The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Snow.2
    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
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    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
  • Front.tar.wide
    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
  • Front.pull
    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
  • Front.ropes
    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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2006.06.14 Cultural revolution coming right up?

Written by David Green.


Every now and then I get a glimpse of how our family’s daily living habits influence my children’s interactions with the world. You know how it is—your family does things a certain way and you grow up thinking that’s the norm. But really, you belong to a bizarre little enclave with a culture all its own and you just aren’t aware—until you hit the real world. OK, maybe it’s just my poor children who belong to such a family.

As we were cruising along I-75 on yet another trip south returning my daughter Rozee to Berea College in Kentucky, the driver in the car ahead of us threw a cigarette butt out of his window.

“I don’t understand why people do that,” I said. “It could start a fire.”

“Well, what else are they going to do with it?” asked Rozee.

“Put it out in their ashtray,” I responded.

She looked at me quizzically.

I gestured toward the ashtray on the dashboard.

“I thought that was a money holder,” she said.

Since neither my husband nor I have ever smoked, we’ve never needed to use the ashtray for its original purpose. We keep our spare change in it, and in her 20 years of life, Rozee hasn’t ever seen it used for anything else.

I was amused enough to make note of the ashtray-money holder exchange and wondered about other of our confusing confounding daily living habits that might be off the beaten path. I began to worry that we might have really warped our children in unknown ways.

My mind immediately fixed on the freezer of our fridge and the several bags of uncompostable foods we stash there until garbage day. I hate the smell of rotting food, so I collect the daily odd bits of orange and banana peels, moldy bread, scraps of uneaten cooked food, and the like, in used bread bags and store it in the freezer so it doesn’t ferment and putrefy in the garbage can.

“You all know it’s not normal to put garbage in the freezer, don’t you?” I directed my question to Maddie, sitting in the back seat, as well.

“Yeah,” said Rozee. “But composting and recycling...I thought everybody did that.”

She was surprised to learn that not everybody participates in those activities.

I recall that same sort of incredulity when I left New York City for college at Michigan State and discovered that not everybody cursed—and that some were even very offended by my “colorful” language. The usual stream of swearwords was business as usual for me and it took awhile to realize that my fellow college students weren’t speaking my language.

A few days after we returned home, Maddie and I were watching Ebert and Roeper as they showed a clip of the new movie, “A Prairie Home Companion.”

“What’s that?” Maddie asked in a “come-again?” tone of voice.

“It’s Prairie Home Companion,” I told her. “They’re making a movie of the radio show.”

She had a perplexed, almost bemused look on her face.

“I didn’t know people actually knew about it,” she said.

And by “people” she means people who would think the show is worthy of making into a movie. People like Robert Altman and Meryl Streep and Lindsay Lohan. And the common people across America who would actually pay money to see the movie of the radio show that’s been background noise most every weekend of her life. I guess she figured if her parents listen to the show there’s no way the rest of the world would know about it.

I doubt that all our weird habits and way of life will ever become mainstream, (most parents aren’t going to fill Easter baskets with prunes stuffed with almonds, for example), but I think the world should be poised for a ripple effect.

I was talking with Rozee last night about the ashtray/money holder incident. She said none of her friends has ever smoked and she’s never been in a car with a smoker who used the ashtray for its intended purpose.

“I asked Taylor [her boyfriend] if he knew what the ashtray was for because he had money in it,” she said.

“He said, ‘It’s in there because you told me to put it in there.’”

Hmm, imagine if I had had that kind of impact on my college friends.

– June 14, 2006

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