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Columns

  • Dispatch New Mexico - Ali! — and Jack Johnson and Donald Trump

    As I think back on Mu-hammad Ali and his impact on American culture in the aftermath of his demise, I’m stuck by a couple of comparisons. Specifically, Jack Johnson and Donald Trump come to mind, and I’ll get to that in a few paragraphs.

    Ali transcended his professional boxing career by thrusting himself head-first into the struggles of his time. If you remember him in his prime, you know he was not only a great boxer, he was also a polarizing figure:

  • Work of Art: Going star-craving mad

    The problem may be that we have simply too many easily confusable words in the English language, and because they’re readily available, we often commit malapropisms.

    So what’s a malaprop? An English playwright named Richard Brinsley Sheridan wrote “The Rivals,” featuring a Mrs. Malaprop, whose passion thrived in choosing the wrong word, sometimes a sound-alike. Many people use malaprops for emphasis or for a laugh. Others simply confuse these words with others.

  • Another Perspective: Maximizing student success

    The number of students who leave college before they complete their education is a depressing statistic. Here in New Mexico, approximately 14 percent of students complete a bachelor’s degree in four years. The six-year graduation rate in New Mexico is only about 42 percent; a better number, but still far too short of where we need to be. Too many students leave with little to show except what too many of them consider a personal failure and debt.

  • Just a Thought: We are governed by the law of the harvest

    Who you are today is no accident. Where you are today is no accident. You are who you are and where you are because of choices you have made. It is the Law of the Harvest. You will not find the Law of the Harvest written into our federal laws. You will not find the Law of the Harvest written into our state or city laws. Yet the Law of the Harvest governs each of us.

  • Laura M. Shields: Brilliant professor, researcher

    A great source of daily news for me is the weekly morning news broadcast on KFUN  Radio with Joseph Baca behind the microphone. Once in a while I can add to a story he talks about, mainly because I have lived here so long.

    A very recent item in his talk show was about the beautiful front, the facade of the Coronado Theatre in Las Vegas.

    I am confident the face of this building is still there, just covered up with a fake, a new front. A highlight of my growing up here was being able to attend Saturday afternoon matinee movies with my best friend, Joanie.

  • Dispatch New Mexico - The demise of customer service

    Editor’s note: This column first ran in August 2013. It’s been edited to update the details.

    Older people, such as myself, like to think we’ve acquired the wisdom of the ages, but when it comes to the modern world, the young’uns have a leg up on us.

    That occurred to me not so long ago when I had some questions about my cell phone account, and I didn’t want to sit on the phone all day trying to get the answers I was seeking. I decided to go to the local office and talk, face to face, with a customer service representative.

  • Work of Art:Slobs among us

    Memorial Day weekend was surprisingly busy for the Trujillo family. It included trips to the Veterans Cemetery in Santa Fe to see the burial site of my older brother, Severino, who succumbed to prostate cancer in December. On a separate trip to the same place, I took a friend to visit the place where her husband was laid to rest about 10 years ago.

  • Another Perspective: ‘Come, follow me’

    By Charles Padilla

    The record says, “Fighting was fierce in the area dubbed the Fish Hook, May 26, 1943, 15 days after the initial invasion.

    The advance of K Company, 32nd Infantry, had stalled near the top of the pass. If the Enemy could hold the Aleutian Islands, Including Attu and Kiska, from there, they could bomb the west coast.

  • Just a Thought: The fable of six blind men and an elephant

    By Rick Kraft

    Perception is reality to the beholder. Good or bad, right or wrong, our perceptions control us. We make decisions based upon how we perceive things. Unfortunately, many of our perceptions are wrong.

    Oftentimes we become defensive of our perceptions. We are confident that our perception is accurate.  What we don’t realize is that we don’t see the entire picture.

  • Dispatch New Mexico - Extrapolating insights from census data

    It’s amazing what you can learn about a place from its numbers.

    U.S. Census Bureau numbers, that is. If you’ve never linked into its Quick Facts data, you don’t know what you’re missing.

    For example, from this data I can tell you that when compared to our three big neighbors to the west, north and east — Arizona, Colorado and Texas — New Mexico is the widest of the wide-open country that makes up the American Southwest.