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Celebrating the family’s eldest member’s birthday

Tuesday, May 13, 2014 — I had the honor and privilege to attend a big birthday bash as four generations of my ex-wife’s family gathered near Corning last Sunday to celebrate her older brother’s 75th birthday.

Les, dubbed “ the last of the real cowboys” (although I’d be willing to bet there are more than a few old-time cowpunchers here in Lassen County who might try to claim that title, too), owns an 80-acre piece of ground at the end of a long, dirt road in the beautiful, rolling, oak-covered hills miles west of Corning.

What’s a dog to do when little Fluffy runs?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014 — We don’t need another stinking cat! Let me be right up front from the start, lest anyone get the wrong impression. Cats are OK, I guess, but deep down inside, I’m just a big time dog guy.

We recently had an abrupt change in our animal family when Trouble, our 8-year-old cat, passed unexpectedly. He was acting funny, so we took him to the vet who treated him for ear mites. But obviously he had something else very wrong with him we didn’t know about because he died five days later.

During a weekend visit to a vet at an emergency animal hospital in Reno, we put him to sleep after the vet said there was nothing he could do for him and suggested we put him down. It was a sad day, and upon our return, we buried Trouble near his favorite spot in the yard. I have to admit he was a mighty cool cat, and I will miss him, even though I’m not the proverbial cat person.

Supes, Burns can save the taxpayers’ money

Correction: The newspaper’s editorial of April 29 expressed two concerns — that district attorney Robert Burns make the transition from district attorney to county counsel as quickly as possible and that he earn only one salary while serving in both positions.

The second concern is moot because it has already been addressed. According to the contract negotiated by Burns and county and approved by the Lassen County Board of Supervisors, despite his possible service in both roles, Burns will continue to earn his salary as district attorney until he resigns. Thereafter, he will be paid as county counsel.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014 — Just last week the Lassen County Board of Supervisors hired District Attorney Robert Burns, who is not seeking re-election in the June 3 Primary Election, as Lassen County Counsel.

Burns will assume the county counsel role May 16 with the departure of Rhetta Vander Ploeg, and, according to the contract he inked with the county, he also could serve as district attorney until the newly elected district attorney takes the oath of office next January — more than eight months from now.

Movie on catastrophic flood a catastrophe

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 — The movie “Noah” has brought about a lot of discussion. I went to see it and was disappointed in it as a film; I did not expect the movie to have any biblical truth.

Noah was a film about God made by a man who does not know God and perhaps doesn’t even believe he exists. Because the director, Darren Aronofsky, could not capture the biblical account of Noah on film, he put a disclaimer on the piece — “artistic license has been taken.”

I say we should just blame it on the moon

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 — I guess I’m just one of those wacky weirdoes who feels the effects of that old fool moon tuggin’ on me. Some folks can just sprawl out across the bed and go right to sleep with the silvery light shinning down on them, but not me. I’m a bundle of twitching, burnt nerves who tosses and turns and winds the sheets and blankets into knots for a couple of days on either side of the full moon.

I worked for years as a musician, and I can tell you the full moon brings out the crazies. I worked as a restaurant manager and that was my experience in that profession as well. Ask any law enforcement officer, and I’m sure they’ll agree with me — things get a little bit nuts around the full moon.


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