Eartha and I had been driving for many miles and we decided to stop, take a break and have coffee and a piece of pie. We found ourselves in a coffee shop in Valley City. We asked about pie and our waitress gave us a list of about a half dozen. I asked how the banana cream looked. She looked around, then leaned down and whispered "The bananas are black."
I just read about a well-known songwriter describing his writing methods for lyrics. He doesn't start with a song on his mind (or in his heart). He says when he feels like writing, he just sits down with pen and paper and no ideas at all and starts writing. The song sings itself while he's writing.
It's called "March Madness" — the time for basketball tournaments and playoffs — high school and college. The high school tournaments are finished now and college playoffs have culled the field down to the Final Four: Villanova, Kansas, Loyola-Chicago and Michigan. There have been 60 games in the tournament so far and 60 losers. Only four teams have avoided losing to this point.
We're lucky — we've gone to only one opioid funeral — a talented 24-year-old musician who knew he was addicted and was trying to recover, but took one pill too many. He was the son of friends. The church was filled with stunned 20-somethings. The music was beautiful, but who could enjoy it? What a miserable day.
Every year about this time, the Motion Picture Academy awards Oscars to the best actors, actresses, movies, music, sound affects (24 categories) of the movies of the past year. This year was the 90th year. The awards this year were on March 4. This article was written before March 4, so I have no idea who the winners were. You do by now, but it doesn't matter, this isn't about glitz, fame, fortune, plunging necklines and long speeches. It's about the day-in, day-out (DIDO) services of ordinary, hard working men and women we see every day.
In the news last week, we saw pictures of thousands of students, parents and community members in Parkland, Florida, attending a vigil expressing grief, anger and frustration as a result of the school shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that left 17 dead, including 14 students. The mass murder was carried out by a 19-year-old former student using an AR-15 assault weapon purchased legally. When arrested, the shooter had multiple ammunition magazines in his possession.
I was about to walk out the door of the county courthouse about two years ago when I spotted a metal button about the size of a quarter on the floor. I stopped and picked it up and it was a red, white and blue political campaign button that read, I LIKE IKE. Whoa! This was a button for Dwight D. Eisenhower who was elected our 34th president in 1952 and re-elected in 1956. This button had to be at least 60 years old. What was it doing on the courthouse floor 10 presidents later? I picked the collector's item up and I still have it − somewhere.
I walked by this women's store and checked the displays as I moved along. It was a very cold day and the north wind was in my face, but the displays inside the window were all spring. However, what caught my attention was a coffee mug or some little knick-knack with a message printed on it. The message: LIFE IS SHORT — BUY THE SHOES. I have to agree — life is short — and there are some things we ought to take care of before we run out of time, and buying a pair of shoes that you can't live without may be one of them.
It was late afternoon — dark, windy and very cold. We decided to stop for a quick visit with our friend in the transitional care unit. We drove to the part of the parking lot closest to the entrance and we had the good fortune to find three or four good parking spots. We very casually parked in one of those spots and went in to cheer up our friend as well as his wife and daughter who were there.
He said his name was Ben. He was about 10 or 11 years old and he looked like a little professor. He approached me and said "I liked your column about '5% charged.'" That was a column from a couple weeks ago about a cell phone that was 5 percent charged and a columnist also 5 percent charged and where does a person go to get energy.