By Byron Higgin
Imagine my surprise when the piano player forthe Whitesidewalls drew a remarkable likeness to the barber I had in Grantsburg, WI.
Once during the performance Saturday night he pointed to me and his mouth dropped wide. I took the picture.
I decided the man they call, “The Wizard” couldn’t be my barber.
Then, when Pat “Houndog” Brown introduced the rest of the band, he pointed to “The Wizard” and said he was from Grantsburg, Wisconsin.
My mouth dropped again.
There he was, the guy I only knew as a barber. I knew he was a musician, but never in my wildest dreams did I know he was a member of the Whitesidewalls. And he never told me that.
During a break in the music Saturday night I ran right up to “The Wizard” and asked him if he remembered me.
“Yes, I saw you out there. What are you doing here?” he asked.
I went through all the trouble of explaining how I came to be the publisher of the Minneota Mascot and “The Wizard,” smiled and said, “Good for you.”
We visited briefly, then he went on his break.
It's been an amazing six weeks at the Mascot, as I bump into all sorts of people who knew me from what might be called, “One of my other lives.”
Sunday I went to Clarkfield to visit friends and when I walked into the restaurant I heard my name, turned and found one of my former Clarkfield Advocate employee and her brother, who just happened to be in town visiting his family. I used to cover him when he was in high school sports and when he played town baseball.
It was another sweet reunion.
Then, just as I was leaving the restaurant another man came up and said, “You’re invading my territory.”
He launched his hand toward me and smiled. It was another fellow named Byron and the comment was a joke, indicating he was used to being the only Byron in the neighborhood.
It certainly is amazing how you can run into people you haven’t seen in a long time, especially when you’re least expecting to see them.
It brings to mind the time my wife and I boarded a cruise ship in Hawaii and as we waited to get our rooms, we went to the dining area.
It was crowded so I picked out a table with one lady and her husband that seemed to look like nice people.
“May we sit here?” I said. “Yes, go ahead,” the nice man said.
We began to visit. “Where are you from,” I was asked.
The lady looked at me and said, “Grantsburg, Wisconsin.”
The man watched my jaw drop, because we were from Grantsburg, Wisconsin. I was the publisher of the community paper and the couple thought that’s who I was but they were not sure.
So when they dropped the bomb, they watched my expression. Later we laughed at how surprised I’d been when they told me.
THANK YOU: I want to take the opportunity to say Thank You to some of the nicest people I know. You, the people of Minneota have welcomed me with open arms.
All the positive comments about the newspaper have helped me feel at home. Many people smile and wave and many are not shy to say they are happy I’m here and that the Mascot has survived.
It’s been almost overwhelming and I am so grateful for the heartwarming welcome.
By the way, if Minneota is blessed with one thing, it’s coffee drinkers.
The biggest problem I’ve had so far is deciding where to go to drink coffee.
Sometimes I’ve had to hit several sites in one day just to make sure I’m keeping up with everyone else.
LAUGH A LITTLE: “There was a clergyman who loved to golf. He woke up early Sunday morning on a beautiful sunny day.
He knew if he had to preach at 10 a.m. he would not get onto the course before noon, which would be the heat of the day. To take advantage of the Day the Lord Hath Made, he went to church, hung a sign on the door that said, “No Morning Service today, out of town.”
He went to the course, set up and hit the ball. To his surprise, it was a HOLE IN ONE.
In Heaven, the question was asked of God, “What are you going to do with this guy?”And God replies, “Nothing. Who is he going to tell?” — Joke contributed.
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: As my Ole Pappy used to say, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.” What did Ole Pappy mean by that, anyway!?