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James R. Stout

Blog posts : "General"

The Future That Was Present

            This weekend I had the opportunity to attend my nephew’s wedding. He’s 37 and it’s his first marriage. I hope that it will be his only marriage. The wedding was held in a small outdoor chapel on the outskirts of Austin, Texas. For those of you unfamiliar with Austin, it’s the capitol of …

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Dum Dum Dum Dum Duh Do Wah

            It’s good to be back on my blog. As many of you know, I have been going through moving from my country ranch to a new house near my daughter and her family. It’s been quite a change and a great one at that. Oh, I miss the scenery and serenity of living on the farm, but not the work. I ha…

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The Eyes of a POW

            Take a look at the picture below. Take a good look. Is it a German POW camp? Perhaps a POW camp in Russia? Maybe a picture from a scene in a movie? No, it’s none of these. Take another quick look:

            Would you believe that this is a POW camp about halfway bet…

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Time and Tide . . .

            Fifty-seven years ago, today, September 30, 1963, our family moved into a new (to us) house in Bryan, Texas. We would live there for just over 3 years. On the day that we moved into that house I was 8 years-old. My sister Debbie was 11, my sister Barbara was 13, my mother was 34, and my …

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The Forever Spring

            I decided to go out to eat for a late lunch or early supper. You choose. So, I went to a Tex-Mex restaurant that I haven’t been able to go to in several months. Just me by myself. I truly don’t like to do sit down eating in a restaurant by myself, but there just wasn’t anyone else to go …

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The Night The Beast Bought The Farm

            I was 9-years-old and had a yearning to be a woodsman. I had been enthralled with the movie tales of Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone as well as the many western movies and television programs of the day. I had won first place in a contest in The Cub Scouts and the prizes were an official …

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The Contraption

            If you’ve been reading my recent blog entries, then you are aware that I am moving. One of the things that has taken a great deal of time in preparing to move has been packing boxes with all my worldly goods. I must admit that I learned quickly that I have been something of a pack rat ov…

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Snoopy Vs. The Wicked Witch of the West

            In February of 1967, our family moved into the house that I would do the remainder of my growing up. I was 11-years-old at the time. I moved out of that house in September of 1976, but my parents stayed there until 1979. When I was growing up, I mostly had good teachers. Some were better…

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A Gravel Road

            Our family moved into a small neighborhood in Bryan, Texas in October of 1963. Each street had roughly 4 or 5 houses on each side of the street. Not all of the streets were filled with houses. There were vacant lots spread out among the streets. Our street had 5 such lots. Our street had…

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The Haunted Elevator

            We were expecting our second child, my daughter Hayley, and things were tight financially speaking. Our son was about 7 months old at the time. The job that I had went away with the downturn of the construction industry in Houston during the mid-80’s. It was a good job with excellent pay…

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The Blue Hydrangea

            As the story goes, my great-grandmother would go and visit her two daughters from time to time. She was a widow of five years when she made one of these visits. My grandmother and grandfather drove her over to one of her daughter’s homes about 75 miles away. This was likely quite an inte…

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My Final Commision?

            I know some people who believe that you should never look back on your life and that you should only look forward. While that sounds like a positive thing, the truth is that if you’re lucky you’ll get to an age where the majority of your life has been lived. I’m 65-years-old (well, I wil…

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Take A Sad Song

            7th grade began for me on September 3, 1968. I turned 13-years-old six days later. I was initially excited about the new school year because I would no longer be in the lowest class in junior high. However, the year turned bad quickly and it was a year that I prefer not to think about. B…

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It's Never Too Late To Dream

             My grandmother used to tell us about her walking to the one-room schoolhouse in the rural community where she grew up. The same area where I have lived for the past 11 years and have been coming to since I was two months old. The name of the community was known as Prairie Point and the …

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It's Never Too Late To Dream

             My grandmother used to tell us about her walking to the one-room schoolhouse in the rural community where she grew up. The same area where I have lived for the past 11 years and have been coming to since I was two months old. The name of the community was known as Prairie Point and the …

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Changes - Part 4 . . .

            It was August of 1967 and things had recently changed a great deal in our family. My grandfather had died suddenly from a heart attack on April 22. It’s amazing how the loss of one person can change the lives of so many. The first realization after the funeral was that there was just no …

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Changes - Part 3

            This getting ready to move is like Eddie Haskell giving me the biz. I have lived here for a little over 11 years and it’s amazing the stuff that you can accumulate. I got the spare bedroom packed and ready to go. It took me a week and a half to do that one room. After packing several box…

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By the sweat of your brow . . .

            My grandparents were married in July of 1921. My great-grandparents owned about 300 acres of land that they farmed with the aid of their son, my grandfather. As a wedding gift, they gave my grandparents 100 acres of their farm. My mother always said it was my great-grandmother’s way of k…

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A Piece of Heaven

            I’ve been reflecting on the years that I have lived in the country. It was always a dream of mine to one day live on my grandparent’s farm. However, it didn’t seem like it was ever going to be possible. In 2007 my mother and her siblings finally divided the 360 acres that had been inheri…

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The Treasure Chest

            It was early September of 1963. I had just turned 8 years old and my older sister promised me something special for my birthday. Our family was living in an old wood frame house in Bryan, Texas awaiting my parents to find a permanent home after moving to Bryan in May of that year. The ho…

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