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Thursday, March 7, 2024
Good morning to you!

Welcome to an extra edition of the mailbag where you will find some of the comments, questions and ideas sent recently by subscribers of this newsletter or our publications. They are edited for space and clarity.

“Shane, thank you for sharing this (Phil Bode, Feb. 19, 2024). We're a wrestling family, and the lessons both our sons learned throughout their youth to high school and college wrestling careers helped mold them into the young men they are today.” - Jeff

It may be something that only wrestlers understand, but that’s OK. - Shane

“Hate to be morbid, Shane, but EVERYONE should have their funeral plans and a will done (Better late than never, Feb. 28, 2024).” - Jim

That’s not morbid. Just real. - Shane

“Good morning, Shane. An odd result of a recent vacation was that we were so busy we could not take the time after lunch to ‘rest’ (aka nap) (Better late than never, Feb. 28, 2024). This resulted in a much better night's sleep. So today I'll avoid putting myself in a position to ‘rest’ and instead go to the gym.” - John

Just make sure you don’t “rest” at the gym. - Shane

“Shane, your article about back-in parking struck a note with me (Whittemore-style parking, Feb. 14, 2024). My brother-in-law and others from the military call it combat-ready.” - Dennis

I hope I never accidentally door-ding your brother-in-law. - Shane

“I had to chuckle at your haircut story (Individualism, Feb. 27, 2024). Upon arriving at Ft. Knox, Kentucky, in 1970, they soon lined all the newbies up in front of the barber shop. They gave each one a piece of paper divided into four squares, with four different hair styles numbered 1-4. You were told when you got into the chair to shout out the number of the hair style you wanted. Of course, when you came out the back door, all had the same hair cut — pretty much SHAVED, like it or not!” - Alan

I see the benefit in that uniformity, but even the U.S. Army has loosened up its “hair and appearance guidelines” that now permit parts cut into the hair, sideburns, hair highlights and wigs. And those are just the policies for men. - Shane

“Shane, I would really appreciate you sharing the hot herbal nighttime tea that helps with sleep. (Better late than never, Feb. 28, 2024). Sleep can be hard to come by some nights, and this sounds like a simple yet healthy solution. Thank you.” - Kris

It’s called Maker’s Mark, and it works like magic! I’m teasing. Kind of. Actually, I prefer the nighttime teas with chamomile and mint — and no caffeine. - Shane

“When I was a freshman in college in the dorms, a guy put toothpaste into the keyhole of my neighbor's lock (Pranks, March 5, 2024). My neighbor came back to go into his room after his first morning class, and his key wouldn't go in the hole. He was locked out. He had his books/homework for his upcoming math class in his room. He was cussing up a storm. He had to get the dorm director to replace the lock. We laugh about it today (30-plus years later), but my neighbor was furious.” - David

I don't want to hear what he did with the dental floss. - Shane

Have a thoughtful Thursday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman
President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

See Shane Goodman's previous columns here.


Your Clear Mortgage forecast

Rain chances begin again this evening and last into early Friday afternoon. A little warming into next week.

For help with pre-approvals or refinancing, get in touch with Originating Branch Manager Carrie Hansen at carrie.mortgage.

CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines®
The results have been tallied and published in the February issue of CITYVIEW and online!


Best Local Bakery

1. La Mie Bakery

2. ChaCha’s Hiland Bakery

3. Nash’s Confections

Read all the results now!


Carousel Theatre of Indianola. “Death of a Salesman,” March 8-15.

Ballet Des Moines. WORLD PREMIERE, “Love Letters,” March 8-9 at Hoyt Sherman Place.

Tallgrass Theatre Company. “Broadway Karaoke,” Saturday, March 9, 7 p.m. 

The Des Moines Community Playhouse has added a performance of “Dragons Loves Tacos” on Saturday, March 9, at 7 p.m. Tickets for this and the originally scheduled performances can be purchased online at www.dmplayhouse.com

— John Busbee, The Culture Buzz

Featured home for sale
Attention, Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.


21827 T Ave., Dallas Center, IA 50063

Now offering $10, 000 credit towards rate buydown. This is truly what dreams are made of! This massive modern farmhouse sits on just under 7 acres and boasts 2,800 square feet of living. The home maintains its original, 1881 bones but has been remodeled from top to bottom. The second you pull up, you'll be in awe with the new siding, windows and roof as well as the front porch.

See the listing here.

See More Homes For Sale
From the March issue of CITYVIEW

The 50 greatest rock songs of all time

By Jackie Wilson

When you think of rock music, what songs come to mind? What tunes provide blistering beats that make you curl your lip, nod your head up and down, and pound your fist to the rhythm? Is it the shredding guitar riff or a low bass dance beat? Or are your fingers strumming, air-guitaring on your outstretched thigh to the driving tune?

Regardless of the musical hook that got you into the groove, this deep everlasting love of the music depends on the first time you experienced a rock song you wanted to listen to over and over. Once you bought the album, attended the concert or joined the fan club, you were doubly hooked.


Sometimes the grass is actually greener under your feet. According to National Restaurant Association data, only 33% of adults think the economy is good or great in the nation but 55% think it’s good or great in their home town.

As we told you last month, steakhouses are finally as busy as they were in 2019, but many more customers are ordering something other than steak. Ruth's Chris Steakhouse (950 Jordan Creek Parkway, West Des Moines) is promoting National Crab Day Saturday with crab cake specials. They also are promoting halibut March 11-17; grouper March 18-24; and scallops with lobster sauce March 25-30.

Specials: Machine Shed (11151 Hickman Road, Urbandale) now has a pork (tenderloin) and noodles special on Thursdays... Dam Pub (2710 Beaver Ave., Des Moines) has goulash on Thursdays, plus $2 cans of beer.

— Jim Duncan, jd91446@aol.com

Keep Iowa Beautiful photo contest winners

ABOVE: Iowa Landscapes, Honorable Mention: “Springtime Storm,” by Heather Johnson of Ankeny

Keep Iowa Beautiful has announced the winners of the 14th Annual Keep Iowa Beautiful Photography Contest, aimed at raising awareness of Iowa's natural and environmental beauty.  To see all the winning photos, visit Keep Iowa Beautiful.

Send your photos of beautiful sights in Iowa to tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com.


FROM KCCI: Iowa House passes bill that would require parents' permission for kids to create social media accounts

DES MOINES, Iowa — A bill that would give parents more control over their kid's social media accounts passed the Iowa House Wednesday afternoon. Lawmakers voted to pass House File 2523, which would require social media companies to get written permission from a parent or guardian before allowing a minor to create an account. Companies would also be required to give guardians access to that minor's account. ...READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: Top of truck sheared off after hitting bridge in Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa — The top of a high-profile truck was sheared off after crashing into a bridge in Des Moines Wednesday afternoon. According to the Des Moines Police Department, the driver of the truck attempted to pass under the 2nd Avenue Bridge at Birdland Drive despite the several low clearance warning signs. The truck was too tall and crashed into the bridge. ..READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: Des Moines man and registered sex offender charged for attempting to entice a child

The suspect allegedly approached a child who was waiting for the school bus and offered them a ride to school....READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

Weekly fuel report

• The price of regular unleaded gasoline rose 5 cents, averaging $3.06 across Iowa according to AAA. Prices are down 9 cents from a year ago. The national average on Wednesday was $3.29, up 2 cents from last week’s price.

• Retail diesel prices in Iowa fell 3 cents this week with a statewide average of $3.80. One year ago, diesel prices averaged $3.99 in Iowa. The current Iowa diesel price is 27 cents lower than the national average of $4.07.

• Wholesale ethanol held steady and is currently priced at $2.16.

• Propane prices averaged $1.59 per gallon statewide.

• Home heating oil prices averaged $3.14 per gallon statewide.

• Natural gas prices rose 10 cents at the Henry Hub reporting site and are currently priced at $1.86/MMbtu.


Birthdays and notables

Happy Birthday Karla Host and Nicole Berger!

These celebrities were born on this date: Amanda Gorman, Bret Easton Ellis, Bryan Cranston, Jonathan Del Arco, Wanda Sykes, Jenna Fischer, Mary Earps, Laura Prepon, Rachel Weisz, Sarah Squirm, Jordan Pickford

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to: tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Morning chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:

What happened after a lion and a tiger escaped the zoo with a Jaguar? THEY GOT PULLED OVER FOR DRIVING WITHOUT A LICENSE (or some other answer where the Jaugar is a car.) - D Dolde, Gail Tomlinson. Diane Berry, Rex Post.  (Shane Goodman pointed out that, for my riddle answer to work, "Jaguar" should have been capitalized.) Without capitalization, the best answer seems to be A CATASTROPHE! - Clare Baker.

Today's riddle

Why did zookeepers name the new arctic wolf "Frost"?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com


To advertise in the Daily Umbrella or Ankeny, Altoona and Bondurant Living magazines, contact:

Angela Ossian
Account Executive
Office: 515-953-4822 ext. 307
Mobile: 515-979-5585

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