Opinions

Thu
26
Jun

INDIAN FIGHTER DOES THE ARMY'S JOB

by Bartee Haile

On Jul. 1, 1855, Gov. Elisha Pease called upon James Callahan, a veteran Indian fighter with a hard-as-nails reputation, to save an endangered species -- the frontier settler. After nine years of the Potomac politicians going back on their word, nothing Washington did should have surprised the citizens of the biggest state in the Union. But Texans never imagined the United States government would leave the Lone Star frontier unprotected.
 
Thu
26
Jun

Switchin' Flies

by Barney Nelson

I love Cowboy baseball. It's like sitting out on a breezy porch in the evening, watching the sunset. For a while the buzzards circle, heading to roost. When the sun goes down, the clouds are different every night: like the time the whole sky turned an inky pink with storm clouds banging around. Then the night hawks come out, hunting bugs attracted to the lights or a little spider decides to build a web in the netting right in front of the pitcher.
 
Wed
18
Jun

LYNCHING STARTS DEM CONVENTION OFF ON WRONG FOOT

by Bartee Haile.

Early arrivals to the Democratic National Convention were greeted by a gruesome sight on the morning of Jun. 20, 1928 - a lynching victim hanging from a Houston bridge. Five months earlier, Democratic leaders picked the Bayou City as the site for their quadrennial get-together, the first meeting of its kind in a southern state since the Civil War. Credit went to businessman Jesse Jones, national finance chairman, whose expert string-pulling made his hometown of 250,000 the winning entry.
 
Wed
11
Jun

Switchin' Flies

By Barney Nelson.

As an old school marm, I've probably listened to several hundred graduation speeches by now. I'm retired (almost) and no longer forced to attend, but I go listen anyway. I even read or listen to several on the Internet. I'm curious about what those speakers are advising our graduates: how to change the world, how special they are with their diplomas in hand, or how bright their futures should be?
 
Wed
11
Jun

DALLAS DOCTOR FALLS FOR FAMOUS FEMME FATALE

By Bartee Haile.

Clara Bow, the scandalous "It Girl," slipped into Dallas under the cover of darkness on Jun. 15, 1930 in search of an ex-lover and $30,000 in hush money. The femme fatale of silent films entered a Los Angeles hospital for an appendectomy in February 1928. On the day of her discharge, Clara's constant companion Tui Lorraine walked in on the famous patient and a handsome intern "locked in a passionate embrace." The embarrassed doctor turned beet red and ran out of the room. "I think he's gorgeous," Clara giggled.
 
Wed
04
Jun

Switchin' Flies

by Barney Nelson.
 
Can you picture an old small-town homebody, who doesn't even go to Midland but once every couple years, on the beach of Grand Cayman Island? Me neither, but it happened! I'd been drooling over all those vacation advertisements for beautiful beaches, thinking I wanted to go someday. Not one to make snap decisions, I had been drooling for probably 40 or so years. For some reason, even though I have trouble walking on a sidewalk,
I pictured myself able to walk in sand and keep my balance in waves. I didn't seem too afraid of being seen in public in a swim suit either, as long as it was pretty unlikely that I'd run into anyone from home.
Wed
04
Jun

BLOODY LAST ACT OF EAST TEXAS FEUD

By Bartee Haile.
 
When the sun rose over San Augustine on Jun. 4, 1900, two dozen or more early-bird snipers already encircled the courthouse. The curtain was about to go up on the last act of a long-running East Texas feud, and there would be bodies to bury on both sides before the bloody day was done. The private wars Texans once called feuds were waged by a breed that believed the only justice worth having was up-close and personal. Warrior clans that showed no mercy and asked for none were plentiful around San Augustine in the late 1800's.

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Thu
29
May

MAN AGAINST BEAST

Man against beast is a theme in many a story, from days of yore to 21st century wolves ravaging baby calves. It normally takes a hero to slay the dragon or sue the EPA. Heroes are often battling with giants, against all odds; David and Goliath, Jack and the Beanstalk, or The Alamosa High School Maroons vs Miami Heat. Dennis had his opportunity to rise to the occasion. He is a farmerfeeder in the San Luis Valley.
 
Thu
29
May

NOT EVEN BLINDNESS COULD STOP "STOVEPIPE"

Two years after pulling off the slickest military trick of the Civil War and only two months before a life-changing piece of bad luck, Adam Rankin Johnson was promoted to brigadier general in the Confederate army. Born and raised at Henderson on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River, Johnson's education ended at age 12, when he left school to work fulltime in a drugstore. Eight long years later, the thrifty youth had put aside enough money for a one-way trip to Texas.
 
Wed
21
May

Switchin' Flies

By Barney Nelson.
 
I miss my snake. Usually by this time of year a very dehydrated red racer has come out of hibernation to drink and soak his way back to life in my bird water. He always looks like he has drowned and been run-over: flat and half of his body completely submerged under water. But if I go out to check on him, he scoots away. So I've learned to let him soak. I'm not sure why I keep calling HIM a HE. He just always looks mad and if I've got a job for him to do, he runs off. He also drops his old dirty "clothes" just anywhere. But he is actually pink instead of red, so he very well could be a girl.

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