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It’s summertime, which means that, like this past Fourth of July weekend, a lot of us gather around lakes, dams and rivers, fire up the barbecue, eat pound-and-a-half burgers and bratwurst and sip a few sodas and brews. It’s also a time when we pay a little more attention to the twinkling stars in the night sky. And especially on the Fourth of July, we gathered together to gaze at fireworks bursting forth from the Heavens and it was then that we inevitably say to each other, “Hey, there’s the Milky Way.”
Sometimes it's fun to just start writing with no particular goal in mind and see where it leads. This is one of those times. But first I'd like to address an issue in life that never seems to get resolved. I'm wondering how can you build the West River Community Center for $12 million and then turn around and add onto it for a few more million dollars, but not be able to keep enough of those little $5 pins in the weight machines that enable you to set the weights at a certain level?
Brace yourself. There’s a long way to go. It’s only June and the presidential election is still almost five months away. Yet it seems like we’ve been feasting on Deepwater Trump, Hammerhead Clinton and Bigmouth Sanders for decades or more. This fishing trip has already lasted too long and I’m wondering if it’s too late to throw back the catch and cast again? Yet if you think this election is one of the most bizarre in history, think again because that first-place trophy was earned long ago by the presidential election of 1876. So let me give you a little background.
Do you know what a statin is? If you don't, it probably means that your cholesterol level has not yet climbed as high as the Empire State Building, World Trade Center or the 2,722-foot Burj Khalifa building in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. So, assuming you're one of the lucky ones, let me tell you that a statin is any of a group of drugs that acts to reduce levels of fats, including triglycerides and cholesterol, in your blood. Because, apparently, it's those two things that clog up your arteries like bits of strawberries do the straw you suck on when you slurp down a milkshake.
Have you ever been to Alive @ 5 in downtown Dickinson? If you haven’t, you never will. That’s because it is no longer called Alive @ 5. It is now...
Do you know what a misnomer is? If you ask Mr. Dictionary, the answer he gives is so vague you feel like you knew more before you asked him. The bottom line is a misnomer is a lie. Mr. Dictionary says it is a misapplied or inappropriate name or designation. But that sounds like a lie. Yet instead of calling it a lie, we call it a misnomer because, for some reason, we think we can water it down. Therefore, maybe it's just a white lie. But then, a white lie is still a lie.
Do you have any traditions? Are there things that you do over and over in particular circumstances? As a society, we are engulfed in traditions. We tend to do the same general thing every Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween and St. Patrick’s Day. There’s nothing wrong with that. It breeds consistency.
What does it mean to be “in the zone?” Does it mean that you are passing by an elementary school and you need to slow down? Does it mean that you are finally in the right spot to park your car? Or does it mean that you have traveled back in time to Vietnam where, during the war, news heads used to talk so much about the DMZ, the demilitarized zone. Actually, it is none of the above.
Do you have credibility? I hope so. It’s a very popular question these days with a presidential election coming up. After all, isn’t that what we are all asking? Whether Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have any credibility? And I do mean ANY credibility. Of course, Mr. Dictionary says that credibility is the quality of being trusted and believed in. That’s a big demand isn’t it? Being both trusted AND believed in? You might be the most trustworthy person in the world and still not be believed in.
What do you think is the most difficult thing in life? Personally, I think it is making a decision to surge ahead or stay back; to “go for it,” or to wait. Yes, the toughest decision is whether or not risk it all, or risk nothing at all. Of course, as a society, we reward those who make the choice to surge ahead and then go on to win. But we tend to butcher those who do the same and then go on to lose. “They were careless,” we often say. And sometimes they were.