Subtlety is an art form that, when placed in the hands of the skilled, can deliver a message so seemingly insignificant that it is absorbed without conscious resistance. A well-worded sermon plants a seed that provides strength for the future when comfort is needed. A word of praise from a teacher will silently build confidence for that moment when everything may change for the student.
I've never been to a live wrestling match, but I have seen the sport demonstrated on TV.
Pardon me. I'm told by male members of the Courier staff that I mispronounced/misspelled the event. Real fans, they tell me, call the sport "wrassling."
A thousand pardons.
The attention to wrestling/wrassling came into newsroom discussion because of a planned event next week in Benton. A number of wrestling/wrassling stars will be performing here in conjunction with Benton's first Freedom Fest.
When I was in third grade, Miss Erma Trice assigned us to write a paper on our ambitions.
At that juncture my heroine was Esther Williams, the movie star/Olympic swimmer that thrilled me with the water ballets I watched on the big screen at James Theatre in Cotton Plant.
There wasn't a doubt in my mind that I could be the next in line to claim her spot in stardom.
In the paper for Miss Erma, I wrote about my desire to "grow up and be just like Esther Williams."
I told about this dream with much flourish because I truly believed it.
Watching the newscasts of Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee celebration, I'm once again reminded of the similarities between the British monarch and my mother.
Though I could address several factors to illustrate the comparison, the most obvious one is the queen's purse.
Nay. Make that her pocketbook.
Queen Elizabeth always carries a pocketbook. It may be of natural straw, patent leather, black velvet, satin brocade or the finest lace, but the style never changes. It's a double-strapped handbag that opens like a book and closes with a clasp in the center.
Identifying a musical work has been a fun thing in our family for as long as I have memory.
We'll hear something on the radio or on a TV show and I can't rest until I recall the song title.
My spouse frequently said I should have gotten on the old TV show, "Name That Tune." He thought I could have won the top prize.
It's true that most of the time I can spit out the name immediately, but when I can't, it's painful.
As a lifelong grammarian, I frequently shudder at what has happened to ordinary conversation.
I grew up around two cousins and an aunt who constantly corrected any of my deviations from proper speech.
Instead of resenting this, I actually appreciated it. Their well-meaning corrections helped me to speak and write correctly most of the time.
Words are my life. This has been so for as long as I have memory. But there are times when words are inadequate to express what one feels.
I'm living in such a time.
As most people know, on May 4 I suffered the greatest loss I have known. This was the final day of life for my husband of 36, nearly 37, years.
Before this happened, I thought I understood grief. I've buried both my parents and other loved ones and said the final goodbyes to friends who were as close as family. But losing a spouse? It's an experience unlike any other.
Only those who have been there know what I mean.
The Social Security Administration recently announced that the most popular baby names for 2011 were Sophia and Jacob.
This is the 13th year in a row that Jacob topped the list for boys and the first year for Sophia, who knocked Isabella to No. 2 after a two-year stint at the top of the female list.
Only one new name made the top 10 on either list this year. Mason rocketed to No. 2 from outside the top 10 to replace Anthony on the boysâ€™ side.
It was also reported that Elvis has returned to the top 1,000, coming in at No. 904 on the rankings. That's good. Elvis needs to be there.
For many years my minister spouse has collected what is known among the church folk as bulletin bloopers.
These are basically mistakes â€” some caused by typos, some resulting from misplaced words, some stringing the wrong words together that change the meaning, often drastically and embarrassingly so â€” but basically they're little pieces of funny stuff that weren't intended to be so.
No cash in the pocketbook? Well, just put that on the charge-a-plate
As a Lucille Ball zealot, I can fill in the dialogue on most of the old "I Love Lucy" episodes.
Truth be told, I've seen these reruns so many times that I think I could play any of the characters â€” maybe even Little Ricky.
In addition to their entertainment value, these old shows are trips in nostalgia. They trigger many memories of life as I remember it from earlier years.