CHAMPION—January 21, 2019, What is more lovely than bright moonlight on fresh snow? It was a gift to have the clouds part on Saturday night after an exciting day of wild blizzard conditions, off and on. It was the kind of snow that held on to every branch and twig. The moon shadows were as India ink drawings on soft blue-white parchment— stark and stunning in the still air. The Super Blood Wolf Moon Eclipse will have everyone talking in Champion on Wednesday. Was it an uncloudy sky? Were they able to stay awake? Were they willing to get out in the cold? Did they watch it on the Internet? Did they think they would just wait for the next one in 2021? The Internet practically exploded with pictures and awed comments. More than one person wrote, “When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore`!” Lovers must have been watching in warm embrace against the bitter cold.
Back in the early 1970s, an adventurous young woman came to visit in the Ozarks and decided to stay. She had a couple of dogs, which made staying with friends difficult, so she enlisted the aid of a new acquaintance to help her find a place of her own. This new friend raised chickens, which she very much liked, and she soon found herself very much liking the tall, handsome man as well. He lifted her in his arms to carry her across the swollen creek to get to the house she would occupy but only for a short while, though it had electricity and good water. She wound up in the arms of that man for more than forty years, making good memories and a couple of beautiful children along the way. Grandchildren now have favorite chickens. They will miss their beloved grandmother as will all her loving family and many dear longtime friends.
Bonnie Brixey Mullens was cited on the Internet the other day for assisting her great granddaughter, Dominique, in the making of a strawberry-rhubarb pie. The pie did not show up significantly in the photograph as it was over topped with ice cream. Great grandson, Warren, is more of a chocolate pie kind of guy. He makes those and banana pudding. Another strawberry-rhubarb aficionado is the elder Backyard Bluegrass guy. These days he might get his pie over at Dora, made by the charming, musically talented Roberta. In older days, Esther Wrinkles was the pie maven. Dennis said they played many a show for Esther. She has been gone from us since about this time of the year in 2013. We miss her yet. She loved bluegrass jams and would be very pleased to know that one is still going on in Vanzant—going strong.
Up in the distant northwest somewhere, young Thomas Jarnagin’s dear old dad, Todd, has a birthday on the 24th of January. Skyline first grader, Blake Macintosh, also celebrates that day together with prekindergarten student, Lexi Webster. Cowboy Jack’s lovely wife, Joyce, has her birthday on the 26th, has does sixth grade student, Brooke Johnson. Our esteemed Lady of Sarcasm, Kaye H. Alexander, gives her royal wave in Springfield on January 27th. Fifth grade student, Kimberly Wallace, will party on the 29th and the next day is for sixth grader, Erika Strong. She shares that day with Sherry Bennett’s beautiful daughter, Nada Hutsell, and with James Brixey, who was forty years old in 2012. Your Champion friends wish you happy birthdays all, young and old, near and far.
A nice old house up on the hill by the store in Denlow was consumed by fire on Wednesday. It was not occupied at the time and firefighters think that it was probably caused by old wiring. The house had a lot of history. Kenneth Anderson lived there when he attended the first grade at the Denlow School in 1948-1949, according to ‘sources.’ Kenneth is good natured and probably will not mind having those dates made public. He is a staunch supporter of The Champion News and is routinely seen about with the always pretty-in-pink, Barbara. Jimmy and Erma Hopper lived in that house from the 1950s to the 1970s. In recent years it was occupied by Ms. Monie Hicks. She has now gone off to Texas to live with a daughter and her granddaughter was moving into This Old House. It was reported that she had just taken her belongings there, but was back in Springfield working when the fire happened. Fortunately, no one was injured, but it is still cataclysmic to lose all one’s possessions in fire, or storms, or floods. Everyone knows someone who has had this experience. Some memory laden things cannot be replaced.
Champions are saddened for their friend, Karen Ross, who recently lost her mother. Reading the obituary for Flora Kathleen Mason, we are sorry not to have known her—a pleasant, hardworking, creative person devoted to her family and friends. Her light shines on in her daughter and her big family will always have those precious memories of the wonderful woman who cooked and sewed and laughed with them and set the example for a life well-lived.
Skyline’s Archery Tournament had to be cut short Saturday because of the inclement weather. Everyone made it home safely though and they will have another chance on February 2nd. One Old Champion got stuck with a pan of brownies intended for the 4-H concession stand. She will have another chance too, but imagine being snowed in with a pan of brownies. Alas! It will be Groundhog Day, and that is always the prime time for second chances. Hopes are that the community will fill the bleachers to watch this fascinating exercise. These tournaments are well organized and all the participants are learning skills that will last them through their lifetimes. Some area sports fans were much disappointed on Sunday evening when the Chiefs lost their game in overtime. It would have been terrific to see them at the Super Bowl. It was a very exciting game, even for people who do not routinely watch football.
Here are a few quotes of famous men to contemplate: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?” “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” “Real power is—I don’t even want to use the word—fear.” “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Come down to the wide, wild wooly banks of Old Fox Creek and mull it over with your friends and neighbors around the ancient wood stove in the meeting room of the Historic Emporium on the North side of the Square in Downtown Champion-Looking on the Bright Side!