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I t's a fact that life can be more bizarre than anything we might contrive.

Take that story the other day about a 66-year-old deer hunter from Yellville who (how best to describe this?) met his own sudden demise as the hunted.

Thomas Alexander was hunting alone about sunset when he shot a buck. That sounds like good news until he approached the presumed-dead animal that unexpectedly arose and gored him several times.

I'm still trying to imagine the disbelief he must have felt at the moment that buck attacked with sharp antlers flailing.

Alexander was able to call his wife for help, who summoned 911. The man soon was discovered suffering from puncture wounds.

Emergency medical technicians transported Alexander to Baxter Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. According to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, an autopsy determined that previous medical conditions were complicated by the deer attack, resulting in his death.

The commission's Keith Stephens said while this sort of incident is rare, it's not entirely unheard of. A hunter in Ashley County survived a deer attack a few years back. His advice: Wait before approaching a downed deer to determine if it's breathing.

Is it really healthy?

I n my quest for a new, healthier lifestyle, I brought home a package of cauliflower pizza crust the other day. My reasoning was vegetables are far better for a Type II diabetic than chips loaded with refined white flour or corn.

Popping the crust into the oven for several minutes, I left it a bit longer than required in hopes the results would become more "chippy," so to speak, than soft and chewy. In my tiny brain, using sliced portions of the cooked crust as chips with guacamole was about as healthy as it gets for snacking.

Soon, out came the cauliflower followed by the rolling pizza slicer, and within minutes I had a plastic bag full of alternatives to fat and calorie-laden corn chips. The flavor was fine, the chips dipped well. I was feeling almost intelligent.

Then I read the pop physician Dr. Mehmet Oz and his partner-in-columnizing Dr. Michael Roizen, who almost burst my bubble. They said not all cauliflower crusts are the same.

Although often billed as a low-carb alternative to flour, the cauliflower versions (depending on the fine print of ingredients) can contain up to 26 grams of carbs in every slice, and about 170 calories a slice. That's close to the same as a regular pizza.

So I scurried to the freezer and checked my crust's ingredients. Whew! Cauliflower was listed first (rather than tapioca or cassava, both high in carbs). Oh, and don't forget to check for added sugars; mine, from Walmart, had zero.

Bottom line, valued readers, to protect oneself, become ever vigilant. Truth and integrity in many instances, even regarding what we can healthfully consume, have been erased from the almighty commercial equation.

Four in 10 stressed

G etting as burned out (downright fried) as I am over the nonstop and relentless political spewing from the mainstream media? We are not alone.

A University of Nebraska survey discovered nearly four in every 10 of us are stressed out by politics. Twenty percent are actually losing sleep, becoming fatigued or even depressed over the endless strife and political posturing. An equal percentage say they have damaged friendships due to political discussions. That's a real shame.

I read a few ideas about how to deal with these daily stressors that can negatively affect one's health and well-being.

First, turn off any phone news alerts, then limit the amount of time you expose your mind to the relentless drumbeat of political news and flagrant propaganda.

Finally, politely ask friends who want to discuss politics to change the subject to topics such as what's been happening in life, what good foods they've enjoyed lately, or perhaps the best movies or television programs of late. Anything but the gut-churning political topics that today lead nowhere but into a dark well of negativity.

Well, you can also turn to exercise and yoga or meditation. How about prayers that this juvenile mayhem mercifully comes to an end?

Classes in finance

W hile on current events, I strongly agree with the suggestion that high school students in Arkansas and nationwide be required to take personal finance management courses as part of their curriculum.

With student debt at staggering new heights and many college graduates deep in financial quicksand because they ignorantly or misguidedly used credit cards to far overextend their realistic capacity, it makes sense for our schools to begin offering such courses in high school, perhaps even earlier.

Our younger generation should understand the sobering ramifications of misusing credit cards so thoughtfully sent to them in an evil tactic that can bind them financially for decades.

Now go out into the world and treat everyone you meet exactly like you want them to treat you.


Mike Masterson is a longtime Arkansas journalist, was editor of three Arkansas dailies and headed the master's journalism program at Ohio State University. Email him at

Editorial on 11/03/2019


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