‘Singing Outlaw’ Evens the Score

Topeka Capital-Journal
Nov. 10, 1997

The state of Kansas is wondering what to do next year with a cash surplus that….

FLASH – I interrupt this column to announce the birth of our 9th grandchild, a boy, born to Rory and son Kurt in Los Angeles. It was 8:05 a.m. Friday when the phone rang as I was typing the first sentence of this column. It was Kurt, saying the baby arrived two weeks early, and everyone is healthy and happy.

Outstanding reporter that I am, I still forgot to ask how much the baby weighed, or if the name has been chosen. I was in too big a hurry to call the newborn’s Grandma, who is at a family gathering in Holcomb. I’m sure the birth details will be on the national and international Associated Press wire, and on the evening new network news.

Now back to the column. Continue reading

Shaking Things Up for Grandson Cole

Topeka Capital-Journal
April 29, 1998

Ten of us were having dinner at a long table in a Mexican restaurant appropriately named “Los Gringos Locos” when I suddenly felt the floor roll to one side and then the other. I looked up and caught the eye of son Kurt, who lives here, and he gave me a funny grin and said, “That was an earthquake.”

No kidding? I figured we might have been hit by a runaway train, or that the place had slid into the ocean and we were rocking and rolling. I looked at diners around us and was relieved to see they didn’t seem to be concerned about anything beyond their rice and refried beans.

I was about to decide it was all a joke when the television set over the bar offered a ‘special report’ saying there has indeed been a quake, registering 3.8 on the Richter scale, with its epicenter at nearby Alhambra. Continue reading

How Many California Sniders Does it Take…

Topeka Capital-Journal
Oct. 20, 2000

DEL MAR, Calif. — It is a Snider family trait to be alarmed and even fearful of anything that creeps, crawls or runs inside the house, and hides under the furniture, so when our son Kurt spotted a mouse in his home here, he took it very seriously. He armed Barbara and me, ordered his wife Rory and their son Cole, 2, out of the combat zone, and declared war.

He gave Barbara a tennis racquet and me a straw broom, and told us to stand back and hammer the mouse when he flushed it out into the open. She looked at him closely to see if he was serious, and he was, and I knew he was. He’s a chip off the old block. Continue reading