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What 4-letter words can do

by Susan Holland | December 6, 2022 at 5:00 a.m.

A friend asked me, "Did you know in that last 'cuff in November you used a wrong four-letter word?"

"Ah, surely not," I answered ... . but there it was; there it is.

Do you remember when you were a child using four-letter words could get you into trouble? Did that come from your parents, your grandparents, your aunts and uncles and even friendly neighbors? And do you remember when they advised you to realize police officers were friends and protect us from crime and bad things? Sorry, I got off track but doesn't it seem that had completely turned over and police outta be gotten rid of so many places? Let's get back to four-letter words.

There it was, there it is in last 'cuff and it deserves being explained and corrected... I had planned to have this 'cuff discuss a situation we all fall into twice a year whether we want to or not. But I do have to explain that four-letter word. Hopefully you didn't even notice it, or maybe brushed it aside. It was in the last sentence of the 'cuff and it was added just to put a finish to the column. What is not good is the old 'cuffer didn't even notice it when he read the column before sending it to the paper.

Do you remember those cold days that hit Westside Eagle Observer country in October and word was going around that the coldest temperature ever in Arkansas had been reached? Was it 17 degrees? I don't remember, but I did remember one time not too many years ago it had been colder in the area than that. So what did I do? I went back and dug through all of the October days from 1926 to the present. Now there are 31 days in October and there are 96 years (on page weather reports) for each month to look over: Two thousand, nine hundred and seventy-six (2,976) cold temperature pages to check. I don't recommend it. There are those daggum Robo phone calls, the doorbell rings and especially "come and get your lunch." Let's just say it took a while. Here's what I found.

Starting on page one in 1926 through all page ones through 2022 the coldest page one temp was 28 degrees in 1985. The coldest page two was 31 in Oct. 28, 1952. The coldest Oct. 3 was 32 in 1987. Oct. 4 was 31 in 1931 and on and on and ...

It's hard to believe that only eight dates show temps of 20 degrees and lower during 96 years, but October actually has many nice warm days until November comes along. Here are the eight dates: Twenty degrees, Oct. 26, 1956, and Oct. 30, 1995; nineteen degrees both Oct. 28 and 29 in 1957; eighteen degrees Oct. 29, 1952, and Oct. 29, 1989; seventeen degrees on Oct. 19, 2022 (sound familiar?) and finally the coldest of all, fifteen degrees Oct. 31, 1993. Did all those dates and figures get tangled up? I triple-checked them.

But what is that four-letter word which messed up the final sentence of the November 'cuff? Here is what it said: "Enough of that, but just remember the coldest October date ever at the local station (in Gravette) was 15 degrees below zero on Oct. 30, 1993. Until next time." There it was, did you get it? It was that big ZERO which should have been eight letters, "freezing." And to make it worse the date said Oct. 30 and it should have said 31. Where in the devil was that old gray stuff? Maybe gray is a four-letter word that needs some thinking.

Thanks to all 'cuff readers who waded through the above 'cuff. The other topic I had planned for this one was about something that gets the entire country on its toes or buried in confusion. It'll have to wait until next time. Okay?

Dodie Evans is the former owner and longtime editor of the Gravette News Herald. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

Print Headline: What 4-letter words can do

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