It was a dark and stormy night...really...it was dark...and stormy...and almost night time...this is what happens when the photographer is sitting in the car...waiting to see if a high school football game in April is going to resume after being put on hold because of Mother Nature’s dramatics...in keeping with the theme for this week’s column, we’ll call this photo “the old man and what he did see.”*

It was a dark and stormy night...

Please read this...

Let’s start this week with something in the “don’t even know what to do with this one” category...

While scrolling through Apple News headlines last Saturday morning, I ran across the following item: USA TODAY Fact Check: False claim links births of Biden, other Democrat politicians to alleged UFO landing...”

As you might guess, the item apparently originated with a social media post shared on Facebook that is claiming a connection between the current president of the United States and, perhaps, ET. Do with this what you want...

Meanwhile...

In the “life is strange and weird during a pandemic category”....

Went to a high school football game last Friday night. Football in April is just kind of strange and weird, but that seems to be the way the last year or so has gone...

Got to the game just in time for Mother Nature to unleash a downpour and some major wind gusts, which accompanied pretty impressive bolts of lightning which were flashing through the sky.

Tried, fruitlessly, to take some photographs of rain and wind and the waning light of day. Rescued my University of Kentucky ball cap that blew away in the wind. 

The ball cap, picked up in Lexington, Kentucky, on a trip back in the days when we could actually do such things, is bright blue, boasting the familiar “UK” logo. Guess you could say the blue blew...or not...

The football game resumed...eventually. Still have to say that football in spring time is just...odd...

Meanwhile...

One afternoon last week, I stopped to get some petrol in the motor car. While pumping the fuel, a fellow traveler on the Journey Through Life approached, said hello, identified himself from behind a face covering...and tested my memory...

He was wondering if, sometime in the distant past, we had run an article in the local newspaper about a connection involving the famed writer Ernest Hemingway and Union County. Just never know what might happen at the gas pump.

For some reason, I actually did remember such a story. It had come to mind in the last week or two, when I saw that PBS was going to be airing a new Ken Burns documentary series about Hemingway.

Mr. Burns (as in Ken, not Montgomery of “The Simpsons” fame) is the creator of an acclaimed PBS film about the Civil War. If you have not taken the time to watch the Civil War PBS film, called, simply enough, “The Civil War,” make a point to do so.

I’d like to think that Ernest Hemingway and yours truly have a few things in common. That would be true. We have some things in common. 

For a while, he lived in Illinois. For a while, I’ve lived in Illinois. He visited Michigan. I’ve visited Michigan. He wrote a book about a guy who caught a big fish. I’ve written stories, and taken photographs, of guys who have caught big fish. He wrote lots of other books, too. I’ve read many books. He worked as a journalist. I’ve worked as a journalist.

He received a Pulitzer Prize. I guess mine got lost in the mail, but I do know somebody who received a Pulitzer Prize and used to “baby sit” for us. He received a Nobel Prize for literature in 1954. I read literature, and in 1954, I was...well, we’ll just leave it at that...

Back to that conversation at the gas pump. I did remember a story about Ernest Hemingway’s Union County connection. I think Jim West crafted the story after he read a biography about Hemingway. 

If I remember correctly, the biography mentioned that Hemingway spent some time in Union County while he was a young man. And, again, if I remember correctly, he did not leave with fond memories. 

I am still trying to track down the details about the famous writer’s visit to our little corner of the world. An initial search on Google was unsuccessful. I am grateful for that encounter at the gas pump.

The Other Half and yours truly did our best impressions of staying awake while we watched the first episode of Mr. Burns’ documentary about Hemingway last Saturday night. I need to go back and watch it again, just to see what I missed. 

Meanwhile...

I got to wondering...if Ernest Hemingway ever had to spend some time on a Friday evening, sitting in a car... waiting for rain and wind and lightning and thunder to end so he could watch a high school football game...in April... during a pandemic... 

(*This is a sentence that Ernest Hemingway, most likely,” would never, never, never have written...)

 

 

 

 

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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