Publisher’s Corner: Expo, Eclipse, Politics…

J.B. Lester

On October 1st, at the Webster Groves Recreation Complex, an event much larger and monumental than the Solar Eclipse will take place — The 34th Healthy Planet Natural Living Expo. If you thought the hoopla over the Eclipse was big, wait until you experience our expo. People line up to get in, parking lots will fill, anticipation will grow and hundreds of people will enjoy dozens and dozens of exhibitors offering healthy and sustainable products and services guaranteed to enhance the quality of everyone’s lives. There will be live music, food and beverage samples (including wine and craft beer tastings), book signings, free health screenings, chair massages, drawings for Amtrak Train Tickets and a family trip to Trout Lodge YMCA of the Ozarks. There will be Chipotle food cards and Missouri Botanical Garden ticket giveaways. Well, there is too much to list here so take a look at the article and ad on pages 4 and 5. But if you are reading this column, you have to come see for yourself. You will go home healthier and happier! Come one, come all, to the greatest show on earth — The Healthy Planet Natural Living Expo Oct. 1.

Speaking of eclipses, I am writing this column the day after the total solar eclipse that passed over much of the St. Louis area. I am lucky enough to live in Webster Groves where we had no clouds and 1:15 seconds of totality. Instead of driving half an hour in traffic for a minute more of darkness, we just set up our chairs in the front yard and settled in with our Schlafly Helles Lager especially brewed for the Solar Eclipse. Surrounded by my two adult daughters, my wife and my future son-in-law we sat and starred into the August sky. It was an extremely hot day with a few random clouds floating by just close enough to make us wonder if one of those fluffy fellows would rain on our eclipse parade. But alas, twas not to be as on time and predicted by scientists (and perhaps a higher power) our tiny moon slipped ever so gently and yet ceremoniously between the earth and the sun creating a total solar eclipse. Temperature dropped, cicadas sang, stars shined, and I saw one very confused butterfly flying in circles. Other neighbors were also viewing from chairs in their yards and at the moment of totality, a cheer erupted from not only our family but from enthusiasts up and down the street. We got chills from the sight. I have to admit, it was one of the most amazing things I have witnessed in my 66 years. And it hasn’t happened like this since 1442. And I have to let you know that in my last column I mixed my historic dates and events by saying that Columbus had landed in 1492 at Plymouth Rock. And of course the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock in 1620. In 1492 Columbus landed on one of the Caribbean islands now known as the Bahamas. So my apologies and thank you to the woman who wrote to me pointing out my mistake. And my apologies also to my 2nd grade history teacher who taught me better. Nonetheless, now that history has been corrected and restored, that was one heck of an eclipse and I am so glad to have experienced it with my family. Where were you during the Total Solar Eclipse of 2017? It will be the new big question. It might even surpass, “Where did you go to high school?”

The thought of having a business leader as president has its merits. But the key word is “leader”. Leadership means so much more than making money. Great leaders have the ability to inspire and manage people, not blame and bully them. Every so often history engages in a social experiment. And elections have to deal with the results of its existing rules. Right now we have a president who is trying to fit into his office like a size 12 foot into a size 9 shoe. And he needs more than a shoehorn. He needs a magic mirror and a slice of humble pie.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the many people who are suffering from the floods in Texas and surrounding areas. We hope for a speedy recovery for all and we ask that everyone help in any way they can. Check with the Red Cross to see what you can do, www.redcross.org/Disaster-Relief/Hurricane.

Totally Eclipsed, J.B. Lester, Publisher