Serving Hohenwald, Lewis County Tennessee Since 1898

Articles from the 'Tyrades' series


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  • Should a sense of humor be mandatory for fathers?

    Danny Tyree|Jun 13, 2024

    Some fathers are entirely too serious. They’re paranoid about their children finding out that they had their own youthful indiscretions and regrettable choices. (“I don’t make mistakes. You can ask any of your six stepmoms.”) My late father ‘fessed up to his own errors in judgment, like when he was in the schoolyard and a classmate yelled to him from a second-story window to toss up some of the abundant hedge apples (a.k.a. Osage oranges) that littered the ground. Just as the classmate...

  • Tyrades! Ready for the final Pat Sajak "Wheel"?

    Danny Tyree|Jun 6, 2024

    June 7 will be a bittersweet day in TV history, as the final “Wheel of Fortune” hosted by Pat Sajak airs. Sajak announced his retirement plans a year ago, allowing himself time for a VICT_RY L_P, naming of a successor and cleaning all the spare bullion out of the sofa in the dressing room. “Wheel of Fortune” has been like comfort food or an oasis in a chaotic world, so millions of viewers are saddened by Sajak’s departure; but very few were truly caught off-guard by the announcement. The “Whee...

  • Can the population implosion be stopped?

    Danny Tyree|May 30, 2024

    “And when I die / and when I’m gone / there’ll be one child born, in this world / to carry on / to carry on.” The song written by Laura Nyro and most famously performed by Blood, Sweat & Tears may have been overly optimistic. According to the Wall Street Journal, the world is rapidly approaching a tipping point at which the birth rate won’t be enough to keep the population constant. Climate-change prophets are probably jumping for joy (“Darn! I expelled more carbon dioxide; should’ve s...

  • Tyrades! Is it nice to fool Mather Nature?

    Danny Tyree|May 23, 2024

    Yes, I was hunkered down paying rapt attention to the weather report on May 8 when an EF-3 tornado rampaged through a neighboring county. Understandably, I was intrigued by a May 11 “New York Post” article about a technological push to manipulate the weather. Eleven states already maintain “old school” programs of seeding clouds with silver iodide to generate precipitation; but around the world, weather wizards are brainstorming other tactics for dealing with droughts, flash floods and related...

  • Tyrades! Is "value" a dirty word?

    Danny Tyree|May 16, 2024

    As I sit here admiring my 88-cent container of mustard, I can’t help feeling self-conscious. I know that restaurants advertise their “value menus” and retailers offer no-frills knockoffs of their glitziest products, but I keep picturing the corporate CEOs loathing such concessions as a necessary evil to appease the (ugh!) cheapskate rabble. (“I thought all the franchise owners got the memo to partner with Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and upsell customers the Eternally Happy Meal!”)...

  • Tyrades! Yearning for random thoughts about Mother's Day?

    Danny Tyree|May 9, 2024

    Believe it or not, Woody Allen’s “Annie Hall” makes me think of Mother’s Day. Remember the scene where Allen’s character Alvy was stuck in line at the movies, subjected to the pompous blathering of a pseudo-intellectual? When the topic turned to media philosopher Marshall McLuhan, Alvy handily produced McLuhan himself to put the blowhard in his place. By the same token, it would be great if those of us being accused of a mid-life crisis or being condescendingly told, “Okay, boomer” cou...

  • Tyrades! Does your town need renaming?

    Danny Tyree|May 2, 2024

    The venerable comic strip “Gasoline Alley” is wrapping up a storyline in which the dastardly assistant mayor schemed to change the town’s name from Gasoline Alley to the ostensibly more modern Electric Acres (without even offering a compromise such as Hybrid Hollow). Sentimentality saved the day in the funnies, just as it usually applies the brakes to abrupt municipal name changes in the real world. (“I have no idea which jurist, general or fur trader our town was named for. Neither did my fath...

  • Tyrades! Ready for the bathroom of tomorrow?

    Danny Tyree|Apr 25, 2024

    Bathroom floor tiles that weigh you, analyze your gait and evaluate your fall risk. Bathroom mirrors that initiate telehealth conferences based on your complexion or facial tics. Toilet seats that check your vitals (temperature, heart rate, oxygenation). According to the Wall Street Journal, these marvels (and others -- such as self-cleaning capacities and soothing infrared light) could be commonplace in upscale homes within the next decade. If so -- and if the restraining orders expire so I...

  • Tyrades! Will you still need me, will you still feed me?

    Danny Tyree|Apr 18, 2024

    During my career as a late-in-life columnist, I have been blessed with the opportunity to chronicle three birthdays ending in zero. (My so-called “good” cholesterol has not exactly overperformed in helping me reach these milestones. It usually “phones in” its duties, and even then apologizes, “Sorry, driving into a dead zone here” an awful lot of the time.) It’s six years until another “big” birthday; but as a Beatles fan, I have eagerly anticipated writing this essay about the fast-approaching...

  • Tyrades! Noisy restaurants: yea or nay?

    Danny Tyree|Apr 10, 2024

    A recent Wall Street Journal article provided food for thought about the decibel levels in restaurants. According to the article, in 2023, audio data from the app SoundPrint found that 63 percent of restaurants are too loud for conversation. (Granted, this is a blessing in disguise if the conversation veers toward “SoundPrint? You told me your phone doesn’t have enough space for photos of my trip to the International Lint Museum, but you have room to download SoundPrint????”) My father hated...

  • Tyrades! Has the Pentagon shattered your faith in UFOs?

    Danny Tyree|Mar 21, 2024

    Well, THOSE eagerly anticipated revelations certainly crashed and burned. You may recall that last summer a former intelligence officer told Congress that Uncle Sam maintains a covert stockpile of downed alien spacecraft and corpses. (“Doesn’t he look unnatural?”) But now a wide-ranging report by the Defense Department’s All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) declares there is zero reasonable evidence of a secret program to recover dead extraterrestrials and reverse-engineer their technol...

  • Tyrades!: What Does Spring Break Mean To You?

    Danny Tyree|Mar 14, 2024

    You probably crave a break from my patented “sour grapes” routine, but we must face facts: spring break (a.k.a. Easter break, a.k.a. mid-term break, a.k.a. “unwind, rejuvenate, have fun, but don’t forget how oppressed you are, students”) is not the same for every family. When I was in elementary school, spring break meant making an extra day trip visit to my grandmother, tagging along to another antique shop with my mother or stocking up on books at the library. High school? My job at the conve...

  • Tyrades! Am I Overthinking Slang?

    Danny Tyree|Mar 7, 2024

    As a writer, I can’t deny harboring an appreciation for the richness of slang, metaphors, similes and colloquialisms. And yet…there’s something not quite rational about the agitators who force our language to evolve. (“Come on, participle! Crawl up on dry land! That gerund is beating you!”) There is an undisputed utility to manufactured terms such as “gerrymander,” “carpetbagger” and “flyover country”; but other linguistic innovations have been more frivolous. (Society’s onetime fascination wit...

  • Tyrades! Have You Ever Taken Full Responsibility?

    Danny Tyree|Feb 29, 2024

    “I accept full responsibility.”’ In your lifetime you’ve doubtless heard umpteen public figures (elected officials, bureaucrats, corporate executives, celebrities) promise, “I accept full responsibility” after some manifestation of corruption, incompetence or social injustice comes to light. (And if you’ve ever witnessed your CAT insinuate, “I accept full responsibility,” you need to take full responsibility for the potency of the weed you’re smoking.) The first dozen times you heard this, you...

  • Tyrades

    Danny Tyree|Feb 22, 2024

    I’m guessing my brother-in-law was underwhelmed by the recent earth-shattering announcement from ESPN, Fox and Warner Bros. Discovery. I mean, he’s the family member who posted a Facebook meme of Snoopy joyously dancing under the headline “This is me not caring about the Super Bowl.” Back to the trio of media powerhouses: in case you haven’t heard, they announced an as-yet-unnamed joint streaming service app that would provide programming content from all the major sports leagues, plus coll...

  • Using the right Valentine's Day questions? by Danny Tyree

    Danny Tyree|Feb 8, 2024

    While struggling to find a suitable angle for this Valentine’s Day essay, I lucked upon some “Reader’s Digest” clickbait. The article talked about psychologist Arthur Aron’s 1997 study, in which he brainstormed 36 questions (including “What would constitute a ‘perfect’ day for you?”) that can theoretically accelerate intimacy between two strangers (or rekindle romance in long-term relationships). Bravo. People typically do an awful job when left to improvise. First dates tend to be characterized...

  • Should students be bribed into attending classes?

    Danny Tyree|Feb 1, 2024

    Are truancy officers about to get help in fighting absenteeism? According to the New York Post, the Ohio legislature is considering a bipartisan pilot program that would make cash transfers to select kindergarten and ninth-grade students if they show up a whopping 90 percent of the time. (One of my friends remarked that the $1.5 million project is called a pilot program because it makes as much sense as a beagle flying a WW I Sopwith Camel. But I digress.) Schools have exhausted other methods...

  • Do you suffer from the "stillgottas"?

    Danny Tyree|Jan 25, 2024

    Despite my best preventive measures, I have spent decades enduring “the stillgottas.” If you are unfamiliar with the medical terminology, it’s the why-can’t-it-be-terminal-and-give-me-the-sweet-release-of-death condition characterized by perpetually gasping, “I’ve still gotta grab item A and finish project B and clean item C and research the efficacy of an Epi-Pen after absent-mindedly ingesting mystery food D and…” Some guys have a fabulous career releasing their inner drag queen, but all I can...

  • Tyrades

    Danny Tyree|Jan 11, 2024

    Oh, for simpler times with fewer adult responsibilities and fewer high-tech distractions! Then I might manage to finish reading two excellent autobiographies (Henry Winkler’s “Being Henry: The Fonz -- And Beyond” and the late Garry Marshall’s “My Happy Days in Hollywood”) before The Big Day. The Big Day? Yes, January 15 marks the 50th anniversary of the premiere of ABC’s nostalgic hit sitcom “Happy Days.” Back in the day, “Happy Days” and its two most successful spin-offs (“Laverne and Shirley...

  • Tyrades

    Danny Tyree|Dec 28, 2023

    “Just when you think it’s safe to be a jerk on the roadway…” Motorists in many cities have grown accustomed to the likelihood of having their license plate photographed if they exceed the posted speed limit and/or run a red light. (Sadly, other motorists are shocked -- shocked, I tell you -- every single time they receive a citation. It’s like we have GOLDFISH behind the wheel of a hot rod! But I digress.) Now New York City and other municipalities are experimenting with noise cameras (sometime...

  • Tyrades!

    Danny Tyree|Dec 21, 2023

    “The right place at the right time.” I realize that not everyone recognizes Jesus Christ as the Son of God (or even a real person); but for Christians, his birth, ministry, death and triumph over death fit the “right place at the right time” for fulfilling prophecies of the Messiah. Perhaps that is one of the most constructive themes to explore this holiday season and in the coming year: striving to be in the right place at the right time. Common courtesy dictates punctuality and followi...

  • Will golf be recognizable in 20 years?

    Danny Tyree|Dec 14, 2023

    A course is a course, of course of course … Or is it? According to those madcap bean-counters at the National Golf Foundation, the number of off-course golfers (those going to simulators, driving ranges and entertainment venues such as Topgolf) recently surpassed the number of traditional on-course golfers in the United States. For the sake of full disclosure, I am neither a traditional golfer nor a high-tech golfer. But I do enjoy playing miniature golf with my wife and son when we’re on vac...

  • Tyrades

    Danny Tyree|Nov 22, 2023

    Well, that quarter-century went by faster than the weaver’s shuttle! (Almost as fast as younger readers Googling, “What the %$#@& is a weaver’s shuttle?”) As of late October, I have been pounding out a Tyrades! column every week for 25 years without a single break, and with no plans to slow down. Why does someone keep up the weekly grind after more than 1300 columns? Tradition … TRADITION! (Although, if I was a rich man, I’d give a congressman a .. campaign contribution … in return for sl...

  • Organized any dog birthday parties lately?

    Danny Tyree|Nov 16, 2023

    One of my co-workers has an autumnal tradition of spending a week of quality time with her dog Alfie around his birthday. Some may find that eccentric, but even she is skeptical of a trend I saw reported in the Wall Street Journal. “Dog birthdays are turning into elaborate social events,” barked the headline. Yes, professional party organizers are raking in megabucks for lavish festivities centered around the anniversary of a dog’s birth or some other canine milestone (the anniversary of the p...

  • Tyrades

    Danny Tyree|Nov 9, 2023

    I had forgotten about it, but my father once reminisced about finding elementary-school-aged me habitually “watching” TV with my back turned to the set. He said I explained that I could imagine more interesting scenes in my mind. The real demonstration of my creativity was that I could conjure a more tactful response than “How about springing for a color TV, Ebenezer?” I still have trouble giving the boob tube my undivided attention. My wife and I dearly enjoy certain programs; they are not just...

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