Saturday, December 31, 2011

Father Knows Something or other...

from the May 13 issue of the County Journal...

I got a book called The Big Book of Questions and Answers to go over with the kids at night. It’s written by some guy named Sinclair Ferguson and, as advertised, it’s about the size of the Los Angeles phonebook.

Anyway...the second question in the Big Book of Questions and Answers is “Why am I here?” (The first night was “Who am I?”)

Now the “Why am I here?” question is one that has caused many a man to ponder, dissertate and/or do recreational drugs, hunt, fish, play golf or a lot of things. I even had a whole class on it at the liberal arts college I attended (and graduated from) in West Virginia.

But this “Why am I here?” question is really in the big, important question category and while I am at peace with the answer (I got a “B” in the class even though I fell asleep often), it still was something I gave a lot of thought to, in order to bestow wisdom on my children, and so they’d think I was smarter than Dora the Explorer and/or Pinky Dinky Doo.

I read Being In Nothingness, The Republic and the Bible in my prepartions for a discussion that would forever impact our children.

Finally, after brushing teeth and giving hugs and kisses goodnight to everyone, (some of them more than once) I sat on the edge of the bed and asked, “Why are you here?”
The answer was to be the start of a great discourse, and certainly the teachings of Socrates, Thomas Aquinas, Jean-Paul Sarte, Kierkeguaard and Alex Trebec were certain to emerge.

She thought for a second and replied, “Because I live here.”

Well, that’s one of my reasons too.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Friday, December 30, 2011

A tribute to Moms...

from the May 6, 2010 issue of the County Journal...

A few different thoughts on motherhood...

It happens every day, but it’s no less important because of how often it happens. Every day, someone starts a life-long journey of being called Mom.

The first day, I’m told, is kind of rough. But the last time my wife became a mom, she had a big grin on her face for most of the procedure and told me (over and over again) that they gave her Demerol. It was nice to see her relaxed and calm. She even sang some Broadway show tunes to pass the time. “Anything Goes,” I think. The operation was pretty simple, at least from my perspective. El Doctor (we were in a foreign land) got our son out the escape hatch he created and sent him off to be cleaned and de-briefed. He and his sister are currently investigating how many different reasons they can think of to not go to bed on time. I think they are up to 10,765.
A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest. ~Irish Proverb
Besides the Mighty Quinn, few people have been immortalized in song as greatly as Mom.

According to a wide-array of songwriters, Mom sang tenor, tried to steer her boy right, stood by her man, said what “would be would be” and that “there’d be days like these,” just to name a few.

Mom got free advice on not letting her babies become cowboys and in her spare time, sewed a coat of many colors.

And although she was seen kissing Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, we have reason to believe it was a case of mistaken identity.

The fact that she didn’t dance was exacerbated by the problem that Daddy didn’t Rock and Roll.

All in all, Mom is the shoulder to cry on, has the wisdom of Solomon, and even though “one of them is a toddlin’ and one is a crawlin’ one needs a spankin’ and one needs a huggin’ and one’s on the way,” she still has the respect of us all. Maybe even more so because of all of that.

She even owns an accordion.
The way I see it, being Mom is hard, but for the Moms in my life, not being Mom would be utterly impossible.

Happy Mother’s Day.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Friday, December 23, 2011

Relay for Life Night in Hardeman County

from the April 29, 2010 issue of the County Journal...

Everybody knows about cancer. Everyone has had someone, be it a loved one, a friend, or a co-worker affected or die from some form of it. But thanks to research and organizations like Relay for Life, everyone also knows someone who beat it, who lives in remission and/or completely cancer-free.

However, according to the World Health Organization, cancer was the cause of 13% of all deaths worldwide. So the fight continues.

Relay for Life has come a long way since 1985, when Dr. Gordon Klatt walked 83 miles in 24 hours to raise money to fight cancer in Tacoma, Washington. Relay is now in 21 countries around the world and has raised $3,000,000,000 (that’s billions) to fight cancer.

But it’s not just about a cure. Relay for Life pays for things like stays at a Hope Lodge. Hope Lodge is for the living, for those who are fighting for their lives.
Relay for Life describes Hope Lodge thusly, “Each Hope Lodge offers cancer patients and their families a free, temporary place to stay when their best hope for effective treatment may be in another city. Not having to worry about where to stay or how to pay for lodging allows Hope Lodge guests to focus on the most important thing: getting well. And a Hope Lodge offers so much more than just free lodging. It provides a nurturing, home-like environment where patients and caregivers can retreat to private rooms or connect with others who are going through many of the same experiences.”

It’s about taking care of those still among us. It’s about taking care of each other.
There’s music, good food and renewing friendships with those who, without research, would have perhaps passed from us before this year’s Relay. But they are here, a testament to the worth of Relay for Life.

Relay for Life Night is a night of somber remembrance, but a night of fun too. Relay for Life night is for those who choose to laugh, eat, and dance while never forgetting those who passed on.

Someday cancer will go the way of smallpox. And Relay for Life in Hardeman County will have had a hand in it.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, December 18, 2011

He was pretty good at picking up the 7-10 split though...

from the April 22, 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

The date on the top of this paper is April 22, and I thought I’d do a bit of “On this day in history.” Not everything I found in my research was all that interesting, so I had to make up a few things.

However, it is a fact that today (April 22) is Earth Day. Back in 1970, a bunch of people, led by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, were convinced that we were about to enter into another ice age and proposed an awareness day to promote the environmental movement so that we could save ourselves from being able to ice skate from Minneapolis to New Orleans on the Mississippi River in August.

The first Earth Day also doubled as a trade show for drug paraphernalia, since mostly the same people were involved, except for the Senator and anyone else named in this column who might have a lawyer and a subscription to this publication. They watched “Reefer Madness” to kill time while a big group of participants went to Burger King for a Whopper, fries, and more fries.

The Committee to have an Earth Day settled on April 22. A few possible reasons:
1. John Muir founded the Sierra Club and the people in charge of the first Earth Day thought to do it on his birthday would be an honor. The only problem was that he was born on April 21. Oops. It was said after this gaffe they banned Cheech and Chong from coming to any more meetings.
2. Eddie Albert of the show Green Acres was born on April 22. In his honor, people shouted, “Give me that countryside!” at the opening ceremonies.
3. Julius Sterling Morton, the founder of Arbor Day, was born on April 22. A research of his life did not find anything I could make a joke about.
4. Julian Koenig was on the committee that established the day as April 22. The date was Koenig’s own birthday and “Earth Day” rhymed with “birthday.” I WISH I made that up.
5. The FBI thought that there was another reason for the April 22 date. The would-have-been 100th birthday of noted Marxist and Professional Bowler Vladimir Lenin was April 22, 1970 and the boys from the FBI thought Earth Day was a front for an eventual subversive plot to redistribute world and U.S. wealth in the name of mythical-man-caused global climate change under the name of “cap and trade.” The FBI was proved wrong though, as Lenin was discovered to have never bowled better than 127 and he didn’t even own his own tri-colored shoes.

And finally, today is my wife’s birthday. Honey, I’m sorry all those years ago the crazy people took over your special day.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Neverending Story...

from the April 15, 2010 issue of the County Journal...

Whenever I’m curious about anything, such as, let’s say, the end of the world, I look to Hollywood. This has helped me with many other riveting mysteries, such as How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, and When Harry Met Sally.
(I do need to point out that it isn’t perfect. It has not helped a bit with What Women Want.)

But in case you hadn’t heard, there is a movie now that is based on the fact that Mayan Civilization predicted that the earth would cease to exist on December 21, 2012, which means your Christmas shopping that year won’t be necessary.

The reason for this end of the earth prediction is because when the Mayans (for some reason) got together to map out the remainder of history, they only went until 2012. To me, that would seem to be enough…seven hundred or so years ahead, enough to plan birthday parties and ritual sacrifices for many generations to come. But Hollywood and other lunatics say this is a sign that the earth wouldn’t last past that…all because some Mayan guy said, “man, 2012 is enough, I gotta get home before the old lady changes the locks.”

And what really makes it silly (for them) is that the Mayans ceased to exist sometime in the 14th century. Some of the theories given for the Mayan civilization disappearing involved witches/priests, a peasant revolt, and poor environmental policy that involved abuse of land and pulverizing natural resources such as forests, animals, and shoals and/or reefs that could have proved useful. If only Al Gore had been around to try to legislate these guys into eternal life.

But some Hollywood guys apparently just heard about the 2012 deal and came up with their version of the end of the earth just in time for us to go pay $7.50 for the chance to see it and $11.25 for a soda and popcorn to help us pass the time (as if the END OF THE WORLD isn’t enough to hold your attention). But if the movie really is about the end of the world and the world ends at the end of the movie, how does the movie itself end?

So I guess I’ll rent it. On December 22, 2012.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Friday, December 9, 2011

Think YOU'RE tough?

from the April 8, 2010 issue of the County Journal...

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

At some point in my life I thought this was the post office motto, but Google has approximately 8 million (give or take a few) people who can’t wait to tell you that this isn’t the motto of the Post Office at all, but instead a Greek description of the Persian Post Office, which apparently ran a very tight ship way back in 500 BC, immortalized by the Persian Historian Herodotus, who coined the above phrase.


As tough as these Persians were though, I don’t think they can hold a candle to the new tough guy (or girl), the TOBACCO SMOKER.

The TOBACCO SMOKER endures the rhetoric of the Government (while paying crazy-high taxes on each pack to it) for the privilege of continuing to be smacked down by laws saying where they can smoke and blamed for high insurance rates. They also must deal with the laid-upon-them guilt of inflicting others with secondhand smoke.

The TOBACCO SMOKER is directly in the cross-hairs of the Surgeon General, who smugly informs them that smoking could cause health problems. Oh yeah? Well, I think the Surgeon General could stand to lose some weight.

The TOBACCO SMOKER must go outside to smoke, says the collector of the crazy-high taxes. The TOBACCO SMOKER stands out in the elements, braving snow, rain, heat, gloom of night and other people that the TOBACCO SMOKER has nothing in common with save perhaps their brand of tobacco or their future oncologist.

The TOBACCO SMOKER is no longer welcome in diners, bowling alleys or pool rooms, places where they once were accepted, loved and encouraged. Instead they are banished to the outer regions and must stand by the back door, sometimes all alone, ashing into a coffee cup or (oh my!) on the ground, polluting the environment with the ashes we will all become eventually anyway.

And to them, this sacrifice for vice is worth it. I don’t smoke, I don’t plan to, I don’t want my kids to, but I admire the TOBACCO SMOKER’s committment to freedom in the face of such oppression.

Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Friday, December 2, 2011

It was sunny, with a high of 96...

From the April 1 Issue of the County Journal...

I’ve been sick (ill) for a week or so now and someone asked me if I had gotten my flu shot this year.

Now, I’m not telling you how to run your life, but I don’t get flu shots.

I know I’ve had the flu a few times in my life, but I don’t remember a specific instance, besides the time that it was viral encephalitis. (of course, the time it was viral encephalitis, it WASN’T the flu, it just had the symptoms of the flu)
As far as shots go though, I have a pretty good memory.

On Friday August 12, 1977 (I was 10 years old) I went to the doctor with my mother for a check-up for school. It was noted at the time that I hadn’t had my Tetanus shot.

So with no concern for my immediate safety (and no protest from my mother) the doctor pulled up the sleeve on my blue shirt, got out a needle the size of an industrial-size caulking gun, jammed it into my arm and held it there for four or five minutes (it may have been quicker than this, but this is what I remember) before pulling it back out and giving me a band-aid and a grape Tootsie-pop, which didn’t do a thing to stop the incredible pain I was experiencing.

My arm hurt for about two days. I remember lying on the couch that afternoon with my arm dangling off watching the Cubs play the Phillies on WGN. The Phillies jumped out and scored 3 runs in the second inning and 4 runs in the third inning and went on to win 10-3. (I remember Dad saying the umpiring was terrible.) I remember my arm throbbing as Steve Carlton got the win for the Phillies while Rick Reuschel took the loss for the Cubs. Frank Pulli was the home plate umpire. The attendance was 28,849.

And my arm kept hurting that night when we had chicken casserole with biscuits. It smarted while Gabe Kaplan guest hosted the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. I remember the guests were Roy Clark, Tom Smothers and Susan St. James, who talked about her career now that McMillian and Wife had been cancelled.

I remember that it hurt the next day when I went outside to get the newspaper. I found a penny (it was heads up, 1974 D) on the way back up the driveway, but it didn’t stop my arm from hurting.

And as I said, I don’t really remember having the flu.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Monday, November 28, 2011


From the March 25, 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

When you are a kid, you hear things, most notably “Life isn’t fair.” But for this past weekend in Murfreesboro…

Life WAS fair: This time, it was. The hardest work, the most dedication and the best fans got the prize this time. There were more Bolivar Central fans in the stands for any team in the finals, including three schools much closer in travel time. Senior Jay Murphy won the tournament MVP, and earned it with both his play and his leadership.

Good things come to those who wait: Head Coach Rick Rudesill said last year would stick in his mind for a long time. Maybe somewhere in his psyche, it still does. But I’m sure it hurts less now. Murphy and fellow senior Ricky Tisdale started for four seasons and finally ended their great careers with a championship. Senior Kegan Fuller’s enthusiasm and the embodiment of “TDQ” (Tigers Don’t Quit) was rewarded with the gold ball. And that leads us to the next one.

Good things happen to good people: “Good kids and good students,” said Coach Rudesill, “I can’t say that for all the teams, but I can this year.” The good kids went from the starters to the last player on the bench.

There IS justice in the world: When you beat a team three times in a row, and twice in the playoffs, you would think that is enough to settle the issue of who is the better team. But it wasn’t. Bolivar had to beat Liberty once more to win the state title. Our worry was that all those past wins over Liberty would be for nothing (and they would have been) if the Tigers were to have an off day in the final. It was annoying to think beating someone twice in the playoffs wasn’t enough and worse still, that saying so after a loss would just sound terrible. The thought of Liberty with the golden ball after Bolivar’s fantastic season was enough to make us queasy. But we shouldn’t have worried. The Tigers knew who was better. “We heard them saying they wanted us,” explained Fuller, “So we thought we’d give them what they wanted.”
Which brings us to one more - Be careful what you wish for. You may get it: Bolivar’s dominant performance on championship Saturday proved all of the above. It didn’t matter that Liberty’s players were more celebrated by people outside Hardeman County. It didn’t matter what people thought of Bolivar’s “talent.”

“I’m learning to redefine it,” said Rudesill during the Saturday press conference after the game. “It’s heart.”

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, November 27, 2011

So there...

From the March 18 Issue of The County Journal...

It has been pointed out to us that we have a “lack of crime” on the front page of the County Journal. So here you go:

The Chicago Police Department has issued a warrant for the arrest of Leroy Brown of the South Side of Chicago. Chicago Police consider Mr. Brown the most dangerous man in the entirety of the city, would give King Kong a run for his money were he to travel to New York City, and is considered more vicious (or perhaps meaner) than a junkyard dog.

Mr. Brown was allegedly involved in an altercation a week ago Friday in a south side bar. Mr. Brown and an unknown man were seen rolling on the floor after Mr. Brown allegedly made romantic advances toward the unknown man’s girlfriend, reportedly a nice-looking girl named Doris.

It is known that Mr. Brown emerged from the fight bruised and bloody. The other man’s condition was not known.

Mr. Brown has been under suspicion by the Chicago Police stemming from allegations of illegal gambling (dice games) and carrying a concealed weapon without a permit (a .32 caliber pistol). Also, Mr. Brown is alleged to have a razor in his shoe.
A description of Mr. Brown lists him as 6 feet 4 and is gives two known aliases: “Treetop Lover” and “Sir.”

Mr. Brown is known to like to wear fancy clothes to flaunt his many diamond rings.
The Department of Motor Vehicles lists Mr. Brown the owner of both a Custom-built Lincoln Continental and a Cadillac El Dorado.
The police also wish you to be on the lookout for Jim Walker. He has been known to frequent pool halls on 42nd Street, where he is considered quite proficient at hustling, according to Willie “Slim” McCoy of Alabama.

While not academically gifted, Jim is described as “stronger than a country hoss” and is called “boss” by his acquaintances, who are also considered dangerous.

If spotted, it has been estimated that attempting to apprehend him alone may be as dangerous as “tugging on Superman’s Cape,” “spitting into the wind,” or “pulling the mask off the ol’ Lone Ranger.” Use caution.
Finally, there is a report of a shooting in Rosa’s Cantina in El Paso, but the details are unknown, except that a reported love triangle ended in the violent death of a “handsome young stranger.” The alleged shooter is wanted for murder and horse-theft, but is thought to have perished at the hands of 17 or more cowboys while returning to the scene of the crime.

How’s that?

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Still Crazy After All These Issues...

From the March 11 Issue of the County Journal...

While I listening to a local broadcaster describe a poorly officiated basketball game the other night, I happened to come upon the AFI’s (American Film Institute) Best 100 Movies of All-Time.

After I got over the disappointment that Point Break or The Muppet Movie didn’t make the list, I noticed Casablanca, (the tale of a statistically impossible reunion of two lovers) was #2. Having seen it five or so times, I can say I like the movie (I think it is better than Citizen Kane, although I now understand why he went crazy) but it requires a certain amount of suspension of belief.

The premise that Ilsa would just happen to come by a bar (on another continent) run by Rick, who she was in love with in Paris right before she found out her husband hadn’t been murdered by the Nazis after all, is just silly. It’s too much of a coincidence that they would ever see each again.

I once lived in a town while an ex-girlfriend was there at the same time. The town had about six thousand people and you could drive across it in 15 minutes (as opposed to two continents) and I never saw her by accident on any ocassion, except one night in the gym when she was kissing another guy.

The guy was a short, skinny geek that hadn’t had a girlfriend before (not that I knew of) and here he was kissing my cheerleader girlfriend near where (the location in the gym) I used to sit on the bench for the basketball team.

But it wasn’t that he was kissing her that bothered me the most, although, as I recall, that was a large part of the problem.

No, the thing that bothered me most was that it occurred to me his type (skinny geek) was the kind of guy she liked…now, either I wasn’t geek enough, or...never mind.

Anyway, the idea that after all those years Ilsa would walk into Rick’s American Cafe was just a little out of my believable zone.

But, that’s why the story was made into a movie, I suppose.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, November 6, 2011

It was sunny, with a high of 96...

From the March 5, 2010 issue of the County Journal

With Poor Richard’s Almanac, my ESV (English Standard Version) Bible, the New England Journal of Medicine, Bartlett’s Quotations, a World Atlas, and Robert’s Rules of Order at the ready, I put the kids in the truck and headed out for our 20-minute ride to church.

As is their habit, the kids began firing questions as soon as we left the driveway. They led off with a simple one: How do you get to China? I explained that China was a long way from us and you needed to fly over the ocean and I wasn’t sure which way I would go, either east or west. I assured them you couldn’t “dig for China” and that I didn’t know if the kids over there were told to “dig for America” or not.

Then we heard question #2: When is summer going to be here? June 21. The forecast calls for sunny skies and a high of 87.

As we turned right from Lake Hardeman Road onto Highway 125, I was asked about junkyard dogs. Why are they in the junkyard, where do they sleep at the junkyard, will they let you go up and pet them, and why would a dog want to be at the junkyard in the first place?

Question #4 was about why you had to get shots at the doctor, when the shots hurt more than getting sick in the first place...

Number five came up because our new reader in the family (now when we spell words to each other so they won’t know what we are talking about, we have to use words so big that I usually don’t understand either) wondered what a “thru truck” was and why you couldn’t have any of them and should we tell on our neighbor for having a big truck. My explanation raised more questions than it retired, although I assured them the neighbor was not in violation of county law.

There were others, such as the designated hitter rule, why cats have whiskers, the biggest pine cone I have ever seen and if dogs had a language or are they barking to just bark, which was a sidelight to the junkyard dog volley of questions.

Someday, they will decide I don’t know what I’m talking about and I’ll only get silence from the back seat. But in the meantime, I hope it’s nice on June 21. I’d like to have gotten one right.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Thursday, November 3, 2011

All the world's a stage...

From the February 26, 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

It’s fun to laugh with your friends. And your best friends will let you laugh with them and, sometimes, at them.

Almost ten years ago, a group set out to let us do just that, and so a few times a year we get to dress up and go to see the fruits of countless hours of planning, both on the stage and behind the scenes.

You watch people you work with, work for and work alongside at times, put on a show, an original or perhaps an old favorite. And they do it for nothing, well not for money. You know they do it because they love it.

You laugh at their jokes, sometimes because you know them. But you also marvel at their ability to make us laugh, even more so because you’ve seen them during the not so funny times too.

You sit at tables and meet new people or hang out with old friends. You’re there because you have things in common…maybe a relative or friend is part of the production. Or maybe you just like being a patron of the arts in a community that values the arts.

You watch the show. During the intermission, you realize (if you hadn’t already) you’re part of an event, an event in your county, put on by your county for your county.

Afterward, you get to go through the receiving line and congratulate those who entertained you. You tell them they were great and you can see it in their eyes that it matters to them, because we count each other as friends. These aren’t jaded performers for hire, they’re businessmen and women, housewives, teachers and students who live amongst us. You realize they are us. You’re a little jealous. You want to be part of it. You wished you had auditioned.

Some people give money to causes. Some give time. Some just show up and enjoy it. But the most fun is getting to do all three.

May it never stop.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Circle of Career...

From the February 19, 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

When I was 18 years old and was in-between colleges (waiting for another semester to start), I got a job as the Sports Editor of a bi-weekly newspaper in Morehead, Kentucky. My job, they told me, was to report on all the local sports, both college and high school. Perfect. Right up my alley.

And then they dropped the bomb.

I had to do a Man on the Street interview for each week. I would take a picture of five local citizens and ask them a question, such as, “Do you think Ronald Reagan will push the button?” Their photo and their answer would appear in the next issue of the paper.

My first few weeks featured mostly people I knew. My boss then made a rule I couldn’t use anyone under 25 years old. Then another rule that I couldn’t be related to them. And then he said that I couldn’t give them $10 or offer to wash their car.

So I hung out at the post office, a solitary figure with a notepad and camera stalking people as they came to get their mail. It was pathetic.

For a while I was IN the Post Office, until people complained. Then I was on the front steps of the Post Office until later I moved (involuntarily) to the sidewalk in front of the Post Office, where Federal Laws didn’t apply. A week later, I moved to the Trademore Shopping Center out near Interstate 64, where I stood in front of the Goody’s (or maybe it was Payless Shoes, I can’t remember) and tried not to look desperate.

This was not much better although I didn’t have to bear the threats of the Postmaster, which I suppose was an improvement.

The problem was, normal people didn’t want to talk to me. No one wanted to tell an 18-year old kid if they thought, for example, “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure” should have won the Academy Award for Best Picture. The people that would share, well, their answers weren’t all that newsworthy.

Question: Where do you see yourself in five years?
Answer: Well, unless they move this bench, I’ll be right here. That banana on the ground is mine, you understand?

So when a local radio station offered me a job a few months later, I quickly gave up my dreams of working at a newspaper.

Well, until now.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Walt, Walt, Don't Tell Me!

From the February 12, 2010 County Journal...

I started watching an old movie the other night called “Double Indemnity” starring Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck and Edward G. Robinson, who didn’t even once, call anyone a “dirty rat.”

The plot centered around an insurance agent who falls in love with a client and the only thing standing between them and romantic and financial bliss was her husband and the fact that he was still alive.

As exciting as this was, I fell asleep while the two of them were professing their love to one another in the canned vegetables aisle of the grocery store and I missed the rest of the movie. I know either he or she did it, since the tagline for the movie was “Love and Murder at First Sight.”

So I imagine the police interviewed some of the people who knew the couple:
Her attorney: “Walt murdered my client’s husband in hopes of a relationship with my client, all without my client’s knowledge. My client’s only dealing with Walt was completely professional. He was the family’s insurance agent. However, she has since cancelled all policies with his company.”

Walt’s College Buddy: “Ol’ Walt offed this dame’s husband after he fell in love with her. Walt always liked the ladies, didn’t he?”

Walt’s Dad: “That conniving woman fell in love with the boy and then convinced him to kill her husband. Walt was always a sucker for a pretty face.”

Walt’s Mother: “That woman framed poor old Walter by pretending to love him all while murdering her own husband. Walter has such a kind heart, always wanting to help out. He couldn’t have done this.”

Walt’s Attorney: “My client was at the public library all day on the day of the murder, except when he stepped out for his lunch break at the soup kitchen he volunteers in on a regular basis. It is obvious that the woman did it for the money. My client is an honest insurance agent and was completely unaware of this woman’s plot to kill her husband when he sold her the huge life insurance policy with the ‘double indemnity’ clause. The romantic relationship between them and the house they just bought in the French Riviera is not relevant to the case.”

Anybody know what really happened? Email me.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Say Cheese...

from the February 5 issue of the County Journal...

One of my least favorite things in the world is to pose for a photograph. I don’t mind a photo being taken now and then, but I dislike getting in a big group and doing the “simultaneous smile.”

The reason is the first thing that occurs to me when someone says “smile!” is that I need a reason to smile. I’m not a machine. Give me some motivation. Tell a joke. Injure yourself while eating Lasagne. Dance. Something.

The idea of taking a picture, I think, is to capture the moment. Well, if the moment is standing with a bunch of people looking at someone with an electronic device designed to reproduce a moment in time, I fail to see the reason for unbridled joy. After all, cameras have been around for quite some time now.

“Hey, look, Bob has a camera! Whoopeee!!!!!!!!!! Let’s all go grin at him!”

I’m sure there are those who would argue, but I think I genuinely smile as much as anyone. But if you think I should grin solely because you have a camera and say “Smile!” my advice to you is get better material. A rubber chicken. Or a fake moustache and glasses, at least.

But this issue of the County Journal has a few instances of good reasons to smile…a new business opening, Tales from the Yellow House and winners in a coloring contest, just to name a few. We hope it will make you smile, too.

If it does, let us know…we’ll bring a camera.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Be (Bad) Attitudes...

From the January 29, 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

My comeback as a basketball player began last Friday night when I took the court with the blue jersey of the Hornsby Baptist Church. I don’t attend the church, but my particular church doesn’t have a team and the guys were nice enough to let me join them for the season, with no strings attached (I had to buy a $10 t-shirt). They said I could remain a Presbyterian, which is nice.

(They did ask me how I felt about “dunking” and I told them I could barely touch the rim. I may have misunderstood the question.)

It was nice to play with a scoreboard, a clock, someone keeping the book and keeping track of fouls, which meant (in theory - see below) every time I went down the lane someone didn’t just grab me to stop me from scoring. It was an official game.

It’s a church league and the opposing team kept the theme of fellowship throughout the game, maybe because they thumped us. We behaved also, with one possible exception. And being a church league, we did have a miracle occur during the game.

However, the lame did not walk.

Our starting center scored a basket early in the game, stepped on someone’s foot and spent the rest of the game with an ice pack on his ankle, yelling, “rebound,” which had he been in the game, would have been his job. And since our other two “big” guys didn’t show, this hurt our presence on the boards and led to the loss.

Nor did the blind see.

To be fair, I must say the referee did miss them on both sides of the court. He missed calling fouls when we had the ball, but he made up for it by calling a lot of them when they had the ball. So it evened out. Sort of.

What was the miracle?

Unfotuatley, the mute spoke. Even though he should have kept his mouth shut. But, given my heritage, the miracle may have been if I HADN’T said “C’mon!” at least once.
But, even with all that, I think we would have lost anyway. And if this column doesn’t get me kicked out of the league, I can’t wait to play again.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hope they read it...

from the January 22 Issue of the County Journal

The recent addition to my weekly routine has left me behind in my reading and therefore, I have no book review to offer to this week’s edition of The County Journal. But the kids were happy to help:

1. Gracie recommends Barnyard Dance by Sandra Boynton…It’s seems that the animals have scored a fiddle and are having a square dance. With a neigh and a moo and a cockle-doodle-doo….Three Stars
2. John feels time would be well-spent with Dogs by Julie Aigner-Clark …Dogs do a lot of things. Clark narrows it down to about seven and none of it is hazardous to shoes...Two and a half stars.
3. John again recommends Sometime I Like to Curl up in a Ball by Vicki Churchill…This wombat is a busy little guy, but he finds time to, you guessed it, curl up in a ball...Three stars.
4. Again, John is entusiastic about The Pup Speaks Up by Anna Jane Hays…Pal the pup lets everyone else weigh in before he gives his opinion. Example: Chug, Chug goes a tug...Three and a half stars.
5. Gracie liked God Made Colours, author unknown Some of the major colors are covered in this six page volume...Three stars
6. Gracie also gives a good word for One, Two, Three! by Sandra Boynton…Amongst the highlights of the book is the notion that six is fun for a running race unless you are the one in sixth place...Four Stars.
7. John liked God Made You Special by Eric Metaxas… Talking vegetables Larry the Cucumber and Bob the Tomato explain that even a gourd can be his own man...Two Stars.
8. Gracie felt Oh, Bother! Someone’s Afraid of the Dark by Betty Birney was a bit overdone…Piglet freaks out during a slumber party he has with his friend Winnie the Pooh. Cameos by Tigger and Owl....One and a half stars.

If I can get up the courage, I’ll slip The County Journal under their pillow. Wish me luck.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Monday, October 24, 2011

Saving the Planet

From the January 15 2010 Issue of the County Journal...

As I was very carefully crossing the street last Friday, dodging the ice patches, I realized that the good news about the miserable cold is that we’ve finally got this global warming thing licked.

It seems to us, though, that we may have gone too far.
So we have a plan to reverse it back:

- We’re going to stop recycling. The separate plastic bins (creating the need for more plastic) never made sense to us anyway.
- We’re going to ask for plastic bags when we get groceries. We’ll double-bag.
- We’re going to take the muffler off our car.
- We’re going to flush the toilet often and for no reason.
- We’re going to leave the TV on all the time. Same with the lights.
- We will never car pool, instead we will tell our friends to get their own SUV.
- We will wash everything in hot water and ask for fresh towels every day if we go to a hotel.
- We will feed local livestock food from Taco Bell.
- We’re going to take those funny-looking light bulbs back to the store.
- We will take unnecessary airplane flights, we’ll drive when we could walk, and if we have nothing else to do, we’ll just stand in the yard and spray an aerosol can into the sky.

If we all work together, by March we should see some improvement.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Sunday, October 23, 2011

From the other side of the desk...

When we started the County Journal (the weekly newspaper of Hardeman County)...the blog slowed down..way a standstill.

My column on the front page will be archived will be a bit familiar as I have pirated my own material on more than one occasion...but here goes.

From the January 8, 2010 County Journal...

My little boy rummaged around until he found it under a pile of leaves. He had to pull a few twigs and some bark off it, but he finally got it to his liking. He ran to the edge of the yard and pointed it at a passing truck, yelling at the top of his lungs. He pointed it at the sky and then slammed it on the ground. He made noises like a gun while aiming it in all directions.

He hit acorns with it. He swept the leaves off the yard with it. He beat trees with it. He held it over his head and yelled at the top of his lungs.

After a while, he came over near me, swinging it back and forth. He started hitting the ground with it. I asked, ”What do you have there, son?”

Without looking at me, he replied, “It’s a stick, Dad.”

And so it is with this…from afar, it’s just another newspaper. But when you get your hands on it and look inside, we hope you’ll see it as something more. We hope you’ll see it as the voice, the watchful eye, the entertainer, the informer, the critic, the record-keeper, and the celebrator of all that is good in Hardeman County.

And if you want to, you can even roll it up and hit acorns with it.

But we hope you’ll read it first.

Darrell Teubner, Editor

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Still hate mayonaise though...

While I was enjoying mowing the lawn the other day, I was careful to avoid the swimming pool. (no, it's still me, I haven't been killed and replaced by an opposite...)

Anyway, the pool is an above ground pool, which means we will have to get a trailer and a few cars on blocks to go with it.

And with the above ground pool, it seems reasonable that after a tough day at work, I could sit on a float in the pool and enjoy a cold beer.

But there is a problem.

Everyone here thinks that I'm not supposed to have bottles (i.e. glass) near the pool. Well, with a concrete structure, I can buy that but I don't think I could break a bottle out there and we've managed to keep the bar fights down so I don't think my head is a candidate for breakage.

I'd write more, but I've got to go out and check the ph level/vacuum/add chlorine.

Next week I'm going to buy a boat or an MG Triumph.

Friday, February 11, 2011

"Hey, He said 'Bark, Bark.' Do I have to explain everything?"

With all that is going on right now, I barely have time to do all the important stuff, like look up lists of talking dogs.

Gracie likes to watch the show "Martha Speaks," which is about a talking dog. She (Martha) has a friend that is also a dog, but lacks the gift of speech, making Martha also a translator to the humans that seem nonplussed by the existence of a talking dog. We think the dog can't read, which means she is illiterate, which is a shame.

My favorite talking dog is probably Huckleberry Hound. He is blue, wears a hat and tie and isn't afraid to sing in public.

Actually, I'm sure he isn't my favorite, but I thought this post would go somewhere when I started, but apparently it isn't.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Betty Ford Mustang...

No, it's not alcohol or sedatives. It's slot car track.

I bought a slot car track and some cars (2) for John (keep this in mind) for Christmas.

And somewhere, somehow, he may have a problem.

At last count, John's collection has grown to nine cars and 60 feet of track. John had a platform built in the upstairs bedroom and is expecting some green astro-turf in order to create a more realistic experience.

He's bought tires for the cars, more cars, track and is planning (he told me) to have the guy come back and add to the already more than 150 square feet of platform in order to add more track.

Unless he stops using the credit card to order track, we are going to have an intervention.

Wish us luck. He'll turn 4 next week. I think he's getting more cars and track for his birthday.

I'd write more, but a big box just came in from Hotslots132.