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Mine Creek Revelations: Her Extreme Hand

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YES, I AM STILL HERE peeking out of the newspaper’s window on Main Street and I am thinking about some of the extremes of weather we have suffered in recent years.

Fer instance: the Mother’s Day Night Tornado of 2015.

Fer instance: the Great Flood of July 16, 2019.

Fer instance, the Deep Freeze of February 2021.

Just this last weekend I had two vivid reminders of Mother Nature’s extreme hand.

My brother Mikey came by with his chainsaw to remove a dead Loquat tree. It was very dead due to the Deep Freeze. I finally admitted to myself that the tree was never coming back.

Mikey cut it into chunks so that his senior brother could huff-and-puff the pieces to street-side for the city crews to pick up.

We noticed that on one of the tree limbs a piece of thick wire was embedded and was sunk so deep that neither of us could pull it out. It wasn’t just any itsy bitsy piece of wire, either. It was solid copper and was about half as big-around as my pinky finger. About three inches of wire was sticking out of the limb. Coulda killed someone.

We figgered that it was blown into my yard by the tornado with such force that it went mucho deep into the living (at the time) wood.

The wind from that tornado also blew down a wooden fence; blew a charcoal cooker into the pool; and blew down two large trees — a pine and an oak. But it also blew some pine needles between a thermometer and the wall it was mounted on. It was mounted flat with screws, too, so it took some high winds to stuff those pine needles in.

I was reminded of the big tornado that hit Dierks back in the 50s. People talked about pine needles being embedded in telephone poles. I believe those observations and other stories related to high winds.

As far as other recent extremes of weather, by Monday morning it had rained 71 of the 156 days of 2021. By Monday morning we were 8.35 inches above the 50-year average rainfall for those first 71 days.

We are soaked. And tired of it.

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PROBLEM SOLVED. Mentioned here last week was County Veterans Service Officer Milton Puryear’s lament that he had to find another bugler to play ‘Taps’ at the annual Memorial Day and Veterans Day events on the courthouse lawn.

For nearly a decade Milton could count on trumpet players from the Nashville High School and Junior High School bands. But those guys have moved on.

There was an offer of help from Nathan Alexander who is on the staff of radio stations KMTB and KNAS. I, myself, heard him make the offer and he has since confirmed with Milton. Too late to back out, now.

Nathan played trumpet four years in the Harding University band, and, most importantly, still has his horn.

Next in importance, he must rebuild his ‘lip’ so that he can make that horn produce meaningful sounds.

As the widely acknowledged Third Best Trombone Player of All Time in the Scrapper Band, I would be glad to advise Nathan so that he will be prepared for his next big gig: Veterans Day on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

Only my fabled modesty prevents me from making the offer of free musical advice.

However, my fabled modesty is NOT enough to keep me from trying to impress you with musical knowledge. The ‘lip’ I referred to is actually slang for a fancy Frenchy word, ‘embouchre,’ which means the way a musician applies his or her mouth to a wind or brass instrument.

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THANKS FOR THE WARNING. A news article says that persons who are allergic to shellfish should not eat cicadas when the bugs emerge from their underground abodes in a few days.

Thanks. I will do my best.

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SOME GERMAN perfessers have been studying on how we retain memories of events and people. An article I saw somewhere says that by middle age we’ve probably forgotten about 80% of the things we learned in high school. No wonder we haven’t been using algebra!

The study also found that those memories are still there between our ears and they can be coaxed up with a few hints.

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ANIMAL CRACKERS. Was mistaken when I wrote that I saw a Bluebird zip across the back yard into the formerly-abandoned Bluebird Box in my yard? Saw the bird again and I believe it is a Wren. Or a Bluebird wearing camo.

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WORD GAMES. The twins: Came and Went. They were here for a only short while.

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HE SAID: “When virtue and modesty enlighten her charms, the lustre of a beautiful woman is brighter than the stars of heaven, and the influence of her power it is in vain to resist.” Akhenaton, Egyptian Pharaoh, 1353–1336 BC

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SHE SAID: “Though beauty gives you a weird sense of entitlement, it’s rather frightening and threatening to have others ascribe such importance to something you know you’re just renting for a while.” Candice Bergen, actress

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SWEET DREAMS, Baby