I spent some time last weekend with several other old-timers from the South Dakota political world and came away feeling nostalgic for the good old days. Nostalgia isn't all bad. I found this definition of the term in an online version of the Cambridge English Dictionary: "A feeling of pleasure and sometimes slight sadness at the same time as you think about things that happened in the past.''
I was a young news reporter when Gov. Dick Kneip won re-election in 1972 and helped bring a bunch of other Democrats into state offices in South Dakota. I didn’t know yet how rare it was to see a Democrat win a statewide race in South Dakota, much less win re-election. I simply reported on the campaigns and results. After the election, I went about the business of meeting the new office holders. That’s when I met Lorna Herseth.
I've been a bit lonely on my bike rides the last few days, since I don't have my shadow. What's that? Oh, no, I have that one. The gray-black one that follows me everywhere I go unless it's cloudy? Yes, that one still hunkers down on the pavement next to me as I pedal or stretches way out into the cornfield across the highway. It runs off ahead of me or lags far behind, depending on which direction I'm riding, but it's there. I didn't pull a Peter Pan and lose the old thing in the Darlings' bedroom while I listened to bedtime stories. That only happens in the movies.
I bought a new pickup not long ago, and while it has satellite radio with something like 1,700 channels, I might as well have an AM receiver tuned to KOMA in Oklahoma City. I’m not knocking satellite radio. It’s great. It offers so many choices a person scarcely knows what to dial in next. If that weren’t enough, the vehicle came with onboard Wi-Fi. If I wished, I could stream a bunch of music from anywhere in the world, if I knew what streaming is.
It's World Series time, and once again my beloved Brewers are back home making plans for next year. That's OK. They had a good season (who am I trying to kid?) and the Series will be just fine without them. Again this year, I probably won't actually watch many games, but I will follow the scores in the morning newspaper. That's how it used to be, back when October and the Series began together. Sometimes I think the world would be a less crazy place if we could follow Marty McFly back to those times. Early October usually was mild. Teams played games in the afternoon.
Over the years, Nancy and I have gathered quite a collection of furniture we sometimes refer to as antique. We also have gathered, in nearly 50 years of marriage and 43 years in one house, quite a collection of furniture that could best be described as old. We have quite a bit of each category in our home. Sometimes it isn't easy to figure out which of our pieces is a rare antique and which is just an old dresser or cabinet or chair. I pondered that word, "antique,'' the other day as we considered getting rid of a particular piece of furniture.
This is powwow weekend for the Crow Creek Sioux Tribe, and for the third year in a row, troopers from the South Dakota Highway Patrol are helping tribal police with law enforcement and public safety. I find that worth noting for two reasons. First, this is one of my favorite powwows. Yes, go ahead and call me a homer. I grew up just across the river and down the road a piece. Second, when I worked for the Department of Public Safety, I helped with the public information the first year the tribe invited the Highway Patrol to work with its police at the powwow.
Fourth of July. Fireworks, fun in the sun, family time, picnics, band concerts with patriotic marches, speeches and no more work until Monday. It's all of that, and I'll be involved in more than a few of those things before the day is over.
As I looked at the calendar for some June dates recently, I noticed in passing that June 6 had no mention of D-Day, the date in 1944 when the Allies crossed the Channel to land at Normandy and begin the end of the European Theater of World War II. "Well, that's odd,'' I thought and went about my business. Later, as I passed a calendar in another room, I checked June 6. Nothing. I went to the main bedroom and checked a third calendar. Nothing. Really? These calendars, variously, had notations for full moons and the start of Ramadan and Father's Day and St.
It's our wedding anniversary. I have the photograph to prove it. Actually, there are several formal photos of the activities on this date in 1967, but they're standard wedding-day pictures—bridal party, parents and couple, groomsmen and groom, bride and bridesmaids, cake, all those normal things that go on at a wedding. At least, those are things that went on at weddings in Chamberlain 48 years ago. The best of the paid-photographer images, I've always thought—and I know Nancy agrees—is one of her with her dad. She's in her wedding gown. He's wearing a tuxedo.