I learned early that being female was not a blessing. My father, a farmer who wanted all boys, had nine girls and only two boys. His first wife had nine children before she died, five little girls in graves. Few children grew to adulthood in those days. When my mother and father married and had two more children, I remember hearing my mother often tell my brother how proud my father had been to have another son, never mentioning pride in relationship to his final girl.
I didn't like the military very much while I was growing up. I could chalk that up to being a pre-teen and early teenager during the Vietnam years when -- quite unfortunately -- this country didn't treat its vets very well. I think I also didn't deal well with authority figures since I grew up kind of scrawny and was bullied a bit as a kid.
After six years of peeling back layers of our corrupt state government, nothing should surprise us. And yet Judge Manning's ruling was still a shock -- it didn't seem possible for a judge to shut down a grand jury investigation into alleged corruption by the Speaker of the House and argue that Harrell's staff and colleagues on the House Ethics Committee must first decide if he has committed a crime.
Thousands of days, all those filled with clouds, rain, snow or sunshine, have passed since that time yet the lesson sticks stubbornly to my heart.
I never aspired to possess wisdom. In fact, mere mortals would never achieve such a goal. I did want to be educated, something that was usually denied for females. Few females went to college; the meager funds were for the males in the family. Even today, many men do not want their wives to work outside the home. The need for two salaries has made two occupations a necessity. Of course, in modern times, women still have their female occupations to do in "off duty hours." I learned that if I could not be male, I had better become educated ...
As you know, the city of Camden is focusing on tourism -- figuring out ways to entice people to visit our historic city. There's a lot of competition out there; everyone understands that tourists spend money, don't pollute and point others in our direction if they have a good time.
WASHINGTON -- Just when you thought American higher learning couldn't get any more ridiculous, along come demands for warning labels on provocative works of literature.
This is what I often hear after meeting someone new and they discover I'm an arborist. Sometimes I'm stumped on the trees' problem or what the homeowner perceives to be the problem, but most times able to assist them. If you have a tree in your yard or on street-side, perhaps you've wondered about a particular tree thing. If so, here is Part 1 of some common tree questions I receive.
One of my responsibilities at the newspaper is to go out each week and do the "Sidewalk Survey" feature we run each Wednesday. Just in case you're not aware of it, let me explain. I find six random people around town and ask them one opinion question. There are no right or wrong answers; it really is their opinion. If they're willing to answer, I get their name and town of residence and take their photo. That's where I lose some of them. A lot of people are willing to answer a question, but some balk when ...
Graduation time is upon us and there's such a buzz of excitement in the air. High school and college students are collectively gearing up for the next stage in their life and emotions are strong. I have to say, I'm particularly glad that I'm not graduating from anything this year.
First, let's be honest with ourselves. For most of us -- especially us white, urban, middle-class folks -- when we hear people talking about the overall poor quality of education in our state, we conjure up images of the Corridor of Shame, i.e. black, rural and poor.
WASHINGTON -- With The New York Times' sudden dismissal of Executive Editor Jill Abramson and Karl Rove's suggestion that Hillary Clinton might have brain damage, the curtain opened on a new theater in an old war.
Since the end of August, I have been the pain in my own neck. I suffered whiplash at that time, aggravating a pair of already bulging discs that had bothered me the year before. I've been in pain ever since.
What one person considers wasting time, another believes to be necessary. I grew up in a time when what your parents said was law and employers set the rules. No one dared to defy authority. Nevertheless, I often did mandatory chores that I considered, and still consider, to be a waste of time.
It happened recently. The 20th anniversary of the death of stock car racer Davey Allison. Maybe you remember him. Maybe you don't.
Hey, y'all! I am Jim McGowan. I am the most recent addition to the award-winning staff of the Chronicle-Independent. I can only hope to live up to their high standards. It will not be easy. I will be the Localife editor and cover the education beat.
A federal nutrition program that places new restrictions on snacks and beverages sold in schools also provides an opportunity for some fresh thinking about school fundraisers.
I remember once I was giving a presentation about important conservation properties in the Piedmont. I showed photos of the incredible rock formations on a particular property and happened to mention their age in an effort to describe their grandeur. Afterwards, I was confronted by an indignant man who told me that the age of rocks cannot be known. He accused me of making those figures up out of thin air. Surprised by his vociferous tone, I told him I was sorry to have upset him. While not a confrontational person, I am a teacher, and I began to politely ...
WASHINGTON -- "Checked the tax code," wrote a friend who's engaged to a woman from a low-tax country. "Unfortunately, marrying [my fiancee] does not entitle me to a tax inversion like the big U.S. companies are getting. Thanks for nothing, IRS."
Their histories, accurate and complete, are lost to time and buried with them and those who knew them. I wish I knew more for their stories would read like a page-turning novel.
OK, OK, yes I'm talking Star Trek again, but hang on, this is really more about newspapers than Star Trek. All right, maybe 50-50.
In 1964, the World's Fair was in New York City. I was 6 years old and went with my parents and older sister to the fair. New York City seemed like a different world to a little boy from Dexter, Mo., but it was all good. We rode on subway trains, we had cheeseburgers in a diner where the staff had funny accents and rode the Staten Island Ferry and saw the Statue of Liberty. I saw a billboard that had the Marlboro man blowing smoke out of his mouth. We were living it up.
In the quest to answer the many questions I receive about trees, see below for part three in the continuing series.
If you have a serious case of wanderlust -- an insatiable desire to see new places and experience unique customs -- then you'll probably envy Alisa Johnson of Seattle, Wash.
Is it hypocritical for a really, really rich person to object to rising inequality?
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