Our hearts ached this past week for Patty Decker and her husband, Randy, and their families and friends with the news that they had lost their son, Joey, so suddenly.
We were at a loss for what to do at first, but one by one we went to their house and offered our condolences and offered to help in any way.
We also took food and paper goods as a gesture of our caring and concern.
I know a publisher and her husband in Iowa who lost their son suddenly about five years ago.
Her advice was to offer food and supplies and then to give them space if they desired it.
As it turned out, they welcomed our presence and we all tried to be there for them.
My belief in texting became more positive, as it is a way of communicating without being intrusive. That is how we learned visits were welcomed.
My best memory of Joey is the Marion County Marshmallow Roast for the Guinness Book of Records challenge at the county lake a few years back.
He and a friend were there and we got together on the wrong side of the fire to roast our marshmallows. If I knew then what I know now, I?d say it was crazy to inhale all of that smoke.
Regardless, we survived it, and I even shot a short video of the event on my phone as proof we were there.
Joey followed in his mom?s footsteps and did some writing for the Free Press as a stringer.
Lately I?ve noticed in some of the convenience stores that you can no longer buy a 12-ounce can of soda. The smallest offering is a 16-ounce can. Publisher Robb Reeves, who with his wife own the Halstead Independent, Hesston Record and Ledger pointed this out in his column last week. He and I both voted with our pocketbooks and did not make a purchase the last time we ran into that situation.
The times in this country are changing and have been for the past 200 years or more. Change is the surest thing that happens. In the case of the pop cans, it?s all about profit. Don?t get me wrong. Profit is not a bad word; it?s necessary for businesses to keep operating. If enough people resist, the pop makers will need to come up with a different strategy to keep the cash register humming.
It would be easy to come up with a list of 100 business strategies that have changed in the past 10 years, and all for the sake of profit. What was working 10 years ago may not be what works now. That?s why some businesses that refuse to change are suddenly no longer in business, while those that adjust to the conditions and make changes continue moving forward.
More on this topic later.
If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@