College football and fall seem to go together. Despite some of the changes that are going on now, many of us consider Friday for High School, Saturday for college, and Sunday for the pros. As the weather cools and the season warms, bowls and playoffs (especially for the lower divisions) loom in dreams and discussions. For alumni of some schools, there is an undercurrent of sorrow in the fall traditions.
I let my mind get away from me the other day as I was sitting on the red light on Broadway and Pine facing east. I thought, âI can see way up the hill by the Pizza Hut. How many yards of asphalt did it take to pave this street in front of me? How many yards of base? Where was it hauled from and who all hauled it? Who tried to keep their sanity as they sat on a roller packer going back and forth, forth and back for hours? How long had it been since it was just gravel, since it was just dirt? Why did the first Comanches ride through here, where were they going and for what?
Even though my children may not believe it (frequent references to my age and stodginess convince me they donât), as a thinking person who pays attention to the world around me along with current events, Iâm very much a product of the modern world. The point Iâm getting at here is that even though many of us donât think of it this way, as times change, so do we. Except, I think our basic personalities mold to the world around us no matter how large the cultural changes.
While patience is most certainly a virtue, it has never been my long suit! I seem to be one of those people who is more likely than not racing about, meeting myself coming and going, and probably not accomplishing as much as I would like. Trying to balance expectations and realities can result in irritation, frustration, and the alienation of friends and family. A slightly calmer approach can work wonders!
I know regular readers of these columns will find it hard to believe, but occasionally I try to influence politics at some level. I know, I know, you wouldnât think someone as shy and reserved as myself would do that, but seeing a need, and given the opportunity, I do try to put in my two cents worth. Just to be clear, for the most part you could say my efforts at influencing politicians revolve around âless is moreâ. In other words, Iâm usually in the âdonât do it, donât regulate it, donât spend it, or donât tax itâ camp.
We were bout the same age when we were youngâuns. âZat right, you say? Yeah, we probably still are. She was really a lot older than me when we were little because I was five and she lacked one month being two years older.
Public engagement is a lofty goal. When interested parties on multiple sides weigh in, better outcomes and real buy-in from âWe the peopleâ can lead to robust discourse. Is it is a myth? Is it worth the effort? Does it really matter?Â Through a series of steps in the past year, our office has steadfastly worked with Texas Parks and Wildlife (the Department) to bring us to a point of announcing an impending true public engagement vehicle that is beingÂ assembled.
This week Iâd like to write about a disturbing trend in our society, that, while not particularly new, is getting worse and worse as time goes on. As I recall it from my pre-Department of Education public school history classes, not to mention the hundreds, or possibly thousands, of history books (which according to my wife are all still hanging around our house), that Iâve read, one of the big reasons our Founding Fathers revolted was to put an end to ââTaxation, without representationâ.
Itâs hard to believe that the annual general merchandise Tax Free weekend is nearly upon us. Stores are running ads for ââback to schoolâ clothing and equipment, and even those without children to clothe and equip are planning shopping sprees for the coming days. Before racing out to take advantage of these sales, however, it is well worth the time involved to balance the check book, and double check the outstanding bills. Back to School too often is the fore runner of a hot check special, ââBack to Courtâ..
A few years ago, I moved to a new town and took a new job, which eventually morphed into a new career.
That town was Sweetwater and the job was working as a staff writer here at the Reporter.
I had always written as a hobby, but I had never worked in the newspaper business prior to my time here. Heck, I wasn't even a journalism major, having studied psychology at a college in upstate New York, where I was born and raised.