Columns

The little lost calf and the case of the aliens

The morning opened with a beautiful sunrise. It was just the beginning of the calving season on the ranch but there was an older cow in Pleasant Valley in active labor. The prerogative of the cowboys is to let "her do the work at her own pace.”
She was doing it.
The two front feet were visible from yards away. The cow circled the same area repeated times. She finally lay down and in just two long heaving motions out he came. The calf was pure black with an adorable pink nose and two little flappy ears. She was a good mom. She cleaned him up "lickety split" (pun intended).

Expecting a miracle

We're going to be grandparents, and it hasn't really hit me. It may not sink in until it's time to drive to Utah and see Ross and Kelly and our new granddaughter, Olivia, at the end of this month.
Grandchildren are truly a blessing from above.
They are also not as mathematically likely to occur, especially to me and Beecher.
It's not that our two boys couldn't get a date. Rather, with only two children, our chances are greatly reduced compared to what our chances would have been half a century ago.

Random encounters of the fourth kind

On the road in Chiricahua National Monument, a dazzling landscape of improbably balanced boulders, granite figurines and Déjà vu.
Listen up: Itineraries and reservations are fine for business trips and family reunions, but if you want to let Miss Sara N. Dipity out of her box, wandering is best done with plans cast in “Jello.” Thus, we land once again in Chiricahua—as far off the beaten path as one can get without disappearing—way, way down in the southeast corner of Arizona, at the juncture of Old and New Mexico.

I'm mad, too

Seems to be a lot of angry folks around here lately, so I'm going to start selling bumper stickers.
In the late 1970s, early 1980s, there was a charismatic figure in the Fort Worth, Texas area named Eddie Chiles. Eddie, who was on a first-name basis with all of Texas, was a self-made man, having started an oil supply company with two trucks and a few employees.
He grew the company to over 5,000 employees, bought the Texas Rangers baseball club and was an economic force in the state.

Time to fix winter water woes in Ouray

The Ouray Ice Park had to close for the season last week. A statement from the folks who run the Ice Park said the recent warm-up of temperatures in Ouray, coupled with the extended warm weather outlook, pointed toward their inability to keep what ice they had in good, safe condition.

The wolf in your midst…and your bedroom?

Dogs are wolves in disguise. They’re smarter than other wolves. We know that because long ago they learned not to bite the hand that feeds them.
Long ago humans found some early version of the canine species to be useful and decided to domesticate the creature. So we reinvented wolves as guard dogs, herding dogs, hunting dogs and “service dogs” of all sorts.
It’s a shaggy dog story.

Feds want their money back

While you were toiling away these last few years struggling to pay off the high rates and deductibles associated with your health insurance purchase through the Colorado Exchange, state employees of the Exchange were using federal funds to throw baby showers, hand out excessive tips and generally misuse funds.

The world in 2017 (warning: read at your own risk...)

A few thoughts at the end of a tumultuous and disappointing year.  There's no need to explain what was tumultuous about it and I wouldn't know where to start even if I tried. As for why it was disappointing, I'll get to that later.
The advent of any new year is a time of reflection and hope. It's the opposite of what typically happens at the end of an old year when we tend to reflect on whether or not we accomplished goals, how we handled difficult situations, and the like. Having some regrets is normal, a sign that we are being honest with ourselves.

Timeless holiday memories filled with family, fun and trips to the ER

On the ranch this Christmas, there was snow on the ground and sunshine above; there were lights on the porch and a tree in the house; there were gifts under the tree and stockings near the fireplace. I was just thinking back to Christmases past. I remember my mother’s  stories of our family and the “dreaded Christmas curse."