
  • Since I'm planning to offer a class this fall on "How to Write Your Own Obituary," I've been looking for good examples. One characteristic of a good obit is to identify the interests of the deceased person, by naming things he/she really cared about or enjoyed. For example, the recently-published obituary of John Crawford, a longtime Denison newspaperman (who served with me on the Grayson County Historical Commission), reminded me of something he and I shared: "A consummate fan of the English language and its misuse, he took particular joy in a good pun, a double-entendre, or typographical error in printed form. It was always funnier when it was someone else’s goof."
  • Five of the many WNJ Auxiliary volunteers. One of my favorite quotes about volunteering is, "You make a living by what you get, you make a life by what you give back."
  • "Jim Crow" was the name given to local and state laws that legalized racial segregation after the Civil War, which were enforced until the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In some states, not only African Americans, but also Mexicans and Native Americans were targets of segregation.

  • An area officer who I feel deserves special recognition is B.F. Wade, who is mainly known for his thirty six and a half years with the Texas Department of Public Safety. He also has worked for the Sherman Police Department, Grayson College Police Department, and the Grayson County Sheriff's Office. He worked over six and a half decades in law enforcement, one of very few officers in our country to have ever served that long. B.F. and his wife Marie have been married over 72 years, another outstanding record.
  • Often over the years, when the Texas legislature does not have much constructive to do, which seems to be quite often, the solons like to designate "Official Texas State Stuff." All the states do this. Every state has a state motto, a flag, a seal (the coat of arms so to speak, not the fish eating, horn playing, sleek circus performer), and so forth, but lately the effort to designate "Official State Stuff," has moved in to new realms of creativity.
  • One of my favorite topics for discussion with elderwriters is entitled "Birth Order and Family Relationships: First Born, Middle Child and Caboose." Recently I took a fresh look at this subject when my youngest sister, Margie, born when I was 17, celebrated her 60th birthday, complete with reminiscences of her birth from all four siblings plus some other members of the extended family.