Archive: » 2021 » February

A Real Shot in the Arm

Now, that was a real shot in the arm. We received our second dose of the Pfizer vaccine on Thursday out at the Gregg County Fairgrounds as rain clouds began gathering. My Beautiful Mystery Companion’s appointment was a few hours earlier than mine, and she encountered more traffic getting into the site, but nothing serious. My appointment was late morning, and I was able to drive straight to the checkpoints, show my vaccine card, park and go inside. I was sitting in the holding area in less than 10 minutes. As it was for the first dose, the entire operation came off with precision and ease....

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A Final Trip to the Farm

DOUGLASSVILLE, TX. — We drove to the farm for a final time on a wintry afternoon in mid-February. It is being sold in coming days. The farm, in Cass County about 20 miles north of Linden, belonged to my late father-in-law, H.K. Teel. This was Papa Teel’s retreat, 40 heavily wooded acres, a huge garden spot across the road at the place owned by his late brother, Brad. I called those guys the Secondhand Lions, after the movie. They were a hoot together, constantly fussing at each other like an old married couple. But they grew massive crops of mouth-watering vegetables and fruits: tomatoes,...

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The Long Strange Trip Continues

As I embarked on a new adventure this month, writing a weekly Capital Highlights column for Texas Press Association that goes out to newspapers statewide, it brought back memories of some of the memorable folks I worked with over the past five decades, most of it spent working at community newspapers. I started on the lowest rung of the ladder in 1968, as a paperboy for the Longview Daily News, the afternoon edition of the local paper. I peddled papers door-to-door throughout downtown and to the car dealerships on Cotton Street and Spur 63. The circulation manager was Charlie Hart, a kindly...

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Requiem for Sam the Dog

Sam the Dog had a good final day on this planet on Feb. 1. Our 12-year-old poodle/cocker spaniel managed to slip out the back door and make his escape in the mayhem of me trying to corral Mollie the Granddog and her sometimes surly cousin, Rosie, after they all had gone outside to do their business. Our yard is fenced, but Sam rarely failed to find an escape hatch under the deck, despite our best efforts to keep him confined. He could slip through tiny openings, with his stocky body and stubby legs. I went looking for him. He always came back and rarely roamed more than a few houses up our cul-de-sac....

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