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Posts tagged: Kathy Hedberg

Hedberg: Beatles Changed My World

The Rev. Huber was a nice guy — about my parents' age, but was fervent for the Lord. A mild-mannered minister most of the time, once in the pulpit he could catch fire, and this Sunday — Feb. 9, 1964 — that's what was happening. I looked up from my Nancy Drew novel to watch the Rev. Huber, red in the face, waving his arms and shouting something in German — then lapsing into English - about an invasion. That was scary. We'd done Cold War drills in school. Were the Soviets on the way, I wondered? I caught something about some insects and then a final word in English: “Don't let your young people watch this,” he exclaimed. My parents were subdued on the way home, and when I asked them what the sermon was about, they said something about some British rock 'n' roll band on the “Ed Sullivan Show” that night/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you find yourself warning your children about certain kinds of music?

Love Me Some Gummy Bears

They make gummy bears now that are fortified with electrolytes and other stuff runners, walkers and other such types need when participating in an endurance event. I found this out recently when I was checking out the website for the Portland, Ore., marathon, where I will be in a month from now, trying - once again - to cross the finish line with a smile on my face. Most of the runs I've been involved in serve some kind of fortified snack along the way to help runners and walkers replace the water, salt and other minerals they sweat out. Usually it's fruit slices or nutritional gel that tastes like cupcake frosting and makes me gag. I have to force it down, but it's necessary to keep from bonking a few miles from the finish line. I actually am quite excited to have gummy bears waiting for me at Portland. I've always liked those little dudes, and they're not nearly as repulsive to swallow as the slimy gel I'm used to/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: I ♥ gummy bears, too. How about you?

Yard Sales Similar To Colonoscopies

Overheard across the back fence: “Yard sales are hell.” I hear you, neighbor. I know plenty of people who have been cleaning out their closets and garages for months now, bemoaning the fact that, “I've got to get rid of some of this junk.”Even the realization that a person can make money on old castoffs - say, 25 cents for a pair of jeans that cost you $80 brand new - is small consolation. We approach getting ready for the annual yard sale with the same enthusiasm we have for getting a colonoscopy. And, when you think about it, there are some similarities between yard sales and colonoscopies. In both cases you're getting rid of a bunch of crap/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Would you compare a yard sale to a colonoscopy?

Hedberg: Dental Visits Pure Anguish

There are certain words that can be spoken to make all the difference between whether a person goes just for the basic health care procedures or opts for the Hollywood blow-out version of self-improvement. Those words are: “Your insurance won't cover it.”You have to give people credit who go ahead with the boob jobs, the facelifts and the collagen implants when they have to pay for it out of their own pockets. It means looking good and being popular really is important, which is what I have always believed. Sure, having a nice personality and a stimulating intellect might win you friends and admirers, but if you really want to make it in life, kid, you need to look hot. For me it involved a relatively minor dental procedure. I say “minor” ironically, because what's minor for many people is major anguish for me/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you fear going to the dentist?

What? My Star Didn’t Make Your List?

Raise your hand if you've ever heard of singer/songwriter Gillian Welch. OK, I see a couple of hands out there three four … five maybe six. Which is about five more people than recognized her name when I told folks recently I was going to see Welch and her music partner, David Rawlings, perform in Spokane. A friend and I were excited to see her in person. We're both fans and know she is pretty famous in the folk/bluegrass/Americana music world. The sold-out audience at the Bing Crosby Theater was also enthusiastic. “Thank you for coming to Spokane,” people called out, along with requests for favorite songs and pleas to come back soon. And yet very few people in my circle had ever heard of her. The one guy who did recognize her name picked it up from the “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” soundtrack. This was baffling to my friend and I until we realized that entertainment options are so numerous these days it's nearly impossible to know the big stars in every genre/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Which musical genre is your favorite?

Frankenstein Mosquitos Worth Risk

Scientists have figured out how to engineer mosquitoes into little suicide bombers who end up annihilating themselves after mating. Getting the tiny bomb jackets on these Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes is difficult. But what happens is the genetic structure of the male mosquito is modified into a mutant capable of destroying its own species.The modified males are turned loose to breed with females in the wild and after the eggs hatch the fatal genes will prevail, killing them all. The Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes (don't ask me how to pronounce that) are among the deadliest creatures on Earth and spread fatal diseases such as yellow fever and dengue fever. I have no sympathy for mosquitoes and this seems like a really neat plan - far better than dousing myself and the people around me with bug spray that may be more toxic than the bugs we're trying to get rid of/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Are you a mosquito magnate?

Hedberg: Boomers Fear Memory Loss

I read recently that baby boomers now fear memory loss more than cancer, heart disease or stroke. Now what was I going to say about that …? Oh well. Anyway, it seems odd we boomers would fear memory loss more than dread disease. Dread disease involves misery and pain, which is not fun and can often lead to death, which is also not fun. Memory loss - what's the big deal with that? So you forget the names of your children, your bank account password, where you set down your coffee cup just two seconds ago. Most of my friends and I have been dealing with that our entire adult lives and we've learned to cope by now. Maybe what we really fear about memory loss is looking stupid in public, which can happen whenever you run into someone you've known for a long time and yet could not recall their name if someone was holding a gun to your head/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you have trouble remembering friends from days gone by when you encounter them unexpectedly?

Hedberg: Computers Make Me Crazy

One morning last week I turned on my computer and at first everything looked fine, but within a few minutes I could tell it wasn't. My mouse wouldn't work. And then the computer, which has been suffering lately from some form of narcolepsy, konked out and I couldn't revive it. So I called the computer guy and he came right over. I think he has me tagged on his caller ID read-out as “high-maintenance customer” because whenever I call it's like a summons for an ambulance.”HELP ME. I CAN'T GET THIS DARNED COMPUTER TO WORK AND ALL MY STORIES ARE STUCK AND I NEED TO CHECK MY EMAIL,” I screech in that panic-stricken tone I use whenever an inconvenience strikes. … But I will say this in my defense: I never used to behave this way when I used a plain old typewriter and paper/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Are you more impatient today as a result of being exposed too long to the quirks of home computers?

Grandparenting Is Nature’s Revenge

Astonishing fact about being a grandparent No. 23: After decades of your children doing exactly what you've told them not to do, rebelling against your core values and tossing your counsel to the wind, suddenly your grown children want you to be an influence on their children's lives. I guess it's part of the realization that comes to every new parent that you really don't know what in the heck you are doing. You can read books, consult experts, go to classes, but kids just have a way of making your best efforts look foolish and futile.From the grandparent's point of view, pay backs are sweet. None of us likes to see our children suffer through parenthood the way we did when we were raising those little twerps. But, really, don't they have it coming?/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you enjoy seeing your children struggle with the same parenting problems that you did?

KH: Mayan Calendar Messes w/Year

Not to be a pessimist or anything, but if the Mayan prediction comes true and the world ends this year, should I bother planting a garden? Just asking because I've been looking at my garden catalogs and wondering whether it's worth it to spend the money for seeds if the world is going to be incinerated. I understand the prediction is the world won't end until Dec. 21 and that's long after the growing season. But it could affect what to plant, such as beets, green beans, corn and the like. Is there any point in planting crops you normally can or freeze for the winter if you won't get to use them up before we're toast?/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Are you concerned at all that the world may come to an end when the Mayan calendar runs out Dec. 21?

Hedberg: Battling Bulge At Christmas

This is the time of year people develop a heightened awareness of their daily intake of calories. Not to say people don't worry about that every other day of the year as well. We're like day traders on the New York Stock Exchange when it comes to keeping track of the calories we consume and burn. We count how many we take in and then we make deals to exchange them for equal amounts of exercise. We're obsessed. We eat, we weigh, we feel guilty, we purge and then we go have a steak and a bottle of wine to celebrate our liberated consciences. But around the holidays people are especially calorie conscious, partly because we easily could consume a month's worth of calories in one meal. And since we are trying to fit into a special outfit for the holiday parties, eating a month's worth of calories at one setting is not a really good idea/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: What's your secret for keeping weight off during the hoidays?

Hedberg: Bad Luck Comes In Phases

I have a friend who believes that when things break and then get fixed it's all related to the phases of the moon. She also admits she smoked a lot of pot when she was younger, but has since gone on to become a respected scientist, so I don't think you can totally attribute this wacky idea to a loss of brain cells. Anyway, Linda says when things go wrong - like your car breaking down, getting overdrawn at the bank or whatever - it has something to do with the shadow the Earth is casting on the moon at the moment. She says if you just wait it out the moon phase will change and then everything will be all right. Personally this philosophy has never quite worked out for me. When things go wrong in my life, I am pretty sure it's because there's an evil demon living at my house and he is trying to tip me over the edge. Even so, it does seem that when problems arise, they happen at once/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you believe that bad luck happens at once?

Hedberg: Good Place To Catch A Cold

You can wash your hands until your skin peels, tank up on vitamin C, avoid closed spaces with other infected human beings and, to the best of your ability, live an antiseptic life. But no matter how hard you try, if there is a cold germ in the vicinity with your name on it, you're going to get sick. I caught mine in church, which is an indication that even God himself is not going to protect you from a cold germ. I was minding my own business, praying to the Lord for goodness and world peace and stuff like that when I noticed out of the corner of my eye a little girl in the row next to me who kept sniffling and snuffling and wiping her runny nose with her hands and then wiping her hands on the sides of her dress/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: I caught a bad cold as the season was kicking in gear last fall. Then, I received a flu shot at Fred Meyer. And didn't catch a cold or the flu afterward. How about you? How many times were you sick this flu season?

Hedberg: Computers On Wheels

Another thing that’s a problem if you haven’t bought a new car in awhile is that these are not your daddy’s Oldsmobiles. They don’t even make Oldsmobiles anymore, do they? What they make now are computers on wheels. There are controls for things that I didn’t even know needed to be controlled and ways to control them that are mind boggling. Don’t think you can operate a new car by simply turning a key or pushing a knob. Oh, no. It’s like operating a space ship. You sit there like Captain Kirk at the head of a multifaceted control panel and punch buttons and give commands and if you know what you’re doing the car will respond. If you don’t know what you’re doing the ejector seat will boost you into outer space/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you still tinker with the engine of your automobile? Or has it become so computerized that you’re afraid to do anything with the vehicle?

Hedberg: Traveling Sans Toothpaste

Brushing my teeth the morning I leave for Southern California, I realize that if I don’t pack my own toothpaste I will end up using my granddaughter, Julia’s, Sponge Bob Square Pants bubble gum-flavored toothpaste while I’m there. And that would be worse than going around with bad breath for the whole week. Sometimes it’s hard to decide what I will take and what I will leave home if I’m trying to pack as tightly as I can. The airlines themselves furthered this crisis when they started charging $20 and up for every checked bag you bring along on your trip. Twenty bucks to check a bag? That’s at least two cups of coffee at the airport, and given the choice I’d rather see what I can cram into a carry-on and avoid the fee/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: How has increased security and bag-check fees changed your air travel habits?

Hedberg: Hair Today, Gone Tamale

On the other hand, while I am losing hair on the top of my head, tiny hairs are popping out at other unfortunate places on my face, which are embarrassing to mention. It seems unfair to have to pluck once a week the very substance that I’m panicking about losing in another location. All I can say is, if I develop a bald spot I might be able to comb my uni-brow over the top of my head to cover it up. Hair is one of those things that cause a lot of angst over our lifetimes, and that’s a pity considering we don’t really have a lot of control over it/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you fret much over your hair … or lack thereof?

Hedberg: Who Needs A Corn Maze?

A friend suggests we take in the University of Idaho corn maze near the Lewiston Roundup grounds sometime this month and I think: “What’s the point?” If I wanted to plunk myself down into a tangle of objects where I was completely disoriented and see how long it took for me to start screaming for help, all I’d have to do is walk out into the Walmart parking lot. Actually, all I’d have to do if I wanted to give myself that weird sensation of being on another planet is walk out into the Cash and Carry parking lot in Grangeville. It happens almost every time I go to the store. Some people, such as myself, are direction challenged/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Are you directionally challenged? I am.

Hedberg: 1 Plump Human = 2 Skinny 1s

Scientists report that a favorite food of many bears, nuts from whitebark pine cones, is scarce. So as grizzlies look to put on some major pounds in preparation for the long winter ahead, they will be looking for another source of protein - meat - and running into trouble along the way. Wildlife managers already report bears coming down off the mountains and into areas frequented by hunters, berry pickers and hikers. “Pack your bear spray,” said grizzly researcher Chuck Schwartz with the U.S. Geological Survey. “There’s going to be run-ins.” The reason to lose weight? If bears are looking to make a meal of a human it stands to reason the fatter you are, the more bear cubs you would be able to feed. Any intelligent grizzly would know that one plump human is worth at least two skinny ones/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Have you ever carried bear spray while camping, hunting, or hiking in bear country? Or do you prefer a handgun?

Kathy: Gas Prices Are A Crap Shoot

Kathy Hedberg/Lewiston Tribune columnizes: “A person could be tempted to become skeptical about why gas prices jump up and down with such wide variations from one part of the country - or the state - to another. Last week we were told the reason gas prices in Idaho are up nearly 20 cents a gallon more than in the rest of the country is because of financial troubles at a Utah oil refinery. Some guy in Salt Lake City bounced a check and now we here in Idaho have to pay the price. I never realized the petroleum business was that fragile. But, then, I began to wonder the last time there was a big bump in price and we were told the oil company manager’s grandma had died and he shut down the plant to attend her funeral. Oil distribution, it seems, is like a virus. Somebody sneezes and everybody within hundreds of miles comes down with the flu. More here.

Question: If you were to make an educated guess, how do you think that gas prices REALLY are set in the various parts of the state, region, and country?

Hedberg: Some Forced To Live Lent

Whether or not you’re religious, Lent is the time of year to give up something - usually something you like, such as beer or chocolate - and take time to make a quiet assessment of your life. This year, because of the economy, many people will be giving up their homes or their jobs, and not necessarily for only the 40 days of Lent. Some people may be giving up meals, as well - not because they are trying to make atonement for their sins, but because they can’t afford food and the box from the food bank has to last a week. In other words, Lent is sure to have the penitential pallor appropriate to the season, but not necessarily because that’s a choice/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Have you been forced to give up something for Lent due to the economic situation rather than religious observance?

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D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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