One Champion cast off her logical fear of lightening and stood grateful in the rain for a moment on her way to turn the sprinkler on in the garden.  The dust did not get settled out on the road, but for a moment the gentle drizzle seemed to wash away a great deal of stress.  Lingering after effects show up in Champion smiles.

“The Olympics helps remind us what an awesomely diverse country we are.  We all came from other places and different people groups. There is no one American look. Yes, folks, that’s what helped make this country great. I love it! :),” says Terri Ryan on Facebook.  Champions appreciate the sentiment and appreciate Terri who teaches at Skyline and is a board member of the Skyline R-2 School Foundation.  School will start on the 15th of August which will be here shortly.   August begins auspiciously with a full moon, the Green Corn Moon, on the first.   That is the birthday of Elitta January, who is so missed by so many.  Before school starts Skyla Boyd will have her thirteenth birthday.  That happens on the second of the month.   She will be in the seventh grade when school starts.  Saturday, the 4th will find all the political candidates over at the Vanzant Community Center for a ‘forum’ and the Judge’s Mom will have a birthday on the 6th, and then the 7th will be the primary election and things will settle down a little.  Champions Foster and Kalyssa Wiseman will celebrate their Father’s birthday on the 8th.  They do not care how old he is.  The 10th and 11th are the dates for the Skyline VFD Picnic and the 11th will be the Fairview School Reunion.    On the 12th the Champion resident, formerly known as Linda Dawson, will wake up to find that she has been married to Glen Cooley for fifty years!  It all started in Nampa, Idaho back in 1962.  They have children and grandchildren and plenty of reason to celebrate a golden anniversary.  Then Kinzeleigh Crain will celebrate her tenth birthday on the She will be in the 4th grade when school starts the next day.  That just covers part of what is happening in the first half of the month.  The second half will be just as busy and the month will end with another full moon.  That makes two full moons in one month and so it is the Blue Moon.  It is figured that the first one is just the regular one and the second one is Blue.

The General was over at the Up an At ‘Em 4-H Picnic on EE Highway Saturday night (probably on Friday too) raving on about the Blue Man.  The subject came up in a conversation about folklore and superstition in the Ozarks when he suddenly became very animated, urgently questioning if anyone had information concerning this Blue Man.  When he did not get the response he seemed to want, he made some furtive gesticulations, glancing about suspiciously, and directed the chat elsewhere.   Elsewhere was toward a nice young fellow named Tim, who was just about to take his second bite of a very good hamburger.  (The universal review by everyone at the picnic was, “Excellent burger! Excellent music!  Excellent fellowship with friends! )  It seems that Tim is new to the area and the General has taken it on himself to introduce him to this part of the world which has been described by some as the most deliberately unprogressive area in the Nation.  “Some is and some ‘aint.”  It is sort of a hit and miss proposition, progressively speaking, according to which holler a person might call home and when he got there.  It was certainly a ‘miss’ as the General was heard describing Champion as “just a little country store.”  That it lies on the broad and shady banks of Old Fox Creek at the bottom of several hills and the conjunction of various county roads at the very Beginning of the Pavement was not part of his description, which he confined to a vague motion of the arm in the approximate direction of Champion and said “It’s about twelve miles over there.”   He had nothing to say about how the Historic Emporium over on the North Side of the Square additionally houses the library and the community meeting and game room as well as the art gallery and museum and that the charming Proprietress has a guest book signed there by people from all over the world.  Tim was not informed that Henson’s Downtown G&G has the most eclectic and complete inventory imaginable—wire nuts, calf starter and ice cream.  When he was able to get a word in edgewise, Tim  said he moved to the Ozarks for the easy living.  So sooner or later, with or without the help of his new friend, he will find his way to Champion and he will be glad!  Someone remarked that maybe one of the reasons the General so often makes friends with newcomers is that everybody around here already knows him.  Yes, and glad of it!  Champion!

Get a look at Linda’s Almanac for August on line at, or at the Plant Place in Norwood, or on the bulletin board at Henson’s Grocery and Gas in Downtown Champion.  According to it, the best dates in August for planting root crops will be 1, 5, 6, 9, 10, 14, and 15.  Transplant on 5, 6, 9, 10, 14, 15.  Champions are urged to work only as hard as they can.  The weather is too harsh for unrestrained, jubilant hard work.  One is advised to head to the shade for the heat of the day.  Get down to one of the beautiful swimming holes in this glorious part of the world and chill out.

The Flag Dedication Ceremony at the 4-H Picnic was very well executed and put the crowd into a reflecting mood.  If one does not know anyone personally who is currently fighting in Afghanistan or deployed to some other dangerous part of the word in the U.S. Military, that is probably because those serving only constitute about one percent of the population.  The whole population, however, participates in that the taxes paid and the votes cast ultimately have an effect on the soldier whose boots are on the ground.  For whatever reason the Nation requires service and sacrifice, they are doing it for the good of the whole.  Acknowledgement with Love and Gratitude is the appropriate gesture toward all those who have served.

The Skyline Auxiliary has a work meeting scheduled for Monday evening to get a start on getting the grounds in order for the big shindig.   Absent from the group is Esther Wrinkles who is flat on her back convalescing at the Autumn Oakes Caring Center.  The get well card that her friends sign does not account for how much she and her good energy are missed.   It will take any number of them to pick up the slack for all the things Esther routinely does for the Fire Department.  Champions wish a speedy recovery to one of their own. .

Rainbows require a little rain.  It turns out, for scientific reasons, that each eye sees its own rainbow.   “There is a rainbow round my shoulder and the sky is blue above.  How the sun shines bright.  The word’s all right, ‘cause I’m in love.”  Sing your rain, rainbow, or love songs out on the porch at the Recreation of the Historic Mercantile in Downtown Champion.  Send them or any ideas about how to get Cowboy Jack on the U.S. Equestrian Team for the next Olympics to Champion@  Come on down to Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!