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I get a LOT of emails at the address you see somewhere in this paper, most of it nonsense political stuff that boils down to “we have to stop the liberals! Please send $10, $50, $100, or whatever you can spare before it’s too late!”

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It can seem like beating a (fat) dead horse to constantly report on surveys that detail how fat we all are. But every time one of these surveys come out, and they come out with alarming regularity, Tennessee is right there in the top 10.

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I’ve come across a couple of articles recently about how the declining newspaper industry will eventually leave small town communities without anybody to act as a watchdog on local government.

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It’s no secret that most of us Americans aren’t exactly what you’d call healthy. Hollywood makes us think 98 percent of us are drop dead gorgeous with great bodies, but if you go out in the world, you find out pretty quickly that’s not true.

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With the Tennessee men’s basketball team having fallen out of the top five, and all the other teams forgetting what winning is, something needed to come along and put us back near the top.

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I’m not sure what the numbers say, but I’m pretty sure I’m part of a dying breed in the simple fact that I’ve been doing the same job, at the same place (minus two years) for nearly 30 years. With factories closing left and right and so many jobs just disappearing with time, I have no doubt …

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I saw a story the other day that said Americans are shocked to find their tax returns are not as large as they’ve been in past years. The story said returns were down an average of 8.4 percent, dropping from $2,035 to $1,865 on the standard tax return.

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Before we get to our yearly look at the Super Bowl commercials, let’s harken back to last week when we discussed all the weird bets you could make on the game. I’m sure you all read it.

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It’s Super Bowl Sunday, or will be shortly depending on when you’re reading this. If you’re even a casual football fan, you’re probably dismayed that, once again, the New England Patriots are in the big game.

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Like a lot of people, I dutifully got my flu shot last fall. I’ve been getting one every year for long enough that I don’t remember the last time I didn’t get one. And while I have come down with a cold here and there, I’ve avoided the flu, knock on wood.

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If you are planning on moving out of Tennessee in the near future, you’d be in the minority. According to United Van Lines, a lot more people moved into Tennessee in recent times than moved out.

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As I write this on a rainy Wednesday afternoon, I’m doing so on an Apple laptop while an iPhone rests next to it and a pair of headphones, connected to the phone by Bluetooth, plays a sports talk radio program from an app that lets me play satellite radio without either a radio or a satellite.

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While I wasn’t blessed with great looks or super smarts or the ability to charm people or a lot of money, I was ... hold on a minute, I need to crank myself back up again.

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I’ve always been a walker. Let me clarify before somebody says they’ve been walking since they were 2 and they’re not impressed at all.

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Not too long ago, maybe just a couple of months, the United Nations released a report that said horrifying things were going to start happening in 2030 because of climate change and that by 2040 the world would be uninhabitable.

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One of the beliefs I’ve held onto is that, barring accidents and disease, I’ll live a relatively long life because three of my four grandparents made it into their 80s and two almost made it to 90.

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It’s always fun to talk about how fat we’re all getting and I’m never one to ignore a study that shows just how much strain we’re putting on the planet.

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It led to some jokes, some eye rolling and maybe even a little panicking, but the recent United Nations’ commissioned study that basically says the planet is doomed by 2040 if changes aren’t made in relation to climate change, seemed to come and go without much fanfare.

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As someone who has watched his weight go up and down over the years (from a low of 167 to a high of 245 as an adult), I’m always looking for a pain-free way to take off the pounds.

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When you get “old,” it’s human nature to look at the generation coming after you and think they don’t quite live up to your legacy. “Bunch of pampered babies,” you think. “They don’t know what real trouble is.”

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If you’re the type of person who’s sensitive about their yearly income (i.e. it’s too low), you might want to go ahead and turn the page.

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The other day I was searching for cat houses on Amazon. Now, before you get all excited or start harrumphing, understand I mean cat house as in a house an outdoor cat can take shelter in when the weather turns bad.

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Like most of you, I dream of a shorter workweek. Actually, my dreams are much larger. I dream of a two-week work year. You know, instead of two weeks of vacation per year, you work two weeks and get 50 weeks off. And, you get to choose the weeks you work. No reason to work them in a row.

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Whether or not you are a nice, polite person is in the eye of the beholder. What might make one person think you’re a horrible person might not elicit even the slightest reaction in another. It usually helps your standing if you’ve known the person for a long time and consider them a friend.

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I’ll admit I was stupid about money when I was young. I spent every cent I had and if I wanted something and there wasn’t any money in my pocket, there were these wonderful little squares of plastic to help with all my “needs.”

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Since last week, I have filled out 20 different forms with the exact same information 20 different times. I have bought hand sanitizer, Kleenex, and colored pencils in bulk. New shorts and shoes and backpacks, paper and pencils and erasers; all are piled up on my dining room table.

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I’m not a mother, something you probably figured out if you’ve ever even just glanced at me, so I wasn’t really aware there’s something on the internet called “mother/mommy shaming.”

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There are lots of reasons to be miserable. Your political views (doesn’t matter what side you’re on; you’re miserable), debt that seems never ending, that person you love thinking of you as a friend, car trouble, disappointing kids and so on.

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Anybody that’s been within hearing distance of me in the past 15 or so months knows I turned 50 in 2017 and they also know that I am not happy about it at all.

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I never had what most would think of as a summer job when I was a teenager. I mowed enough yards to fill Neyland Stadium with grass cuttings, but I never had to report anywhere on time and complete tasks under a watchful eye everyday.

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When I heard about the shooting incident in Annapolis, Md., where a deranged man killed five people in a newspaper newsroom, my first thought wasn’t that it was a Trump supporter who had taken the president’s declaration of the “media being the enemy of the people” to heart.

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New moms have a way of finding each other and sticking together. The bond made with friends who are going through the exact same things as you are strong. No one understands how hard (and how wonderful) learning how to “mom” really is — no one except for your Mom Tribe.

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I’ve never been blessed with what one would call a “great bod.” In my adult years, my weight has gone up and down from a low of 167 to a high of 245. Unfortunately, I’m much closer to the high nowadays than the low.

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I assume that most of you, like myself, have spent your lives in small towns. I’ve lived in Sweetwater all my life, and even though a country-dwelling relative once asked me how I liked living in the big city, Sweetwater is pretty small on the town/city scale of size.

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We went to the zoo this week. It was a lot of fun and we saw a lot of animals, but I believe we could have just stayed home and toured the animals there.

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I was at a recent high school graduation, and I noticed there were eight valedictorians and no salutatorians. This job has required me to be at a lot of high school graduations over the years, and this is the first one I can remember where you didn’t have a speech from both a valedictorian a…

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Do you consider yourself rich? No, not rich in love or family or experience. I mean the kind of rich that really matters. The kind of rich you can count, the kind that makes people you don’t know become your best friend.

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Happiness is a very individual thing. What makes you happy might depress another person or, even worse, leave them feeling indifferent.

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You’ve got bills. I know you do. And if somehow you don’t, then you’ve led a life about 98 percent of us couldn’t begin to comprehend.

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