CHAMPION—December 6, 2010

           Champions are mighty glad to know that there are still two full weeks of Autumn left before Old Man Winter lumbers into town.  The Winter Solstice occurs on the 21st of the month and coincides this year auspiciously with the full moon.  This one is called ‘The Cold Moon’ by some and ‘The Long Night Moon’ by others.  With a little warming trend going on between now and then Champions will be well prepared and welcoming to whatever Winter has in store.

          The Store is the big news in Champion.  Every day the replica of the Historic Emporium inches closer to completion.  Some of the doors and windows are in and soon the electricity will be wired in and then insulation and then and then and on and on until One Fine Day (OFD) the resounding chorus of “Ta Da!” will echo through the countryside.  What a day that will be!  Until then, Champions are glad to know that there is plenty of time to do it right.  Most folks who have ever built a fence know the story about the guy who measured each post on the one before it and his posts got shorter and shorter until, before he knew it, his fence was about knee high.  If multiples of something are needed, it is best to make a template so that each of the duplicates can be measured from the same source.  An old Swedish carpenter answered the question, “How long?” with “Twice the length of my two foot ruler, a brick, a hammer handle and a piece of string about this long” whereupon he stuck out his two knobby index fingers an undetermined but short distance apart.  It is all relative.  Everybody has some relatives like that and Champions are uniformly patient with them.  The term “verisimilitude” measures the extent to which a hypothesis approaches the truth.  Readers understand this concept is also relative in Champion.

          A review of Champion News archives ( revealed that in December of 2006, Dustin Cline was reported to have said, in front of eight witnesses, that he was wrong (about something).  The report was made at Staci’s request and subsequently he was heard to have said that she was right about something.  That was also about the time that Champion Esther Wrinkles got her truck stuck in the mud in her own garage and was locked out of her house and wound up climbing in through her front window.  She fixed the window so it can no longer be used that way and has plenty of keys in case she should be locked out again.  Esther keeps a pretty front porch  and when it was time to bring the plants in (the ones the goat did not eat), she shared one of her Christmas cactuses with a friend who is today enjoying voluminous pink blossoms.  Monday morning Ester was still feeling mighty bad about not having reached out a hand to comfort the General on Friday Night.  It was up at the Junction and Bob Moody and some steel guitar players were entertaining at the fish fry when they played such a sad song that the General became so flustered and emotionally overwrought that he could not get his hand in his own hip pocket for his hankie.  Finally he found a handful of table napkins with which he vainly tried to stem the flow of tears from his rheumy eyes.  He is a soulful sort and not at all responsible for the goat on Esther’s porch and she would say, “There, there” to him if it were to come up again just that way.   

          Champions are enjoying the Clever Creek and Champion Items written by Sylvia Henson in the late 1940’s.  A copy of the collection that Hovey sent recently is available for examination down at Henson’s Store which is currently located in the Temporary Annex on the West Side of the Square.  One item was written in September 1947.  Mr. and Mrs. I. P. Henson had attended the National Convention of Spanish War Veterans in Kansas City.   Mr. Henson met several of his old comrades of C. B 28 U.S. Infantry whom he had not seen since his discharge from the service forty-six years earlier.  There were about 2000 Veterans attending that convention.  While many may not recall just why that war was fought and the reasoning behind current conflicts may escape understanding, Champions do understand that the call to military service is an honorable one and that the Nation owes a debt of Love and Gratitude to all those who serve. 

          Sisters Linda and Charlene from The Plant Place and The Gift Corner over in Norwood have been busy with Santa’s Workshop activities.  Throughout the course of the year Charlene keeps her eyes out for bargains and so when the school children come to Christmas shop, they can find affordable gifts for their friends, siblings, and parents.  It is a lovely program that the local schools have accommodated for a number of years.  The atmosphere is lively and festive and it reinforces the notion that a thoughtful gift is priceless.  Linda has been busy making cuttings and working on her beautiful begonia crop for next year.  Gardeners and plant lovers always have something to do.

         Sometimes sad news travels slowly and Champions were saddened to learn that teacher, friend, and bridge player, Jan Townsend, of Mountain Grove has lost her long battle with cancer.  She had sparkle about her that remains in the hearts of people who knew her even casually—a special gentle kindness and a wonderful laugh. 

          Champions are almost uniformly a nostalgic lot of people.  Even though there may not be a lot of people in Champion at any given time, the ones who routinely occupy the place can easily start a sentence with, “I never will forget the time…” and then go on to recall some unforgettable moment.  Naturally, everybody finds his own life extremely interesting.  For the sake of future generations Champions are very busy making excellent memories today.  It is a quality of life thing that goes along with “do not let perfect be the enemy of good.” 

          “I really can’t stay (Baby, its cold outside) I must go away (but Baby it’s cold outside)” Sing that one on the way into the store in Downtown Champion or use these cold days to practice your knitting.  It is to be noted that the builders have not taken up knitting and the appellations of Nit & Purl are totally inappropriate.  Be advised.  Voice opinion or advice or recall excellent moments at Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood, MO. 65717 or at Champion at  Submit plans for approval of your float to the Champion Christmas Parade Committee before the Solstice or be left out of the fun.  The porch on the replica of the Historic Emporium will be an excellent reviewing stand for Champion’s myriad fascinating and unique parades, as well as a stage for all manner of performances and a platform for oration of any kind that is exulting and uplifting.  It is Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!