When the leaves have mostly fallen and Jack Frost has put a white coating on your roof, you know that summer is bidding you farewell. It may linger for a day or two now and then, but the sun has said its goodbye and is on its way south to find a new home below the equator.
Think how boring life would be if we didn't have bumper stickers? They didn't appear until 1927 when the Model A introduced bumpers as a safety measure. Forest Gill, a silkscreen printer from Kansas City, gets credit for the first bumper sticker when he pioneered the use of adhesive to stick them to vehicles. I'm not sure what the first bumper sticker said but it was probably something like: IF THE WORDS ON THIS STICKER ARE GETTING BIGGER, YOU ARE PROBABLY GETTING TOO CLOSE. Whenever we see a bumper sticker, it's a teachable moment.
Bemidji has more interesting local and area history than most cities of similar size. One building of local lore that you already know about is the Lake Julia Sanitarium. Let me fill in some gaps for you that will make it even more interesting.
Every time I write about this topic, my wife, Kathy, says, "Not this again!" She is referring to my passion to write and speak on how we need to graduate 100 percent of our students. If this is to occur, I have to be relentless about it even at the expense of boring my wife and, maybe, you, too. I was taught years ago that once you set your goal you have to keep it in front of the people and you have to do it relentlessly.
Most of what we learn in school we don't seem to remember until we take the ACT test and then it's often too late. We don't remember because all of that subject matter doesn't seem to be really important at the time. In reality it is important but what may be even more important are the words of wisdom a teacher will drop on occasion that seem to stick with us throughout our life. These words of wisdom could be from a music teacher, a third grade teacher, a counselor, a history teacher or a coach, cook or a custodian.
In view of what is happening in Texas and Louisiana it doesn't seem right to write a column about laughter. Tens of thousands of people have lost their homes including all of their worldly treasures. They have been uprooted and displaced. It will take them months and maybe years to return to some kind of normalcy. I can imagine what young people are thinking. When will school begin? When will I be able to return home? Do we still have a home? What about my toys? Where are my friends? Where are Grandma and Grandpa?
By now you have listened and read about the events that occurred in Charlottesville, Va., and about the groups that protested, which included KKK, white supremacists and neo-Nazis, skinheads and other white terrorist hate groups. Kathy asked me if I could have been a Nazi. What a question! After thinking about it, I said, "That depends."
Are kids more likely to do drugs if they drop out of school or are kids more likely to drop out if they do drugs? That's a good question and the answer is, it works both ways. But there is one thing we do know for sure, kids and adults are less likely to do drugs when they have a high school diploma.
I was never much interested in astronomy. Kathy bought me a good telescope many years ago that I eventually donated to the Headwaters Science Center. I just didn't seem to have time to drag it out in the evening among all of those mosquitoes and look at the stars. What a shame. I passed up a golden opportunity to study our celestial bodies.
Have you ever made some real stupid mistakes? Guys, have you walked out of the bathroom and forgotten to zip up your fly? Have you worn a new piece of clothing and forgotten to take off the tags? Have you deposited your salary check in the wrong bank? I have done all of them. Here are some true-life adventures from my never to be written book titled, "I can't believe I was so dumb." Beware of Canucks in Turkey