CHAMPION‚ÄĒJuly 27, 2015
A mysterious mist rises above Clever Creek north of Champion.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† Champions remember the extreme cold from last January when the polar vortex of the previous January was still all the talk.¬† Frozen pipes and slick roads were topics of conversation.¬† Now it is the heat and humidity.¬† The unusual weather, heat or cold gets attention and comment, but moderate days when no one is particularly uncomfortable can go by weeks in a row without anyone saying a word.¬† It is the extremes that define the ordinary.¬† Ordinarily things in Champion are just fine.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† Skyline teacher, Terri Ryan writes, ‚ÄúPaint Day!¬† If you are available Saturday, August 1, we could use your help.¬† We‚Äôd like to use the remainder of the paint received through the True Value Hardware Grant.¬† Painting will begin at 9:00am and go until it‚Äôs finished.¬† Your help is greatly appreciated!‚ÄĚ¬† The last time they did this the whole gym got painted and the next time you have occasion to be there, you will be impressed.¬† It is very bright‚ÄĒred and white.¬† Feel free to bring your brushes or other favorite painting tools; though there will likely be plenty available.¬† Sami McCleary is planning to be there for a little while Saturday.¬† She will be at the Skyline Fire Station on Friday mornings so that anyone in the area may drop off a donation for the silent auction that will be held at the Skyline Picnic on August 7th & 8th.¬† Any good thing that someone might like to buy is welcome.¬† If you have something that you would like to donate and would like to make arrangements to have it picked up, contact Sami at 417-543-4947.¬† There is a lot of hard work going on already to make this another one of those special summer events.¬† Bakers will be getting their recipes ready and shopping for ingredients to share their pies with the concession stand and their cakes and cookies with the cake walk.¬† It is a great community that comes out to support its little school and its little volunteer fire department.¬† Skyline/Champions.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† The duo of Wayne and Jerry made a big splash at the Vanzant Musical on Thursday according to Cyber General Upshaw.¬† He was surely speaking of Wayne Anderson and Jerry Wagner.¬† Music lovers who missed this performance are sorry they did, but are glad to know that Wayne and Jerry are making it out to the Bluegrass Jam from time to time.¬† (This takes place every Thursday with a pot-luck dinner starting at 6:00 over at the Vanzant Community Building.)¬† More was said about a derailed train and a cow on the track, but the references were so obscure and truncated that it would be hard for someone who was not there to make heads or tails of it.¬† The lesson here is to get up and get out and go.¬† You are liable to run into Elmer Banks there and that spells fun.¬† It is a real gift to the neighborhood that the musicians are willing to share their talents in this friendly, neighborly way.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† How big do copperheads get?¬† Various life sciences sources say that the adult is a medium size snake between two and three feet in length.¬† Some fellows over at the Recreation of the Historic Emporium were talking about copperheads the other day.¬† One had a loose board on a porch step for some while and was suddenly in the mood to fix it when he discovered a good sized copperhead living under it.¬† Another talked about having stretched a recently killed copperhead out almost the length of a pick-up tail gate.¬† It was speculated that a person could kill a couple of different snakes to give the illusion of one enormous one by discarding the tail of one and the head of the other.¬† Mr. Dooms told of once having spread one across the desk of the school superintendent who was adamant that they never exceeded two feet in length.¬† The generous rainfall this summer may be causing snakes to get bigger due to plentiful food.¬† Information has been published in medical journals for almost a decade, about the cancer-fighting properties on the Southern Copperheads venom.¬† A protein in the venom called contortrostatin (CN) causes a disruption in the tumor cell‚Äôs ability to adhere to and invade neighbor cells while also inhibiting the development of new blood vessels required to sustain the tumor.¬† Although good things can come from unlikely sources, Champions and visitors to the area are cautioned to be alert.¬† Though not considered to be fatal, a bite of one of these pit vipers can be serious and recovery can take a long time.
¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†¬† ‚ÄúOld man, take a look at my life.¬† I‚Äôm a lot like you were.‚ÄĚ¬† Neil Young is getting to be an old man.¬† He looks like someone from around these parts, kind of rangy and maybe getting a little frail, but he has always looked like that.¬† He still has a lot of spunk about him.¬† He has recently produced a short documentary called ‚ÄúSeeding Fear‚ÄĚ having to do with Monsanto which is now controlling over 90% of the soybean and corn growth in America.¬† Family farms are being replaced by giant agri corp farms across the whole country.¬† The documentary was also timed to bring attention to a House of Representatives bill dubbed the Deny Americans the Right to Know, or DARK Act.¬† ‚ÄúThe dark act takes away the rights of those people to vote for or against things like GMO labeling in their states.¬† It does seem ironic.¬† If the act is passed, it will truly be a dark day for America.‚ÄĚ¬† He goes on to say that farms and our food sources are in jeopardy and ‚ÄúThis has happened on our watch while the country slept, distracted by advertising and false information from the corporations.¬† Monsanto and others simply pay the politicians for voting their way.¬† This is because of ‚ÄėCitizens United‚Äô, a legislation that has made it possible for corporations to have the same rights as people, while remaining immune to people‚Äôs laws.‚ÄĚ¬† Being an informed citizen takes some effort and it is probably an impossible task to get it all figured out.¬† Molly Ivins said it right when she said that there is a real connection between our lives and what those ‚Äėbozos‚Äô do in Washington and in our state capitols.¬† Our votes do count.
Sweet corn is coming in by the bushel and potatoes are ready to jump out of the ground. Every good garden thing is thriving for some gardeners and some gardens are a total bust this year. It may depend on how much clay is in the soil, or how well it drains, or how many weeds are competing with the vegetables for food and water. Linda‚Äôs Almanac from over at The Plant Place in Norwood says the 2nd and 3rd of August will be favorable for planting root crops, and fine for vine crops. They will also be good days for transplanting. Linda‚Äôs Almanac is available on line at www.championnews.us as well as on the bulletin board at Henson‚Äôs Downtown G & G. There is plenty of growing season left for folks willing to get up early enough in the morning to have the hard work done before the heat sets in. This kind of heat is dangerous for older folks. It is easy to become dehydrated. Come inside and watch the grass grow through the windows. Or come down to the wide, wild and wooly banks of Old Fox Creek and enjoy the shade up on the spacious veranda. From there you can see new growth high atop the Behemoth Bee Tree on the South Side of the Square. You will be in good company in Champion‚ÄĒLooking on the Bright Side!