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Opinion

  • Now that my transformation into a gingerbread man was complete, the battle for Christmas supremacy began.
    As soon as my head hit the pillow and my eyes closed Sunday night, dreams of sugarplums did not dance in my mind.
    More like bloody, violent dreams of sugarplums warring against a native tribe of gingerbread people.

  • Column as I see ’em …
    If the above headline sounds familiar, it should. It’s nearly identical to one I wrote a few weeks ago on the front page, and one that apparently got a few city council members in a bit of a snit during their meeting Monday night.
    Councilman Ken Evans demanded a retraction from News Editor Meaghan Downs, who was covering the meeting, and said she spoke with both Evans and councilman Tommy Vaughn about the headline after the council adjourned.

  • The writer O. Henry once wrote a short story called the “Gift of the Magi.”
    You may have heard of it.
    If not, here’s the plot: Young, poor husband sells watch to buy wife expensive hair comb. Young, poor wife sells glorious tresses to pay for husband’s watch accessory.
    Irony ensues and we all get warm and fuzzy about the “true” meaning of Christmas.  

  • Raise your hand if you traveled all the way to Alabama to buy special Christmas lights for your outdoor holiday display this year.
    Robert James did.
    But James, who lives on Bondville Road, says he loves to “go all out” for Christmas.
    And he wants others to enjoy the free lights, er, fruits of his labor.
    “We’re just two kids at heart and we just like setting up for Christmas,” James said of himself and his neighbor, Gordon Brandenburg, in a phone interview a few weeks ago.

  • Stay home.
    Lock your doors. Put an iron chain across your threshold if you think you won’t be able to resist incredible Thanksgiving deals tomorrow.  
    Because there is absolutely no reason, none at all, to drag your family members out into the cold to save a few precious bucks.  
    I suppose I could use this column to vilify the retail giants and other businesses that decided to open early on Thanksgiving. I don’t think that’s necessary.

  • Editor’s note: Should any of our friends in Taylorsville happen to read this column, please understand it’s all in good fun and for a good cause. The people of Taylorsville, its high school teams and politicians are all perfectly fine. However, if you have a limited sense of humor, please find something else to read. If not, just know you’ve been warned.

    Remember Shannon Brock? She was a staff writer and former news editor here before being promoted to editor at the Spencer Magnet in Taylorsville.

  • We’re hoping that the Anderson County Board of Education already knew it had spent $660,000 more than it took in during the 2012-13 budget.
    We doubt it, though, and are fairly certain it took an auditor to let board members know.
    If the board knew it was spending so far beyond its income level, why didn’t that problem come up even once earlier this year when board members discussed the district’s budget?

  • The Roman Catholic priest called, the sing-song lilt of his voice heard through the telephone:
    “So, what are we going to suggest today?” he asked her, the usual conversation necessary before the next committee meeting.
    Retired Disciples of Christ minister Pat Yates, sitting at her kitchen table last Friday afternoon, said her ideas on Christian education would only be heard if spoken through the mouth of her friend, a Roman Catholic priest also serving on a committee to develop programs for inner-city youth in Ohio.

  • Column as I see ’em …
    I’ll bet you’re curious about this photo, and I’ll get to that in a moment, but first let me say how disappointed I am that the fellow charged with drunk hunting and wanton endangerment has pleaded guilty instead of standing trial.
    David Gaines, a Lawrenceburg man who in my view was railroaded into this mess, pleaded out on three Class D felony counts and in essence now admits to shooting in the direction of other hunters earlier this year in a dove field.

  • My sister cried into my coat early Monday morning.
    The frost on her windshield hadn’t melted, so we puffed goodbyes outside into the cold air as her car purred low while it warmed.  
    I only knew she cried by the quivering sound of her words muffled into the thick, green fabric of my shoulder as she hugged me goodbye.
    You see I prefer no eye contact when I say goodbye to people, because as everyone knows, tears are highly contagious.

  • With a pair of unanimous votes last Tuesday morning, the Anderson County Fiscal Court saved taxpayers here and across Kentucky $1 million.
    OK, that’s probably not accurate. It’s more likely that those two votes save taxpayers several million dollars in the coming years by simply doing the right thing.
    The first vote was about the county’s 120-plus miles of so-called orphan roads, the second about making developers honor their commitments.

  • First graders are champions of the non sequitur.
    They’ve perfected the art of the artless transition. One minute, you could be asking them what they think the tools of being a reporter are.
    The next, they’re describing the most efficient and safest way to enter a burning building.
    Since I cover education for The Anderson News, I’m in and out of schools fairly often, but unfortunately, I don’t often spend unlimited time with students.

  • Column as I see ’em ...
    Lawrenceburg’s Harold Todd might light a candle before the altar of Tea Party darling Sen. Ted Cruz each night before going to bed, but I doubt it.
    Yet a column by Al Smith in Sunday’s edition of the Lexington “Herald-Leader” would lead readers to believe that anyone associated with the lawsuits against several Kentucky libraries is a Cruz-loving Tea Partier bent on wreaking havoc on America — or at least Kentucky’s stable of authors.

  • Ben, the man pictured directly above me on this page, recently handed me a news article about $1 million.
    Turns out that during a recent school board meeting in Woodford County, the Woodford County school board learned they could face $1 million in Affordable Care Act or Obamacare penalties if it failed to offer adequate health insurance to those full-time employees working 30 hours a week.

  • Uh oh. That was my takeaway after watching Gov. Steve Beshear’s appearance Sunday on “Meet the Press.”
    Paraded out by Democrats looking for something, anything positive to say about Obamacare, Beshear was supposed to trumpet how well Kentucky has done signing up people for the controversial health tax (yes, I said tax, not law, and point to the Supreme Court decision to back it up).
    Beshear did an admirable job spouting that there have been roughly 25,000 sign-ups and heralding the state’s ability to create a website that actually works.

  • A little known fact about me — I am the queen of leftovers.
    Endless possibilities leave me paralyzed, gnawing on a block of cheddar cheese because I’m too overwhelmed by choice to cook a proper meal for myself.
    Give me an almost bare pantry, and I can whip up something pretty delicious.
    OK, that adjective should probably be “edible,” not delicious.
    Consider this week’s column an exercise in leftovers: the last week’s tidbits layered in an informational news sandwich.
    Great. Now I’m hungry.

  • Column as I see ’em …
    Judge-Executive John Wayne Conway made a good decision and a questionable one during last Tuesday night’s meeting of the Anderson County Fiscal Court.
    Lest I be perceived as always focusing on the bad, let’s start with the good.
    Conway informed magistrates that he had recently rejected the Shelby County Detention Center’s offer of work release inmates, a wise choice once you think it all the way through.

  • With three fingers clenched into a curved claw, I tried to pluck heaven out of Jane Bennett’s harp.
    No rich, strong and angelic voices sang from the chord’s strings as I had imagined. Moments earlier, I had glided my pointer finger up the strings in a glissando like a child clumsily drags a stick across the bars of a fence.
    My first harp lesson had lasted a total of five minutes, and I was already frustrated.
    And strangely, kind of relaxed at the same time.

  • Column as I see ’em …
    The holy war that has been waged first on the sidelines of local football games and subsequently in the editorial section of this newspaper apparently has plenty of company.
    Just in the past month, high school football players were told their coach couldn’t lead them in prayer (although in actuality he really wasn’t), followed by the school board’s decision to pray, but only before it actually opens its meetings.

  • By Rob Hawksworth
    The Bluegrass Pipeline team has begun negotiating easements with landowners. This is a critical step in finalizing the route for this important piece of American energy infrastructure. Prior to commencing these negotiations, Bluegrass Pipeline sent a letter to the affected landowners that addressed a number of issues including the important landowner question “how does this benefit me?”