Commentary

Wed
10
Jun

Holy buckets!

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Nebraska natives know better than to complain about the rain.
Life-giving moisture falling from the skies, or lack thereof, permeates our lives in so many waves, causing massive ripples throughout both our social calendars and the local economy. It’s a given, year in and year out, that weather -- good, bad or otherwise -- is a hot topic of conversation.
But holly cow, rain is coming down in buckets this spring and summer!
Just a year or so ago we wrote about NRD water restrictions and how perilously close the Upper Big Blue District was to hitting record low aquifer levels. Had the spring readings come in just a smidgen lower last year, area producers and communities that rely on the precious underwater reservoir would have had to deal with strict water allocations, which have been a harsh reality in western Nebraska for decades.
What a difference a year makes!

Wed
03
Jun

Bandage woes are only a ‘me problem’ it seems

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As I get older my fingers don’t seem as nimble as they once were and I find myself struggling to button shirt cuffs; holding small nails without hitting my fingers with a hammer; and punching the keyboards on a cell phone or computer. However, one of my biggest problems comes from those doggone little adhesive bandages. As you probably know, I use a lot of those quick patches because many of my handyman adventures still continue to go sour.
Over the years adhesive bandage manufactures have gone from the simple plastic patch to new advanced multi-sized antibacterial coated bandages now incased in descriptive knuckle or fingertip flexible fabrics. New technology has advanced the adhesive bandage to currently tout what manufactures advertise as “superior protection, 4-sided seal, thinner, breathable and stretchable.” Why even today’s adhesive bandage has an option of antibacterial triple pad technology with a pain-free non-stick film.

Wed
03
Jun

Hornet pride. Giltner student-athletes give community reason to celebrate

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“It’s just awesome to be a Hornet.”
Jared Hastings said what many of his Giltner teammates and their families were thinking last weekend during a memorable couple of days in Omaha. The Hornets did what few other teams have been able to accomplish at the Nebraska State Track Meet, winning both the boys and girls championships in the same year. That takes some doing, since the event brings the state’s best talent together for what is always an extremely competitive test of athletic ability.
The Hornets were impressive, winning seven events between the two teams and six other medals. It was a fitting end for a talented group of student-athletes who have carried the orange and black torch with pride, and in fact raised the bar of success for future generations to aspire to.

Wed
27
May

Fond childhood memories fade as town deteriorates

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This past week I ventured to a small country cemetery in Kansas where my grandparents and great grandparents are buried. As I exited a busy blacktop highway and drove down those gravel country roads my mind began to wander. Memories came back to me about my grandparents and the small community in which they lived. I realized I was lucky enough to have fond childhood memories implanted by my grandpa and grandma.

Wed
27
May

A day to reflect

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America turned the page toward summer Monday, pausing ever so briefly to honor the men and women who fought and died for our country, while also cherishing the memories of lost loved ones.
Memorial Day has become a traditional day of transition, marking the end of another school year and the beginning of summer. It’s a breath of fresh air for many.
At its core, however, this day is intended to focus our thoughts on the heroic men and women who have worn a military uniform. The day invites us to remember the cost of making America what it is, while also forcing us to acknowledge that the price is not yet paid in full.
In today’s world, perhaps more than any time in history, freedom comes cloaked in uncertainty. News of the day from the Middle East is unsettling, especially for those following ISIS developments who have  loved one’s in harm’s way. Our nation still and always will rely on her sons and daughters to defend her liberty.

Wed
20
May

Be careful what you say about cutting back chow

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A drought has occurred in our household. I’m not talking about a household with a lack of water, but a household that has another type of drought. Let’s just call it a “dessert drought” and it was one of my own choosing.
I unwittingly mentioned to the betterhalf  I was beginning to get a little thick around the middle and it was going to be necessary to cut back a little on the chow. I didn’t realize she included desserts as a part of what I assumed was chow -- you know, that meat and potatoes stuff.

Wed
20
May

New Hamilton County Guide offers snapshot of community

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“Welcome to Hamilton County.”
That’s the front page greeting on one of the county’s most comprehensive marketing pieces, which is hot off the press this week in the form of an 84-page full-color magazine.
The Hamilton County Guide offers guests and prospective newcomers a Reader’s Digest version of a place that’s very special to those who call it home. It will soon be available online as well (auroranewsregister.com) to any and all who want to enjoy a colorful snapshot of our community.
There is indeed a lot to offer here in Hamilton County -- great schools, quality health care, top-notch recreational facilities, a diversified economy and a proud, ag-based heritage rooted in some of the best soil and water resources in America. That’s not a sales pitch, but rather a heart-felt sentiment shared by many.

Wed
13
May

Override the veto

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A plan to improve Nebraska’s roads and bridges has hit a roadblock in the form of Gov. Pete Ricketts.
The first-year governor made it clear from the get-go that tax relief will be high on his agenda, which is a message anyone who talks Nebraska politics can agree with. Taxes are high in our great state and the heavy property tax burden falls especially hard on rural land owners.
There is strong support, however, for a bill that would increase the state’s gas tax by 1-1/2 cents per year for four years, raising an estimated $75 million per year once fully implemented. Dist. 34 rookie Sen. Curt Friesen said he didn’t run for office with a plan to raise taxes, but he supports this particular proposal, and with good reason.

Wed
13
May

Murphy’s Modern Day Laws apply to us all

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It becomes downright silly what a guy thinks about when it’s time to face the deadline of writing a column.
I’m sure some of you would rather I just forget column writing and have the newspaper fill the space with something else. Well, I’m not going to let you off the hook that easy. When the pressure is on, some topic will emerge. This time it happened to be Murphy’s Laws. However, it’s time to now title them “Modern Day Murphy’s Laws, so here goes those modern day squibs.
We are told:
* It’s impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious.
* The chance of the toast falling butter side down is directly proportionate to the cost of the carpet.
* In order to get a bank loan you need to prove you don’t really need it.
* A Smith & Wesson revolver always beats four aces.
* Anything that’s dropped in the bathroom will always fall in the toilet.
* The best golf shots always happen when playing alone.

Wed
06
May

Of all the things a child needs, Mom tops list

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There’s no question I am an avid newspaper reader. I couldn’t help but chuckle when an advertisement in a daily newspaper this past week caught my eye.
The advertisement featured a free gourmet dinner at an Italian steakhouse immediately following a free seminar. What was the topic of the seminar?
“Stress, hormones and health – the true cause of belly fat.”
***
If any community could use a chamber of commerce promoting the positive aspects of its community it would be Aone, Japan. Aone has a population of 638 residents. It’s two-room schoolhouse contains six desks for six elementary students. The middle school has an enrollment of eight.
The community’s main street is described as two small general stores and a restaurant. The reporter described the restaurant as a “grimy restaurant” that could make a claim for serving the worst food in Japan.

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