Opinions

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

A hero in the eyes of a black horse

It was over 15 years ago that the news reported about the Texas woman who drowned her five children. They said she suffered from postpartum depression. I have four beautiful children and I have never felt anything less than love for any of them.
My daughter, Caitlin, was just an infant at the time and I recall thinking, "What kind of a monster kills her own children?" I didn't know much about mental disabilities nor did I believe in postpartum depression or psychosis. I couldn't fathom the possibility of hurting one of my precious children.
I know now that postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis are real, and cattle suffer with the symptoms, too.
Some five years ago, I was visiting the calving barn with my husband to check on some newborns belonging to the first calf heifers. A first calf heifer is basically a "teen mom.” She was bred as a one-year-old and gives birth around her second birthday.

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

Kudos to Road & Bridge

Dear Editor,
Food for thought: It's soon going to be time to discuss the condition of
roads again. While I support a county-wide increase in taxes to fund the Road
and Bridge Department, I have done some research on a portion of the existing
dollar allocation. This might surprise/shock some of you. Tax area2 consists
of 3,487 properties. These properties are all in the Ridgway Library
District.
Road and Bridge receives $143,250 and the library receives $319,860
from these properties. So, the library gets $176,610 MORE than Road and Bridge,
just from that tax district. And, the library constantly sends me a letter
asking to donate more. I am certainly not an anti-library kind of guy, but I
would think Road and Bridge is deserving of a reversal of fortune. I personally
could make do without a library (I am not suggesting we should), but none

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

Debating school funding

Dear Editor,
Due to consecutive years of the state shortchanging K-12 education—Ouray has lost about $1.5 million over the past five years—the School Board is now struggling with how to fund our district this coming year and in future years. It is obvious to me that we cannot look to the state to help us; we have to help ourselves.
With our school’s dedicated staff making sacrifices and the administration and Board’s thrifty budgeting, we have continued to provide a full scope and high quality education to our students, being Accredited With Distinction by the Colorado Department of Education for seven years running. One tool that has been used to afford this full scope education has been to dip in to district reserves to make up for state funding shortfalls. By “full scope education” I mean the Three Rs plus a slate of electives, sports, and activities that graduates well-rounded adults, ready to lead productive and fulfilling lives.

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

Acting ill-mannered

Dear Editor,
Who were those people at Congressman Tipton’s Town Hall meeting in
Montrose—shouting, interrupting, stomping their feet, booing, waving signs
and generally acting like the cheering squad at a hometown basketball game?
And why were they so ill-mannered as to badger our elected U.S. Congressman
in this unseemly fashion?
I was one of them, so let me explain.
Looking around the high school gym that night, I recognized quite a few among
the 400 or so folks acting up to get Rep. Tipton’s attention. I saw
teachers, farmers, medical professionals, community volunteers, business
owners—folks from just about every walk of life, from young parents with
their kids to retirees like myself.
These are not people who routinely act out of order or rudely. They generally
follow the rules, vote in elections and contribute to their communities—in
short, the backbone of our democracy.

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

Can identical twins get away with murder?

“Hi, Tom! How ya doin’?”
The greeter was a grinning Grant M., my friend and neighbor. He had just walked out of his front door. I was working in the yard. I looked up and said, “Oh, hi there, Gordon.”
He was a person I’d never seen before in my life, but I knew at a glance that his name was Gordon, not Grant. A mystery wrapped in a riddle, right? Here’s what you need to know to solve the riddle:
1) Grant has a lively imagination and a good sense of humor, but he’s a little like Dennis the Menace. He just might take a big bite out of the apple in your lunch pail if you don’t keep an eye on him.
2) Grant has an identical twin named Gordon. I knew he lived in Chicago, but I didn’t know he was in town for a visit.
Gordon’s daughter, Julie, once confused the two of them. She thought Grant was her daddy. The only reason I wasn’t fooled is that Gordon had recently gotten a haircut and Grant’s hair was, shall we say, a little less stylish.

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

Dust control alternatives

Dear Editor,
The Road and Bridge department (Department) is currently researching alternatives to mag chloride. Mag chloride has been used on county roads for a number of years with varying degrees of success.
Mag chloride works well as a dust suppressant but it has not worked well as a road binder. The Department has been researching alternative products that have the possibility of working as a dust suppressant as well as a road binder. There are two products that have the possibility of achieving both. They are: Earthbind from EnviRoad LLC, and DustGard 80/20 from GMCO.

Thu
18
May
atodd's picture

When I was young like Juliet

Imagine you're a "Millennial" from Seattle. It's been cold and wet for weeks—downright dismal with more drizzle and snow than should be allowed.
Rents in “Boomtown” are ridiculous, so you must work three jobs in order to keep extortionist landlords at bay. The weather never seems to cooperate with your one day off per week. But you're young and strong and smart, have naïve dreams to leave "home," maybe go someplace with shorter winters, less rain and more sunlight. You have a fuzzy plan to get there, too… if the “Universe” would just get off your back. In the meantime, Seattle is "home." One could do worse, except for the traffic.

Fri
07
Apr
atodd's picture

Truisms of the game

Truisms of the game
Do not show up to the Community Center in Ouray this Friday to help the City of Ouray place bubble caps on Douglas-fir trees around Ouray. Although a story ran within these pages last week inviting volunteers to assemble at the Community Center Friday, April 7 at noon, we now hear from the organizer that it's a little early in the season, and the excursion into Ouray's surrounding woods to help blunt the spread of beetle kill will have to wait just a bit.
So for now, according to Bevin Campbell, the date is "TBD," and she'll keep us posted when we can help round up the troops again.
I'm betting that if you're wanting to help, and you want to be notified by Bevin, you can just email her at bevincampbell@gmail.com, and she'll put you on her volunteer notification list.

-------------------

Fri
07
Apr
atodd's picture

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).
In just minutes, he is on his wobbly four hooves and making his way to his very first breakfast.  Suddenly, the cow steps away from her nursing calf and calls to him in a low murmur. She feels threatened. She's not sure that her baby is safe where they are.

Wed
08
Mar
atodd's picture

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.
The more children, the greater the chance at grandchildren. Especially if the fertility rate doesn't decline.
But since the 1960s, it has steadily declined.
And for a couple of average white parents, our chances are even less than others.
According to the Pew Research Center, since the World War II baby boom, the trend to smaller families has been on the rise.

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