Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

I am an English teacher, and I am helping to destroy the English language. There. I said it.

As an English teacher of 34 years, this was not an easy thing for me to come forward about. We teachers of English are supposed to be ferreting out unneeded commas, circling misplaced apostrophes, and knocking down those dang dangling participles. We are supposed to be splashing red ink over incomplete sentences and splitting run-on sentences into smaller, more coherent ones. We are supposed to be in the business of unifying paragraphs and identifying themes. We guardians of grammar are supposed to…


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If you watch politics at all, and political commercials in particular, you would think that the entire social infrastructure of the United States is up for grabs. To watch the political ads or real the campaign literature, you would think that soon federal agents will be coming door-to-door to confiscate your guns, or that some ragtag group of men who look like lost dwarves on meth from the Hobbit are about to overthrow our government. Or……you might be thinking that it won’t be long and you will have all of your health care needs taken care of by a universal…


Right outside our kitchen door is our patio, and hanging on the patio are 2 bird feeders that attract quite the assortment of birds. This time of year they are especially busy making nests, having babies, and filling the air with song. These are the birds I see most frequently around the house, and they make each morning delightful.

Public domain photo of male and female cardinal

Northern Cardinal

Cardinals are daily visitors to our feeders, and they win the award for the best dressed couple. They always look like they are at the Prom, with their color coordinated outfits. The bright red male will be the lightning rod for…


Photo by Wesley Tingey on Unsplash

In recent years the word “patriot” has been tossed around a lot. I have seen people refer to each other in conservative circles as “patriots.” I have seen the word used in advertising to sell flags, gold coins of twice-impeached presidents, ammunition, clothing, and lots of other consumer goods. George W. Bush proclaimed September 11th as Patriots Day. Great. But who exactly IS a patriot? Miriam-Webster defines it as “one who loves and supports his or her country.” Fair enough. But what is THAT? What does that look like?

I am going to attempt to bring some clarity to what…


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White America pulled a Rip Van Winkle and has been shaken from its nap

Most of the older white people I know are racist. The problem is that they don’t know it. They aren’t mean, and they don’t openly burn crosses or use racial epithets. They aren’t members of the Proud Boys or the KKK. They don’t advocate white supremacy either, at least not intentionally. They love black athletes and performers, and they eat at Mexican and Chinese restaurants. They love their sports teams with the Native American logos. They see that as a way to honor Native Americans, not ridicule them. They might have a friend or two who is not white. Many…


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Most everyone has heard about secret shoppers, and like Amway, a lot of people have given at least some consideration to trying it, myself included. The way it goes is something like this. First you sign up to be a secret shopper, and then you either get emailed opportunities to shop secretly, or else you go to the company’s website and sign up for opportunities in your area. There are very specific directions that must be followed, and a form that must be completed once you have completed your mission. As a secret shopper you generally have to report on…


Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

We don’t use coins anymore. Not really. Most people today look at coins more as an inconvenience than as legal tender for purchasing goods. Maybe that is because the cost of everything has gone up so much that there aren’t many things that can be bought just with coins anymore. Coins are heavy and fill up pockets. Who wants that? I think the day will come when coins aren’t used at all. We aren’t far from it now.

As a kid, coins were worth a lot more than they are now. As a matter of fact, in the early 1960’s…


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Advice to a new assistant manager from those under you…

I recently spoke with a younger person who was just accepted into the training program to become an assistant manager at the store where I do a side gig. Over the years, I have held a number of side gigs in retail, and I have worked for quite a few assistant store managers. Some of them were wonderful to work for, and others were simply dreadful. In our conversation about her move up the corporate ladder, I admonished her to think about the managers she worked for, and to list the traits she liked and disliked about each, and then…


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Dear President Biden,

First of all I congratulate you on your win. It was a hard fought election, and you showed that you have the intellect, the stamina, and the organization to govern our nation. Secondly, I know you don’t have a lot of free time to read things like this, so I will cut to the chase. There are a number of things I need to bring to your attention.

First of all, if we learned anything about the GOP during the Obama years, it is that they do not expect you to reach across the aisle; nor do…


Photo by jaikishan patel on Unsplash

From the moment I heard that there might be trouble building in Washington over the inauguration of Joe Biden, I began to shake my head. This trouble had been brewing for months. Biden had not even received his party’s nomination yet, and already Donald Trump was framing the election that if he won, the election was done fair and square. If a Democrat won, it would be because of voter fraud. He repeated these statements over and over until they became a part of the far right’s reality. Trump wins = fair. Democrat wins = fraud. …

John Egelkrout

I am a teacher in an alternative school and work a small hobby farm in southeastern Wisconsin with my wife Kathy.

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