Category: Free Falling

Debates need some new rules

I wish the debates were really debates. What we have seen this political season are more akin to forums, places where candidates are given free rein to trade jabs with their opponents. Some 80 million Ameri­cans tuned in for the first “debate” between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. About half that many watched the two vice-presidential hopefuls go at it […]

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Head trauma: Worth the risk?

Football season is underway once again. The boys are hitting the field and hitting each other as usual. But, there is change in the air. More and more, brain specialists are sounding the alarm about something called chronic traumatic encephalopathy or, more familiarly, CTE. And, while the focus in recent years has already been placed on concussions and making sure […]

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Tips for success this school year

We are on the verge of a new school year, like it or not. This will be my 28th term as an educator, and I would like to think I have learned a thing or two myself during those nearly three decades. So, I thought I would pass along a few tips that might make the transition from summer freedom […]

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Highlights of Italy, Switzerland

Remember the old tourism slogan: “Texas: It’s like a whole other country”? Well, sketchy syntax aside, a recent visit to Europe revealed a number of major differences between the United States and countries such as Switzerland and Italy. Some are obvious, but others are a bit more subtle. Food, both how it is served and what is on the plate, […]

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Illnesses that need medication

Just try watching the evening news without feeling sick. I’m not talking about the content of the broadcast itself; rather, I am referring to the commercials. There is a seemingly endless stream of advertisements about diseases I have never heard of and ways to cure said diseases. And, sometimes, the list of side effects seems worse than the illness under […]

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Spring into summer thoughts

As late spring turns to early summer, here are some things to ponder…. I’m sure I don’t have anything new and insightful to bring to the presidential election table, but I do have one wish I would like to deliver to the candidates: stop yelling so much. I have always been a fan of actor Patrick Stewart. He was great […]

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Iowa trip side trips were great

My wife and I took a little cross-state tour of Iowa over spring break. To be perfectly honest, she planned the whole thing. And I like it that way. When I map out a vacation, it is usually about getting from point A to point B. I am not all that concerned about what is in between. Our getting to […]

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Election: best hope for schools

I really didn?t want to write about our state government. Again. In fact, I wanted to avoid politics altogether this month. But I feel as though my hand has been forced by the recent revelation that all our Kansas legislators are up for reelection this fall, both representatives and senators. Every one of them. We may finally be in a […]

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Cookie fortunes can crumble

I have always been fascinated by fortune cookies. More specifically, the printed pieces of paper they contain. Most are useless, arbitrary and meaningless. Someone left a huge box of the treats in the teacher workroom and lunch?room recently. We all had a good time checking out the words of wisdom they contain. Too late, I thought about keeping all of […]

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Things I hope vanish in 2016

The new year brings a sense of hope, a chance for a new start. It is also an opportunity to clear up and perhaps even forget the errors of the past 12 months. Here are a few things I would like to see disappear in 2016. My wish list begins with what has become a tradition at college football games: […]

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