Columns

  • By Robert Krol, Tribune News Service
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Interstate 85 reopened in Atlanta earlier this month, six weeks after a homeless man allegedly set a fire that caused a bridge collapse and shut down the freeway in both directions. It could be easy to misjudge the catastrophe as the latest proof that America’s infrastructure is falling apar…

Birds of prey beget strong feelings. They are killers and their kills are conspicuous. Gnatcatchers catch gnats and flycatchers catch flies and swallows catch all sorts of insects. A peregrine falcon catches birds. A peregrine in its high-speed dive hitting a pigeon in a cloud of feathers de…

Life is sometimes difficult. I don’t have to tell you that. All of us, as we go through life, face countless obstacles, disappointments, sorrows and even pain, both emotional and physical. Of course, we don’t all face exactly the same things, nor in the same amounts.

It was 54 years ago, yesterday in my mind. Samson, our family’s black German shepherd, gently grabbed my forearm with his mouth and led me away from the street, up the slope of our driveway, back toward the house. I do not remember the circumstance. I am sure it was as innocent as a 4-year-o…

When a person starts a new job usually someone there is ready to play a joke on them. It was no different back when I went to the police department back in 1958. I was told later that it was a test of courage. Whatever they wanted to call it, believe me, it was not one bit funny

Earlier this month, the great Loretta Lynn had a stroke and was rushed to a hospital in Nashville. Updates on her health are few and far between but those that have been released are positive. She’s out of the hospital and moved to rehabilitation.

In 1816, a hunting party from St. Clair County, Alabama, was just below Ten Mile Island on the Coosa River. They stumbled upon a dead animal that was half in and half out of the water. One of the hunters later wrote a letter to his sister in Charleston about the beast. It would be over 50 ye…

In John Irving's book “The World According to Garp,” the main character’s son mishears the warning to avoid the “undertoad” while at the beach. Garp, a writer and the boy’s father, embraces the “undertoad” as a metaphor for that beast of calamity that sometimes we fear sits just under the su…

We live in very challenging times. Some of my friends and loved ones are sick, while others that I grew up with have transitioned to the world beyond. I have come to realize how blessed I am just to be alive, no matter my circumstances or situation. We cannot take the precious gift of life f…

Since the election of Donald Trump as president, the Democrats have brought new meaning to the term “opposition party.” Presidents normally get a “honeymoon” at the beginning of their term when the country unites behind the new leader. Instead of a “honeymoon,” Trump got protests at his inau…

  • By Jonathan Hafetz, The Seattle Times
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President Donald Trump’s effort to bar travel to the United States by citizens of several Muslim-majority nations continues to face stiff resistance in the courts. Two federal judges have blocked Trump’s new executive order, issued after multiple courts had halted enforcement of his initial order.

I am weary. I don’t mean tired, I mean weary. Weariness is not a short-term issue. It is developed over a long period of time, a lifetime in this case.

My experience of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was forever changed when I saw the food pantry at St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco. Each Friday, St. Gregory distributes food to 400 hungry families in the community.

About a decade ago I traveled to San Francisco for work. Once my meetings were over, I decided to check out the city’s iconic cable cars. I waited in a crazy long line like all of the other tourists.

Mr. Bricklemeyer, old Brick, (“Mr. Brick” if you did not want to get in trouble) ran the swimming pool in my summers. No one liked him. He was mean and hairy and loud. I possess this unpleasant memory despite repeated purgings and repressions.

  • By Andrew Malcolm, Special to McClatchy
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According to President Donald Trump, he had decided to pull out of NAFTA until, at the last minute the other day, he talked with the leaders of Canada and Mexico, who convinced him to first try renegotiating the 23-year-old trade agreement with them instead.

In 1845 James Lafferty built himself a steamboat in Cincinnati, Ohio. He took the little boat down river till it ran into the Mississippi River, and all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. There he followed the inland passageways till he reached Mobile, and up the Alabama River he went. Just abov…

Our desires and appetites are powerful things. Many of them help keep us alive. And yet some can get us into trouble if we are not careful. And the stronger the desire, the more satisfying and meaningful it can be when it is finally “satisfied.” And often it is the strongest desire that wins…

If you had a big wad of money and you could spend it on something really neat, how would you use it? That’s a question Floyd County, the city of Rome and Cave Spring will be addressing over the next few months.

“Why don’t you write a weekly column?” he asked. “Of course!” I said, “Just tell me when you need them.” Sure, I thought, I can easily add writing 800 words a week to my list of things to do.

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