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Climbing to conclusions

NateSmith 2013smile

NATE SMITH

Clinging to my shoulders and arms, standing upright, as he’s wont to do these days, my nine-month-old son has taken to treating me like his very own Daddy jungle gym.

Cooing, and usually with drool dripping from the corner of his mouth and chin, the boy tests his limits. I’ll scoop him onto my lap and hold him upright. He grabs at my shirt to maintain his balance and bends his knees, bouncing and wobbling every which way.

Other, more advanced obstacles grab his attention. No longer content to climb about Dad’s lap, “OB,” as his friends have taken to calling him, seems to have set his sights recently on the top of the couch, and higher still, a nearby lampshade.

He reaches for the couch’s arm, steadying himself with both hands and the look in his eye signals that he wants to conquer this couch and mount the lampshade, which mocks him from its lofty perch atop the lamp, resting on a side table next to our sofa.

I’ll never tell him he can’t accomplish something to which he sets his mind, and that may well be the only lesson I’ve learned in this nine-month foray into parenting.

That, and, to stand to one side during diaper changes.

Last Updated on Friday, 20 December 2013

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Stouts’ extension of grace a display rarely seen

NateSmith 2013

NATE SMITH

No one would have faulted Steve and Penny Stout had they insisted the man who struck them with his pickup truck while they were bicycling near Benjamin Logan schools and then fled the scene be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

Nathaniel Gregg, the motorist who spilled his bowl of cereal moments before hitting the couple, will serve only modest jail time and will not be convicted of a felony as a result of the case.

This light sentence comes not as the result of sloppy prosecution or an inattentive arbiter, but because of an awesome show of grace from Mr. and Mrs. Stout, who’ve long forgiven Mr. Gregg.

Despite their call that Mr. Gregg receive no jail time whatsoever, Logan County prosecutors recommended he receive 60 days in Logan County Jail.

Explaining to Logan County Common Pleas Court Judge Mark S. O’Connor why the state still recommended for Mr. Gregg a period of incarceration, Chief Assistant Prosecutor Eric Stewart said that’s the public’s expectation.

“If I crashed into somebody with my vehicle and then didn’t stop after the accident, I would expect to go to jail,” Mr. Stewart said during Monday’s hearing. “I think that’s what the public expects and that’s why we’re asking for 60 days’ local jail in this case.”

Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 November 2013

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BEING REASONABLE: The other, other side of the coin

nate smith

It’s high time someone stand up for officers of the Bellefontaine Police Department.

Some $14,000 has been raised to benefit Deirdre Romine, a Bellefontaine resident who lives below the poverty line at 1600 S. Detroit St., Apt. 21.

She was issued a summons Oct. 7 for stealing coins from the fountain in front of the Logan County Courthouse, and her story garnered state and national attention after some focus was given to her daily plight. She lives alone, suffers from a mental illness, faces eviction and, at least on the day in question, didn’t have anything to eat.

It was a sad story and one she was more than willing to share with a contributor to one local monthly publication.

An online donation page was set up in her name and contributions poured in faster than even the organizers likely could have predicted.

She’s been victimized, people believe, for “only” stealing $2.87. Therefore, her oppressor must be the BPD.  

Lost amongst a groundswell of faux indignation surrounding Ms. Romine’s theft summons, is the reality that her behavior, in fact, necessitated a ticket and this whole mess has been blown entirely out of proportion.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 October 2013

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Words of wisdom from an owl

Reuben-2012

Owls have always been a symbol of wisdom but it’s a rare occasion you can squeeze anything much more than a rhetorical “Who?” from one.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 October 2013

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No easy solutions in Syria crisis

Reuben-2012

Syria has me at a loss.   

Just two short years ago, an uprising began as a movement of the people to overcome an oppressive government.

When atrocities — such as the severe beating of Ali Ferzat that left the political cartoonist with both hands broken or the murder and removal of musician Ibrahim al-Qashoush’s vocal chords — it was apparent that the regime of President Bashar Assad was a nasty bunch that the world would be better without.

But over the course of the past two years, the people’s movement has grown into something much more difficult to support.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 September 2013

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TEEN TO TEEN TALK: Establishing your assertiveness

“What’s this?” my dad asked one day, somewhat annoyed as he stared at the mountains and mountains of books I had heaped on my bedroom floor. I was dusting, I explained, to clean the shelves all the way to the back instead of just brushing a paper towel or feather duster across the visibly dirty section. Understanding that I am an avid book lover, I told my dad, “my books deserved that.”

Last Updated on Sunday, 21 July 2013

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May I use the rest room? Jail officials lock bathrooms to quell contraband

nate smith

NATE SMITH

Logan County Jail officials have confirmed that certain modifications to the lobby in recent weeks are an effort to curb the amount of contraband being smuggled to inmates in the jail.

Last Updated on Monday, 10 June 2013

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An E.G.G. sandwich with the president

Reuben-2012

REUBEN MEES

I once had the opportunity to personally dine with the president.    Not the President of the United States — that would involve way too much security and media hype.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 11 June 2013

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