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HOLLENBECK: Try a little kindness and have a happy Thanksgiving

November 23, 2011

Except for St. Patrick’s Day — which my Irish heritage tells me I must claim for my favorite holiday — my “next favorite” is Thanksgiving.
To me, it’s a much better day than Christmas because it’s about family and friends and food and fellowship and all good things in between. I don’t feel pressured to have the perfect gift for everyone I know. I can just enjoy.
Still, if we get to the real reason for the season, Christmas should come first. That’s a no-brainer. It’s the extraneous stuff and human-made pressure that has made that event hectic and difficult and expensive and exhausting.

HOLLENBECK: There’s nothing like the wisdom that comes out of the mouths of babes

November 14, 2011

There are people who don’t like to read columns about the cute things kids say. If you’re one of them and you’re reading this, just move on down the road because this column will be about the cute things kids say. I’m one who relishes such gems of wisdom.
And some of those cute things will have been espoused by my grandchildren and those of others in my intimate acquaintance. Truth be told, the stuff said by youngsters may not be as enchanting to others as it is to kith and kin, but I’ve always liked kids — mine and other people’s — so I enjoy all of it.

HOLLENBECK: Imagination reigns supreme among the young and the old at Halloween

November 9, 2011

I always enjoy the visits from Halloween trick-or-treaters. It’s probably as much fun for me as it is for the children.
As a lifetime enthusiast of “let’s pretend,” I love seeing costumed youngsters taking on new characters.
The younger they are, the cuter they are. I could do without the adult visitors who apparently have a craving for sweets, but I don’t turn anyone away. As long as the candy holds out and the beggars are there, I gladly distribute the sweet stuff.

DAVIS: Don't like our political coverage? I'll make you an offer you can't refuse.

November 3, 2011

I'll be honest with you. About this time last year I was concerned about the direction this paper was taking, so much so that I considered no longer writing my weekly column for it. The political rhetoric was, from my point of view, beyond what the general public considered interesting. I don't say this to cast aspersions toward the previous editor and/or publisher. I say them to set a new standard of this newspapers involvement in political campaigns. To clear the air, so to speak.

DAVIS: Think Before You Vote

November 3, 2011

It doesn't matter what the election, voting with your emotions on your sleeve can be dangerous. Voter remorse sets in quickly and before you know it, the person or issue that you steadfastly supported are now the cause of that pain in your shoulders and other regions that can't be described in a local newspaper. We all have had the feeling before but sadly enough fail to recognize the signs when future ballots are placed in front of us.

HOLLENBECK: Tradition continues: Thanksgiving is approaching, so bring on the corn

November 1, 2011

It’s fast approaching the time of year when I cook.
I should clarify the statement.
We do eat at our household. We always have and more than likely we always will, but most of the time I “fix” things. I reserve cooking for people like my late mother; the Courier’s Pat Stuckey, who can cater meals to feed army-sized settings at the same time she’s doing six other things; Gail Nickerson, our Grits & Grace lady; and others who know what they’re doing when they walk into the kitchen.
I can identify a spatula in a utensil lineup, but when you get into more complicated gadgets, I’m at a loss.

HOLLENBECK: Life with pets is challenging but absolutely never, never dull

October 24, 2011

Living with pets presents unusual challenges at times.
Sometimes the challenges can be BIG, particularly if humans get involved and the humans don’t happen to be on the friendly side of the animal.
Case in point: A flooring project done at our house a number of years ago.
The work entailed ripping up old carpet to replace it with a vinyl-like floor that looked like hardwood.
Everybody at the carpet store was wonderful in accommodating me in what I wanted.
There were no problems until the actual work started.

DAVIS: Recess is over. Time to leave the playground

October 16, 2011

It's time to put the conspiracy theories, the rumors and half-truths, the innuendo and all the other distractions of the school board election away. On a near daily basis, these very same tidbits made their way through various channels to the ears of our citizens. Some of the recipients, not all, would accept these nuggets as fact, repeat them and never question what they had just heard.

DAVIS: It Was My Job to Burn the Leaves

October 14, 2011

The changing of the seasons are times in which I relish being alive, particularly when summer changes to fall. Gone are the days of sweltering heat, the discomfort of sweat and the buzzing of mosquitos. For those of us who live outside the city it also means a goodbye to the slithering of snakes that are often found out in the fields and patrolling the creek banks in search of field mice and frogs.

HOLLENBECK: An uplifting story: The history of the brassiere

October 13, 2011

There’s an urban legend that claims the brassiere was invented by a man named Otto Titzling, who reportedly lost a lawsuit with Phillip de Brassiere.
This reportedly originated with the 1971 book “Bust-Up: The Uplifting Tale of Otto Titzling and the Development of the Bra” and was propagated in a comedic song from the movie “Beaches.”
It’s not hard to figure out the reason to attribute the invention of the bra to a man. If I have to explain it, you probably don’t need to be reading this prattle.

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