Published 10:20 am Thursday, May 21, 2009

One more visit to Harlan and Maggie Boe’s farm would have been nice.

Harlan is a great storyteller and earned the title “prairie poet.”

He would have some wisdom to share for another story in the paper.

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His wife, Maggie, is a gracious hostess and can cook up a storm at a moment’s (Harlan’s) notice. That would have been worth the visit, too.

I would like to have heard if Harlan has any regrets about his long life. Doubt that he would. Find me a nicer human being than he if you can.

Of course, Tommy Mullenbach is gone, so there’s no opportunity to tell him what a difference he made in the lives of so many people, including yours truly. St. Peter will have to do that at Heaven’s gate, and it will take some time, so many lives, including mine, did he touch.

Saint Thomas will be the one standing in line with his cap on, smiling and letting others go ahead of him.

I would like to have been around when Jeff Anderson got elected governor, but Jeff ruined that notion of mine by vowing not to run for public office again, putting his wife and their children, as well his career as a teacher, ahead of bucking the Minnesota Legislature.

There are so many unfinished stories that I would like to have had a part in reporting.

The Shooting Star Recreation Trail, for instance.

Getting to know those hard-working Prairie Visions people, who believe so fervently in the quality of life in greater Mower County, was a pleasure.

Never got tired of writing about those people even Harold Eischens.

They deserve to see the trial they worked so hard for so long built and so do Ken and Becky Hartwig at the Rose Pedlar.

I’d like to write about Grand Meadow American Legion Post No. 140’s veterans’ memorial just like I did Hayfield’s.

As long as the Grand Meadow folks listen to Hayfield Post No. 330’s Harlan Buck, they will get it done.

Of course, Adams American Legion Post No. 146 is in a league by itself when it comes to honoring veterans with their one-of-a-kind museum.

While on the subject of Legion Posts, I am willing to go out on a limb and say Lyle’s Post No. 105 is just about the friendliest place I’ve ever visited.

A reporter gets to meet so many people, and I’ve met my share.

No matter, what distractions may have existed in my own life, I always found a better way listening to the stories told by others.

Or reading them in other newspapers’ accounts of life in Mower County.

Not a popular thing to do on the job at the Herald, but always enlightening.

Here’s something nobody should ignore: Newspapers, all of them, are still important.

Of course, there were signs I needed to make a change.

For instance, Rosemarie from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, e-mailed me her dislike of the notion I wrote in a story that rabbits weren’t agile.

Imagine that?

When a reporter stoops to criticizing rabbits, they must be burnt out.

There were, to be sure, other signs a change is needed in my life.

Personally, I thought the idea of installing wind chimes in the council chambers and county commissioners’ meeting room was a good idea.

I would install them in the middle of the meeting rooms, according to my plan.

That way everyone could tell who was the windiest: Elected officials or citizens.

The idea didn’t fly.

Somebody said the noise would be deafening.

And even at the Herald, my ideas are falling flat.

For instance, I honestly believed selling advertising space on the back of pink termination slips could generate revenue.

The publisher suggested I be the first to try it, but I stopped him before he could fill in my last name.

So, yes, there’s going to be a change in my life and next week I will tell you about it, but first … How about a blonde joke?

A man was in his front yard mowing grass when his attractive blonde neighbor came out of the house and went straight to the mailbox. She opened it, then slammed it shut and stormed back into the house. A little later she came out of her house again, went to the mailbox and again opened it, and slammed it shut again. Angrily, back into the house she went.

As the man was getting ready to edge the lawn, she came out again, marched to the mailbox, opened it and then slammed it closed harder than ever.

Puzzled by her actions the man asked her, “Is something wrong?”

To which she replied, “There certainly is!”

My stupid computer keeps saying, “You’ve got mail!”

Like I said, Readers, it’s time for a change.