No bus, no chalk tally, no Miss Kitty

Comment & Observation
By Joe Lee III

     Should the City of Grenada ban political signs from public property and rights-of-way?
     We have been asked by a city official to post that question on
     To vote, click on and scroll down until you find the poll question. Please select your answer, then check this column next week for the poll results. Thanks!
No bus, no fuss
     If you want a Greyhound bus along I-55 north in Mississippi, you are out of luck.
     The nearest pickup points listed for Senatobia, Batesville, or Grenada are Tunica Junction, Clarksdale, Memphis, or Durant according to the company website.
     Apparently the north Mississippi bus no longer runs down the interstate; it travels primarily down U.S. Highway 61.
Election worries
     A good many of the election machines used in America operate on Windows 7. Microsoft plans to stop supporting that version on Jan. 14, meaning the operating system will become more vulnerable to hackers.
     Nobody, at least on this side of the ocean, seems to know exactly what the Russians did during the election of 2015, but whatever it was, it has draped a curtain of paranoia over the coming presidential election. An obsolete and unsupported computer-tallying program does not add much confidence.
     Of course, most of the media blames Trump for the 2015 election meddling, if there was any, but he was not president when the election was held. Someone else was in charge.
At any rate, I miss the “good old days.” It took all night to count the paper ballots, and as each box came in, the results were posted on a giant chalk board on the side of the courthouse.
     The night was usually hot and sticky. Some races were not decided until dawn, or close to it. Sometimes a vendor would come by with a hot dog and a Coke; maybe even a melting Eskimo Pie. You had to fight off the flies and other bugs attracted by the floodlights. The temporary bleachers were made for napping as the crowd cleared out after midnight, or when their candidate lost.
     I don’t remember hearing a single soul worry about whether a computer had stolen the election. Cell phones and iPads were pretty scarce back then, too.
     A small covey of high school girls showing up after supper for some of the early returns certainly enhanced the evening. Ice cream cones seemed to taste a little better back in high school.
     Maybe that is what they call enhanced memory.
     The current national campaign is a distressing as old memories are pleasant.
     Both sides are calling each other ugly names.
     Morning Joe on MSNBC used to be interesting to watch. It had commentators from both sides presenting viewpoints. Now it is 100% hate Trump. The rest of the network is about the same. Apparently that is a profitable niche.
CNN isn’t much better.
     Ironically, Fox News, the news outlet the other cable networks guffaw, is probably the lesser biased of the three. At least the early morning program takes frequent breaks from reporting the vile political antics to features happy events like National Hot Dog Day and staff corn hole competition.
     I spend most of my limited television time watching Gunsmoke reruns. They were filmed during the same era as the election chalkboards, and Miss Kitty hasn’t changed a bit.
     Gunsmoke doesn’t have foul language and nasty political talk – Marshal Dillon and Chester don’t allow it.