Freeze iced water lines and meters


Frozen water meters in downtown Hillsboro were pretty common Friday. The city was busy thawing meters up and down the street.

We had never had our water line freeze at the Free Press in the 11-plus years we’ve been here. Frozen piles are more a problem for a restaurant, which needs water to make coffee and more. Our neighbors offered the use of their facilities, which was nice.

Tom, from the city’s water department, rolled up in a city truck and proceeded to place a big rubber hose over the exhaust pipe on his truck and ran it into our meter hole to start the thawing process. Pretty clever, I must say.

He said it would take about 15-20 minutes, but after 30 minutes I asked him what else might be wrong. To make sure it was really frozen at the meter, he cracked the nut on the city side of the meter and nothing came out—hence it really was frozen.

We’re glad John Giffin has chosen to come onboard at the Free Press as our sports writer and video expert. If you read his column in last week’s issue, then you know a lot about him already. He comes to us with high recommendations, and we look forward to the experience and new skills he will be sharing.

I wonder if livestock can remember if the weather is a lot colder this winter than last.

In a trade journal that came in the mail the other day, I learned the new word for January is “Planuary.” Planning in January for the next year is a little late, but better late than never.

We are changing our announcement policy at the Free Press. You can read about the reasons in this week’s editorial. We did our research and made a change to paid announcements in September. We admit now that we don’t always get it right.

However, I am still certain that our marketing strategy of total market circulation for the Free Press is correct.

Without our paper in the market, advertising rates would most likely be three times higher than what we now charge—if you were to buy an ad in the other three papers. What’s more, considerably fewer households would be receiving those newspapers, in my opinion.

Had we charged for subscriptions during the past 11-plus years, our readers (had they all been subscribers) would have paid more than $2 million in subscriptions during that time. Call it our economic stimulus plan.

We know by our CVC audit that about 86 percent of the folks who receive our paper regularly read it and almost 80 percent respond to the advertising found in it.

Or we could say that only 14 percent of the people who receive our paper don’t read it.

In my view, that isn’t very many folks who don’t care about what is happening around them.

After watching Texas get beat by Alabama in the BCS championship game Thursday night, I began wondering what was wrong with Texas after quarterback Colt McCoy was injured early in the game and couldn’t return. Texas has a $5 million coach and no backup quarterback ready to play?

Have you ever had such a body ache from a cold that your whiskers hurt when you shaved? I believe that can really happen. It did recently.


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