District residents should seize the opportunity at hand to serve
Early in the 1990s I was invited to a Wisconsin hunting shack to participate in the gun deer season. Having never hunted before I was hesitant to accept the offer. A lack of previous hunting experience was of no concern, the host assured me it was all about camaraderie, playing cards and consuming high fat meals. Sounded good to me, I borrowed a gun (a brand new, never out of the box, 7mm Mag. Browning Medallion), bought a license, a doe tag, packed a knapsack and off I went.
On Friday night I was schooled in the intricacies of sheepshead. The camp elders informed me “Paul, it won’t cost you much to learn this game.” After some hours and several dollars out of my pocket I came to understand that sheepshead is along the lines of pinochle, a game I was familiar with. It’s all about trump and taking tricks. Eighty percent of any job is showmanship and twenty percent is nomenclature. Unable to understand, much less talk about, a Piquet deck, leaster, schneider, blind, picker, double on the bump, mauer, schmear, renege and the like I knew I was at a disadvantage.
While playing sheepshead the conversation turned to deer hunting. I, an inexperienced novitiate, listened carefully. Again, the camp elders instructed me, “if a lone doe comes through don’t get antsy, chances are a buck could be following her.” Based on an understanding of mammalian reproduction, that made sense.
After a brief, restless night’s sleep we were up way before dawn. Opening morning, which is still the middle of the night, camp tradition includes lots of bacon, eggs, toast, butter and coffee. After breakfast I packed a lunch consisting of a braunschweiger, blue cheese, raw onion and horseradish sandwich and a can of cola. Into the woods northeast of the shack I headed. It was cold and calm as the darkest dark began to fade. I found a small meadow at the base of ridge that offered red oak hardwoods all around. Setting my day pack behind a stump ten yards away I settled in to watch dawn arrive. That opening morning, deep in the woods, all by myself was the most tranquil, peaceful, quiet and serene experience of my life. About 8 a.m. a coyote came in apparently unaware of my presence. I watched him circle, sniff and investigate my pack. I could hear him breathe, listen to his steps in the frosty grass, I could smell him he was that close. I thought this was an experience few people get. That coyote must have had a liking for my sandwich to be oblivious of me. The instant he realized I was there he disappeared so fast I thought the whole experience could have been a dream.
About 10 a.m. a lone doe came in, hog fat, what had been described as a “meat” doe. She was relaxed as could be, not a care in the world. I watched her, thinking about my schooling last night, as she slowly strolled through my meadow and off into the forest beyond. I could have taken her broadside, standing still at 30 yards but I waited for the buck.
I hunted that day, the next two days, came back after Thanskgiving and hunted three more days. In all that time I never saw another deer! In my experience God does not wave a magic wand and make things happen. No, I believe He presents opportunity and it is up to us and our own free will to recognize and take advantage of God given opportunity. I was presented with an opportunity. I chose to wait for a buck and I wound up with an empty freezer.
We as a community are presented with a rare opportunity come April 2021. At election there will be four of the nine (44%) seats to fill on the Board of Education. To not put before the voter a choice of eight candidates to fill those four seats would be a failure of this community to recognize a God given opportunity, a failure to take advantage of an opportunity to Make Medford Great Again! It is time for a grass root movement to encourage candidacy, a time for individuals to step up, get involved and work to not only maintain but improve the quality of education available to our youth.
No later than 5:00 pm on Tuesday, January 5, 2021 all candidates must have filed at the district office: Campaign Registration Statement (Form CF-1) Declaration of Candidacy (Form EL-162) Forms and information are available at the district offi ce.
With at least nine candidates registered for the four seats a Primary Election will be held Tuesday, February 16, 2021 in order to narrow the field.
Lets recognize and take advantage of this God given opportunity.
— Paul Dixon, Medford School board member