Useta-coulds and still cans

Local Columns

A colleague at the Sioux City Journal 40 years ago was a native of Oklahoma. Our offices were adjacent and we got to know each other well. I enjoyed his Oklahoma idioms and his Okie drawl. One of his frequently used phrases was “useta-could” as in “I useta-could eat a whole bowl of okra ...

Boats and scoreboards

Local Columns

A few weeks past I read of the upcoming construction of a new Kwik Star on the west side of town. I am a student of “rabbit trails” (as you’d know if you’ve heard me present a talk on a subject). The article was about the demolition of the former Naden Industries building. I’ve sat ...

Grief expressed is grief relieved

Local Columns

One thing aging does for a man is help him understand life’s deeper issues a little better. Take funerals, for instance. As a younger man I thought funerals were just an expensive tradition — overdone sentimentalism. Now a septuagenarian, I more deeply appreciate our society’s funeral ...

Hardened hearts and short-sightedness at the Iowa Capitol

Local Columns

Republicans in the Iowa House hate government freebies. Unless it’s their corporate friends who get them. The latest evidence of this hypocrisy is the effort to kill a central Iowa program and prevent others like it that are aimed at helping poor people. UpLift is a test program in ...

Dr. Holt’s dental plan

Local Columns

I’ll be the first to admit I sometimes have issues with too many choices. I love living in this country, though it can be tough selecting the “right” toothpaste or deodorant. When my wife and I moved to Webster City, I thought everything would just naturally fall into place. Smaller ...

Don’t get your elbow in a wringer

Local Columns

As I was growing up I often heard my mother say, “Soap is cheap.” Cleanliness truly was next to godliness in our home so it’s no wonder Mom’s old Maytag wringer-type washing machine remains a vivid part of my memories. My earliest recollections of laundry day include a vision of a ...