'Round Town (Sept. 18, 2019)

Posted 9/17/19

The sun will settle above the equator next Tuesday, making that day the official autumnal equinox, better known to us as the first day of fall. According to forecasts, Madisonville’s temperature next Tuesday will hover around 93 degrees. So much for fall weather in Texas folks!

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'Round Town (Sept. 18, 2019)


The sun will settle above the equator next Tuesday, making that day the official autumnal equinox, better known to us as the first day of fall. According to forecasts, Madisonville’s temperature next Tuesday will hover around 93 degrees. So much for fall weather in Texas folks!

While the autumnal equinox doesn’t always happen on the same day, back in 2014 it also fell on Tuesday. The difference though, is it made its debut with a big announcement, dousing the summer heat with a crisp 62-degree temperature. Ah, for the good ol’ days!

By the way, I know this because I read about it while doing a little research in old ‘Round Town columns. Yes, I keep them.

On to what’s going on ‘round our town these days.

The drama of the Madisonville main intersection continues. If you read the newspaper last week, TxDOT’s restructuring of the intersection of State Highway 21 and State Highway 75 was the hot topic of front-page news. It hasn’t simmered down much since then.

TxDOT has been working on the issue though. At least I think they have. If you’re one who daily passes time at that particular intersection you may have noticed TxDOT employees readjusting the timing for the light. That’s an ‘A’ for effort but it doesn’t appear the effort has solved the problem.

A friend who daily travels east through Madisonville on Highway 21 complained it was almost impossible to get through town these days without sitting through three red lights, that is, unless you were the first car in a line of traffic stopped by a red light at Madison Street and Highway 21. Then you might only sit through two red lights before traveling on.

Madison Street, by the way, is the street crossing Highway 21 on the east side of the square. If you are stopped by that light while traveling east, the courthouse is on your right side and local businesses such as Edward D. Jones, Walker’s Café and Trading Spaces are on your left.

Even before TxDOT’s restructuring, it wasn’t unusual to stop at both the Madison Street signal and the Highway 75 signal. Sitting twice at one of those signals is a little much for a small town though, so I made a mental note to see if I experienced the same problem.

It didn’t take long. That afternoon I was the fourth vehicle at that intersection when the light turned red.

My compadre was right. When I finally passed Brookshire Brothers on my way toward Interstate 45, I had sat through the Madison Street and Highway 21 signal and then twice through the Highway 21 and Highway 75 signal. In full disclosure, an 18-wheeler was one of the vehicles in front of me, but then driving behind an 18-wheeler isn’t that uncommon when traveling Highway 21.

Maybe those stripes on Highway 75 need repainting. Maybe it’s petition-signing time to show TxDOT concern for our town isn’t just a few disgruntled citizens. Maybe we need a petition signing leader!

Hats off to Clark Osborn who is volunteering much of his time to find and rehabilitate tombstones in the Madisonville City Cemetery. Recently Osborn located what is believed to be the oldest grave in the cemetery and then gave it a much-needed facelift.

If you can get on Facebook, you can see pictures of the amazing restoration of the tombstones. Like everything, keeping up our Madisonville City Cemetery requires money, so if you can make a donation, it will be greatly appreciated.

Clint Brown, the son of Robbie and Ronnie Brown who was hospitalized with serious injuries following a July 30 accident with an 18-wheeler, is finally back home in North Zulch. A fund has been set up for Clint at Normangee State Bank. If you can help with his growing medical expenses, send your check made payable to Byron Clinton Brown Benefit fund to P.O. Box 189 Normangee TX 77871.

Heads up to parents with teenagers or about-to-be teenagers by 2021. Madisonville High School teacher and Spanish Chair Suzanne Risinger will be taking students and parents to Spain in the summer of 2021. Those plans are now in the making and we’ll share more about this in the coming weeks but in the meantime, you can also contact Mrs. Risinger at srisinger@madisonvillecisd.org.

Have you purchased those cards for next week’s Thinking of You Week?

It’s to remind us that remembering one another “just because” is really what life is about.

I visited with my sister about this very topic last Sunday. It’s been a tough year for Dolly. Her husband passed away. A week later her daughter-in-law who lived next door lost her battle to breast cancer. Then Dolly broke her foot and it is having a difficult time healing. It could be those 100 radiation treatments plus chemo treatments she has undergone in her own breast cancer battle. Then pneumonia grabbed her last month and she spent two weeks in the hospital, several of those days in ICU.

Mexia, her hometown has caring people just like Madisonville. While convalescing from pneumonia Dolly reminisced one last time with the cards she had kept throughout the year. As of Sunday evening, she had filled three trash bags with them. She shared how much it meant to read them again when, as she said, “I’m in a better frame of mind.”

It must be in the genes. A closet cleaning day is in the near future. I too have boxes of special memory making cards, some from friends on trips, some from many of you with kind words, some with pictures allowing me to watch children grow up, some received during times of serious illnesses and deaths.

I doubt my family is the only one who does this. Send a card, write a note. They mean a lot.

On to other things.

On Sept 28, our neighbors to the north in Leon County are hosting a Salute to Veterans. First on the agenda is some skeet shooting and a little coed baseball. Registration for both events begins at 8 a.m.

That evening you can enjoy a meal while partaking in a live and silent auctions and dancing to the music of Texas country singer Gabe Garcia. It will all take place at the Leon county Expo Center located between Centerville and Buffalo. For more information log on to www.veteran-outdoors.com or contact Eric Munoz at 936-348-8459.

Perhaps you’ve heard about the brain-eating amoeba typically found in fresh water such as lakes and rivers. It has hit a little close to home. Ten-year-old Lily Mae Avant, who attended Valley Mills Elementary School near Waco died this week having contracted the disease after swimming in the Brazos River over the Labor Day holiday.

According to a news article, “The Texas Department of State Health Services confirmed Thursday that a Bosque County resident has primary amoebic meningoencephalitis, a brain infection caused by the so-called brain-eating amoeba Naegleria fowleri, which is typically found in freshwater bodies such as ponds, lakes and rivers.”

Just be aware, do a little research, be smart.

And finally, if you think about it, life is all about perception. How you perceive things, though, may be quite differently from your neighbor.

A lot of our perception has to do with influences through parents and upbringing. Some has to do with education, some with present environment, and the list goes on. No matter what we perceive, there will always be right and wrong.

It was Leo Tolstoy who once wrote, “Wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it.” Likewise, Augustine of Hippo said, “Right is right even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it.”

Unfortunately, because of perception there will always be those who choose to blur the lines but there seems to be a lot of obvious line blurring going on today.

Should we be outraged? Or are we outraged, yet merely watch the tv and hope others will handle the problems?

If so, seldom does that perception work. Theodore Roosevelt explained that many years ago. Said Roosevelt, “In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing."

It could be our lines of right and wrong are blurred because too much “nothing” is going on.