As I write this, a burn ban rages across the state.
A week ago I had the pleasure of meeting some folks from out of town who were just passing through.
A thick down comforter of gray clouds pressed against the morning sky. The fringe along the eastern edge of the clouds was the color of July peaches. Before sunrise late last week, I had come outside, coffee in hand, to admire the explosion of yellow swamp sunflowers in our otherwise fading backyard. The sunflowers are perennials that grow and grow -- some are as tall as 12-feet -- and you wonder if they will ever bloom.
This summer Starkville's city leaders engaged an independent consulting firm to develop a new comprehensive plan.
Several good friends and readers have asked me to weigh in on the Initiative 42 referendum.
Please find a rich person -- which isn't easy in Mississippi -- and offer him or her a hug today.
Last week we left for our annual camping trip to north Alabama. I admit I was torn between camping and staying with the new kittens but my responsible 16-year-old neighbor girl readily agreed to keep the kittens and besides I knew Sam needed a vacation from SEC television and retirement activities.
We are seeing so much energy and activity in downtown Starkville these days.
I have just finished reading the article in Tuesday's Dispatch concerning Initiative 42 (Slimantics: Just in time for Halloween: The scary story of the "single liberal judge").
It is almost comical the lengths our state's career politicians are going to in a frenzied effort to defeat Initiative 42, a November ballot measure that requires the state to adequately fund K-12 public education by holding the Legislature accountable to the judicial system.
I don't often answer the telephone, but that day I did. Probably most people don't even have a landline anymore.
The "Third Place" is a phrase used by professionals studying the process of community building.
I have been enjoying taking photographs at the butterfly garden on the Columbus Riverwalk. While the main attractions are the butterflies, hummingbirds and the beauty of the flowers, there is another story within the garden.
"Oh the places you'll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all." Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You'll Go! Thanks to a soccer-playing granddaughter I have a new Tuesday/Thursday afternoon ritual.
Misleading or useful? That's the question surrounding the updated College Scorecard website published by the U.S. Department of Education. (See collegescorecard.ed.gov)
ROLLING FORK -- The chosen theme for this year's National Newspaper Week is "Power of the Press," and that power, it seems to me, is a very relative thing. Everybody understands the power of, say, The New York Times or The Washington Post, but probably less recognized and appreciated is the power of the Deer Creek Pilot and the thousands of other small, community newspapers just like it all across the land.
In "Lonesome Dove," the cowboys crest a hill and see a gentle valley with ample timber, grazing and water. "This will do," is how they end their months-long cattle drive. They had found a place to settle down, seek prosperity. In 2015, they'd need to know more -- a lot more.
In the days when we were colleagues in the Mississippi Press Association, I learned quickly that Patsy Speights was a substantial, formidable woman and a truly great small town newspaper editor.
Just when you think you can't take the summer heat one moment longer, it's fall. Momma always said fall was her most favorite season.
1. Our View: From failing schools come failing communities DISPATCH EDITORIALS
2. Wyatt Emmerich: Towards safer streets LOCAL COLUMNS
3. Editorial cartoon for 10-20-17 NATIONAL COLUMNS