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That darn hat


Fri, Jan 3rd, 2014
Posted in All Commentary

I came from, arguably, a family of nomads. My family lost the family farm through various means, some of them slightly questionable, and as a result my clan have wandered through northern Illinois and into central Wisconsin. My mother, father, and older siblings moved six times in 20 years and finally settled into a little town called Neillsville, almost smack-dab in the middle of the state. We stayed there for 11 years which was, up to then, the longest my family had stayed anywhere in the 25 years my parents had been building their family.

So, what does this have to do with a hat?

Well, as my wife will tell you (often while sardonically humming “Deutschland Über Alles” and rolling her eyes) my family is quite close. Not necessarily by design, as the gap between my eldest and youngest sister is 13 years, but more by necessity. When you move so much, and the children are so young, it can be tough to form and hold onto friendships and the like. Even in this world of Facebook and Twitter, I don’t keep up like I should with people I’ve moved away from. When your family moves as much as mine did, you may not have those childhood friends we see in Hallmark movies that ride Schwinns down sun-dappled lanes pas colonials and Cape Cods… but you still have your family. You always have your family.

Now, anyone will tell you that being the new kid in town, or at school, it a tough go. I just learned a few years ago about the fights my older brothers got into being outsiders at the schools they grew up in, which I found a little shocking when I heard of their ferocity. Through all of this, though, there seemed to be one common thread that kept us all going. It didn’t matter how much you got beaten up, or teased, or bullied, or whatever, because you could still come home to a loving family and, sometimes, that was all you had. As a result, the decisions and actions you make, like some sort of weird Japanese stage play, seem to have heavy overtones of “family honor,” even when your family was a bunch of German nomads in the middle of Wisconsin.

Which brings me to… the hat.

I was born in 1985, to a family that originally called northern Illinois home. If you know your NFL History, it should come as no surprise that I was brought up to be a fan of the Chicago Bears. Of course, that ran into a bit of a snag when my family spent 11 years in one of the deepest parts of Packer country. Na .....
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Looking ahead to 2014

Thu, Jan 2nd, 2014
Posted in All Commentary

Tim Penny, President/CEO Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation Here at Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF), during the past year, we highlighted our work in entrepreneur development. It was an exciting year of partnerships, growth, ..... 
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One Moment, Please... Operation: Target

Fri, Dec 27th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

Please forgive me in advance of the overuse of the word TARGET, but there is a bit of irony in the fact that over 40 million consumers spending money with the Target Corporation became victims of a “targeted” credit card breach. This entire si ..... 
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Budget deal politically a step forward, yet underwhelming

Fri, Dec 27th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

Congress has managed to disappoint once again. Sure, the deal is politically significant in that they managed to find bi-partisan common ground and finally pass a budget which will fund the government through March 2015. Passing a budget is a basic ..... 
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Correction 12.23.13

Fri, Dec 20th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

In the December 16 edition of the Fillmore County Journal in the article titled “Snow accents Lanesboro’s Christmas Inn Tour,” it was mistakenly called the Lanesboro Art Center “Cornucopia” Art Center. It has not been known as the Cornucop ..... 
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Celestial navigation, a fairly simple concept

By Col. Stan Gudmundson

Fri, Dec 20th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

In some ways, I am a dinosaur, the last of a specialty that has been bypassed by technology. I was trained in the art of celestial navigation using nothing but stars, the moon, the sun, and some of the planets to navigate airplanes. Celestial na ..... 
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Peace on earth

By Yvonne Nyenhuis

Fri, Dec 13th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

The birth of a baby is a source of wonder. We marvel at the perfection of the tiny toes and fingers of this miniature person. Once he gets over the insult of being thrust into the world, he settles into his blanket and goes to sleep as if nothing ex ..... 
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One Moment, Please... In the aftermath of Sandy Hook

Fri, Dec 13th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

Just one year ago, on December 14, 2012, Sandy Hook Elementary School became a crime scene that claimed the lives of 20 elementary-school-aged children and six adult staff members of the school. These types of tragedies, while fading in our memori ..... 
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One Moment, Please... Another year in the books

Fri, Dec 6th, 2013
Posted in All Commentary

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends. This year, just like the past four years, I joined a group of friends to run the Fillmore County Turkey Day Run -- 10.3 miles from Lanesboro to Preston along the Root River State ..... 
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