Garden Road - March 4, 2013 In the late 1980s, we experienced a severe drought that brought out grasshoppers and locusts from dusty thickets. It sucked the water from our ponds and cracked the ground like glass broken by a pebble. When the weather turned in that direction, we hired bulldozers to clean out the basins. My grandpa hired the reed-filled pond south of the hay barn dug out, but for some reason, they left mountains of dirt in three sections instead of smoothing it over the dam. In the short time they existed, these clay mountains became a favorite destination for my cousins and me. We even named them—I only remember two, Dinosaur Mountain and Selby Mountain. I would climb to the top, and dare myself to stare straight up for as long as I could without losing my balance.
We weren’t yet wired into the World Wide Web, where people by nature like to stand on the edge and look down. Mar 3, 2014, 13:36
Garden Road - February 25, 2013 Grant Darrah was scheduled to display his artwork at the Corydon State Bank in February, but he had to postpone his exhibit. When Wayne Jackson of the WAYCO Arts Council told me not to publicize the event, I offered to step in for this month to fill the gap. I have not painted for a while, but I had enough material from the past seven years to get by.
I also mentioned to Wayne that I am willing to work on commission—and he became my first new client, which I am excited about. He wants me to paint a garden scene, which will be a nice way to start over. It gives me an excuse to practice that art again. And as a shameless promotion of myself, I do good work, and I would always consider new projects. Feb 24, 2014, 08:42
Garden Road - February 18, 2013 In my youth, I was creative, even for a child. The recent celebration of a full moon Valentine’s Day got me to thinking of the hardwood floors at our old house. That is where I used scissors and my artistic ability to make a personalized Valentine for my mother.
I really, really liked dinosaurs, so I drew her a picture of an Allosaurus eating the carcass of an herbivore. Then I cut a sliver of paper and folded it like an accordion, so that it popped out when you opened the card. I taped the herbivore’s heart onto the accordion. In the spirit of Valentine’s, my greeting card said, ‘The heart is the best part.’ My mom accepted my gift, and was not in the least bit disturbed. Feb 18, 2014, 08:43
Garden Road - February 11, 2013 Winter is still with us, as most of you know. My family lives on a steep hill, and without four-wheel drive, I wouldn’t be able to make it up the lane at night after work. The lane also faces north, so the winter sun cannot melt the surface.
My cousin, Matt, and I took advantage of the drifts that formed on the hills of my grandparents’ farm six miles south of Corydon. My grandfather put up a snow fence in the fall, and the drifts rose taller than us at times. I recall climbing up mountains of drifts that blew against the old barn and the grain bins. It’s odd how I don’t remember the cold. Feb 10, 2014, 08:34
Garden Road - February 4, 2013 With the Super Bowl approaching, I am reminded of a dreary afternoon when my dad wanted to watch a football game. I do not remember if it was a college or a pro contest, but I do recall that it was cold and icy outside. Our antenna sat on top of the house, and it enabled us to tune in Channels 3, 5, 8, 11 and 13, and with the addition of a special adapter or attachment, Channel 17 as well. We watched both Iowa and Iowa State games and rooted for both teams, and Channel 17 was the only way to get Hawkeye games. Occasionally, if the wind blew just right, the antenna moved so that reception became poor. You could adjust it and improve the picture, but you had to climb onto the roof to do so.
With the prospect of better reception in mind, my dad climbed up while the rest of us waited in our living room. We lived in a small house for a family of five, and I could pedal my black motorcycle, which had an AAA sticker on its chassis, in a circle through all the rooms. It was an open concept plan. Feb 3, 2014, 10:55