Issue #340 Sept. 6, 2017
what one former teacher will miss about back-to-school season
This fall will be the first time in 27 years that I will not be going back to school. There are many features of the first days of school that I will miss, but I’ve decided to list my top 10 ...
Issue #338 Aug. 9, 2017
What does it take to staff a music fest’s ‘Mom Booth’? A talkative personality, some good advice, and lots of Band-Aids.
Full disclosure, I pretty much “barged” my way into the “Mom Booth” at the Eaux Claires Music & Arts Festival in June using my connections. As a ticket holder, I was intrigued when I saw that one ...
Issue #329 March 22, 2017
taking a breather from life’s hectic flow allows for more face-to-face time
I’ll admit that I’m old enough to remember the full-service gas station. My mom would drive up to the pump at the DX Station and roll down her window. A man in denim overalls ...
Issue #328 March 8, 2017
what I learned from the too-short life of a friend
I first met Brian Leaf in 1980 when he was a scrawny, mouthy, irreverent and totally irrepressible part-time employee for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, where I began my 30-year career in journalism ...
Issue #323 December 28, 2016
what happened when my column about my Spanish-speaking family went viral
Yesterday I took my family to look at a used car. We’d found a rusted out “beater with a heater” on Craigslist which I thought could be used for picking up my children from school ...
Issue #322 December 14, 2016
nonprofit that helps combat-wounded vets get fit could use a local chapter
’Tis the season. For cookies and carols. For decking the halls and wrapping presents. For school programs and family gatherings. For many it is also the season for giving, the season for charity ...
Issue #319 November 2, 2016
rising cities Eau Claire and Buffalo, N.Y., follow similar paths
Barbara Tzetzo Gosch
While creating a “sweet” American Dream story about my Albanian immigrant family’s candy business – which grew to become the largest in western New York – I had an “aha!” moment ...
Issue #318 October 19, 2016
this year’s clown phobia is rooted in something serious
Steve Russell, photos by Travis Dewitz
Everybody loves clowns, right? They do tricks, they twist balloons, juggle, do magic, and make people laugh. Good, right? So when, how, and why did it all go bad?
Issue #312 July 27, 2016
Nobody’s good at everything. So why do we expect musicians to be?
I am thankful we are all wired differently, that we all come to the table with a variety of skills, abilities, and experiences. This makes life much richer, don’t you think? Diversity, when embraced and celebrated ...
Issue #308 June 15, 2016
when you're building a new radio station, the question "what is local music?" is critical
For the last couple of months, I’ve been humbled to work on launching a radio station, Blugold Radio 99.9 FM. This station is a marvelous gift from Midwest Family Broadcasting ...
Issue #307 June 1, 2016
it's quality over quantity; sometimes a little extra work can pay off big time if you're having a rummage sale
Summer is a great time to enjoy the best of what life has to offer: sunshine, ice cream, beaches, sleeping with the windows open, and, of course, the most important thing: Rummaging ...
Issue #305 May 4, 2016
why the most beautiful lines in the English language remind me of a classmate who died too young
Issue #304 April 20, 2016
mockery of older people used to mask our own fears of growing old
As a prejudice, “Ageism” singles out those who are older for ridicule. Fear of growing older is its engine. Few people recognize its existence even though they often engage in its expression ...
Issue #303 April 6, 2016
a coalition is working to improve the quality of the Eau Claire River – and you can help
Robin Walsh, photos by Michael Lundebrek
This is a story about a city that decided to throw a party down along the river, but forgot to ask if the river was in a party mood ...
Issue #302 March 23, 2016
team manager’s on-court performance offers lesson about sportsmanship
A basketball game was played on a Thursday night, and like many played across the state of Wisconsin, this one began with the arrival of a yellow bus. You see, if the other team doesn’t show then it’s a practice, and tonight we want to play ...
Issue #300 February 24, 2016
patience is key for those whose birthday is on the rarest of all days: February 29
We all love our birthdays. Even if you’re the kind of person who hates getting older and constantly lies about your age, you still love and celebrate your birthday. And why not? It’s the day when you become the center of attention and get showered with cake and presents. But for someone like me, birthdays don’t come every year ...
Issue #298 January 27, 2016
Justine Childs, photos by Andrea Paulseth
I met a man tonight named David. He’s 57 years old. He has a neatly trimmed beard, clean clothes, wears glasses, and was drinking a Mountain Dew. He grew up being bounced ...
Issue #294 November 25, 2015
skimming the free samples and falling in love
I must confess I have a slight obsession with grocery shopping. Writing up the list, weighing apples on the scale, attempting to pry open the produce bags, deciding what new flavor of yogurt to try – yes, I love it all. When I was little, my parents would pack all six of us kids into the minivan, and we’d take a family vacation ...
Issue #293 November 11, 2015
how a New England vegetarian adapted to her Wisconsin in-laws’ hunting lifestyle
Awaking in the middle of the night to watch Alternative Nation on MTV, my teenaged self was obsessed with the Boston band Letters to Cleo. Their song “Awake” featured lyrics like, “You’re awake and I’m asleep and / we are so complete that way. / You’re asleep and I’m awake and / everything’s so great.” ...
Issue #292 October 28, 2015
changing seasons and shortening days can be a drag, but leading a classroom again is a joyful experience
I hate winter. My joints bark. It’s dark before dinner. More deer are attempting suicide by Honda. Fresh produce lies frozen solid in the garden. My bicycle hangs useless on the red hook in my garage. My black leather sandals have been relegated to the far corner of the closet. I love summer: swimming in warm lakes ...