My credit card company sold my card to another entity, then offered me a new one. Now I have to learn a new number and reestablish a new identity all over again. Seems idiotic to me.

Did you know it would take about 635,000 McDonald’s straw wrappers, laid out flat and butted up against each other, to cover a football field. How do I know? I measured one and then used my HP12C calculator to figure it out.

I was interested in the printed promotional piece some merchants in Moundridge recently produced for their town. The eight-page publication, called Moundridge Marketplace, is sent by direct mail to a couple thousand area homes. It is a campaign giving reasons why residents should shop in their stores.

It is no secret that small-town businesses everywhere are feeling the pinch that the big-box stores, supercenters and the Internet are putting on them. Hillsboro and other Marion County towns are no exception. To one degree or another, our small communities are at a crossroad. Our towns have to be more than a place to sleep.

Consumers enticed by loss-leader pricing and bigger selection at the big boxes are not taking into account the effect buying elsewhere has on their local communities. It means lost revenue for friends and neighbors who operate businesses and employ others, and lost taxes that otherwise go right back into improving the town.

We have many nice shops and businesses right here that can provide excellent service. Most of the time you are dealing directly with the owner, who has 10 times more knowledge about what he or she sells than a part-timer in a big box. The advice and knowledge of these hometown owners is valuable.

Spend a little more with your friends and neighbors if you can. Without reasonable profits, they might not be here when you need that one item quickly.

Have you ever awakened in the morning with a crick in your neck? I awoke the other day and could hardly move my thumb.

We went to the Warren Theatre in Old Town this past Saturday night to see “The Terminal.” Since we hadn’t been there before, I wasn’t sure it was going to work to watch a movie with food being ordered and delivered all over the place.

As it turned out, it wasn’t too distracting. I guess we’re all so busy these days that we can’t stop to eat, and then see a movie. It’s more efficient to do both simultaneously.

The electric control box downtown needs a little decorating. Some suggestions have been to paint it like an old-fashioned phone booth from the 1930s or 1940s, or to paint a map on it that would give directions to places in town and the area.

It can’t just stay drab green. What’s your idea?

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