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Today's Features

  • All are welcome: Democrats, Republicans, all church denominations and garden variety citizens to get involved in the recently-formed Marion Mavericks Community Victory Garden to feed the unfortunate in Marion County. Support us anyway you can. We are all non-paid volunteers to help feed the unfortunate for a better America.

  • “This was worth getting up for,” Cheryl Gier said to her friends as they headed back to their vehicles. She was referring to the ultra-light-led cranes fly-over of the Dunnellon Airport.

    Thursday morning, Gier was one in a crowd of about 200 people who flocked to the Dunnellon Airport in hopes to catch a glimpse of the seven whooping cranes as they moved closer to their final destination. Earlier in the week, Jan. 17, the other seven cranes were left at St. Mark’s Wildlife Refuge.

  • Normally, I’m a rather calm, cool and collected person. Actually, my creditors trying to collect things from me, mostly money, are responsible for this and I have been officially collected. If I could only just collect my thoughts – but the pieces are too small and too few.

    Anybody who knows me knows I am not easily rattled by anything. I let the chips fall where they may because I know from whence they came. I am not susceptible to the various rumors that make their way around on a regular basis.

  • No matter what political party is in power, the inauguration of a new president never ceases to move me. The inauguration of Barack Obama was no exception. As I watched the historic moment I couldn’t help but feel proud that as a country we have come so far, and yes, I felt inspired by the pervasive mood of hope and optimism. We do not have to agree with one another ideologically to be united in our desire for a better future.

  • In Chapter 1 of The Last Lecture, author Randy Pausch tells us that for years at Carnegie Mellon, where he was a professor, faculty were asked to consider their demise and “to ruminate on what matters most to them.” These became what were called a “Last Lecture Series.”

    Pausch was given a 2007 September slot for his own last lecture at a time when he had already been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. But he was optimistic. Perhaps he would be one of the lucky survivors. He was not. 

  • Driving home from Apalachicola we passed through Sopchoppy. Now there’s a funny name for a town. And on our way to and from Jacksonville we go right by the Scrambletown general store on C.R. 314. That’s an even funnier name, eh?

  • Birding is sometimes a matter of luck and mood. I found both in a Days Inn parking lot in Ocala while driving from New York to Longboat Key. This was the fourth year my wife and I were staying at the motel. The date was the same at least three of those times, Dec. 30. We were going to have dinner at a small family-owned Italian restaurant called Lorenzo’s, for the third time.

  • In north central Florida, our winters are mild but we can have weeks of killing frosts. The fierce, relentless wind can wreck even the stoutest misplaced shrub.

    January can be a crazy quilt of weather: warm, cold, windy, rainy. Usually it’s cold in the morning and warms up nicely during the day. Some days it doesn’t warm up at all.

    All the tender green has virtually disappeared and the garden is all sticks. Other plants, especially the tropicals, have perhaps “burned” with the frost and wind. Succulents and cacti have turned to mush.

  • The Hospice fashion show at the Friends of Freedom Public Library meeting Jan. 17, featured attractive casual wear selected from the Thrift Store in Jasmine Plaza.

    Jan Hathaway, Hospice of Marion County marketing manager, gave a brief talk and Margarethe Nachbar did some modeling as well as introducing the models: Jeannie Dooley, Linda Glick, Marie Ostrov, and Margarethe’s husband, Milton Nachbar, all of whom sported their “wears” as well as any pro.

  • Hollywood Squares was a television comedy and game show in which two contestants played tic-tac-toe to win prizes. The board for the game was a 3- by 3-ft. vertical stack of open-faced cubes, each occupied by an entertainer seated at a desk and facing the contestants. The stars were asked questions and the contestants judged the authenticity of their answers in order to win the game.