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Bummed out about jolly good toilet paper TV commercials?

September 24, 2014
Bummed out about jolly good toilet paper TV commercials?

Things keep on a-changing.
Modern Library’s Greatest Book of the 20th Century, Ulysses by James Joyce, was banned for decades.
Back in the day, the word “pregnant” could not be uttered on TV.
On the radio, “Louie, Louie” was banned mainly because parents in 1963 – hearing the most popular version, by the Kingsmen – thought their children were being told vile things through the lyrics. Even though the “obscene” words were anything but, parents – and the FBI!… Read the rest

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Thoughts on how can you do the R.I.G.H.T. thing

September 24, 2014
Thoughts on how can you do the R.I.G.H.T. thing

I had to do something this week that I really hate to do. I turned down a speaking engagement. They are easy to turn down when I am already booked somewhere, but I actually had this specific time slot open. The problem was that it was about the only open time slot for this whole week, and I knew I would not be able to give my best effort and preparation to it.… Read the rest

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A tale of two Sauk chiefs and the Black Hawk War

September 24, 2014
A tale of two Sauk chiefs and the Black Hawk War

War is complicated, and sad. I had never paid much attention to the Black Hawk War of 1832 except to remember that the future President Abraham Lincoln fought in it.
In the 1820s and 1830s the policy of the U.S. government – quite logical at the time – was that whites would not settle the land west of the Mississippi River for generations. Therefore, treaties to persuade, purchase, coerce the native tribes to move west of that mighty river would allow them to continue their life there free of white encroachment and conflict.… Read the rest

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Davis, Abbott answer questions in McAllen forum

September 24, 2014
Davis, Abbott answer questions in McAllen forum

With less than six weeks until election day on Nov. 4, the first of two scheduled gubernatorial debates was held in the Rio Grande Valley city of Edinburg on Sept. 19.
Democratic Party nominee for governor Wendy Davis, a state senator from Fort Worth, and Republican Party gubernatorial nominee Greg Abbott, Texas attorney general, fielded questions from Carlos Sanchez, editor of The Monitor, a daily newspaper in McAllen, and Telemundo’s McAllen news anchor Dalila Garza. Abbott and Davis responded to questions for 60 minutes on topics such as border security, economic development, education and education funding, abortion and visions of the future.… Read the rest

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Sometimes you really do just have to be there

September 17, 2014
Sometimes you really do just have to be there

Today there is a generation that wonders what the big deal is about the Dallas Cowboys.
They wonder: Why are my parents/grandparents so worked up about the guys with stars on their helmets?
This new generation has never seen the Pokes even sniff a Super Bowl.
Dallas has won just a single playoff game – in 2009 – since December 1996.
The last Cowboys Super Bowl appearance came to cap the 1995 season.… Read the rest

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On focusing on life’s better half

September 17, 2014
On focusing on life’s better half

Did you ever have to halve something with a sibling? Which “half” did you want? I don’t remember who came up with the rule, but it is a good one. One person “halves” and the other person picks. That certainly has a way to keep the “halver” honest.
When I was a pastor, I got a lot of grief from church members about the length of the sermon when the Dallas Cowboys had a noon kickoff.… Read the rest

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Fort Worth’s North Side immigrants leave lasting legacies

September 17, 2014
Fort Worth’s North Side immigrants leave lasting legacies

For many years I have been aware of the early immigration to the North Side of Fort Worth, mostly from central and eastern Europe. By the 1890s ship travel became cheaper, and folks came from Poland, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Russia, etc. to work in the two meat packing plants, Armour and Swift. This was true all over the Midwest in cities that had stockyards. In my book on the North Side, North of the River I included a chapter on these immigrants.… Read the rest

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War of words?

September 17, 2014
War of words?

Texas, Mexico exchange words over border military force

While the governor and group of trade-with-Texas promoters were in Japan and China last week, the 13th anniversary of the “9-11” terrorist attacks on the United States was broadly observed. Perry acknowledged the anniversary from afar and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who serves as acting governor when Perry is out of the state, also made a similar, solemn statement on Sept. 11.… Read the rest

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Tons of pain in the 5 stages of drought grief

September 10, 2014
Tons of pain in the 5 stages of drought grief

The clouds gathered last Saturday, staging west like a gathering army anxious to advance.
You got 15 minutes, Captain Thunderhead said.
So I continued walking the highway, looking for a cell phone that I had left on the truck roof. (Never do that.)
Finally, phone-less, the Bride picked me up on our dirt road that I had hours earlier back-breakingly shoveled three tons of rocks out of the bed of two pickups onto to help soon-to-arrive partygoers reach the house easier.… Read the rest

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Autocorrect gone wild: The Lawyer and the Geisha

September 10, 2014
Autocorrect gone wild: The Lawyer and the Geisha

If you use a smartphone, it has probably happened to you: that moment when autocorrect takes over and inserts a word that makes you say, “Where the heck did that come from?”
A few months ago, Mrs. Sweetie was sending a text message to my brother.  The subject was our nephew and the word she was typing was “hero.” Her phone decided to make it “heterosexual.” The fact that our nephew is heterosexual would not have been a revelation to his father, but we were glad she caught it before she sent it.… Read the rest

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