Opinion: Au Revoir from the Skinners
Free Press Opinion Columnists
He said: Well, we are at the end of this cycle. We have no more column deadlines after this date and our disagreements will again be private. But sharing over the years has brought us closer and improved our communication with each other. We will no longer be stressed, trying to send a column in from a foreign country or thinking of something new to say. Looking back, I am also grateful for the readers who responded to us. Two of them are the most memorable to me. One person wrote to us after the death of our dog and shared his very moving and personal experience about being left by “man’s best friend.” Another comment that still amazes me is the reader who responded to our comment that Rush Limbaugh didn’t tell the truth by defending him. She asserted that we didn’t understand he was purposely telling lies to make jokes about the current political arena. She must know a different Rush than I do. Knowing you, your memories won’t coincide with mine at all.
She said: I’m amazed you are enmeshed in memories as you rail against people who bring up the past. The columns have been somewhat of a diary for me; the journal I want to write, but have not so far. It has been nice to have a public platform to say things we feel need to be said. With that in mind, I want to share an experience that renews my faith in the vibrancy of this community. I was a judge at the Central High Invitational speech meet a couple of weeks ago. It was incredible to be around the energy such an event generates and see how young people perform under pressure. Like athletic events or performances, speech meets measure an individual’s performance in a way a written test could never do. These events do not happen without dedicated teachers, sponsors, and community members. Many of the judges were Central speech team alums, others were parents whose children are on the team, but there were others with no stake in the event beyond helping out. A myriad of businesses supplied food and other support for the meet, a measure of how often these small businesses get asked to help out. It really does take all of us to build the community in which we wish to live, and it is heartwarming to see individuals, businesses, and churches continue to volunteer to help bands, athletic teams, theater groups, thespians, and choirs perform along with the multitude of nonprofits in the valley. The efforts lend a rich layer to life here.
He said: You are right that we must all take efforts to invest in the future. Locally we are indebted to those who had the foresight and gumption to create the Downtown Shopping Park, the Riverfront Trail, the James Robb-Colorado River State Parks, Suplizio Field, Fruita Recreation Center, the Palisade Peach Festival, Powderhorn Mountain Resort, the John McConnell Math and Science Center, the Avalon, and all the other venues that allow us to get together, often with tourists, and celebrate. However, we have some elected officials and others who feel the only issue is dollars in their pocket and who would like to see us stop those community-based activities. You are also right about the younger generation and working with them. Understanding just a little of what the Millennials are already accomplishing with technology makes me believe we may be on the edge of an innovation explosion that may be beneficial to all — if we will accept it and embrace it. For example, we could reduce K-12 text book costs significantly and guarantee up-to-date information by just giving each student a $90 tablet. Ah, but, I am done railing about the past and future. I wish all our readers the very best in the coming years. Happy Chinese New Year!
She said: You may be done pontificating on paper for all to read, but I have no doubt you will continue to let me know what you think. I welcome that though because it means we are still thinking and talking. We’re alive!
He said: Is this the time we ride off into the sunset?
She said: Get your hat, pardner.
The Skinners hope you can live every day to the fullest. Thank you for supporting our community and us in our column endeavor. We can be reached at linda.jhslaw @gmail.com.
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Highway 82 over Independence Pass reopened Tuesday morning at 10:30 a.m. after an overnight closure for safety reasons, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.