November 7, 2004
If you always wished to catch a glimpse of Santa's reindeer up close before they land on the slate roof of a Whiteford house on Christmas Eve, you may be in luck. Just 20 minutes north of Bel Air, nestled in the rolling hills of Whiteford and open for the Christmas season, is a 100-acre farm with a reindeer village on the Pennsylvania end of the property. Sassy, Molly, Minnie and a baby named C.J. romp and play to the delight of schoolchildren taken on tours by farmer Brian Adelhardt. On Dec. 5, Santa will stop at the reindeer corral before he visits 1,500 homes a second, at an average sleigh speed of 3.6 million mph, while carrying about 156,000 tons of cargo, according to "Santa Claus: Ergonomic Risk Assessment" from the System Concepts Web site.
October 31, 2011
Was I the only one to notice last week that right here in Howard County, Maryland, USA, a 17-year-old was "secretly arrested" by federal authorities in July of 2011 for "alledgedly" sending emails to provide terrorist support. The important word here being "alledgedly. " Still under detention in October, Mohammed Massan Khalid had just graduated from Mount Hebron High School and had received a full scholarship to Johns Hopkins University. "Secretly arrested" reminds me of Hitler's Nazi activities, not something that I expected to happen in America.
March 25, 2013
The Sun keeps trolling the depths for examples of right-wing thinking like that of Matt Patterson's recent commentary on the nomination of Thomas Perez for labor secretary ("Why do we need a labor department?" March 22). The best supervisor I ever had during my employment career, a man who exuded integrity, had a phrase to describe sub-par work: "Thin gruel. " Mr. Patterson's piece epitomizes those words. I would be the last to argue that bureaucracies can't become bloated. Any organization can. But that does not necessarily mean its purpose and goals are flawed.
November 12, 2011
In a directive worthy of the oxymoron "slavery is freedom," from George Orwell's novel "Animal Farm," the Roman Catholic Church in effect has said that "discrimination is religious liberty" ("Bishops assail same-sex marriage," Nov. 10). In their directive, local bishops warn that if same-sex marriage is legalized in Maryland, Catholic businesses may actually have to supply food or flowers to people who are homosexuals. Imagine! This directive is a transparent (and desperate)
September 10, 1995
"What kind of writing do you do?" asked the novelist sitting to my left at a writer's luncheon."I work for a newspaper in Baltimore," he was told."Oh, did you go to journalism school?""Well, yes.""Columbia?" he asked, invoking the name of the most prestigious journalism school in the country."Actually, no," I heard myself telling him. "I'm one of the lucky ones. I am a graduate of the Miss Dennis School of Writing."Unimpressed, the novelist turned away. Clearly it was a credential that did not measure up to his standards.
October 1, 1992
Educational petting farm opens for its third seasonGreen Meadows Farm, an educational petting farm, opened this week for its third season in Friendship Park, along Dorsey Road.The 225-animal farm, which allows children to milk cows, feed goats, ride a pony and go on hayrides, runs through Oct. 31.About 35,000 people -- mostly from area schools -- are already scheduled to see the farm this month -- more than came last season, said manager Ken Keyes.Admission is $8 a person for general admission, but groups get discounts.
December 16, 2008
The Environmental Protection Agency's end-of-year decision to exempt farmers from reporting the amount of ammonia emitted from animal waste doesn't pass the smell test. While this would benefit those in Maryland's poultry industry, which is based on the Eastern Shore and raised 295 million chickens last year, the ruling isn't welcome news for their neighbors, environmentalists and others citizens. The EPA's rule change exempts animal farm operations from having to report ammonia and other emissions under "right to know" requirements of federal emergency response laws.
March 26, 1997
Contrary to the assertion of its title, in "Cats Don't Dance" they do dance -- but so what? They're animated. The thrill of tap dancing is watching someone -- preferably human but I'd watch dogs, pigs and pigeons do it, too -- master an impossibly arcane, labor-intense and speed-dazzling set of moves with aplomb and panache.It has no point if it's drawn! It's not real. Who cares?Anyway, the movie turns out to be an ambitious but lame parody of "Singin' in the Rain," with Danny from Kokomo (that's Scott Bakula's thin voice behind the screen)
September 5, 2009
Regulators shut banks in Missouri, Illinois, Iowa NEW YORK - Regulators shut down Friday banks in Missouri, Illinois and Iowa, pushing to 87 the number of banks that have failed this year under the weight of the soured economy and rising loan defaults. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took over: First Bank of Kansas City, based in Kansas City, Mo., with $16 million in assets and $15 million in deposits; Oak Forest, Ill.-based InBank, with $212 million in assets and $199 million in deposits; and Sioux City, Iowa-based Vantus Bank with $458 million in assets and $368 million in deposits.
September 27, 1994
Classics by authors such as Mark Twain, George Orwell and Ernest Hemingway prominently displayed at the Cover to Cover Bookstore Cafe have one thing in common -- all have been banned somewhere in the United States.To call attention to censorship by school boards and libraries across the country, the independent bookstore in Owen Brown Village Center is sponsoring Banned Books Week through Saturday, displaying books and the reasons they were prohibited."If you start banning books, if you start somewhere, there's no end, because somebody's going to find something to object to. That's why we have the First Amendment," said Marsha Berman, owner of Cover to Cover.