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Articles written by Karl Terry


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  • Most of us could spend more time reading - for business or pleasure

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Jun 8, 2024

    I’ve finally found something suggested by the governor of New Mexico that I agree with. Children in our state would benefit from what she called during the legislative session a summer literacy bootcamp for kids that would provide four hours of reading instruction per day. The idea was to give kids from kindergarten through eighth grade a free summer school focused specifically on literacy. With only 38% of our children proficient at reading it’s well past time to do som...

  • Tornadoes changed my plans - as they often do

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Jun 1, 2024

    Plans were to get back on track for writing my column on Wednesday this week — a tornado had other ideas. First I procrastinated while finishing a novel, then I watched the late Albuquerque news. The weather guy had picked up on radar-indicated rotation in a storm system north of Cannon Air Force Base, but his report was all over the place as to what was actually happening and whether or not a tornado warning was issued. My normal phone alerts weren’t going off for even a sev...

  • Thinking about dreams and how they intersect with life

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated May 25, 2024

    Dreams — mostly I haven’t given them much thought because I don’t usually remember my own dreams. When I do remember them, the memories are choppy and not plain or they’re startling enough to be nightmares. Such was the case recently that got me thinking about dreams on the conscious side of my 24-hour day. I was startled awake about 5 a.m. the other morning after a dream produced a terrifying enough image in my brain to wake me quickly and completely enough to leave fragmen...

  • Night skies seem to bring me closer to God

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated May 18, 2024

    Night skies are maybe as close as a person can come to God. If you’ve ever rolled out of a sleeping bag in the mountains at 2 a.m. you know what I mean. You can turn away from a campfire and look at the skies, but it’s not the same as getting up in the dark after you’ve been asleep a few hours. The stars can be so close it seems you could reach out and grab them. If the moon is up and anything bigger than a sliver you have a blazing nightlight to go potty by. I kicked myself f...

  • Lucky to have a mom who's prayed me through hard times

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated May 11, 2024

    I’ve frequently told folks that I raised my mother. I’m not totally sure she appreciates me saying that, but I love her and it’s just tough if she doesn’t like it. I am the oldest of three siblings and I was born while she was in her teen years. So by the time I was 10 and becoming more responsible, she was in her mid-20s. Couple those facts with everyone telling me I was born an old man, and there you have the recipe. I mostly liked working side-by-side with my mother,...

  • Little League sock styles have changed since I was a kid

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated May 4, 2024

    One of my fondest memories of starting Pee Wee baseball was getting home with the uniform and wondering what I should do with those fancy striped socks. First of all, they didn’t have any toes and playing without toes in my socks didn’t sound like a great idea. After discussing the situation with others I found out that I needed to put a pair of white athletic socks on first and then the stirrup socks. As I got a little older, I became aware that the more you stretch tho...

  • Heavy winds and weeds herald spring in New Mexico

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Apr 27, 2024

    In some parts of the world, the arrival of spring may be a bit subtle. Here in eastern New Mexico, it’s pretty plain. Just look for a brown tinge to the sky and reduced visibility. The wind is a given in the springtime around here and because it arrives before enough rain arrives to establish ground cover the dust starts to blow and we have sandstorms. Some years the rain doesn’t arrive and we can have brown skies all the way through May. That might sound a bit like I’m of th...

  • Here's hoping I get my tax return before the fall

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Apr 20, 2024

    I apologize in advance. This column is going to be a bit of a rant. You see tax season just ended and this one stressed me a bit. I can’t say for sure, but I would guess it has been decades since I actually mailed my taxes off at the post office thanks to e-file. The IRS and all the tax preparing folks and tax software actually push the option as a convenience that will speed up your refund by weeks. Some of those years I was paying so it wasn’t that exciting, but in rec...

  • Real retirement goals include getting, staying fit

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Apr 13, 2024

    One of my goals upon retirement was to find ways to become more physically active. I dove right into that task immediately. OK, I didn’t literally dive in, though I could have. I just figured it might hurt my back if I didn’t hit the water exactly right. That’s right, my biggest fitness initiative involves working out in the pool at Eastern New Mexico University. When I say working out in the pool, people automatically assume I’m going to swim laps. When I started, lap swimmin...

  • Give kids a chance and curb their social media use

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Apr 6, 2024

    Hello, my name is Karl Terry and I’m a YouTube addict. Florida recently became the latest state to restrict the use of social media by children. A good thing I think, maybe a wakeup call to all of us with a screen addiction. If you read Tom McDonald’s opinion column in this paper last Wednesday, please indulge me as I plow across the same furrow. Hopefully I can make it worth your while. His column was actually the second slap across the chops in the space of a week on the...

  • Leroy Thomas embodied service above self

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Mar 30, 2024

    My first memory of Leroy Thomas was as a youngster in Vacation Bible School. He was a tall, gangly man with glasses and a large Adam’s Apple. He looked kinda funny as he attempted to teach grade-school kids just released from school for the summer how to sing the old VBS classic “Booster, Booster be a Booster.” I know he used emphatic fist pumps to emphasis the word “booster” and I’m pretty sure there was some poultry imitation going on when we got to the “grouchy as...

  • Some spring breaks more memorable than fun

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Mar 23, 2024

    Hearing about students and families on spring breaks this last week or so has brought out a streak of jealously in me. I did spend a few spring breaks backpacking and actually had one beach vacation when I was in college. It wasn’t your typical beach spring break though. A buddy and I who were both into scuba diving at the time decided Blue Hole and Conchas Lake wasn’t going to cut it any longer. We wanted warm salt water, some reef action and an adventure. After res...

  • It's a long shot, but I'm hoping the Hounds make to the end

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Mar 16, 2024

    As a friend told me how her young son would narrate the backyard ball games he played by himself, I could relate. It’s called imagination and it was an innate ability that we used back before the internet, social media, video gaming and unlimited television choices. I used my imagination to do the same thing, even after I was much older than he is now. In the late 1960s, Greyhound men’s basketball was the hottest ticket in eastern New Mexico. Greyhound Arena was packed to the...

  • Plan to live my life to the fullest extent in next chapter

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Mar 9, 2024

    I sit at home in my office with “my box” at my feet wondering what awaits me in my next chapter. I put the words “my box” in quotes because it was the term a good friend always used anytime business got tough at the car dealership where we worked and he feared some of us might get fired. “Well, I’ve got my box ready,” he would say, referring to the box he would use to load the stuff in his office if his employment ended. Truth is, he didn’t have much of a box because he didn...

  • Caitlin Clark deserves to become record holder for men and women

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Mar 2, 2024

    Today it is likely my basketball hero Pistol Pete Maravich’s career NCAA scoring record of 3,667 points will fall. A girl will displace him. Until a few weeks ago I had never heard of Iowa’s Caitlin Clark. I guess that might just be because I haven’t really followed major women’s college basketball. She’s been tearing it up over four seasons. Maravich played at Louisiana State University over 50 years ago and has been dead for 35 years. But for me he set the mark in basketbal...

  • We only really feared three things in the dark of night

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Feb 24, 2024

    Growing up in the country around here we really only feared three things when it turned dark. None of those things was the boogey man and none of them involved hunting snipe — we were almost fearless. You sometimes knew where any of those three things were located, depending on whose house you were playing at and how kind they were to visiting playmates. Sometimes even when you knew where these things were, it didn’t matter when a good game of tag, kick-the-can, football or ba...

  • Flu left me home sick with bad TV, just like childhood

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Feb 17, 2024

    Over most of my working life I only had a handful of illnesses that forced me to stay home from work. The last four years I’ve now had the flu three times counting this past week. The first two of those I was properly vaccinated and yet tested positive for the real flu anyway. I gave up on the flu shot and still it nailed me. I’m not sure if it’s the gregariousness of this job or the fact that I’m spending more time in doctors’ offices or what but this stuff is really getting...

  • Searching for the 'American' breed of cattle

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Feb 10, 2024

    The conversation started out, “You don’t know me but I’m on sort of a fishing expedition.” I had heard that opening gambit before and I usually relished what was to come. As I get ready to give up my career at the Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce, those conversations will be one of the things I miss. Anyway, the fellow on the phone told me the object of his fishing trip was to try and locate anyone who might still own cattle of a certain breed called the American breed....

  • Privileged to have a Bill Vance original bolo tie

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Feb 3, 2024

    I’m privileged to have a Bill Vance original bolo tie and I’m not certain how I came to possess it. Just for the record, I did not steal it or find it on the street, but the true story of how it came into my possession is a bit foggy. First let me talk about the tie and then I’ll get to the story. Bill Vance was a gentleman who lived in Portales most of his life and I suspect was not a stranger to much of anyone in town. I knew his family because his youngest daughter Jill...

  • Adrenaline rush has always been my drug

    Karl Terry, Correspondent|Updated Jan 27, 2024

    Last week we held our annual banquet at the Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce and it marked a milestone for me as it will be my last as the Chamber’s executive director. Many of you probably know that I announced my plans to retire to our board last fall so they could be prepared before my Medicare kicks in this spring and I’m relaxing on Easy Street. Sure, I’ll have to get familiar with where all the soup kitchens are located and maybe check out those senior meals, but I d...

  • Biggest lesson from cancer - don't put off dermatologist visit

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Jan 20, 2024

    This the last in a three-part series tracking my trip through skin cancer. I’m happy to report the squamous cell cancer in the bald patch of my head is now gone. If you’ve been following along here since Christmas you know that after dragging my feet more than I probably should have, I was diagnosed with the skin cancer in early December. I was very fortunate that I was quickly passed off to a second dermatologist in Lubbock who was able to get me in quickly and do the sur...

  • Been learning a lot since my skin cancer diagnosis

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Jan 13, 2024

    This is the second in at least a three-part series about my journey with skin cancer. After getting the reaction I had received from several medical professionals, I was pretty resigned to the fact that the biopsy taken by a Roswell dermatologist was going to come back positive for cancer. A week later, it did. The doctor told me the lesion on the top of my head, right in my bald spot, was positive for a type of skin cancer called squamous cell carcinoma. It is the...

  • I think I got a rainbow for my Christmas gift

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Jan 6, 2024

    Not many of you can claim you received a rainbow for Christmas, but I think I did. Let me explain. My late wife, who passed in May, always dreaded the idea of cancer; thinking about it or hearing about someone suffering cancer would send her into a full-blown clinical panic attack. It was so consuming that she couldn’t be convinced to do regular screenings such as mammograms and pap smears. It worried me, but I eventually resigned myself to her fear. Shortly after she died, I...

  • Likely to spend much of 2024 reinventing myself

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Dec 30, 2023

    I’ve always heard that in order to move forward in life these days a person has to continually reinvent himself. As 2024 rolls in, it looks like I’ll be doing just that one more time. Change should invigorate us, challenge us, even scare us. As I get ready to retire from my career as a Chamber of Commerce executive director, I expect to experience all of that and even more. I don’t yet know my last date, other than telling my board I wanted to be done before Medicare started i...

  • This Christmas full of grief, but I also have hope

    Karl Terry, Local columnist|Updated Dec 23, 2023

    To say it hasn’t been a joyous Christmas holiday for me would be an understatement. I have boxes of Christmas decorations in arm’s length of where I get out of the car every night but the only hint within my home that it’s Christmas this year are the Christmas cards I’ve carefully placed on the mantel as I’ve received each of them. It’s my first Christmas without my sweet wife in 42 years and it hurts — a lot. I knew I would miss her, I just had no idea how much. Add to...

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