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Columns

  • Dispatch New Mexico - A blue state in a sea of red

    The state of our state just shifted with the last election, more so than most of the other states that felt the punch of a Donald Trump insurgency. Here in New Mexico, we’ll be feeling it politically, economically — and culturally.

    Whether it’s for better or worse, we’ll soon see.

  • Work of Art: Skype calls are complicated

    Many people my age are thankful for there being younger people around to figure out things that often baffle us oldsters. Case in point: We received a text message from our former foreign exchange students, Phaedra Wouters and Ana Granado, asking us to join them for a conference chat at 8 Sunday morning. This call differs from so many other kinds of calls we send and receive. We panicked, as the idea of being able to see the callers is a bit of a novelty.

  • Another Perspective: Is city water enhancement program dying?

    By Bob Wessely

    Numerous questions about Las Vegas’ Water Enhancement Program have been raised at City Council meetings and elsewhere over the past six months. Clear answers have not been forthcoming. We hope the problem is simply poor communication vehicles, not that unpleasant facts are being deliberately hidden.

  • Beth Speaks for Herself - Home is where …

    By Beth Urech

    Last year I began my Christmas column with “When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” I added that here I can see the stars from my back porch. All I have to do is look up.

    Since then we have moved from Ninth to Seventh Street. I can still see the stars, and now it’s from my very own front porch. The first porch I have ever owned — attached to a sweet little bungalow, of course.

  • Another Perspective: A community in crisis

    By Arthur Ray Gallegos

  • Just a Thought: It’s all about what’s in your head

    By Rick Kraft

    Okay, let me get right to the point of this column. What’s important in your life is what is in your head. There. If you want to move on and read the rest of the paper, you are now free to do so.

    People are complex beings. Very complex. Each of us is one-of-a-kind unique. I don’t think it’s possible to ever fully figure any one of us out. Just ask a couple who have been married for 60 years...

  • Work of Art: Where did we get that word?

    Almost daily we come across — and many of us even use — familiar expressions that, when you come to think about them, really defy explanation.

    As a person who’s made a living by using words, I confess I’m one of the biggest offenders; that is, I often use expression that I feel comfortable with and that I’ve heard before, but seldom am able to explain why I used such terms.

  • Straight from the City: ‘Waste not’

    Sludge. It’s really not a glamorous topic. But on the other hand, any farmer can tell you it’s the earthy things that are the most fertile.

    The city’s wastewater department is doing good things with sludge.

    Used to be, the sludge by-product of our wastewater treatment system was wet, and heavy, and city employees were hauling it out to the airport by semi truck to dump it, 12 to 20 times a week.

  • Dispatch New Mexico - Thankful for what’s still standing

    I may be an inky wretch by day, but more than that I’m a family man. My greatest role model, my father, was a family man; my mother a dedicated homemaker. And while they are gone from this earth now, I remember them as the best parents anyone could ever hope for.

    Still with me are my five brothers, all with families of their own, an ex-wife and two daughters, and a passel of cousins and others in our extended family. Every year about this time, we all get together at a retreat center in the Ozark Mountains, in my native state of Arkansas.

  • Work of Art: Grateful for avoiding pedestrian

    I came close to creating another obituary for the Optic as I drove downtown on Hot Springs Boulevard Thursday night.

    I proofread all the obits after La Gente Editor Mercy López places them on the page. Thus, it’s safe to say we have a long-time vested interest in what appears on the Optic’s page three.

    On Hot Springs, as one approaches the Behavioral Health Institute, the speed limit drops from 45 to 35. I slowed down and soon noticed a woman close to the middle of the street.