Articles by Dennis Dennis

Dennis E. Powell is crackpot-at-large to Open for Business. Powell was an award-winning reporter in New York and elsewhere before moving to Ohio and becoming a full-time crackpot. You can reach him at dep@drippingwithirony.com.

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The View from Mudsock Heights: It’s a Tortured Path from Figure of Speech to Cliché

By Dennis Dennis | Apr 8, 2011 at 14:19

The hot new word of 2011 is “bespoke.” If you listen, you’ll suddenly hear it everywhere. It used to be a perfectly good word, but by midsummer it will be threadbare and tattered from overuse. The wear is already showing.

The View from Mudsock Heights: In Times of Crisis, Remember and Mourn the Passage of Calm News Coverage

By Dennis Dennis | Mar 30, 2011 at 23:53

Back when the world was young, there were mechanical devices in newspaper, radio, and even television newsrooms called “teletype machines.” The precursor to modern electronic printers, these things were very noisy. They had letter keys inside them, on arms, and in response to electrical impulse they would type the (usually) correct letter in the fashion of a typewriter.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Our Response to Local Disaster Taught Us a Lot -- About Ourselves

By Dennis Dennis | Mar 23, 2011 at 0:09

The sky wasn’t just dark, it was … weird. Meanwhile, the weather radio was going crazy, with alerts interrupting other alerts.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Remembering the Worst Vacation Ever

By Dennis Dennis | Mar 13, 2011 at 23:56

Last week I saw a station wagon pulling a little travel trailer and I shuddered. Here’s why. The word “vacation” had always meant a trip to see relatives in Indiana or Nebraska or Pennsylvania. So my two sisters and I were greatly surprised when our parents, after some of that quiet, almost whispered code conversation grownups sometimes have, announced that we were going to make a trip to Florida.

The View from Mudsock Heights: From Cold, Snow, and Ice to Rain, Mud and Our Specialty, Floods

By Dennis Dennis | Mar 2, 2011 at 22:08

The mud across the road told me how lucky I’d been. It was last Tuesday and I needed to get to Columbus. It had rained a lot the day before, but somehow I had forgotten: it floods here when it rains a lot. Fortunately, the water had receded before I headed out. 267×400

The View from Mudsock Heights: Re-Learning the Art and Science of Tomato Growing, Just in Time

By Dennis Dennis | Feb 20, 2011 at 21:58

When the weather has been so cold and so awful for so long that (groundhog predictions notwithstanding) it seems the spring will never arrive, there’s only one thing to do: Think about tomatoes.

The View from Mudsock Heights: To Fight Hatred, Let’s Stop Accusing Each Other of It

By Dennis Dennis | Feb 10, 2011 at 1:03

We’ve been hearing a lot about hatred lately. Actually, that’s not accurate. We’ve been hearing a lot of accusations of hatred lately. So let’s stop a minute and think about hate.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Anniversary Reminds Us How We Blew What Might Have Been

By Dennis Dennis | Jan 31, 2011 at 22:24

Fifty years ago this May, Alan Shepard became the first American in space. Later this year, the space shuttle will fly for the last time, marking the effective end of the country’s manned spaceflight program. And right in the middle, 25 years ago last Friday, was the loss of the space shuttle Challenger, which broke apart 73 seconds after its launch, killing seven people and, unbeknownst to me at the time, consuming much of the next three years of my life.

The View from Mudsock Heights: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson Suggest that the Internet Won’t Ruin the English Language

By Dennis Dennis | Jan 20, 2011 at 1:11

Will the Internet be the death of spelling and maybe the English language? Sometimes it seems so. A quick look at much that is sent or published online leaves the impression that the most powerful communications tool the world has ever seen is populated by people who did not complete fifth grade.

The View from Mudsock Heights: The End of a Photographic Era Brings Sadness and Memories

By Dennis Dennis | Jan 11, 2011 at 1:10

When the word came, it was like news that an old friend had died, albeit an old friend I hadn’t seen for years. A small camera shop in Kansas the last Thursday in 2010 turned off the last machine in the world capable of processing Kodachrome film. The best color film ever made is now gone, probably forever, a victim of the digital revolution.

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