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 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: You can please some of the people …

This morning, a friend whom I’ve not yet met sent a photo of foliage turned colors in Maine. Everywhere the season is turning a corner. Maine. Montana. Mexico. Everywhere. Rains a... — Updated 10/21/2021

 By Carrie Classon    Opinion

The Postscript: Generally good habits

I am a person of generally good habits, which is why it is puzzling when I acquire a bad one. Habits are probably the most important thing when it comes to having a happy life. I ea... — Updated 10/20/2021


Working to protect Montanans from Democrats' tax-and-spend spree

Democrats, led by President Biden, Chuck Schumer, Bernie Sanders and Nancy Pelosi, are rushing a reckless $3.5 trillion tax and spending spree bill through Congress that would reshape the very foundation of America and push the... — Updated 10/19/2021


Letter to the Editor - Support wild animals that are free

Editor: Too often in the world today there is truth in the statement, “These are wild animals, yes, but they are not free animals.” That is case with the American bison in Yellowstone National Park. The bison are wild animals... — Updated 10/15/2021


From the Fringe: Where is the leadership on COVID, because this isn't normal

This is back to normal? 510 Montanans hospitalized with COVID-19 is normal? If that’s the case, all I can say is, yikes. But, normal is exactly what Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte... — Updated 10/15/2021

 By Pam Burke    Opinion

View from the North40: Simple doesn't have to be conventional

For a very brief period in my youth, I wanted to be famous, which was a very stereotypical urge but strongly at odds with my natural inclination to stay home and not be noticed. If... — Updated 10/15/2021

 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: It's not a perfect world …

Honest to Pete, sometimes I’m blind as a bat. Yes, I know; let the clichés roll on. These last six years that I’ve lived in my Etzatlan house, I thought my bodega roof drained... — Updated 10/14/2021

 By Carrie Classon    Opinion

The Postscript: Buying jeans

There are few things as daunting as buying jeans. I don’t buy jeans frequently enough to buy the same kind twice. By the time I’m ready for a new pair of jeans, whatever I’ve... — Updated 10/13/2021

 By Pam Burke    Opinion

Proteins, magnets and the spooky mystery of science

Remember last week when I said that magnetic north and south could just up and swap ends and that birds’ ability to migrate properly could be disrupted by that or by the mad... — Updated 10/8/2021

 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: In my next life …

We stood side by side on the ditch bank, relaxed, Dad leaning on his irrigation shovel. The July afternoon was quiet, air hardly moving, hot, dry. I was in high school but I... — Updated 10/7/2021

 By Carrie Classon    Opinion

The Postscript: Dozens of cousins

“We are cleaning up our stuff,” Meschack, the tile layer who now more or less permanently resides in our home, informed me. “We are giving you more space.” “More space!... — Updated 10/6/2021


Magnets: They're both positive and negative

Magnets are all fun and sciency until the earth gets knocked off its access. I don’t have to tell you that magnetic north is different from geographic or true north. We all know Santa’s North Pole stays put right where the... — Updated 10/1/2021


Sinema could learn from Montana's' Hatfield

Watching Arizona’s freshman Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema trying to figure out how to vote on President Biden’s budget plan reconciliation bill reminds me of a Montana situation almost 44 years ago with freshman Sen. Paul... — Updated 10/1/2021


Lies and lies

In the 1920s, Adolph Hitler published his book titled “Main Kampf.” He advocated for big lies as he advised leaders who needed to lie to the public to tell only big lies. He assured his readers that people would easily see... — Updated 10/1/2021


Letter to the Editor - Legislative majority ignores voter wishes

Editor, At least four times this last legislative session, the Republican majority showed us that they do not trust Montanan voters to decide their own future. HB 176 eliminated same-day voter registration. Originally passed by a... — Updated 9/30/2021

 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: The way we were raised

Turned out to be a surprise party at my house, planned by Ana and Leo, unbeknownst to either myself or Michelle. I knew Ana and Michelle were coming over. I’d asked them if they... — Updated 9/30/2021

 By Carrie Classon    Opinion

The Postscript: Ginger cookies

We were supposed to get the tile backsplash installed in our kitchen yesterday, but my husband, Peter, said he needed to use the kitchen so he could bake ginger cookies. “Can you... — Updated 9/29/2021


Amtrak wreck proves north- central Montana best place to live

There is no doubt north-central Montana is the best place to live. This past week was a true testament of what a giving and caring community we all live in and how we can band together in a disaster. When Amtrak derailed just west... — Updated 9/28/2021

 By Pam Burke    Opinion

View from the North 40: The birthplace of movie plots: Bus garage

The truth isn’t always stranger than fiction, but the truth could strangely inspire fiction. A big article we ran in the paper this week illuminated the trouble our local school... — Updated 9/24/2021

 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Looking out my Backdoor: Fifty (and more) shades of gray

I have become adept at simply watching the sky, at comprehending or at thinking I comprehend, the grim and gritty shades of gray, unrelenting gray, and nothing sexy about it, and I... — Updated 9/23/2021

 By Carrie Classon    Opinion

The Postscript: Riding together

My husband, Peter, and I are at my parents’ cabin in the woods. The weather was perfect for a bike ride so we took a long one. We had not all been riding together in almost two... — Updated 9/22/2021


Park board ignores presentations on beaver control at park

As expected, the Hill County Park Board has basically voted to continue with its current way of managing beaver in Beaver Creek Park. Trapping is the only means of control they have ever used and will continue to use. No mention... — Updated 9/21/2021


Home Sweet Homecoming

For many of us, one of our fondest memories is going to our high school or college homecoming. If you look up the definition of the term, homecoming means “an instance of returning home” and “a high school, or university... — Updated 9/20/2021

 By Pam Burke    Opinion

View from the North 40: Maybe we have fallen down a rabbit hole

I realized two things this week about the often adverse relationship between animals and man — one thing because of the lack of headlines and the other because of the wealth of... — Updated 9/17/2021

 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion

Friends Sitting with Silence Shining

I begin my days with a loose routine of morning readings, nothing cast in concrete, but generally start with the poet Rumi. This epitomizes the week. “But for us this day is... — Updated 9/16/2021


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