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A dream takes a hit


Fri, Feb 7th, 2003
Posted in Columnists

I am just a little too old to be a true "Sputnik-baby", but not by much. Growing up with spaceflight, I was just old enough to appreciate the thrill of the earliest successes. I believe I was too young and maybe we were all too sheltered to have thoroughly felt the impact of early failures.

Spaceflight and the heavens have always fascinated me. There were just a few books about space in our country school library and even fewer science fiction books. I attacked the science fiction books that did exist in the paltry stacks and read them over and over again. Robert Heinleins Between Planets and Donald Wollheims Five Against Venus are the two that stick in my mind. I knew exactly where they were on the shelves and they were always there because I was the only one in school that read them. I probably read each of them at least once a month during the school year.

I managed to advance to junior high school. The best thing I found there was an extensive library that included dozens of science fiction books. I tried to read them all and kept a list as I read them. I read an average of three books a week in seventh grade. Needless to say, I didnt get much studying done.

All this reading fed my natural interest in space. I spent a lot of time stargazing and dreaming. During the moon expeditions, I kept an eye on the television and followed the progress in the newspapers. There was no doubt in my mind that some day I would make a trip to the moon. The way technology was advancing, going from tiny satellites to a moon landing in less than twenty years, I could see that a trip to the moon for sightseeing purposes was certainly in my future. There was no limit to the possibilities and no limit to my enthusiasm for the trip. The idea never occurred to me that something might go wrong.

I received some of the first "Teacher in Space" literature back in the early 1980s that asked teachers to apply for a position on a space shuttle mission. It was a very exciting time for me. I toyed with the idea of sending in the application in much the same way that a person buys lottery tickets. Sure, it was a long shot, but somebody is going to go. Why couldnt it be me? Well, actually my chances werent that good. For one thing, I had spent too much time reading science fiction and too little time studying. My academic credentials left much to be desired. I am intellectually fairly fit for .....
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Of People, Places and Things: The Fillmore County 10

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Columnists

Many of you have probably heard of the big to do on the streets of Preston on Tuesday. It was reported in Wednesdays Pioneer Press under the headline: Sheriff hits the street for jurors.  The story was eventually picked up b ..... 
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At Home in the Woods: Home Improvement

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Columnists

The severe frost of last night had not damaged the pump as the check now seems to be sufficient to prevent any pumping and filling of the pump-head with water."  Former Lanesboro physician, Johan C. Hvoslef,  &nbs ..... 
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Are You Game? Super Bowl & more

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Columnists

Remember the Super Bowl triumph one week ago. Tampa was clearly the best team on the field. For Oakland fans the most offense on Super Bowl Sunday was the Bud commercial with the guy trying to score with a lobster crawling into his ear. Heck, even th ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Eric M. Leitzen

Fri, Jan 31st, 2003
Posted in Columnists

What is wrong with us? How far will we stoop? It has often been thought that our society was governed solely by our outward physical appearance. Now it has been proven, beyond the shadow of a doubt.

During the Super Bowl, inclu ..... 
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Journal Writing Projec: Andy Wolter

Fri, Jan 24th, 2003
Posted in Columnists

I was wondering about the roots of the Internet a few days ago, and I found some good information. My internet research corresponded quite nicely with my lack of a Journal topic, just in case you were curious like me.

The idea o ..... 
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Township Roads: Cold Weather Reading

Fri, Jan 24th, 2003
Posted in Columnists

It was too cold, in my opinion, to work outside for long this weekend. The boys and I managed to stay warm for a couple hours while we split firewood. Im sure we could have kept warm all afternoon had we been splitting with axes and a sledgehammer, ..... 
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