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Thursday, July 28, 2016
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  • Wednesday, July 27, 2016 10:45 PM

    Known this week’s couple for decades as our kids were about the same age, (graduates of Southmont) and always thought they were pretty interesting and special folks.  However, I learned so many captivating things sitting down with them at (yep) PH, that I’d probably vote them my most fascinating couple yet. 

    First of all, she is directly descended from several original land owners in our county, impressive folks in their own rights.  Vancleaves, Milligans, Canines, Revolutionary, War of 1812 soldiers, and a Major in the US Army, long-living ones, yet her father passing at a very early age. 

    With Social Security money from her father and an academic scholarship plus with her mother working at R.R. Donnelley’s, she was able to get summer jobs when off from Butler.  Her brother also went to Butler and played football.  

    Now, there was a particular pressman at RRD who sent her birthday flowers and that was the start of something big.  She received her undergrad from Butler and two masters (Social Studies and Counselling). 

    In fact, she graduated from Butler June the 2nd, got married on the 3rd, had a whirl-wind honeymoon (Canadian World’s Fair for one) and landed on the 17th in Santiago, Chile where he helped set-up a printing company, installing the printer and training the workers.  Of a hundred men, an electrician and engineer knew a bit of English so he had to learn to speak to the workers.  Although his Spanish was working, local Spanish, my couple took a class and he didn’t do well, yet he could speak to the workers with ease.  They noted that there were many wealthy people there, many Nazis and German Jews who kept their distance but their children got along fine.  He spent hours at the plant and she taught but he also had a chance to set-up a soccer team that is still in existence today.  She even got Pele’s autograph.

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  • Tuesday, July 26, 2016 12:00 AM

    We’ve had a lot of fun celebrating what we’ve called Founders’ Month. Just in case there are more than the regular eight or nine of regulars reading this week, the little newspaper company that could is celebrating its 12th anniversary.

    Throughout the month we’ve shared a little news about the folks who have invested a significant amount of money to give Crawfordsville and Montgomery County a true locally owned newspaper.

    Today, let me share with you those who have invested their talents.

    These are the people who work here, or in Ol’ Roughrider’s words, the people who are “in the arena; whose face(s) are marred by dust and sweat and blood . . .” These are the people who make The Paper and The Weekly a reality.

    It begins with Kim VanMatre. Kim has done a little bit of everything here. She started almost 10 years ago selling ads. She quickly was promoted to retail director. Later she became advertising director and is now our corporate vice president of sales with The Paper, The Weekly, The Noblesville Times, Sheridan News and Hamilton County Sports Daily. Truth to tell, I’ve worked with some awfully talented sales people over almost 40 years but I’m not sure I’ve ever worked with anyone who can sell better than Kim. What sets her apart is how much she cares about both her customer and her company. She has that rare combination of brains and talent that makes her an unstoppable force.

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  • Poison Ivy
    Monday, July 25, 2016 12:00 AM

    We are in the middle of summer and people are still out puttering in their yards. Predictably, this has resulted in a lot more cases of contact dermatitis showing up in my office, most of which were likely caused by poison ivy. Poison ivy is one of three plants in Indiana in the genus Toxicodendron. This genus also includes poison sumac, commonly found in central Indiana, and poison oak that is an infrequent offender.

    The physical appearance of the poison ivy plant is highly variable, though it always has leaves in sets of three (see illustration). I learned a memory aid in Boy Scouts to remember what it looks like – “leaflets three let it be, berries white a poisonous sight.” The white berries can sometimes be seen in wintertime. The plant is small and low to the ground when young. As it grows, it can be found in various sizes all the way up to a thick vine attached by small red tentacles to trees or other structures.

    The rash of poison ivy, like most contact rashes, results from the immune system reacting to a foreign substance on the skin. The substance binds to skin cells, is recognized by the immune system as a something foreign to the body, and then attacked. When dealing with poison ivy, sumac or oak, it causes the typical rash, known by the medical term, “rhus dermatitis.” 

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  • Sunday, July 24, 2016 11:00 PM

    My wife has decided that we need to go on a budget. Now that we are both scaling back on work, there’s a lot more going out than coming in. As we downsize, we’re finding the same thing with trash, as well.

    A budget is like a diet. Seems like a good idea, looks great on paper, and has a nice sound to it. (I mean, can you make up three dumber reasons to do something?)

    When we first got married, Mary Ellen toyed with the idea of a budget, but when she realized that saving money required not spending as much, the idea lost a lot of its glow.

    My wife has an MBA, which means she will be very meticulous about this. She’ll want receipts; she’ll question each expense; everything will be scrutinized. It’s enough to make me want to leave home, but I just know there will be no moving expenses in this budget.

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  • Their life together has been a moving experience
    Wednesday, July 20, 2016 11:11 PM

    Two Montgomery Countians went off to see the world, but thankful they ventured back again decades later.  He was born in the small town of Alamo and she by where Cracker Barrel is (just north where the Rick Ward’s building sits).  Two brothers for her and a sister for him.

    In high school he was involved in basketball, and meets monthly with the six of 13 who graduated with him.  In fact, it was basketball that brought the two together.  Her best friend, Kay Harper was going to a game at Alamo to see her fella, and asked my gal if she wanted to go.  Well, yeah!  In fact, she referred to it jokingly, “We drove to Alamo in hot pursuit!”  It worked!  She graduated from CHS but wasn’t in too much (band) as she rode the bus.  She did take 4-H pigs eight years, having the Grand Champion in 1952.

    Reminiscing, these two sillies told about their third date when they went with Bill (Hallett) and Kay to the Shades area and fixed hot dogs and marshmallows.  Ready?  That’s where she got her first kiss, but it’s lucky they lived for the second, as it had gotten dark and they’d not taken flashlights.  They had forgotten they had to go over Devil’s Backbone to get out to their car.  If you’ve ever been there, you know it’s precarious even in the daytime.  They crawled across it in the dark -- silly kids!

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  • Pneumothorax
    Sunday, July 17, 2016 10:15 PM

    I’ve received some questions recently asking what a pneumothorax is. The word is derived from the Greek word “pneuma,” meaning wind, air or breath and the Latin “thorax,” meaning chest. It literally means air in the chest.

    Some may now be questioning my knowledge of anatomy and physiology. You may be thinking, “of course, everyone has air in their chest!” The difference lies in where the air is located.

    Air is normally found inside the lung. When someone suffers a pneumothorax, the air is outside the lung, specifically between the outside of the lung and the inside of the chest cavity or thorax. This is not a normal physiologic state and it causes the lung to collapse. These injuries can be quite dangerous and even fatal.

    To understand how this all works, you need to have an understanding of the anatomy and physiology of breathing. When we take a breath or inhale, the muscles in the wall of the chest expand the chest outward. Likewise, the diaphragm (the muscular dome separating the chest and abdomen) pulls downward and expands the chest toward the abdomen.

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  • Sunday, July 17, 2016 10:12 PM

    Just once in 38 years I’d have liked to hear Mary Ellen say something like: “Dick has this terrific habit of changing his underwear every day.” Generally the word habit is associated with a repeated bad action.  I mean, there are good vibes and bad vibes; good ideas and bad ideas; good luck and bad luck. But it’s almost redundant to include the word “bad” with habit.

    Mary Ellen recently commented that after all our years together, it still drove her a little batty that I whistle all the time. She claims I do it when I am working in my home office or cleaning out the garage, and even when I am on my way out the door to go to the TV station.

    “No one whistles on the way to work,” she said. I told her I could probably name seven who did, but one of the dwarves’ names keeps slipping my mind. 

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  • Sunday, July 17, 2016 10:09 PM

    Garrison Keillor performed his final Prairie Home Companion episode last week, capping things off with a goodbye visit to Lake Wobegon, his mythical hometown where “all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.”

    I did not hear that live performance on the radio; I watched it the next day, on YouTube—a decision I regretted because for four decades he was a disembodied voice. That might sound odd, but actually seeing his body took away some of the magic for me. If you love radio, you know what I mean.

    Keillor was a glorious confluence of Mark Twain, Jerry Seinfeld and Will Rogers.  And while I did not know him personally, there were a few intersecting points in our lives.

    The first begins with Fred Newman, his intrepid sound-effects man. Fred makes each performance sparkle with accompanying mouth noises that brilliantly mimic explosions, trains, tornadoes and virtually anything that Keillor throws at him as he spins a story. Fred never knows what’s coming.

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  • Their love is as strong as Karen's mailbox
    Thursday, July 14, 2016 12:00 AM

    Ever lived in the country and ya’ just couldn’t keep a mailbox?  Well, I have, the last couple of times losing it to kids with their ball-batting fun. Problem solved, as my fella’ this week fixed us right up with a tough, steel mailbox that hubs put on a railroad tie.  That baby was still as strong as could be when we moved a couple of decades later.

    He and his employees did interesting work far beyond our mailbox: steel work on the Williamsport Library, Comfort Inn, M-16 Gun racks for the National Guard (20 guns/rack); Black Creek Bridge; secured the north wall at the Masonic Temple; the most unique being the circular stairways in the Elks building.  Not only a hard worker, he’s one smart fellow, too.  After all, he chose his interesting and adorable wife.

    She was born near Soltau, Germany (with a slight hint of that in her speech even today). Her mother had cousins in the Russellville area who had come over by sponsorship on a freighter a couple years earlier.  Tough voyage.  Although her father had been a tool and die maker in Germany, he and his family were sponsored by the (Leonard) Pyle Farm near Marshall to come to America to work.  Her father soon discovered he didn’t like farming.  Father Hans, mother, Sophie, brothers Hans and Wilfred and our little lady at age 9, almost 10 came on the passenger ship, Olympia arriving December 31, 1953.  Hans had been forced into the German army in 1939 until the end WWII.  Not what he wanted for his children, although his son joined the service in 1957.  My gal took the test, passed, and was ready to head out with her brother.   Her grade school years were in Marshall but she then went on to Rockville HS where she actually met our man. 

    He grew-up not far from where Riverton Parke HS is now, with two brothers and two sisters.  The home where he grew-up was designed by his father who also sawed all the wood from their property.  It was top of the line and they paid the carpenters $1/day.  This was in the early 30s.  They made a beautiful slabbed 12’ trestle table with four benches from one of their Oak trees, as well.  

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  • Monday, July 11, 2016 10:53 PM

    Clearly, I love newspapers. I love almost every single thing about them. I love the idea that we give you the news of the day. I love that we tell you who came into this world as well as respectfully share who left. I love the smell of ink and paper dust – even as that fades away through outsourced printing and readers migrating online. I love the fact that while lots of folks like to say newspapers are dying, the fact of the matter is that we have more people reading us than ever before.

    Think about that for a second, if you would. If this were a Broadway play the critics would be predicting the curtain falling on the show while the theater was packed with a waiting line out the door.

    Ah, but I digress.

    Here at your little Newspaper Company That Could, we’ve turned July into what we call Founders Month – a month-long celebration of our 12th anniversary. As such, I’ve had my nose buried in Montgomery County newspaper history books and it’s been a joy for a geek like me. For example, did you know that the first newspaper in Montgomery County was the Crawfordsville Record? It rolled off a press – brought all the way from Cincinnati by freight wagons – on Oct. 18, 1831. The subscription cost a whopping $2 per year if paid in advance.

    Next came the Examiner, a weekly Democratic newspaper that began in 1837. Two more papers opened and closed their doors – the Record and the Western Reporter – before the cousin to the current version of the Journal-Review, entitled simply the Review, opened in 1841. A competitor, the Journal, came along seven years later and fought tooth and nail (sound familiar) until 1929 when the two came together to form a new newspaper.

    However, as Paul Harvey would say, here’s the rest of the story.

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  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
    Monday, July 11, 2016 12:00 AM

    I see a number of people who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel is a very common condition, often related to repetitive injury at home or in the workplace. It is one of a number of repetitive strain injuries or “RSIs.”

    Carpal tunnel symptoms usually include numbness and/or pain in the hand and wrist that may extend up into the arm, shoulder or even neck. The numbness, tingling or pain frequently wakes people during sleep.

    To understand the condition, it’s helpful to have a lesson in wrist anatomy (see diagram). There are eight carpal bones that make up the wrist. When you hold your wrist with your palm facing up, these bones form a U-shaped valley. The top of the valley is enclosed by a piece of connective tissue called the transverse carpal ligament. These structures together form the carpal tunnel.

    The tunnel is a very cramped space and some very important structures are packed into it. There are nine flexor tendons and the median nerve. The tendons that run through the tunnel connect the muscles in the palm side of the forearm to the bones in the fingers. When the muscles in your forearm contract, the tendons slide through the tunnel and pull on your finger bones, allowing you to make a fist (finger flexion).

    The median nerve runs directly under the transverse carpal ligament. This nerve is responsible for the feeling in the thumb, index, middle, and the thumb side of the ring finger. It also controls the muscles in the thumb that allow you to pinch your thumb and index finger together.

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  • Friday, July 08, 2016 11:00 PM

      Here it is, the morning of Independence Day, and I’m surveying my once clean kitchen. Peanut butter on the floor, vanilla spilled over the counter top, and powdered sugar, well, everywhere.  Just one more chapter in the adventures of nine-year-olds Phoebe and Olivia.  They’ve been experimenting in my kitchen for a couple of weeks now, brainstorming some pretty horrible concoctions, but laughing and learning along the way.

       Last week, upon my return from Los Angeles, I was not inclined to make an immediate trip to the grocery store.  So, in the absence of basic ingredients, my daughter and her friend got especially creative.

       I don’t know exactly what they included in their recipe, but I know it was only in the oven for approximately three and a half minutes before the smoke detector sounded.  I grabbed a broom and started fanning the unit, while Phoebe and Olivia ran around throwing open windows and doors. 

      The cookie sheet was bubbling with something that looked a lot like the La Brea tar pits I had just visited in California. At any moment, I expected a fossilized wooly mammoth to surface. 

      In my mind, as soon as the mess cooled, they would scrape it in the trash and start over. Or maybe move on to another activity that didn’t involve smoke detectors. But, no. Within minutes I was the recipient of a piece of thin, floppy, chocolate rubber topped with a banana slice. Two sets of nine-year-old eyes looked at me with eager anticipation. 

       “So, what do you think?” 

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  • Thursday, July 07, 2016 11:53 PM

    As April moved aside for May 1998, the good folks of Lennox Valley had no idea how their world was about to change on Monday, May 4.

    On Talk Radio 88.3’s “Rendering With Raymond,” callers were equally divided between two topics of vital importance.

    The first had to do with a book published a few months earlier that was all the rage among Lennox Valley teens. “Harry Potter,” barked the first caller, Martha Jean Bratton, was “of the devil” and “has no place in the hands of any self-respecting young person.” Host Raymond Cooper felt certain, he told his listeners, that enthusiasm for this “Potter character” would wane soon enough.

    As for the second critical topic, the plight of the Federal Reserve System, which took up much of the next three hours, Raymond felt less confident. Especially with “insiders” like Iris Long fanning the flames in support of the government. Raymond noted, with a sly grin not seen by his listeners, that the Hofbrau had raised the price of a Denver omelette from $3.25 to $3.29 over the weekend, more proof of the havoc resulting from federal mismanagement
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  • Thursday, July 07, 2016 11:48 PM

    Sleeping has always been an issue for me. Not napping: I’m a wiz at napping. The problem is falling asleep in a bed…and staying that way for six to eight hours. I’m just not good at it. Never have been.

    I have tried many things over the years. I took Ambien once. It worked well, but there was an odd side effect. Not only did I think I got a good night’s sleep, but when I woke up in the morning, I discovered I had mown the entire front lawn in the dark. I also tried allergy medicine because a friend told me that if I took a couple it would make me sleep deeply. It also made me a little goofy. I don’t think growling at yourself in the mirror is normal.

    The one place I sleep great is on a bus. But why? There is nothing on a bus that lends itself to sleeping. The seats are hard, the space is cramped and it’s usually hot.  

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  • Thursday, July 07, 2016 11:44 PM

    The ladies at the DAV Van (Park and Rec) have a need. They need more volunteer drivers as we only have three drivers now. Any interested volunteer will need to go to the VA facility in Indianapolis at 1481 W.  Tenth Street and get a TB test done, physical and background check and be finger printed.  This will be done on a Tuesday from 8:00 -2:00 and will take place in Room D-2039. You will then be told what to do next.  That is all we need done for now, so please help us out if you can.  Please call 364-5175 ext 21. Leave a message if no one is there. We need your help!

    The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall will be coming to the Lane Place Aug. 12, 13 and 14. The Wall will arrive on Aug. 10 and there will be a parade to follow at 11 a.m. at the corner of Wallace and Main streets for Vietnam Veterans.  All Vietnam Veterans are invited to walk in the parade for the Vietnam Wall.  Please call Mike Spencer if you are willing to do this.  His number is 765-366-9883.  The men will walk to the end of Main Street just past downtown.

    The VA has done away with the signature on the 10-10ez form this is the form that you file for your Health Care needs.  You may call 1-877-222-8387 for getting your health care needs.  You may still fill out the 10-10ez form and have me send it in or online health care application
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a division of Sagamore News Media

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