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Columns

Saturday, February 25, 2012

By BOB URBAN

rurban@tnonline.com

As tragic as Whitney Houston's sudden death was, I thought the national media overplayed the story. I counted four different TV networks broadcasting her funeral service Saturday, and her demise dominated the national news all week. American soldiers are dying almost every day in Afghanistan. Yet those tragedies don't get one percent of the attention that the singer, whose life was dominated by self-induced alcohol and drug problems, received.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

I watched the Republican primary race with interest over the last few weeks. I am very disappointed with the nominees, their performance and their platforms. They are bland and have little chance of engaging the hearts and minds of the electorate. After carefully reviewing their platforms, I believe that they do not have a real vision for America. Rather, they are running on a "defeat Obama" platform. The candidates seem like a bunch of kids in the schoolyard lining up to be divided into teams. They scream "pick me, pick me" but they have nothing of value to add to the team.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Last week an article in The Wall Street Journal caught my eye. The attention-grabbing headline read: Why Italian Moms Are the Best.

As someone who had at least five Italian mothers and one Italian grandmother, of course I wanted to read the article.

In our family, there wasn't much difference in the diligence of my mother and her four sisters. They all functioned as mothers to me and my cousins.

Nothing, absolutely nothing, got by these five mothers.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

JIM:

What are our children's dreams? They are as varied as the kids themselves. Here are two examples, both from youngsters still in elementary school. They span the spectrum from the sublime to the silly:

I have a plethora of dreams, but today I'd like to write about my dream of being a traveler.

And,

My dream is to own all the Barbies in the world.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The President has released his 2013 budget. Despite the rhetoric, this budget increases our deficit by at least $1.3 trillion and raises the overall deficit to $17 trillion.

This budget does not save any money; it reduces the planned increase in spending by a trivial amount. It will actually increase taxes on small business owners and stifle job growth. We will still be spending more than we take in through the myriad of excessive taxes and fees.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

After being married for 40 years, Valentine's Day is just another day, right?

Wrong.

When I opened my eyes Feb. 14, there on my nightstand was a Valentine's Day card for me.

While packing Harry's lunch, I tucked a bag of Lindt's chocolate truffles and a card in his lunch box. I also cut his whole wheat Deli Flat turkey sandwich in the shape of a heart.

In lieu of gifts to each other, we decided we'd rather spend the money on a nice dinner out.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

By BOB URBAN

rurban@tnonline.com

Football season has only been over for two weeks, but I already miss it. Good news, however, is that next week pitchers and catchers will be reporting for spring training. Baseball will be here soon.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

By jim zbick

jzbick@tnonline.com

This year, doomsday prophets will be getting much mileage out of the Mayan calendar, which reportedly runs out of days just before Christmas.

Doomsday prophecies are nothing new in our history. In early January 1912, Lee J. Spangler of York County was proclaimed as "the last of the prophets."

Spangler was expecting "nothing but trouble for 1912," according to an article in the Tamaqua Courier headlined "Prophet Sees Awful Things."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I love the humor of Steven Wright and events over the past several years brought to mind an old joke of his that I want to share with you.

"The other day somebody stole everything in my apartment and replaced it with an exact replica... When my roommate came home I said, "Roommate, someone stole everything in our apartment and replaced it with an exact replica."

He looked at me and said, "Do I know you?"

Saturday, February 18, 2012

It is said that everyone has a book somewhere inside of them.

Often, when I talk with groups of writers, they ask if I will ever write a book. I tell them I don't have the patience to stay with one subject for so long.

Decades of doing the "fast hits" that newspaper work demands has gotten me addicted to that fast pace as well as to constantly switching subjects.

But I'm just like a lot of other people in the fact that I already have the title of a possible book long before the first page is written.