Ponderings by Dan Ponder

It is okay to disagree

If you follow American politics seriously, you are aware that the past few weeks have been almost unprecedented in terms of nasty discourse.  The politics of personal destruction are in place on almost every issue. We are on the verge of being defined more by the differences of our political party affiliation than by things…

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What a difference a year makes

The calls started a couple of weeks ago.  Most were from television stations and newspapers in large metro areas close enough to remember the storm of a lifetime that hit the Florida panhandle before moving into Georgia. Their question was all the same.  They wanted to ask how our community was doing a year after…

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Sisters …. and much more

There are good sides and bad sides to being retired.   You get to travel more and in doing so you often miss things that would have been part of your regular routine when you were still working every day. One of things that Mary Lou and I miss is our regular attendance at the…

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Welcome to Aggieland

I realize that many readers of this column were focused on the Georgia versus Notre Dame football game held in Athens this past week.  Congratulations to the Dawg Nation on a significant win.  I am sure the atmosphere in Sanford Stadium assisted the team in UGA’s victory. Mary Lou and I continued our quest of…

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Family. Past. Present. Future.

Like most of you in Southwest Georgia and Northwest Florida, I still deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Michael.  Our community is slowly recovering from what seemed to be insurmountable odds last October. We are still trying to find that new normal that everyone talks about, but at the same time things for our city…

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A sad song of Summer

An unpleasant part of retirement is the dreaded downsizing.  This includes cleaning out closets and storage rooms, some of which have been untouched for decades.  It can be a bit depressing, especially when you try on clothes that haven’t fit you for years. I will admit I am a bit sentimental when it comes to…

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City of Roses

It has been a while since I wrote a travelogue in this column.  This past week, Mary Lou and I, along with my brother, sister, mother and most of my cousins on my mother’s side spent a long Labor Day weekend in Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington. It was a bittersweet time as my Aunt…

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Good news for the Arts

What is culture?  It seems like a simple enough question.  The answer is a bit more elusive. I consulted several dictionaries to find a few short words that define the meaning of culture. It is not that easy. Perhaps the description that I liked the most was culture refers to the values, norms, and beliefs…

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The Promotion

It was an extraordinary Summer. My childhood friend, Keith Granger, and I took the first flight of our lives. We flew from Atlanta to St. Louis where we changed planes before continuing to Salt Lake City.  From there, we drove four hours south with a total stranger in a station wagon. We arrived in Koosharem,…

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From watermelons to retirement

It was just after dawn when we headed out from home. We were picked up at the peanut mill and taken to the watermelon field.  It was our first day on the job. Six dollars a day with a dollar deducted for lunch. Lunch consisted of two packs of crackers and a Coca-Cola. We were…

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