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Why Does a Jock School Need a Computer?

By Jean Storlie / November 5, 2018 / 0 Comments

My father fumed as he came out of a meeting with the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents. It was the early 60s, and he had just pitched the need for the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (UWL) to install a computer system. The Regents had summarily dismissed his proposal. One of the Regents had scoffed at…

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Monster in a Corn Field

Frightened and Lost in a Corn Maze

By Jean Storlie / October 2, 2018 / 0 Comments

A zombie with a chain saw blocked our exit from the Haunted Maze which sent us screaming in the other direction. After a few more scary encounters, we made our way out of the maze with our hearts racing. A cup of hot cider calmed our nerves and warmed our toes on this cool, crisp October…

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Angel Food Cake

The Perfect Folding Technique

By Jean Storlie / September 6, 2018 / 0 Comments

Sister Agnes Marie greeted our class as we filed into the brand new Foods and Culture Lab. Perfect grey curls framed her face under her traditional habit. Her face was puffy with old age and her pasty lips looked like she ate a lot of Tums. A transfer student entering my sophomore year, I had…

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Old Man in Store

“Paper or Plastic?” Captured an Audience’s Attention

By Jean Storlie / August 2, 2018 / 0 Comments

My attention was jolted out of my pre-speech-giving trance when the speaker ahead of me started to tell a story about taking her 86-year-old father to the grocery store. She had let him wander the aisles with his own cart because he was persnickety about his independence. After finishing her shopping, she got into the…

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When Yellow Blooms

By Jean Storlie / July 9, 2018 / 1 Comment

“Yellow! You need yellow.” Relaxing with my friend, Astrid, in my new garden patio along with an intimate group of high-school girlfriends and their spouses, I had asked her “what other flowers should I plant?” As a novice gardener, I thought she could guide my horticultural efforts. Expecting a concrete answer about plant varieties or…

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Left-Handed in a Right Handed World

By Jean Storlie / June 5, 2018 / 0 Comments

After writing signatures with our non-dominant hands, we agreed that the action was clumsy, unnatural, inefficient—and our signatures turned out distorted. I was taking a certification course to become a facilitator in the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) with a group who primarily represented the helping professions (social work, education, counseling). One of my innate, left-brain preferences came vividly…

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Grief Walk from New York to Wisconsin

By Jean Storlie / May 3, 2018 / 0 Comments

George Asa Sprague felt numb as he turned his back on his home where he had lived with his wife, Lydia, and baby son, Oscar, on the shores of Lake Skaneateles near Syracuse, New York. It was the summer of 1854, and his young family had been destroyed a few months earlier when Lydia and Oscar…

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Big Meadow in Norway

By Jean Storlie / April 6, 2018 / 0 Comments

As I set off for school with my older sister, Cindy, I heard the neighborhood kids shouting, “There’s Cindy Big Meadow!” and chanting, “Jean Big Meadow!” I shrunk away, confused and embarrassed, while Cindy went off to figure out what was up. She came back to explain that our neighbors’ Norwegian grandma was visiting, who…

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Miracle on Lazy M

By Jean Storlie / March 7, 2018 / 0 Comments

“Turn off the wind!” 4-year-old Jackson hollered as we paused a short way into our first run of our second family ski trip to Red Lodge, Montana. Everyone was excited to ski Lazy M again, a 2.5-mile cruising run with spectacular vistas. Abby, Jackson, and I were getting slapped by a howling wind as we…

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When You Want to Say “I Quit!”

By Jean Storlie / February 5, 2018 / 0 Comments

Shivering by the side of the pool, my seven-year-old-self did not want to jump into the water. The pool overwhelmed my senses; it was located in the cavernous basement of a 55-year-old YMCA (built in 1909). Kids’ voices echoed off the walls and the damp, rank air assaulted my nose. My sisters were already in…

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