The matter of gun violence is of great concern everywhere. It should be. In these days of everything goes in personal conduct, the first thing anti-gunners jump on are good citizens who value their guaranteed rights to ownership.
There are some mighty good reasons for Monday morning quarterbacking. Usually this is left to sportswriters, sportscasters and sports fans.
The words “eminent domain” are more frightening for counties, cities and towns everywhere than “this is the Internal Revenue Service.”
It’s been a good week around these parts. The Great Frederick Fair has been a joy to behold and the quietness that’s covered the area is a welcome relief
With respect at mid -week where we normally have a travelogue, all eyes and journeys focus today on the Nation’s Capital. Supposedly everybody will be on their best behavior even if fingers are crossed behind their backs.
In reading today’s dithyramb several high profile situations come to mind. They are important for various reasons.
The words silent majority have been designated as offensive in some idiotic encounters. Actually, the definition of those words truly means the astonished majority, and it seems this political correctness could well be reaching the end of the line.
By all rights the conversation today probably should be about local politics. The goings on in Winchester Hall continue to develop with spreading underground discontent. Murmurs keep spreading that the county executive continues spending at will.
At the very moment the Honorable Kim Davis figuratively expectorated – spit – in the face of a federal judge, she was headed to jail.
Labor Day is a few days off, but today is a perfect time to revisit first days of the first job. The experience sticks with most people no matter the passage of time. Me, too.
May be hard to believe, but imagine for a moment the summer is almost over and, both parents and students alike are jumping with joy, or should be.
There was a time, believe it or not, when the political correctness fad didn’t exist. People of all ages didn’t run around being offended by this and that, and elected officials were never called stupid, even though it was often talked about in closed door meetings.
The current summer of mental and physical relaxation seems to be slipping beyond reality. Events all over the place have overtaken fun and games. We can admit all exploding news in every platform is astonishing, exciting and a desire for more.
There is a lot of clucking going on in and around Frederick these days. Don’t confuse this with the idiocy suggesting the locale is mean and unkind to visitors of all persuasions, or some such discombobulation.
One of the great reasons to live in Frederick is the reasonable cost of living, lovely homes and mighty nice people. Plus, expenses in other counties like Montgomery, Howard or Prince George’s can be considered outrageous.
That Donald Trump! That Bernie Sanders! That political landscape! There’s no escaping facts that the chattering classes, partisan politicos and money givers are in awe, unknowing as to how to deal with the current state of affairs.
From everything I’ve gathered, Frederick’s police department does a pretty good job with its keeping everything safely and in order.
I am in no way a racist. I am a lover of history, good, bad or indifferent. I was all set to ignore all of the hand-wringing about the battle flag. Then I saw the headline and story, “How the South Skews America. We’d be less violent, more mobile and in general more normal if not for Dixie.”
Phew! What a week of the past. All manner of communications have been bombarding this bureau. News junkies have enjoyed a heyday. It is time for all the good people to take a breath and have some relief. It is almost too much to bear.
There’s no way to avoid discussing the despicable events from South Carolina. It is the duty of all to consider the nine murders in a church massacre.
Whether popular or not, the official language of Frederick County, the State of Maryland and the rest of the states of our national union is American.
Those with news nose sensibilities rank high in getting a jump on monumental decisions by those in authority or their authoritarian positions.
Time is now to affirm, promise, pledge and swear – yes, swear – that no more politicians from Maryland will be jumping into the billion-dollar presidential fray.
In the land of the free, the home of the brave and in Frederick County these are baffling times. As the week ends, good people are suffering in the horse latitudes, probably a bit dizzy from all the idiocies going on.
When all else fails, at least in the political arena, take a poll. In this stage pollsters often become polecats no matter which side they take.
The drum beat goes on. Crime and corruption is pervasive in Maryland’s largest county. Listening to the Frederick County executive this week was alarming.
Imagine for a few moments if hindsight was 20-20 vision. Imagine if mistakes could be corrected years after the fact. Imagine not having to say “if only I could have done things differently.”
The opinionating business is serious and should be. I take it as a solemn matter. There are times more often than not when a good old guffaw is in order.
looks like County Executive Jan Gardner, known in some quarters as Her Worship,
is determined to wipe out homes for some poor and needy people.
Sure looks like County Executive Jan Gardner, known in some quarters as Her Worship, is determined to wipe out homes for some poor and needy people.
There is nothing funny, witty or humorous from Baltimore’s week of unrest. Usually through trials and tribulations pain in many instances can be assuaged with some harmless amusement.
Lip service has been spewing non-stop out of Baltimore the past week or so. It is likely to continue full blast, so let us contribute further as to the declared emergency.
The tragedy that’s continued to unfold in Baltimore truly effects all segments of Maryland life and most all communities, large and small. There have been no easy answers to Freddie Gray’s death two weeks ago, and the city’s political and police officials have gone to the nth degree to salve the matter.
In all probability the toughest job in the world these days is being a cop. This slang expression is considered an acceptable term for serving men and women that comes from Constable on Patrol. There are other meanings, of course.
There’s no sense beating around the bush. News is really slow these days and citizens’ interests have turned to other pursuits. That’s probably good as tune-ups and recharging the issues batteries are well in order.
When it comes to smoking pot or tasting what is known as weed in cookies or brownies and other concoctions, I am a virgin. Somehow, I’ve managed to escape any attraction to such participation.
A bunch of us are age-ing alarmingly. Surely it is evident in these days and times our society and lifestyles grow in all sorts of ways. This is truly exciting and adventurous. The fast pace of modern day and coming of “the New America” is worth considering and frightful.
The movement has started. Not quite sure how long it will be before it’s consummated, but the train is moving. To be somewhat honest, I figure midway through the first term of the first woman president the $20 bill will have a new face.
The thing that is so disturbing by news “presenters” is they get to jawing before knowing any facts. Naturally, it depends, too, on an agenda.
The story breaks. Frederick County Fire Chief Denise Pouget is fired by the county executive. The action comes without notice and catches the able chief and her two deputies off guard. And, the county as well.
I still hold out that baseball is the nation’s pastime. Sitting in the stands watching a no-hitter, or seeing snappy double plays and homeruns, what’s better to any sport lover? It’s preferable in these quarters to watch a direct throw from catcher to the second baseman and an out. Similarly for an outfielder’s throw.
My attention today is not on the crumbling national and international stages. The masterminds there don’t care about my thoughts anyway. Now, for a short sabbatical from the whys and wherefores elsewhere, it’s more important for us to consider the affairs of State at Winchester Hall.
It is a frightening thing that when leaders are in the wrong arena, they don’t understand the enemies; and the big worry this particular moment is emails.
Sure is nice that Barbara Mikulski is giving her successors time to line up for her seat in the United States Senate. Anybody who loves crab cakes can’t be all bad.
By all rights the following should be on the extreme opinionated side. Probably the only good thing on the horizon is the coming baseball season. As players at all levels are warming up, the sidewalks, yards and streets will be following suit.
It is time to put to rest – to bed – all of the hullabaloo, gibberish and nonsense about the Redskins name in the National Football League and any place else for that matter.
The would-be’s are flailing all over the place. They and their ghost writers are hustling books, going to places like Iowa in the dead of winter trying to organize electable opinions and lining up begging apparatus in high gear for the highest office in the land.
Let there be no question, today is special. Everywhere around Frederick and the world, it is described as Pancake Day. Personally the fluffy cakes are something else with all types of berries, syrups and butter, real or otherwise.
There are many who easily accept the current state of world affairs. The attitude of far too many is that troubles in the Middle East are no longer American concerns.
My friend and colleague Roy Meachum is experiencing some physical ailments these days. While we have more often than not disagreed on political matters, we remain on top of the news.
Many circuit courts and those of equal rank in every state, city and town have long faced times when they over-ruled parents. They had to, because some parents won’t allow life-saving blood transfusions or specific prescriptions to protect their children, the elderly, the infirmed and neighborhoods. All of us.
Lots of days, mornings, noons and nights, I have been in the company of my friend Jane. Even while trying to make sense of the Frederick County political activities, she kept knitting, drinking tea and reminding that us “Americans have a lot to answer for.”
I could not wait for the end of the Arizona festivities. Sports fans, bettors, political operatives and assorted other civilians can rest a bit now and get ready for other events. There are plenty more to come.
The business of protocol is important. Call it what you will, but good manners, dignity and courtesy are always best. Times most often call for posterior osculations around the world and with locals of various cultures and politics.
The past few weeks in Frederick have been rather interesting, entertaining and especially uplifting for journalists in all categories. During the fortnight when national and statewide events might overshadow goings-on locally, untoward conduct reared its ugly head and “really and truly” enables all of us to just guffaw.
I want to thank Kathy Afzali today. Her continuing audacity has weaned me from developing reportage that stirred the cockles of my heart. By the way, there are no such things as cockles, cochleae cordis, if you please.
Without doubt, all of us “plain people” will be somewhat agog tonight. Even those who don’t have cable will be able to watch the assembled public spirited leaders put on smiling faces, plenty of crimson ties and scarves on the happy occasion in the Capitol where senators and representatives may be on their best behavior.
Just who is “primus inter pares” these days among Frederick’s political insiders and outsiders? Sure, I’m being a smarty pants today because the search is under way to answer a lingering idea of who is or may be the first among equals.
Woe unto the Frederick County Republican Central Committee. I am not a member. Never have been. Even if I had such tendencies to be a joiner, I wouldn’t give a hoot for the local boys and girls, the supposedly partisan big shots in the political arena.
A full-fledged mêlée has exploded. I don’t mean the murderers of free speech in France. I mean right here in Frederick. It is exciting and the result has hit the Internet, broadcast media and printed pages.
To borrow a popular phrase, “When I thought I was out, they pull me back in.” Well, I did want to exhibit a sweet and nice attitude moving into a new year. But why? I’m searching for a good answer.
We are in the last days and this is my final column; I mean, the last one for the Year of our Lord passing on this the 364th day. But don’t dismay, because there will be more to come in 2015.
Buenos días, señores, senoras y senoritas y simplemente amigos.Feliz Navidad! Today, however, I’m not getting into the “boobus Frederickus” ongoing downtown. Let’s address the fact that when things change they always remain the same.
Sure seems like lots of bullets are flying in and out of Frederick County’s Winchester Hall. Doubt is everywhere that the offensive is going to recede anytime soon or during the next four years to come for that matter.
Verbal bashings continue out of control toward a former president, vice president and the intelligence agency; the “covert ones,” if you please.
Society is never going to be fair and equal. Never has been and never will. Platitudes abound plenty and certainly always sound good.
Let’s face it. Ninety-nine and forty-four-one-hundredths percent of people always snicker, then grin or breakout guffawing hearing news that a celebrated institution or person or persons has been caught in some salacious conduct.
Just when the public gets comfortable and thinks that personal safety is really a matter of everywhere else, presto, it is in the local backyard.
The business of hateful journalism is alive and well. Unfortunately such opinionating has reached the unbelievable, the far-fetched and is beyond good taste.
Regardless of when or where who started this feast day or who set aside the fourth Thursday of November, Thanksgiving Day is one of remembrance, joy and hope.
No matter where life takes us, there’s no uncertainty politics will always play a major role, whether good and bad, up or down, in or out. Everywhere, at city halls, town halls, county seats, civic clubs and churches of all persuasions.
The sporting life of these modern times is over the moon, to borrow an old expression. As was mentioned recently, federal agencies are getting into the act, supposedly to keep everybody clean, quite possibly pure.
I’m feeling sorry today for athletes at all levels. Time is, perhaps, for sports fans, political watchers and regular people to have a rest and think about the good days to come, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Creepers, sleepers and social destroyers are in fine form. Most certainly the newly elected local members of the Board of Education must consider the danger lurking.
There is much to be considered on this somber day of remembrance. The War to End All Wars ended a centenary ago, but the Great War didn’t end anything at all with exception of massive deaths of nine million soldiers and about seven million civilians.
There is no such thing as a morning after pill for election results. Life goes on. For a while the general public may have a short respite before the next cycle invades daily stresses and strains.
On this day of astonishment when expensive public duty comes to a closure just a little bit, time may well be on tap to consider the incredible amounts of money needed for public office.
Amid the brilliant fall colors Taney Avenue was a busy place, campaign faithful were waving flags, the Senior Center parking lot overflowed and election judges were busy certifying voters.
When major news events capture the public attention, it is the time politicians can usually get away with fooling the public and their constituents. Insidious things usually happen and the trusting lambs aren’t any the wiser.
The sample ballot has arrived. I’ve checked it twice and thrice. Don’t need any campaign material to help me decide, or more instructions as to how to make my voice heard. I might vote early to avoid the rush in two weeks.
It is good in the political arena to always stand for better policing, better education, better money-handling, better government, better this and better that. Actually the same-o same-o is always the battle cry of the outs. And, the outs always like to take advantage of amnesia of the citizenry. Let’s be nice here, and call it the forgetfulness of voters.
Everyone should have the opportunity to meet those fervently campaigning for various important positions in Frederick County and the state.
Since colleagues have pretty well explained and detailed all the issues of the Frederick County political and Ebola matters in recent days, perhaps a re-visit to the matter of names is appropriate.
Without any question or debate, baseball is the nation’s preeminent and favorite pastime. In our neck of the woods The Game has provided a season of joy, anticipation and thrills.
It is rather refreshing to have a breather from all the animus enveloping us all from the murders home and abroad and all the yapping about “boots on the ground” instead of the truth about troops in battle no matter what description is on the lips of the wizardry newsies, politicians or even poll takers.
Since “child-dom,” my word for the moment, I’ve been a note-taker. You never know when scribblings may come in handy, particularly in the writing business. A word here and there will joggle the mind and lead to all kinds of sentences, paragraphs and essays.
One of the most exciting days of the year for me has always been Election Day. I consider it a High Holy Day. This day is not only the climax of political campaigning and campaigners; but, back in my fledgling days, it was somewhat of a social event, really a fun day.
News of late has had some interesting turns. Most assuredly the latest volte face involves professional football. Worries about the billion dollar television contracts, incredible player salaries and purported rules changes for safety and individual off-the-field conduct is the order of the day.
Lots of eyes are on Scottish voters today who will decide to break from Great Britain and go-it-alone as a separate country at the top of the British Isles – or not. Yes, many of the kilt wearers, those who attend the Kirks, the distillers of malts and promoters of the Loch Ness Monster are making the big decision.
Honestly now, can it get any better? The Orioles and Nationals are winning big time in their respective leagues for playoff championships and, prayers in Emmitsburg and elsewhere in Frederick are unbroken en masse for a Beltway and I-95 World Series. And The Great Frederick Fair is under way.
It is obvious now. No need to worry about any bad things happening. The way for everybody to get along is easy, merely just change reality – the everyday words being used and heard.
The misanthropes of all sorts running wild throughout Arab nations must be stopped. Baseball fans will remember Leroy Paige, known as Satchel and a right-handed mounds man. He said "Don't look back. Something might be gaining on you." He didn’t pitch ever for the Frederick Keys.
In the middle of the political season obvious debates rage among battlers for the new county executive and council. As usual, the focus is on money and immigration matters. Tax-n-spend and free schools for illegal personages are quietly being lost in the discussion.
Regard for the judiciary has always ranked high in this aerie. Those in such lofty positions are truly esteemed and provide keys to the very words of honesty and veracity, reason enough to address them as “Your Honor.” They indeed represent the highest in rectitude, righteousness and decency.
A self-imposed muzzle prevents any dedicated name-calling, fact-based or otherwise until after next Monday. Then it may become open combat regarding county-wide races for the executive, council members and the other competitions.
Won’t be long now. The imaginary Labor Day political campaign kickoff rolls into ribald, raucous and rip-roaring high gear. Everyone has been waiting for this. Gloves will be off in a contumely manner.
To borrow an age-old saying, silence is deafening from a vast majority of locals and national citizens and politicians, except for the usual suspects. I’m referring to the civil unrest ongoing in the show-me state, “missoura.”
Imagine for a moment if sheriff’s deputies, police officers, state police and fire officials were removed from the streets for a day or so in Frederick. Visualize the pandemonium, danger on the streets and highways, the illegal guns that would surface, home invasions and carjackings.
No matter how ruthless local political fights may be, they are nothing in league with the genocide from radical Muslims in Iraq. Merely look at the television pictures from the mountainous Sinjar area.
The wonder of it all these days is when, really when, are Americans going to get mad as hell and not take it anymore?
Amid the so-called dog days of summer, the weather has been rather appealing, in fact, not so bad after all. Prospects for a vibrant fall are looming big time, schools are getting ready to reopen, and the misanthropic political wars abound, not just around the world as have been previously noted, but throughout the communities and towns of Frederick.
The thing about polls, the political kind, is simply they allow political connoisseurs to become “experts” and, quite obviously, legends in their own minds.
From the sublime to the ridiculous. The best way to change leadership on levels is the ballot box. Watching the crowd in the nation’s capital is further proof they are out of touch with the nation.
For the first time in a few days I wasn’t awakened in the early morning hours at 2:30, 2:45 and 3 o’clock by the missile alerts from the latest iPhone APP. I don’t know what APP stands for but it works, at least until the battery ran out of juice.
For the past week, I’ve been inundated with instant rocket reports slamming into Israel. The iPhone rings every few seconds that another town has been hit.
Can there be any doubt the matter of illegal immigrants, now described as undocumented people, continues to exacerbate and befuddle governments all over the place?
The headline blared, “Middletown held for ransom – again.” Nope. Blaine’s Board of County Commissioners was not in the hot seat this time.
Driving around and through the various and numerous communities of Frederick County there is, without doubt, a “Spirit of Place.” In other words, the county is unique, distinctive and cherished by the native-born and the “come-here’s.”
The ongoing social upheaval, unsavory at the least to many, is nothing new in the present day. Underlying people tremors are those constantly shaking up Frederick in every quarter. That is also true elsewhere in other states.
Usually on Thursdays in the spring, Miss Martin read Homer’s Iliad to her sixth graders at John W. Daniel School. The windows were raised and we little tykes hoped a breeze would flow through the room. We didn’t have air conditioning in 1950.
Let us re-examine today the matter of winning. At least for this one time to discuss the alleged craze of “futbol” versus real All-American football, which supposedly has the attention of sports fans and all “real Americans.”
Apparently there is no rest for the weary. Lots of voters in Frederick County either had amnesia or just were too involved in other things to cast ballots this week. Plaudits are due each and every candidate who stood for offices.
The idea that every nation and peoples of the world should be like the United States has gotten out of hand a bit. It is unnerving that the nation’s able diplomats and military men and women should try to enforce such nation building. This is somewhat foolhardy.
The first leg of the political season comes to an end in four days when Tuesday’s primary voting for local and state offices stops. The real “knockdowns” then hit the streets, airwaves and printed pages almost immediately on the road to finality in November.
It sure is nice and sweet for local leaders to be so inclusive to assorted lifestyles. It sure is more of a blessing the lawmakers want to open their public sessions with prayer. Perhaps the invocations will have a soothing effect on deliberations and keep things smooth.
There are so many good things to write about in and around the city and county of Frederick. It is a pleasant challenge to pick and choose topics to beguile, befuddle and hopefully bemuse the smart citizens in all the various jurisdictions.
The way I hear it is this. When a soldier walks away from his post, the Army has rules and regulations and investigators who immediately jump into action to determine the facts. That is before any adjudication gets under way.
The righteous indignation being spewed about the repatriation of an American soldier has become nothing short of reprehensible, distorted and wrong with a capital “W,”
This business of healthy eating has slowly but surely gotten out of hand. Food wizards all over the place forget that moderation is the key to good meals and dietary efficiency.
I took a friend at his word, “don’t be a one-note player.” About the same time I was reading humor from S. J. Perelman, “try everything once except incest and folk-dancing.”
The tragedy of politics most of the time is listening to candidates worthy of votes. Too often ears are deafened because of pre-conditioned thoughts of party politics.
It has been rather entertaining to hear of numerous graduation speakers declining invitations after a few students of various institutions put up objections.
A story goes that a house burned down because the homeowner didn’t make a tax-free donation to a local volunteer fire department.
A little known political campaign is under way in Frederick County. The winner receives a guaranteed 15-year term. The race truly benefits one and all. Without a doubt, the campaigning is dignified and honorable. It should be.
Sometimes answers to important community-minded projects can be too simple and easy. Fund-raising efforts are always going full blast throughout Frederick County. This is good and commendable for providers and recipients. Categories abound.
Prayer before governmental deliberations is good. Prayer before sporting events is worthy. Prayer is praiseworthy and necessary before travel on “aeroplanes,” ocean liners and ferries, and before courtroom proceedings. The medical fraternity, physicians and nurses, dentists, chiropractors and even veterinarians agree that Divine appeals are effective.
Nine years have elapsed since Maryland used lethal injection to complete a death penalty case. Future capital cases are unlikely.
To those enjoying bonus years, after the normal three score and ten generally accepted by insurance guessers and church-goers of all sorts, mature days and years should be nice and free from foolhardiness and folly.
Just what are the issues, the real and true ones, facing residents of Frederick County’s many jurisdictions? Everybody has a pet one most assuredly, but sometimes it is rather difficult to figure out the biggest, the baddest and the most beneficial to one and all.
Every so often intelligent informed recipients of writers, commentators and word merchants of all stripes are entitled to knowing if the latter can honestly be considered worthy of their educated speculations, sentiments and assumptions.
In the land of the free and home of the brave what is more fun than keeping abreast of the nefarious activities under way in the “republic” of Frederick, both city and county.
Since my earliest days on this planet the oft-used word “luck” has always been considered a blessing from the Divine. Nothing has changed since those formative times. If anything the celestial consents seem more obvious.
The day must be on the horizon when Maryland's elected savants, the ones mostly on the left side of any questionable sense, will decide which criminal laws are to be ignored.
How in the world can a man retire these days with all of the shenanigans popping up in all quarters of Frederick, Annapolis, the federal city and Ashburn, Va.? The news libido keeps pumping. There is no rest for scribes of yore.
On this meretricious day, not a national holiday by the way, practical jokes and hoaxes are often played on friends, enemies and most particularly politicians.
It's rather easy to take aim at government, politicians and all of the non-profit political parties that their fables are for the public's own good. Plus these entities are full targets for comment, good, bad and ugly
The matter of free speech surely, completely and without exception is certainly alive and well. Contrarians and other questioners need only remember the name of Fred Phelps. Thankfully he's not from Frederick.
Amid all the opinionating, commentating and general word-smithing, it’s fun to be a note taker and anecdotist of sorts. It can be amazing what can be seen and heard keeping one’s eyes and ears open.
A few miles south down I-270, Alexandria citizens have become a bit uneasy. Who can blame them? A serial killer is on the loose and apparently has been for over a decade.
Pleasant bonuses usually arrive when least expected. These joys aren't always of the financial kind, even though the latter can be more than appreciated. This story comes right in the middle of St. Patrick's celebrations, the time of year when everybody is Irish or would like to be.
Lots of illegal pot smoking goes on around these parts, according to those in the know. Large numbers of citizens, young and old, have been locked up for buying, selling and using cannabis. The latter results in criminal records.
Many people, wizened and otherwise, have long believed that Russia of the past and present is the Great Satan. It's probably a bit too late now, but the question looms: did American intelligence agencies drop the ball, completely and totally of late?
Finally, it's that time of year for some divergence from various "silly-nesses" of the past few months. This is especially true throughout the Frederick communities where the political windup is now well underway as politics moves into high gear.
Consider for a moment if Frederick's Board of County Commissioners or the City of Frederick’s aldermen decided to join the federal government and send agents, inspectors or political operatives into newsrooms of local newspapers, broadcasting houses and every online outlet.
The major cause for so little interest in conservative partisan politics these days is rather simple. People suffer from short memories. The current crop of supposed leaders is out of their league.
Enough already, everybody. It's time now for some questions real and rhetorical. Maybe we're snow-crazy, but that can probably be explained.
On this day when love may be bursting all over, we shut-ins have time to contemplate a world of this and that. Today in this space there is a correlation between sports and politics where amour is missing more often than not.
The recent ice storm was an attention getter first-class. And, for a lot of families and homes in Frederick County. It did serve to get our minds off various foibles like how terrorists were going to disrupt the Olympics, candidates for the new county executive and county council or the future of Vice President Joe Biden.
The fact is well known, all politics is local. The good things of public service should rise, bottom to top, and not the reverse. It's not good when outside and national consultants like to infringe. They do and the landscape changes.
From a shopping center it's now time to return to reality and to city streets where statistics are still roaring out of control. The exception is Frederick, and that's a star in the crown. At least for the time being.
With one swipe of a pen, and a poke in the eye, it’s what happened earlier this week during a joint session of Congress. About time, too.
There's no question that Saturday's shotgun murders and suicide at the Mall of Columbia is a high octane tragedy for everyone in every location local, state and nation.
Whatever the facts prove to be, federal corruption charges leveled against Virginia's 71st governor are nothing short of astonishing. No such thing has ever occurred in the state known as the "Mother of Presidents."
Hoopdorff, The Netherlands – A few days in this quaint town just kilometers from Amsterdam, is a recharging experience. Here, in the midst of a charity conference, plans have been made for more educational supplies, more hygienic facilities and reports on the success of providing milk cows for villages.
For over two decades, I've listened intently to the medical advice of the same physician, a superb boater and triage man first class. One time I ignored his words, "get a flu shot." Now that was dumb. He didn't say "I told you so," but he should have.
The travesty and tragedy of civil war, hunger and famine continues in Africa in the midst of the Christian holiday celebrations. The latest eruptions of murder and mayhem are in The Sudan. This time fighting between rebels, farmers and shepherds in the in the new nation of South Sudan.
As the days slip by in nervous anticipation for the arrival of Christmas morn, greetings by electronic mail and front-door delivery are also appearing, mostly unsigned and incognito.
There he was. The President of the United States, along with four predecessors and some other 91 world leaders paying homage to the late Nelson Mandela in a massive Johannesburg, South Africa, stadium.
One Sunday afternoon each month it was a pre-teen's bounden duty to visit the hometown Old Folks Home. The fun was distributing cookies, cake and smiles, handshakes and hugs.
Call me anything you want, just don't call me late for dinner – or payday. Then there's this one, you can always tell people from (you pick the state) but you can't tell them much. Smile, please.
Childhood days make the Christmas season the happiest times in most lives. In this particular case Christmas trees were the real thing, artificial trees had never reached my family and it was usually on Christmas Eve that most families brought in felled cedars and spruces.
Regardless of when or where or who started the feast day, or who set aside the fourth Thursday of November, Thanksgiving Day is one of remembrance, joy and hope.
Using the term "kids" referring to those from the cradle to their 20s and some to their 30s has always been anathema in this quarter.
The 11th month is always a good one, especially when the 11th hour and the 11th minute are remembered with honor, and red poppies are seen everywhere.
Just when it seemed daily life might return to the important stuff like the coming holidaying season in Frederick, and that everyone could delve into a book of characters, the bedraggled post office couldn't deliver.
What could be better than waking up every morning not seeing your name in obituary columns? There are certainly many answers to that, but being a bit nosey there's a lot to learn from the notices.
The 11th month is always a good one, especially when the 11th hour and the 11th minute are remembered with honor and red poppies are seen everywhere.
As the City of Frederick marches on after today's balloting, and the county looks forward to a charter form of leadership, perhaps some consolidation of services should be considered.
The most popular books, movies and television shows are those dealing with espionage, covert action and the secret world of intelligence.
This is not a fairy tale; but once upon a time children enjoyed All Hallows Eve, running up and down neighborhoods and downtowns dressed in costumes depicting all kinds of gremlins, goblins, ghosts, angels and imps.
The old cliché, all politics is local, hits Frederick City 11 days from today. Every registered voter has a distinct duty to select the mayor and members of the aldermanic board.
Now that the sky didn't fall everybody can get back to eating fried chicken, chicken and dumplings and mashed potatoes and gravy.
After due diligence, broad research and deep contemplation, it can be said the toughest jobs in the nation's capital belong to the chaplains of the Senate and House.
In a moment of facetious pique, it was suggested that the ‘Current Occupant’ of the Executive Branch declare martial law because the nation is in a State of Emergency.
The assault on Daniel Snyder and the Washington Redskins has gotten a bit much. The vendetta is out of hand and more than just plain silly.
In the land of liberty, majority votes still count. It continues to be a major impertinence that the tail still wants to wag the dog making traditional life uncomfortable and unnecessary.
"Penny wise and pound foolish" and 'they know the cost of everything but not the value of anything." Sounds mighty familiar these days, not only in the nation's capital but in Frederick County, MD.
The wireless blared, "knuckleheads in the news." As the good people expressed various concerns about a federal government shutdown, it wasn't an attempt at humor at the expense of the national electeds.
It's a fearful thing to get all excited by the scary antics taking place at First Street SE, in Washington. Those who dare can visit the historical facilities called the United States Capitol.
Warning, gentle reader, the following may cause considerable indigestion, deep thought, scintillating wonder and probably anger. Hopefully each of these will come true.
How to deal with those of mental and physical impairments is a serious matter. Awareness and education should begin at family and community levels long before public difficulties ensue.
All the international discussion about killing with chemical weapons is without doubt worthy of the hand-wringing about one of the worst forms of weapons of war.
Rhetorical questions are important sometimes. Here's one for today: Has the fun, seriousness and importance of local elections reached the end of the line?
One of the most exciting days of the year for me has always been Election Day. This day not only has been the climax of political campaigning and campaigners; but, back in my young days, it was somewhat of a social event, really a fun day.
When fires explode and vehicle accidents interrupt traffic to the discomfort of travelers as well as victims, 911 calls aren't answered by city or county code enforcement offices.
Labor Day is a perfect time to revisit the first day of the first job. The experience sticks with most people, no matter the passage of time.
It’s a warm June afternoon in 1962. At about 4 o’clock I was in the vestibule of the Hampton Institute chapel. A light breeze flowed through the windows raised about 12 inches.
Is the next big social upheaval and battle ground slinking its way into the Free State? How soon will the money-raising events for politicos at all ranks simply become "pot parties?" Or, smoking for the poor and needy?
Is it any wonder lots and lots of people want to live longer, a century-plus perhaps, that modern medical wonders offer opportunities to not look our ages, that telecasting has become a constant barrage of believe-it-or-not cockamamie schemes?
Those who dare call attention to – or to comment about – the increasing Muslim influence in Maryland communities and throughout the 50 states must take great precaution in their words
When reporters report the news, they're not participating in a popularity contest. They're supposed to give the facts fairly and objectively.
Sometimes discretion is the greater part of valor. There is no dearth of opinionators, though, about how the legal system just failed everybody in the "land of sun and fun."
The Georgia cooking queen has been paying the price for using imprudent and careless adjectives of known ill-repute. A Florida murder trial is blared across the news system as the most grievous of modern times.
Aw, shucks. Just when it looked like Alexandria (VA) would be “home” to another spy he’s slipped through the grasp of authorities. Sadly, it’s the story of a Maryland boy.
What can be better than putting the kibosh on a man of the cloth, especially if that clergyman is an aficionado of the old time religion? That’s happening and devotees of separation of church and state have broadened its meaning. Making progress? Indeed.
It may be too early for some to think a Virginia governor may have to resign before his term is completed. It could happen.
This has been an interesting week in Frederick. The grass had been cut. It was time to nap. A relaxing afternoon? Not quite. Just as eyelids closed neighbors burst into the house and in loud voices, “somebody has smashed the car window.”
Few cities or towns remain quaint and cuddly. The Golden Mile running down Frederick’s West Patrick Street, a.k.a. Route 40, is a fine example of good food, good gas and generally good shopping.
Just like the boon to reporters from the Milhous Mess of the 37th president, amnesia emanating from the current 0ccupant, re-ignites the Fourth Estate. Seems like a good thing too, returning the gabblers and scribblers to their real job.
Miss Marple, one of the best fictional detectives, says “tell the truth and shame the devil.” She is also known to remark that “Americans have a lot to answer for,” even if meant tongue in cheek.
An era has arrived in a major assault on the history of the continental United States. Seems like the progressives’ time is bound and determined to disparage, decry and devoid the colonials.
I want to be sensitive here. The president’s remarks at the Boston Bombing memorial service were soothing, important, tender and touching.
Problems in public schools most of the time come from those who manage them, not the teachers most of whom are stymied by highly-paid administrators engrossed in political correctness.
I can’t resist. I’m glad spring has sprung even if somewhat still chilly and windy. How surprising it might be if forecasters could be accurate and another snow storm finds its way. Maybe some coming Frederick political battles could be cooled.
Driving around the pleasant countryside of Frederick County gives proof to a trite old saying: “It’s amazing what you can see if you keep your eyes open.”
Except in special cases, seldom does the death penalty bring about much conversation pro or con on all sides of the political spectrum. It’s not a cut and dried matter and must not be taken lightly.
In light of recent international events, I confess here and now that my favorite Cardinals have always been Americans. First is a favorite son of Donora, PA, and the other from Boston, MA. There is a third American now on my list, but more about that later.
Crime runs rampant these days and it’s not the blame of the media, or local, state and national financial crises, or because school teachers and administrators are avoiding responsibilities.
After five standing ovations I stopped counting. The capacity crowd was a happy bunch. Applause from the seated patrons was loud and often including the balcony.
Knee-jerk reactions are difficult to overcome particularly when our own children are involved. Above all, when physically and mentally challenged citizens have difficulties, our hearts and minds are wrecked.
How to be offended? Let me count the ways. In this era when everybody is always exasperated, hurt, insulted, outraged and provoked by something, I am beginning to feel as though there should be a national day for crybabies.
Opportunities come when least expected for sure and seen especially true in sports and politics where ideals of right and wrong often are in dispute.
Lots of witticisms, jokes and uncouth remarks can be made about allowing women in combat. Some people might think it’s another giant step in bringing about equality of the sexes. I’m not so sure.
Back in the olden days as the hot blood of youth began to bubble and gurgle, I learned at an early age when something seems too good to be true, it usually is.
Headlines blared “sheriff’s deputies killed a man who had a gun.” The follow up was “deputies fired at least 18 shots.” Definitely eye catchers for readers. Lots of interest in these days of gun control battles.
It can be rather tough for us columnists and commentators and know-it-alls, carrying the weight of affairs on our shoulders. Somehow we manage. It’s troubling to this space-filler that humor and laughter seem to have been lost through our daily travails and worries about which charitable group we’re going to contribute.
It’s always exciting for reporters and editors when new police chiefs, sheriffs and judges are appointed. Readers love these stories and I can attest to that after years of covering and then working in law enforcement.
Just finished oyster stew and crackers, traditional fare at my house the day after Thanksgiving. It was a big bowl of big Chesapeake Bay mollusks in heavy cream. The delights provided ample time to acknowledge good things and consider some suggestions.
On the day I was sworn in as a member of the Fourth Estate, I was told to keep my eyes open, my ears ever on the alert, keep notes and never forget the five “w’s” and an “h.”
Money, money, money. A nice sound and it’s not filthy lucre unless, of course, it’s the undying love of legal tender, but who can tell?
Polls seem to have overtaken all facets of living, scientific or not. Thankfully I’ve escaped the robo telephone calls, but I still get flooded by requests for my opinion from Internet sites – newspapers, banks, sports teams and the like.
All the chatter running amok to create a charter government flies in the face of the alleged desire for less and smaller county-wide rule. This vital proposal comes smack in the middle of the critical national elections.
I am grateful this political season is coming to a climax – and none too soon. Maybe, just maybe, television will get back to some semblance of order and entertainment, even though I can’t think of any programs I want to see.
Being frugal is a good thing. Knowing the cost of everything and not the value of anything is a sign of poor leadership. It's also a bad omen of things to come for citizens of Frederick County when the elected officials decide to censor library books.
Back in the gentle days of my childhood, it was fun riding the city bus, from the stop near my house to the end of the route and back. Gosh, it was a joy and, no kidding, this five year old wasn’t in danger of being attacked or abused by the friendly driver.
The serious business of voting always has a happy side. Candidates are special and can make the races fun as they go for the gold, another word for hard work.
The other day driving just a few miles over the limit, I was listening to one of the sports radio stations. The experts were newspaper sportswriters turned sportscasters, who were prattling on the state of football and baseball.
Even though a hurricane attempted to sideline a political convention this week, the real excitement has been the typhoons under way in Maryland and Washington. These latter whirling dervishes, borrowing an old sports writing cliché, involve the sporting life.
It may be the so-called dog days of summer now, but there is a great hope for better days and funnier days. Politicians on the campaign trail are working overtime to give the populace some splendid laughs.
I guess I’m not as open-minded as I thought. I’ve needed many years to learn how to eat chicken. It began in my grandmother’s backyard. She asked my uncle to grab a hen so there could be chicken and dumplings for supper.
I know some old saws and it’s a good thing to recall some of them every now and then, particularly in this age of sloppy talk, slovenly dressing and “expertise” in all areas.
The headline blared “3 Stabbed During Melee.” Halfway down the page, before the fold, the smaller headline was “Youth Police Academy aims to ease fears.” This was in Frederick, not in Colorado, or Washington. Good news coverage and good reporting.
I can hardly wait for this year’s Great Frederick Fair, a nine-day spectacular for everybody. It is always a fun time, plenty of good food, bunches of people from all over and farmers and farm animals large and small.
I was never any good at pitching pennies. I’ve never had any success at the few times I deigned to play the lottery. Chances to hit the right numbers for the big money are slim to none.
Sheriff Andy Taylor succumbed this week. Thankfully we won’t forget him and should not. In our hearts he represented the good man, the good citizen, the good public official. Actually he was the epitome of what Alexis de Tocqueville said, “America is great because America is good.”
I believe in law and order. I am a devotee of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These are the basic tenets of civil and religious life in Maryland and the rest of the 50 states. There’s no question we like to brag about this all over.
It's important to honor and revere Old Glory and not just on the day set aside as Flag Day. The official observance was yesterday, June 14. It didn't have to be a federal holiday, a day off, to be a proud flag waving day.
I hope the talk emanating from the northern climes, New York City specifically, limiting sizes of soft drinks, doesn't float down to the Mid-Atlantic and other southern areas.
It’s no longer true that the “business of America is business.” Today, the business of American society is politics, the continuing campaigns for public office, the daily money begging to fund these races on all levels. And it’s not cheap to mount these battles for the public hearts and minds.
I stand in awe of the brave military men and women who have served the nation. The closest I ever got to military service was as a Civil Air Patrol cadet back in the peaceful days of the 1950s.
We can’t let this week slip by without acknowledging National Police Week. This commemoration and celebration has drawn thousands of policemen/women, sheriff’s deputies, Border Patrol, Secret Service, U. S. Marshals and all types of the law enforcement officers to greater Washington.
I began traveling the world as a boy. How fortunate I was. My trips sent me to London, Paris, Moscow, Berlin and even to the Asian Pacific. I met those figures of the time, Winston Churchill, Hitler, Stalin and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
In a day and age when lots of people wear their feelings on their sleeves, is it possible the American society has become a bit too soft?
When a president visits a local community, it’s a big deal. Frederick County is no stranger to such visits from the present and to previous American presidents since World War II.
I’m a bit prejudiced, but I’ve always believed that all work by public agencies is clearly the business of the people and should be made available to news organizations without delay and before their deadlines.
There are several good sides to the meanness being seen and heard these days on the local, state and national political stages. I’m truly astonished by the conduct of those running for the highest office in the land, about their discourtesy to each other and to what seems to me as disrespect for the presidency which they seek.
It took a federal judge to say what’s obvious, that Marylanders have a right to carry concealed weapons and they don’t have to prove to anyone why they need them.