Reaching For The Stars

2016 July/August

On summer nights when I was growing up, I used to listen to the lady next door play the piano for hours. The best seat for those solitary concerts was my sister Jeanne’s bedroom, on the west side of the house that faced the sprawling porch of Mrs. L’s brooding Tudor.


The Things That Matter

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As I sat in my pew on a February Sunday afternoon, I was witness to an insightful anecdote. The minister told a story about a small boy and his grandfather who, as they were strolling along a lonely stretch of ocean shoreline, found hundreds of stranded starfish left on the sandy beach to die. As the little boy encountered each one, he would gently pick it up and put it back into the rippling tide of the clear ocean water.

Is January 11th Paducah's Birthday?

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Matt Jaeger, McCracken County Library Assistant


What do you think?


A birthday is defined as 1) the day of a person’s birth and 2) a day of origin. When you’re talking about people, that day is pretty easy to determine. When you’re talking about a town’s origin, however, perhaps the answer is a tad grayer. 


The Haunting of Camp Beauregard

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High on a hill overlooking The Valley is a parcel of land with a preternatural ambiance.  Some places simply lend themselves to legend and Camp Beauregard is among them.  The Civil War campground turned cemetery is a nest of intrigue.



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I have a friend whose name is Cecil Neel.            


He is an auto repair mechanic.          


He is a super guy and a super mechanic.          


Food Defines, in the South

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On many a summer Sunday morning my grandmother would head to the chicken house, snatch up a happy (until that moment) hen, and then wring its little neck.


She would then dip it in scalding water, pluck its drenched feathers, wash it, rake out the innards, take a knife to it, and fry it up for the frequent Sunday trip to her brother’s house for lunch after church.

College Quests

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With a new school year dawning, freshman flock the campuses of colleges across the nation. Sometimes I think that I may have been better off if someone had guided me through college, but then again I’ve always liked to learn things the hard way. So I’m not here to be an advisor, but for anyone interested in my bit of advice for freshmen, or anyone else “doing life,” here it is, Addie’s Editorial from “The College Years.”

Halcyon Days in Hot August

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I can remember the entire summer flying by and trying to squeeze the last drop out of every day.


One Tough Tomato

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All I wanted was a job. I had spent a couple of summers picking up aluminum cans along roadsides, and while I did enjoy the fruits of my labor, at 15 years old, I was ready for the big time; the kind of big time that only three-dollars and thirty-five cents an hour would bring. A boy my age with that kind of summer money was surely just one step away from a mustache, muscle car, and all the girls he could ask for.

Courage: Rodeo Style

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I have no courage at all when compared to my granddaughter, Hannah. Oh, I put on a brave face (I mastered this ability many years ago) and prepared myself to be her biggest fan as she began her college rodeo experience this fall. But I can’t pretend it was easy for this city-turned-country grandmother. 



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