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Ponderings by Dan Ponder

Old traditions. New beginnings.

The fourth of July holiday is always different in our family, yet almost always the same.  For a little more than the past century, my family has gathered at Compass Lake to celebrate our country’s birth.  This year, as most, my mother joined us.  Mary Lou and I were there along with our daughters and…

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You can’t scare me

This past weekend, a longtime family friend posted on Facebook a picture of himself wearing a T-Shirt.  “You can’t scare me.  I have two daughters” was on the front of the shirt.  As the father of two daughters, I can totally relate. I was raised in a family with lots of boys.  Four of my…

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Why can’t we be friends?

No one knew where we were going.  The number of people was overwhelming for the space.  Classes were hopelessly overcrowded.  The lunchroom could not really feed the students in the staggered 30-minute slots.  Too many people.  Too little space.  Too little time. The year was 1969 and Dothan, Alabama was under a court order to…

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The Great Physicians

William Osler is often considered the father of modern medicine.  A Canadian physician, Osler was also one of the four founding professors of the world-renowned John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland.   Among Osler’s many accomplishments, he is credited with starting the first residency programs for specialty training in medicine.  Dr. Osler was also one…

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The faces behind the masks

I started Rehab some six months ago working to strengthen the muscles around my knee and hip.  The primary goal was to delay eventual knee and hip replacements due to arthritis.   The secondary goal was to be able to interact more with my grandchildren.  Who ever knew that getting up off the floor could…

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S.O.S.

The television ads became almost unbearable.   Auburn is located near the Georgia – Alabama border, which means that political ads from both states are saturating the airwaves as the primary election dates get closer.  In particular, the candidates seem to have bought all the spots available around the evening news slot, the only real…

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Young at heart

Mary Lou and I walked into the packed theater to the sound of synchronized applause.  We were accompanied by some two dozen other people as we were escorted to our seats.  It could have been a tremendous boost to your ego, until you realized that the 1,000+ fourth graders were just clapping in time to…

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The unbroken chain

The only teenager I ever met with the last name of “Ponder” that was not my sibling happened to be my future wife.   We met in the seventh grade at Girard Junior High School in Dothan, where our Algebra teacher made us sit in alphabetical order.   Mary Lou and I were great friends…

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Go lightly. An unexpected blessing.

Some six hundred columns after I penned my first article, I still occasionally find myself searching for a subject to write about.  I believe that there is no shortage of topics, but sometimes you must search hard for something, anything that might be of interest to your readers. I might be a bit distracted because…

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We are not average

My mother used to tell me that if you have five great friends in your life, you will be lucky.  Her follow up comment was that if you had one of these special great friends, you should tell them.  After all, they are a blessing beyond comprehension to you.  Tell them of their place in…

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