• COLUMN: Remembering Harvey Lee DeSpain

    Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today. James Dean (Feb. 8, 1931 – Sept. 30, 1955)

    My cousin Harvey was 23 when I was born. He was the son of my Aunt Marie – my dad’s sister – the one I was named after.

    Harvey Lee DeSpain spent the first years of his life in LaRue County, but he had already moved to the big city of Buechel when I met him. He didn’t visit us often, but his visits were memorable.

  • COLUMN: Beware the old man in the hat

    I’ve spent the last few weeks driving down Memory Lane and came across this column from 1995. Funny how some things have changed – while others – like the old man in the hat – never do.
    I like driving on the old E’town Road.
    It’s not as scenic, but it’s faster than the parkway unless I get behind HIM.
    Him who?
    The man of my nightmares –
    The man who inspired the theme to “The Twilight Zone” –
    The old man in the hat.

  • The importance of wrestling ... and other things

    When my son was a little guy, he wanted, more than anything, to play basketball.
    He practiced for hours and turned into a pretty good ball handler and a consistent shooter. It was also obvious that he was not going to inherit the 6-feet 1-inch gene from the taller members of the family. It looked like he was going to stand about 5-feet tall (he finally reached a whopping 5-feet 5-inches) – and I knew what that meant for a basketball player.

  • COLUMN: Thanks, Mr. Ireland. You're the Best.

     Since I married Bud Ireland in 2004, I have counted on him for many things. He changes the oil in the Jeep, makes sure I am wearing matching shoes and generally keeps me going. There is no way to count how many stories or pages of the newspaper he has proofed over the years – or how many photos he has taken for me when I couldn’t get somewhere. 

    He has missed more suppers and listened to more city council stories than anybody.

    And he has done it without complaint for years.

  • COLUMN: Play ball! Reminiscing 1995

    As I was going through some mementos, I came across this column that was published on April 12, 1995. It gave me the idea to republish a few of my early columns in the upcoming weeks. I hope you enjoy the trip down Memory Lane as much as I did.
    My 9-year-old son decided to play little league baseball this year.
    I tried to talk him out of it like I did last year.

  • COLUMN: Feeling old, looking forward

    A few weeks ago, I was standing knee-deep in snow on the edge of a bluff, hanging onto a skinny tree branch and trying to take photos of a car that had landed in a creek below.
    The snow had edged over the top of my Fat Babies (boots, people, boots) and I was losing traction fast. I got a few photos and prayed that I wouldn’t end up at the bottom of the hill (or on YouTube) – looking like a giant snow burrito – before I finished.

  • COLUMN: Spring brings bird brains and dumb clucks

     This column is about chickens. If you don’t want to read about roosters in particular, now is a good time to stop.

    A few months ago, my pet rooster Chi-Bob was assassinated. There is no other way to describe the carnage that occurred when a red-tailed hawk dropped out of the sky directly onto his head. One second Chi-Bob was standing inside the pen, flirting with the hens – the next, he was a flattened wad of feathers.

  • COLUMN: Frankfort Focus

    FRANKFORT – In one way, the bills filed each legislative session are not much different from the teams taking part in the NCAA basketball tournaments.  Some advance, while others find out that this is not their year.

  • COLUMN: Splg skls hv suffrd tx 2 tk

    Gone from the landscape of many schools today is the old-fashioned spelling bee. Count us among those lamenting its demise.
    While some elementary school classes might have a spelling bee, to our knowledge, there is no school-wide spelling bee at either South Christian or Pembroke Elementary
    Back in my school days, the classroom spelling bee to determine who would represent each class in the overall spelling bee was a big deal. Teachers promoted it and students considered it a major achievement to advance to the district-wide spelling bee.

  • COLUMN: Open government? Take it personally

    Don’t take it personally?
    That’s usually good advice, but today we urge the opposite reaction to all government bodies operating in the shadows, purposely avoiding public scrutiny and genuine transparency.
    In other words, take closed government personally. Please!
    • Take it personally when a reporter is kicked out of a city council meeting so members can hold an illegal or unnecessary executive session.
    • Take it personally when public access to government records is refused, limited, or attached to excessive fees.