Bob Mitchell: ’Twas the day after Christmas

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Then came the day after Christmas 2018, and throughout the house, most of the mess created from the gift-opening season has mostly been collected and deposited in the trash receptacle.

That’s only after all the boxes and wrappings have been carefully searched for any small gifts or cash that might have been overlooked and tossed out to be carried away.

It was fortunate here since pickup would be a day late from regular times due to the holiday to observe the birth of Jesus.

2018 Christmas

Commercialization really took over this special holiday this year with its extended Black Shopping Days that sent shoppers scurrying and pushing and shoving through entrances to places of merchandise. For many of these people, it was probably the first time they had rolled out of bed that early in a long time. But they were there bright and early looking for the bargains that were being offered.

Even the Christmas lights underwent a substantial change with everyone from power companies to retailers touting a special type that was supposed to conserve electricity for both the budget and the environment.

This special season brought fewer Christmas cards to our house from long-lost acquaintances, which could be attributed to the aging process, or it might have something to do with the higher cost of the cards and then tack on postage, and folks seem to be more conservative in this respect these days.

Another noticeable change in holiday activities is the fewer number of extensive outdoor decorations that might be found in communities. Or perhaps the more senior years folks just aren’t out and around after dark to observe the decoration imaginations of others.

Missed most of all

A special shortage this Christmas is probably going to be the absence of young folks that will be included in the package scramble around our family.

Those miles that separate our families these days aren’t all that easy to travel for my generation. That’s one special use of a cell phone these days, as miles don’t matter when pushing the buttons on this instrument of heavy use. To hear the voices of those across the many miles will be sufficient for us.

Just five days till 2019

There are just five days before the end of this year as next Tuesday is New Year’s Day. As 2018 leaves us, it will open the TV sets to hours of football bowls, which now number more than anyone in the past might have conceived. But that’s the sports dollars we’ve grown accustomed to knowing it exists in our way of life today.

For the most part, we’ll probably welcome the schedule and then put some other observances on our schedule as the New Year rolls around.

Last Almanac info

For a few days around and especially after Christmas there are wintery mixes possible coming into the plains states. Storms in the southwest could go about any direction depending on push of weather makers.

Fair conditions should exist for central and western locations and then changes could come into play for the New Year’s time. Snowin’ and blowin’ is a possibility for the southern plains, possibly eventually reaching Missouri.

Off the spike

Traveling Highway 14 recently presented a new sight to behold. City limits postings for both Clever and Billings are posted miles before reaching these metro areas. You drive and drive, anticipating soon to reach the towns only needing to drive miles further before actually reaching the towns.

These ambitious communities have really stretched their reach hopefully with the full cooperation of their adjoining property owners.

Then, on the other hand, is Cassville way behind the times in this particular venture?

Cassville’s new city map, now including Barry County within the folds, looks toward the business community in a good manner, which brings a salute to the Chamber of Commerce, the organization in charge of these things.

A definition brought forward for Socialism means “you don’t have to bring your own highway to drive on, the state provides one for you.” And, if you want to go further, “you don’t need to have your own fire department.” Still want another one, “the banks and government provide protection for your account, leaving bank failures and lost funds a thing of the past. Then, just one more “REA, a government agency provides the electricity when you flip a switch for lights in your home, or to perform other functions.” That’s enough.

Happy New Year

2019 actually arrives next Tuesday, so I’ll just wish each and everyone of you the very best that can come down the pike for this new year. May you and your family experience the very best conditions and health for the coming 365 days!

Bob Mitchell is the former editor and publisher of the Cassville Democrat. He is a 2017 inductee to both the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame and Missouri Southern State University’s Regional Media Hall of Fame.