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Well, it’s back to work and back to writing about conservative values on my blog. All of this Christmas holiday cheer and food has caused me to gain a few pounds and have more than one case of indigestion. Many people are suffering from poor eating decisions during this special time of year, resulting in soaring sales of products such as Pepto Bismol to help with such things. 

Such is the case that during a recent trip to go shopping…or shall I say, “Returning”…I was in the men’s room when one of the many shoppers in that facility had a dire emergency. This poor guy was in a stall that was insufficiently stocked with tissue. After asking for help from others in adjoining stalls, it was soon discovered that each stall had a lock box around the individual tissue supply, preventing anyone from extracting a roll of tissue and sending it to the man in need. 

After having finished washing my hands, over-hearing the call for help I sprang into action and left the men’s room in search of a suitable alternative. Not able to find any maintenance personnel for the facility, I thought about a story my father told me about depression-era necessities, one of which was the Sears catalog. It seems that many of poor folks in that time (Dad included) had a secondary use for the giant Sears catalog, of which use was in lieu of toilet tissue. This gave me an idea.

I proceeded to the news stand in the mall in hopes of finding a suitable solution to the problem had by the man in the stall.  After all, I told him that I would return in short order, and the clock was ticking. As I approached the news stand in the mall, I eyeballed a copy of a merchandise catalog. Thinking this would do the trick, I picked up a copy and saw a modest price of one dollar for the catalog, refundable with the first purchase from the store represented. Reaching into my pocket, I looked down and noticed that, alongside the catalog, was a copy of The Washington Post.  I paused for a minute then picked up a copy of the post before paying for the catalog. I thumbed through the pages quickly, with the goal of keeping up on the latest in political events. 

To my surprise, I saw an op-ed piece from one Professor Colman McCarthy, an adjunct professor at Georgetown and several other schools. In it, he criticized Ivy League schools for allowing ROTC and military recruitment on campus. He boldly states his thoughts on our military and the brave men and women who are in it. He states, 

“To oppose ROTC, as I have since my college days in the 1960s, when my school enticed too many of my classmates into joining, is not to be anti-soldier. I admire those who join armies, whether America’s or the Taliban’s: for their discipline, for their loyalty to their buddies and to their principles, for their sacrifices to be away from home. In recent years, I’ve had several Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans in my college classes. If only the peace movement were as populated by people of such resolve and daring. “  

 I quickly put down the merchandise catalog and paid instead for the copy of The Washington Post. Realizing that I had been gone for some time and the clock was ticking on my commitment to the man in that men’s room stall, I quickly rushed back to the store and charged into the men’s room, proudly proclaiming to all who were in there that I had a solution to the man’s problem. After explaining to the man my idea, he agreed that a newspaper would indeed work. Having folded back the paper to read McCarthy’s article, I slipped the paper under the stall door. The man inside yelled, “Thanks!”, and I proceeded to leave the men’s room. 

Standing in a nearby checkout waiting to return some merchandise, I noticed a man exit the men’s room. As he walked by I said to him, “Excuse me, are you the man I handed the newspaper to?” He replied, “Yes, I am. Thank you for being so helpful.” Thinking he may have the same interest in McCarthy’s article that I had, I said to the man, “Did you take a moment to read the article that I had the paper folded to?” He replied to me, “Yes, I did”. 

“In fact”, said the man in his perfectly pressed Service Alphas, “It was the first page I used.”

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