Archived Story

Batt: Wife’s family likely drowned their sorrows on anniversary

Published 10:07am Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Echoes From the Loafers’ Club Meeting:

“What are you going to do today?”

“I’m going to try to remember what day it is.”

“That sounds exhilarating.”

“It can be on the days that I remember what day it is.”

Driving by the Bruces

I have two wonderful neighbors — both named Bruce — who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: a journey of a thousand miles gets a late start.

I’ve learned

The check may not be in the mail, but a credit card offer is.

The shortest line will be the slowest.

Make one person happy and you will make two.

Over here

I travel as a part of my job. I enjoy traveling, even with all its blemishes. I visited Kilkenny, Minn., a small town so proud of its Irish heritage that it holds a Half-Way to St. Paddy’s Day Community Celebration in September. The road to Kilkenny was dotted with sweet corn that had fallen from over-filled trucks. Road kill for vegetarians. When I was a boy, we raised sweet corn for Birds Eye. When I was a neophyte nebbish yoked to an agricultural enterprise, I watched geese fly overhead. I wanted to know where they were going long before I asked where they came from.

I knew where I’d come from and where I was headed as I pulled into a convenience store, that I still call a gas station. My car was thirsty. There were no other vehicles at the gas pumps. I filled the tank. The price was $3.58. I thought about the lack of customers and considered the law of supply and demand before I offered the clerk $3.50 a gallon. She laughed before charging me the full price.

A euphoric anniversary

Ours is a marriage of long ago but not far away.

You know what they say in French. Of course you do. They say everything in French.

We were teenagers, I’d just been named the promising young squirt of the year by the American Grapefruit Growers Association, when I asked Gail, “Are you walking my way?”

“Yes,” she responded. She’d just had a fight with her parents and wanted to disgrace them.

“So am I,” I replied smartly.

“You’re the most handsome boy in Hartland,” she said sweetly.

“You’re kidding,” I was more than willing to be flattered.

“I was kidding,” she admitted.

It was the thought that counted.

We celebrated our anniversary recently. My wife’s family likely drowned their sorrows.

Happy anniversary, honey.

Nature notes

Fred Fiebelkorn of Thompson asked why there are so few monarch butterflies this year. Monarchs are scarce this summer. There were only 60 million monarchs wintering in Mexico last winter. That’s 80 percent below the 350 million average. The monarchs covered only 3 acres of forest, compared to a 17-acre average. Drought and excessive heat during the summer of 2012 resulted in low reproduction. This spring was unusually cold across the middle of the country and that delayed the northern migration. The first monarch generation was slow to develop in the southern states and late to migrate northward. Monarchs can produce a new generation in about 30 days. The monarchs that migrate to Mexico this fall are the great-great-grandchildren of those that left Mexico last spring. Monarchs have a high reproductive potential and they breed across a wide area. I hope that brings recovery. I’ve seen good numbers of monarchs wherever there are blazing stars.

Meeting adjourned

If you can’t be kind, impersonate someone who can.


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