Lost in the parking lot? You have company

Echoes from the Loafers’ Club Meeting:

“It’s a good thing that I have a good memory for faces.”

“Why is that?”

“Because I broke my shaving mirror this morning.”

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: Money is like underwear. There’s no need for everyone else to know you have it.

Did you know?

A survey cited in The Wall Street Journal found that 59 percent of women admitted to having frequent problems in relocating their vehicles in parking lots. This same problem afflicts 42 percent of men.

Doctor, doctor …

Marci Fuller of San Benito, Texas, told me that her doctor/husband tells many of his patients to go on “itos-free” diets. That means no Doritos, Fritos, burritos, Cheetos (qualifies on sound alone), or taquitos.

Restroom reflections

I was about to speak at a thing in Harlingen, Tex. I visited the bathroom first. Always a good idea. No one needs any extra stress. As I entered the necessary room, I met a man carrying one of those giant mugs. I reckon it held about five gallons of his favorite soft drink. That might be a slight exaggeration, but it was huge.

“You must have to make a lot of stops in rooms like this,” I said.

He raised his mug as a salute in my direction and replied, “Endless.”

Maybe he should drink the contents of his enormous mug only in restrooms.

Echoes from a church

We were talking of many things as we enjoyed good food in the church basement. Food always tastes better outside and in church basements. Anyway, we talked of many things. I thought of Lewis Carroll, who wrote in Through the Looking-Glass, “‘The time has come,’ the Walrus said, ‘To talk of many things: Of shoes — and ships — and sealing-wax — of cabbages — and kings — And why the sea is boiling hot — And whether pigs have wings.’”

We didn’t actually talk about any of those things, but Pastor Ron Brey, a friend of long-standing, did say that it was hard to find funny sympathy cards. I had to agree.

Brain cramp

I got up from my office chair and walked into the living room. For no apparent reason. Or at least not for any reason that I could remember.

The cat that had been sleeping on the sofa, suddenly awakened, jumped to the floor and walked resolutely down into the basement.

I hoped it remembered why it had gone there.

Customer comments

Arlene Bryson of Alden told me that she has been experiencing some hearing loss that is most noticeable in rooms crowded with people. She said that when talking to people in such situations, she has learned to smile a lot and to refrain from nodding.

Nature notes

A caller asked what ants do during the winter? Smart ones crawl to Arizona. Some ants can adjust the structure of their nests to help regulate the internal temperature. Anthills act as solar-collectors, increasing the temperature inside. When it becomes too cold, the ants retreat deeper underground, below the frost line. Carpenter ants live in nests in wood. Wood is a good insulator, but freezes in winter. The ants enter a state of slowed metabolism called “diapause.” Generally, the queen stops laying eggs. The workers begin to mass more than before. Cold weather doesn’t stop some ants from being active in buildings. A common indoor winter ant is the pavement ant. The reddish-brown pavement ant is 1/8-inch long. Pavement ants typically nest in the soil under stones, bricks, sidewalks, or driveways. When the nest is kept warm from a building’s heat, the ants stay active, move through the cracks in concrete, and actively forage for food and water.

Mower County

Austin Living: Jane Taylor Academy of Dance brings 22nd annual ‘Nutcracker’ performance to Paramount Theatre

Mower County

Flower Basket Program kicks off 29th year

Mower County

Recycling Center addition progressing to spring completion


10 Austin-area families to receive kits to support transitions into stable housing

Mower County

HI scientists publish paper on how immune systems react to canine parvovirus vaccination

Mower County

SEMAC announces Jan. 10 grant application deadline


Give the Gift of Education this holiday season with MNSAVES


Woman’s decades-old mosaic of yard rocks and decorative art work may have to go


Rosalynn Carter honored by family, friends, first ladies and presidents, including husband Jimmy


Cities crack down on homeless encampments. Advocates, however, say that’s not the answer


Facing budget crisis, Rochester proposes closing some schools, moving others


Freed Israeli hostage describes deteriorating conditions while being held by Hamas


Hunter Biden tells Congress he’d testify publicly, setting up a potential high-stakes face-off


Emergency crews respond after small plane lands on Twin Cities highway


Mayo Clinic announces $5 billion expansion of Minnesota campus

Crime, Courts & Emergencies

Austin man with three active drug cases charged in a fourth

Mower County

CWD detected in a wild deer near Wabasha in southeastern Minnesota


APS hires new executive director of Finance and Operations

Grand Meadow

Model railroad open house to be held on Dec. 9-10 in Grand Meadow

Mower County

Photos: Home for the holidays

Mower County

Raising charity in the holiday season

Mower County

In Your Community: Duplicate Bridge

Mower County

In Your Community: Mower County Senior Center


Nearly half of Americans think the US is spending too much on Ukraine aid, an AP-NORC poll says