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Soon after graduating high school where basketball had been the focus of so much of my attention for years, I was often struck by the urge to take the court. The bounce of a ball, the squeak of … more
I’ve written about Blake Henley and the Fighting Yellowjacket Marching Band in this column previously. You’ll also find considerable space dedicated to them in last week’s newspaper as well as … more
In journalism school, they teach us to avoid them at all costs. Avoid cliches like the plague, the professors say. But there’s just no better descriptor for what I heard that night. It … more
This is Sunshine Week, an observance led by journalists but not FOR journalists. It’s for you and your right to know important information about how the government operates. We go to battle for … more
From all indications, we are now slowly leaving the COVID era in a wake of experiences we never imagined. We’ve lost friends and loved ones, adapted in every way conceivable – education, … more
Occasionally, you get to witness something that reveals so much truth about a person, or a situation, or circumstance that all you can really do is sort of stand there and be in awe. It happened last … more
(This week’s column is an excerpt from my book, The King of Highbanks Road, chapter titled Country Folk.) There were two kinds of people in the Highbanks Road community: all the ones who … more
When he said it, you could have heard a pin drop, and it changed my political views forever. It was Day 1 of my dream job, the thing I’d aspired to since I was 14 years old, and suddenly I felt … more
Welcome to this special birthday edition of The Flatlander. This week we celebrate the 56th birthday/anniversaries of the Toyota Corolla, Doritos, Superbowl LVI, and yours truly. To recognize … more
Speaking to a school boards conference in December, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said some of the decisions he has made these past two years might have been wrong, but he was certain he had made the right … more
Sometime around the middle of August back in 2020, I asked Leader Editor Lori Freeze what she’d think about me writing a weekly column. I’d already somehow fallen into the weekly routine of … more
Midlife. It’s a word I’ve been thinking on lately. Some television documentary used it a few nights ago describing my generation. Truth is, unless I live to 112, I’m well past midlife … more
Happy upcoming birthday, Stone County. You don’t look a day past 140!April 21 begins Stone County's sesquicentennial year, and residents are planning a yearlong celebration here in Stone County … more
In the 1960s, David Wolper took a simple concept and created a successful television show that ran in different forms for decades. The documentary series Biography had a simple and thought-provoking … more
One of the truths about the news business and telling stories is that the story sometimes sneaks its way into our own lives. I’ve become friends with countless interviewees over the years. I … more
Of 2021, some have noted how quickly it passed, yet seemed to drag on forever. Such are the complex feelings of a politically divided society, living through a pandemic in a time when there is no … more
As we wrap up our Christmas shopping and attend to our last-minute holiday to-do lists here in the Ozarks, a rural-Arkansas sister community is just figuring out what tomorrow looks like. It is my … more
One experience led to the next. First, there was a warm feeling gently permeating my face as I seemingly walked out of some foggy realm. Gradually, and from some distant place, and wherever it is … more
Government statistics say it costs almost 7 percent more just to live today than it did a year ago. Groceries. Fuel. Automobiles (if you can even find them). Everything costs more. And I … more
It’s the time of year to count blessings and take stock of the many reasons we have to be thankful, despite hardships and losses that may be on our minds. The staff of the Stone County Leader … more
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