"Where Fillmore County News Comes First"
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Saturday, December 3rd, 2016
Volume ∞ Issue ∞
 
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Words of wisdom from an old baseball coach


By Jeff Erding

Mon, Aug 29th, 2016
Posted in Wykoff Commentary

Dear readers, I want to share a speech given in 1996 by a retired baseball coach at the annual ABCA coaches’ convention in Nashville. The speaker, John Scolinos, was well respected by his peers, having posted over a thousand wins during a career at Pepperdine and Cal State Poly, with three national championships to his credit. The 4,000coaches present represented all the baseball age groups, and all eagerly awaited the speech they felt would give them some invaluable tools in their coaching endeavors.

A standing ovation greeted Coach Scolinos as he shuffled on stage. Much to the consternation of his audience, he was wearing something strange on a string around his neck…. It was a regulation Home Plate! He spoke the first 25 minutes without any reference to his prop. Even those who knew him well were mystified as to the significance it represented. The mystery was soon solved.

He first addressed Little League coaches by asking them how wide home plate was at their level. After a short pause, someone replied, “ 17 inches! “

“ How about Babe Ruth coaches?” the coach asked. “How wide at your level?” The reply was quicker this time. “17 inches!”

The old coach asked the same question of coaches at every level on up to the Major Leagues, and each time the reply came back, “ 17 INCHES!!” At that point, Scolinos roared back “Correct! And what do they do with a pitcher in the majors who can’t throw the ball over these 17 inches!?” Coach answered his own question, “THEY SEND HIM TO POCATELLO!”, eliciting a chorus of laughter from the audience. “What they DON’T do,” continued Scolinos, “is say, ‘Ah, that’s ok Bobby, if you can’t hit 17”, we’ll make it 18”, or 20”, or wider still, say 25 inches.’”

The old gentleman paused a moment, then began again in a softer voice. “What do we do when our best player shows up late to practice, or violates curfew, or gets caught drinking or using drugs? Do we hold him accountable? Or do we change the rules? Do we widen home plate?”

There was absolute silence in the packed auditorium.

Coach was far from finished, as he drew a picture of a house on the snow white front of the plate. “This is the problem in our homes today with marriages and parenting. We don’t teach discipline or accountability. We don’t enforce consequences! We widen the plate!”

He we .....
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A clear message

By Jeff Erding

Mon, Nov 17th, 2014
Posted in Wykoff Commentary

Part 1 - In honor of our veterans “Never in the field of human conflict has so much been owed by so many to so few!” When Winston Churchill made this famous statement, he was talking about the costly but successful battle waged by the Royal Air ..... 
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Clash of Cultures: An evaluation of the status of America by 4 prominent liberal Democrats.

By Jeff Erding

Mon, Oct 13th, 2014
Posted in Wykoff Commentary

I bet you never thought you’d see the day I wrote a column quoting prominent liberals. I don’t blame you; I’m surprised myself! Recent events have convinced me the best way to help America back on a path to sanity is to communicate the opinion ..... 
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Mayhem in Missouri; Coming soon to a town near you?

By Jeff Erding

Mon, Sep 15th, 2014
Posted in Wykoff Commentary

By Jeff Erding American interests and citizens both at home and abroad face dire consequences from the destructive policies of the radical left. For solid information about the situation, please read on and prepare to be shocked at how badly Govern ..... 
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Guest Commentary: Obama/Biden Gun Control

Fri, Apr 5th, 2013
Posted in Wykoff Commentary

By Jeff Erding, Wykoff, MN “ALL IN ALL, IT’S JUST ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL” [from THE WALL by Roger Waters of Pink Floyd, 1979] You may be sick of the gun control debate, and I sure don’t blame you. You may be thinking: “This guy is ob ..... 
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