Category: Life
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Life

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Fireside Issues | Abortion

If you want to end the practice of abortion, as I do, you will have to do that in partnership with women and providers.

29Jan2017 | | 3 comments | Continued
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Older Brothers and Pranks

Whether I come by my fascination with pranks honestly or not is sometimes irrelevant. I say ‘honestly’ because I come from a family of pranksters.  And my two older brothers often tested their pranks on me. What was I to do, I passed the pranks on to my younger siblings. Like the time when I […]

30Dec2016 | | 2 comments | Continued
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A 1964 Christmas Story

It was 1964. Life hadn’t been great for the girl, but this particular year had been mostly a nightmare. Her Mother and Step-Father had separated. Finances were next to non existent. School for the girl became a burden on the mother. At only 15 she was resigned to possibly never finishing high school. She was […]

12Dec2016 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Aren’t We Done Yet?!

I can recall earlier Presidential campaigns that were contemptuous to say the least and how I really, really could hardly bear the wait till the first Tuesday of November. This year is the worst I could ever have imagined. Although, recent postings on social media show us there is nothing new in this world and […]

4Oct2016 | | 0 comments | Continued
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Oh Lord Won’t You Give Me?

I loved and love Janis Joplin. I like the song she sang, Mercedes Benz, because it reminds me of a Church I attended with a friend when I was about 16. It was located in South St. Joseph. There was a neon sign outside proclaiming PENTECOSTAL SOMETHING OR OTHER CHURCH. A bright white two story […]

31Jul2016 | | 0 comments | Continued
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My Curiosity Defeats My Timidity

As the title eludes, I like to think I have a defense from fear. Many long years ago, my eldest son was about three. Our yard was fenced in and the best place for him and his sister to be in the summer. Our house was not air-conditioned.  This particular day I was visiting with […]

28May2016 | | 0 comments | Continued
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A Vet on Jules Street

From a facebook post by my Brother’s son:  A Vet on Jules Street (A haibun) It seems like an odd duality really, in regards to time. Memory can do this. I’m taken back to when I was a boy sitting on my Grandparent’s front porch on Jules Street; so many years ago, but just yesterday. […]

23May2016 | | 1 comment | Continued
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The “Shoulds” of Life Have Me Down

I have been a responsible man for most of my life.  Some would challenge that point – because my failures have stood out like atomic bombs.  As a Senior Citizen I don’t face too many life changing events or decisions.  But I do have some responsibilities and those become the burrs under my saddle – […]

10Apr2016 | | Comments Off on The “Shoulds” of Life Have Me Down | Continued
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Karma and Life Lessons

Shorthand, I know what it is, but can’t read it. Many years ago at Lowy Enterprises. I received a promotion to work with Dave in Accounts Receivable. At high school I refused typing and shorthand because I didn’t plan on being any man’s secretary, Hah. So, one of my new jobs was to take dictation […]

5Apr2016 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Jelly and Rocket Science

Someone I love has a favorite expression, “it’s not rocket science”, he will say this when someone is having difficulty understanding his direction. Last Summer I attempted to make Elderberry Jelly. It had been nearly two decades since the last time I made this loved delicacy. Nearly every where I have lived as an adult, […]

19Dec2015 | | 0 comments | Continued
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Does Race Really Matter?

Transcript from Walla Walla Union Bulletin, Walla Walla, Washington December 20, 1950 Seattle (AP) – A blow on the head with a baseball bat in a neighborhood altercation was fatal Tuesday to Merritt Scotten, 33 year old Seattle pipe fitter. He died of a skull fracture Saturday night. Leon W. Venson 28 a neighbor has […]

25Nov2015 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Barking Dogs and Refugees

Nearly thirty years ago, I was living through a particularly rough patch of life. My husband and I were divorcing. All the usual ugliness that comes with divorce was going full force. My family was literally diminishing before my eyes. My oldest son was in the Navy on board the USS Forrestal which was in […]

18Nov2015 | | 0 comments | Continued
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The Cost of Illegal Immigration

Sometimes, I think with my heart and project my motherly instincts and experiences in an effort to understand others. In the case of illegal immigrants, I have often thought, if I were a Mexican mother living in the deplorable poverty and enduring the crimes that, reportedly, occur in Mexico. If the opportunity came, I would […]

13Nov2015 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Starbucks vs Christmas Cheer or Lack of

OK, here’s my tilt on the subject. I don’t recall Starbucks declaring an affinity to any religion. Not that they haven’t, I just haven’t heard anything about it. They are a business in the business to make money by making coffee. I have never had a Starbucks product. Probably never will, I find spending more […]

12Nov2015 | | 0 comments | Continued
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Life After Tuberculosis

As suggested by a good friend and cousin of mine, I will try to shine a light on a personal experience regarding Tuberculosis, the “Curse of King Tut”. The year was 1965 early Autumn. My mother’s estranged husband was taken to Mount Vernon, MO. This was at the time a ‘sanitarium’ for individuals with ‘lung […]

31Oct2015 | | 3 comments | Continued
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Perceptions and Homemade Bread

Before I get much further, I just want to say this is not, a crying in your beer or milk, sob story of a life in poverty. Now that’s out of the way and here we go. I am the second child of the nine children my mother gave birth to. If my mother was […]

4Oct2015 | | 1 comment | Continued
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I Am Woman, Stand By Your Man – Helen Reddy vs. Tammy Wynette

Helen Reddy gained notoriety on her first hit “I Am Woman” (1972).  Her hit stood in stark contrast to Tammy Wynette’s “Stand By Your Man” (1968). Released just four years apart – these two songs reflected the division in a changing culture from the 1960’s to the 1970’s.  In 2015 we stand at another reflection […]

27Aug2015 | | 1 comment | Continued
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When Sadness Overwhelms Us

All of us experience grief.  As children we see our grand parents pass.  We lose our pets, great aunts and uncles.  We lose games of school sports.  We fail to make the team.  These are the experiences that help prepare us for the more grave loss of parents, siblings, spouses.  Sadly some of lose our […]

11Jun2015 | | Comments Off on When Sadness Overwhelms Us | Continued
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When Seniors Look For Love

OK – right off I have to admit that I am a senior.  That is the demilitarized zone between middle age and elderly.  This is but one account of love in a life well lived, and the hope for love yet to come.  Life has bestowed many blessings on this old man.  Good women have […]

10Jun2015 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Advice From Farmer John

Farmer John and I do not always agree on politics – but he does have some simple but wise thoughts about life.  I found this posted on facebook: Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong. Keep skunks and bankers at a distance. Life is simpler when you plow around the stump. A bumble […]

15Jan2015 | | Comments Off on Advice From Farmer John | Continued
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Trial of John Doy

TRIAL OF JOHN DOY.In the month of January, 1859, Wm. A. Newman, of Platte County, had a favorite servant to run away from his home, in Weston, to Lawrence, Kansas. Dick being an active, intelligent and skillful carpenter, Newman offered a large reward, and in the month of February, 1859, at a point fourteen miles […]

9Jan2015 | | Comments Off on Trial of John Doy | Continued
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“Let It Begin With Me”

Occasionally we hear quotes, slogans, sayings, something that seems innocuous on the surface, but resonates with wisdom upon further inspection.  Al-Anon, a program for the families and friends of Alcoholics, has official slogans which are raised to the level of proverb, of wisdom, of scripture in the program.  One such saying is “Let It Begin […]

8Dec2014 | | 4 comments | Continued
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More on My Emotionally Disturbed Friend

I wrote recently on the escapades of my emotionally disturbed friend – well – today saw a significant turn of events.  I thought about writing the other day to report that life seemed better for that man of great hurt and grief.  I would have said I thought he had turned a positive corner.  He […]

11Oct2014 | | Comments Off on More on My Emotionally Disturbed Friend | Continued
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Just One More Alcoholic Story

Note from Ohg Tone – I am just passing this story along.  I changed the names to protect all. By-line: Tommy C. Last January we started a new Al-Ann group at our Alano Club in St. Joseph, Missouri.  We have just finished restoring the room. http://alanostjoe.com/2014/08/09/new-hope-al-anon-has-a-fresh-look/ About a month ago, while working on that room, […]

26Aug2014 | | Comments Off on Just One More Alcoholic Story | Continued
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When My Mind is Racing

Most of the folks who read my posts recognize my natural inclination toward self-righteous sarcasm.  I know that sarcasm is toxic – Mr. Clark (the Editor) tells me almost every day.  Sarcasm does serve to drive home a point.  But there is a cost to being the negative reflection of the world around us.  And […]

24Mar2014 | | 2 comments | Continued
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The Irony of Ohg Rea Tone – the Conflict of Ideology

Ohg Rea Tone struggles, like others who believe wholeheartedly in their own point of view.  The simple twist of fate put Mr. Tone on the left side of most issues. Had the shoe of the other foot fallen a few millimeters to the right, Mr. Tone would sound the same, look the same, feel the […]

10Mar2014 | | Comments Off on The Irony of Ohg Rea Tone – the Conflict of Ideology | Continued
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A Personal Fight With Social Injustice

Most of my adult life people have treated me as if I am particularly intelligent.  Some have openly called me intellectual.  My thought was usually that they were mistaken, that I am well read and speak well.  When I take a shower and dress in a suit I present pretty well.  I did not receive […]

5Dec2013 | | 3 comments | Continued
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Preparing For The Emotional Downtime of Winter

I am a sunshine guy.  I much prefer hot weather to cold.  With St. Joseph, Missouri, as my hometown my weather experience is of all extremes.  Northwest Missouri is like that – the joke is this:  If you don’t like Missouri weather wait a day and it will change.  Being a sunshine guy does not […]

17Sep2013 | | Comments Off on Preparing For The Emotional Downtime of Winter | Continued
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Probiotics and the Relationship Between Mind and Body

In a culture that promotes the use of food additives like High Fructose Corn Syrup, probiotics is an area that is well worth a personal investment.

11Sep2013 | | Comments Off on Probiotics and the Relationship Between Mind and Body | Continued
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Alcohol is Not a Truth Serum

My volunteer work takes me to the front lines of the war on addiction.  Yesterday I was quietly minding my own business, in a place known for alcoholism traffic, when a staggering drunk passed by.  Ron was a happy drunk.  He laughed when he told the obvious, “I’m pretty drunk”.  Personally, I don’t believe anyone […]

26Jul2013 | | Comments Off on Alcohol is Not a Truth Serum | Continued
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Father’s Day – 2013 – Notes on My Father

  My father was a tough guy – a product of both nature and nurture. His formal education consisted of six grades in elementary school. He landed on Omaha Beach at age 21, marched across France and Germany, earned six battle ribbons, a purple heart, and four bronze stars for valor. He worked thirty-six years […]

16Jun2013 | | Comments Off on Father’s Day – 2013 – Notes on My Father | Continued
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The Oddities of Genius

Have you ever known a genius?  Genius is usually a word used to describe certain traits of intelligence.  We might say a genius has a passion for learning and has unique processing capabilities.  They generally show a creativity and intelligence beyond their peers.  Some definitions are more fixed or measurable, like the score on an […]

15Jun2013 | | Comments Off on The Oddities of Genius | Continued
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Smoking Alcohol – No Calories and No Brains

Drugs and alcohol – the elixirs of a giddy walk down the path of doom and despair – have many different modes of ingestion.  Until about five hundred years ago alcohol and drugs caused few problems for mankind.  It was about that time that some Chinese bricklayer working on a really big wall discovered that […]

7Jun2013 | | Comments Off on Smoking Alcohol – No Calories and No Brains | Continued
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Birds Nesting Around My Home

I like birds.  Yes, I like chicken and turkey and quail and pheasant, but I also like the birds that never visit on Thanksgiving.  St. Joseph, Missouri, is located on the migratory trail of many of the mid west traveling birds.  My home is particularly inviting to summer nesting.  There are many varieties of plants […]

25May2013 | | Comments Off on Birds Nesting Around My Home | Continued
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Suicide – The Burden of the Village

Most of us have some experience with suicide – someone we know has taken their own life.  Such a death is difficult in every possible manner.  Families cry together.  Distraught disbelief overwhelms us.  Our emotional system is shocked to the core.  We feel personally defeated.  We often feel we have failed, failed our loved one […]

25May2013 | | 3 comments | Continued
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The Cruel Hoax of Fanatics

Our dog is something of a rescue dog – she was turned over to a veterinary clinic with a gash on her head and one eye-ball literally hanging out.  We took responsibility for the dog ($800 over two years).  We do not know her age.  Obviously we know she suffered some trauma in her life.  […]

18May2013 | | Comments Off on The Cruel Hoax of Fanatics | Continued
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On Alcoholics Anonymous – A Letter From Prison

Corresponding with an inmate in the Missouri prison system can be rewarding – and it can be heartbreaking.  My friend Joey is again in prison.  Joey is not a criminal – but four DUI’s will get anyone some time behind bars.  I met Joey when he was in Drug Court.  He was my client. As […]

22Apr2013 | | 1 comment | Continued
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The Conumdrum of the 2nd Amendment in the Post Modern Era

We humans have crossed a threshold, a military threshold.  When the Constitution and Bill of Rights were written there was an equality of arms between a ‘militia’ and any government.  Governments of that era did have canons – but these were of limited mobility and accuracy.  Most militia men living along the Potomac did not […]

5Mar2013 | | 1 comment | Continued
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The Allegory of the Forest – Carl Jung’s Collective

There are no more trees.  No more forested wildlife.  Humans no longer have terms for forest or wildlife.  The Earth was deforested many years ago.  Some older adults remember playing in the woods.  No pictures, photographs, exist.  There are many drawings by children.  Some drawings are done in pencil, others in water colors – some […]

28Feb2013 | | Comments Off on The Allegory of the Forest – Carl Jung’s Collective | Continued
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Choosing the Right Coffee House

To get started in finding the right experience with coffee, you have to choose a coffee house. This is important because there are a lot of coffee houses out there that are expensive and cushy, but do not fall into the “micro-brew” coffee house category. Micro-brew coffee shops will roast their own coffees on the […]

21Feb2013 | | 1 comment | Continued
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Jung and Alcoholism and Drug Addiction

Carl Jung was a genius on the level of Albert Einstein.  Jung might say that he and Einstein were able to tap their unconscious and the collective unconscious for what appear to be ideas of the human imagination.  Jung’s work now defines an entire branch of modern psychology – in his lifetime he captured the […]

18Feb2013 | | Comments Off on Jung and Alcoholism and Drug Addiction | Continued
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Choosing the right coffee drink

The owner of the coffee shop where I worked was a stickler for quality, and I worked with him for over two years. There were customers in our store that came to our location because I was working, trusting that my skill with steamed milk and my knowledge of espresso would come together in a […]

9Feb2013 | | 6 comments | Continued
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Obama, Racism, And Gun Violence in South Chicago

A family buried their daughter today.  15 year old Hadiya Pendleton was killed earlier this week by that crazy phenomenon of irrational gun violence.  Did I mention that Hidiva was black?  Did we note she was killed on Chicago’s South Side – the epicenter of gun violence in new reports.  This is tough to talk […]

9Feb2013 | | 4 comments | Continued
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Retired? How Do You Know?

I live in Missouri, northern Missouri.  I tell people that I am one generation removed from hillbillies – which means my parents were most likely rednecks, and it follows that I am a redneck too.  Or was.  I went to college and the rednecks disqualified me.  Anyway, I know some hillbillies, rednecks, and the watered […]

27Jan2013 | | Comments Off on Retired? How Do You Know? | Continued
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The Demise of Ohg Rea Tone

Ohg Rea Tone has passed nine months hither.  His demise was non-dramatic, no violence or accidents, just worn out.  Some say he was haggard,  a value judgment Mr. Tone would have found appropriate. Mr. Tone was a son, a brother, a father, and a grandfather – yet he had no family.  Mr. Tone was well […]

26Jan2013 | | 2 comments | Continued
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Grand Canyon 2012 Winter Expedition II

27Dec2012 | | Comments Off on Grand Canyon 2012 Winter Expedition II | Continued
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Grand Canyon 2012 Winter Expedition

27Dec2012 | | Comments Off on Grand Canyon 2012 Winter Expedition | Continued
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The Stuppy & Clark Expeditionary Force

Bryan Stuppy, LISW, LADAC, a leading psychologist in New Mexico, has asked me to join him on an Expeditionary Force to study the effects of primal living in a nomadic tribal environment.  The ruse has been established.  The ‘tribe’ thinks they are to study the effects of man-made flooding in the Grand Canyon.  In reality […]

9Nov2012 | | Comments Off on The Stuppy & Clark Expeditionary Force | Continued
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Grand Canyon Rafting – National Park Service Orientation Video

Excitement abounds.  After a hard year in my life I will wrap up 2012 with a very dear old friend on a 25  day rafting/camping trip down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon National Park.  The trip has a degree of danger so the Park Rangers require an orientation – first by video (included […]

25Oct2012 | | Comments Off on Grand Canyon Rafting – National Park Service Orientation Video | Continued
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Who Am I? Searching for the Modern Identity

I am liberal, angry, Aries, impatient, intolerant, loving, forceful, kind, intense, educated, brother, son, father, grandfather, friend, forgiving, humble, proud.  Which defines me?  Any?  All?  Am I modern?  Post-modern?  And who are you?  To whom do I answer?  What philosophy?  Religion? Country? Club?  We live in a complex world, a fast world requiring quick judgement […]

13Oct2012 | | 2 comments | Continued