Native son: All the news fit to print

by Charles D Novak

The cost of a “forever” postage stamp went up on January 27 from fifty cents to fifty five cents. In 1918 the Postal Service lost $3.9 billion dollars. It’s kind of a grey area about who runs our postal service. At one time it was the government that made all the rules and regulations.
For the past twelve years it has been hemorrhaging cash. Trump puts the blame on Amazon saying they are not paying their fair share by offering “free delivery” on their merchandize. This is debatable. People using emails instead of writing letters may have something to do with this. So far this year I’ve written only one letter and have received two in return. I’m still old fashioned and sent seventeen Christmas cards. Twenty years ago it was thirty or more cards. I am keeping in touch electronically like the majority of people are doing.
Great news! It was announced that auditions for the Ely Community Spring musical of CABARET will be held January 21 and 22 at the Vermilion College Theater. The performance dates of this fantastic musical will be March 28, 29, 30, 31 and April 2, 4, 5, and 6. I’ve seen this show six times – twice on Broadway. It’s one of my top ten favorite musicals. I am currently working on an article about Cabaret for my Echo column which will be published in mid-March. This show has such an interesting background that I just had to write about its history that goes back to 1966.
The words to the first song are “what good is sitting alone in your room, come to the Cabaret…..!” Cabaret was a smash hit all over the world. Let’s see if we can sell out all eight of our performances!
Did you know when pianos made their first appearance the legs on this instrument were thought to be obscene and had to be covered with a cloth whenever they were played in public. This idea was as useless as an ashtray on a motorcycle.
With a perfect view of Whiteside Park from my living room window, I am able to take in all the sights of our annual winter sculpture garden. It is amazing how many trucks of snow are needed for this fantastic display of carved ice. It will be worth your time taking a stroll through this creative Ely event. Take pictures!
Finally those ugly colored panels on the windows of the Washington School Building have been removed. I still marvel at the wonderful renovation of the Washington Auditorium. To complete this project however they must install new seats so audience members are not sitting on springs! I wasn’t able to find a seat in the place that didn’t inflict pain. At 128 pounds maybe I don’t have a cushion on my body where it should be!
Without much fanfare, Chuck Novak (no relation) was sworn in for his third term as Mayor of Ely. As far as I know there were no other candidates for this position. I wish the Mayor had the power to fill all those empty and abandoned homes. It breaks my heart to see entire blocks of houses ready to fall down. I know the only thing to prevent this from happening is for a major industry to come back to Ely. I just don’t feel that is going to happen in my lifetime.
You would think being retired would cut down on the paper work of taxes. Because of investments and other financial issues I have a folder full of forms. For years I would do my own taxes but now I can’t keep up with all the changes being made on a yearly basis. Lucky for me I have Dan at D&D Accounting located right across the street who now handles all of this for me. His tax knowledge is as sharp as a hunting knife. I can highly recommend him.
Hard to believe we will be celebrating our 60th class reunion in July at the Grand Ely Lodge. I still haven’t seen most of my classmates since I left Ely in 1960. I hope we get name tags.
Thought for the day: Faith without doubt is just really blind obedience.