Cool, Man!

Ronnie Mincey

Mincey’s Musings
Year One, Week Thirty-Six

Many people follow the “five second rule”. It goes something like this—if something is dropped on the floor and remains less than five seconds, it is fine to retrieve for consumption by the human body. This holds especially true when referring to the last chip in the bag.

I can remember instances of those who followed the “no second rule”. The people who presently come to mind are those who worried about cleanliness to the point of obsession. These people were mysophobes, germophobes, or bacterophobes, or perhaps all three rolled into one. In simple English, these people feared germs.

When I was in elementary school, there was the annual onslaught of the mumps. I contracted mine in the second grade when I was seven years old. My glands swelled and I couldn’t stand the smell of food, but other than that it was a two week vacation from school. My father was in the hospital at the time, and my mother left during the day to stay with him. Until she returned at nightfall, I was left in the care of my Aunt Lidia. Oh, what rapture to have those days all to myself with that wonderful saint!

Aunt Lidia was no germophobe. Someone recently related to me that Aunt Lidia occasionally used to visit their home. The lady of the house would get quite upset because Aunt Lidia would take a spoon and taste whatever was cooking on the stove, perhaps using the same spoon more than once in different vessels. The lady never said anything to Aunt Lidia, but she never ate what Aunt Lidia tasted. She did serve it to the rest of her family, however.

Aunt Lidia was an avid scholar of the Scriptures. She would sometimes become so absorbed that she forgot household chores like keeping the fire in the Warm Morning™ stove. The fire would go out, the house would get cool, and Aunt Lidia would rouse herself from her studies and try to rebuild the fire. In the process, she would get ashes all over the floor.

On one such occasion, the Rev. Ben H. Knisley, then pastor of Maynardville Baptist Church, came to visit. Preacher Knisley was the first regularly visiting preacher I ever knew, and even then he was seemingly the last of a dying breed. The fire was out, the ashes were on the floor, but Preacher Knisley and his wife Fern took no notice. They began a discussion of the Bible which was continuing when my mother came home. She said she was never so ashamed in her life, but she never mentioned her embarrassment to Aunt Lidia or let on to the preacher and his Mrs. that anything was wrong.

Neither Aunt Lidia nor my mother had contracted mumps. We all three slept in the bed in the living room, me in the middle. Mother worried that Aunt Lidia would catch them from me and that it might kill her in her advanced age.

So, what did Preacher Knisley find on his next visit? Dad was out of the hospital, Aunt Lidia had moved on to her next temporary destination, and Mother was in bed with the mumps. I couldn’t understand why Preacher Knisley didn’t want to go into the bedroom and visit her! Mother later said she had never been so sick in her life.
Remarkably, I endured the rest of my childhood, never suffering from two other common diseases that kept lots of kids from school, chicken pox and measles. I did have chicken pox when I was twenty-seven years old and teaching fifth grade at Luttrell Elementary. A mother of one of my students called me at home to tell me that her son wouldn’t be in school because he had chicken pox. I told her not to worry, that I had them, too! As a matter of fact, I secretly gave full credit for my dilemma to that very student.

And there were other childhood traumas to endure. There continues to this day the occasional outbreak of head lice. When I was in elementary school, my dad insisted that I wear a “burr” haircut. This had its advantage—when our class was checked for lice, my hair was so short that no decent louse would have bothered to attach itself to the scant hair that remained on my head.

But it also had its disadvantages. I was thinking earlier today of the beautiful girl who transferred into our sixth grade class. She sat behind me—we were assigned the last two seats in the row closest to the bulletin board and water fountain. She would rub my head and ask me, tauntingly, “Do you have to use shampoo or can you just rub a washcloth over your head?”

Remember Barbara Mandrell’s song, “I Was Country, When Country Wasn’t Cool”? I wore a burr when they weren’t cool. Burrs later came back into style (somewhat), and those funny eyeglass frames I wore did as well. Too bad that beautiful girl didn’t realize I was just ahead of the times!

Along with head lice came another scourge, the dreaded scabies, otherwise known as “the itch”. I remember a classmate, also in our sixth grade class, who was an unfortunate victim of this ailment. She was unceremoniously removed from our class. The teacher (a true germophobe) held by the pinkie and forefinger everything this girl owned, schoolbooks included, and sprayed them with Lysol®. I tried this at home while playing school, but I didn’t use Lysol®--I was innovative and used Arid Extra Dry® deodorant. That old fourth grade math book sure did smell good for a while.

While I was in college, I took a summer history course. A fellow student, also a teacher in one of our local systems, always wore his suit coat so he could put his hand in his pocket to turn the doorknob so he wouldn’t have to touch it with his bare hand. Before sitting at his desk, he would spread a handkerchief across the surface as a barrier between himself and the germs other students might have left.

Next week I’ll share with you the tale of a germophobe who couldn’t get along with my father. Until then, remember this bit of wisdom gleaned from email:

A whale swims all day, only eats fish, and drinks water, but is still obese!




A Universe of Stories

Maynardville Public Library Director Chantay Collins and Assistant Mandi Suddath

Maynardville Public Library has kicked off their Annual Summer Reading Program, A Universe of Stories. Reading is made fun with creative ways to earn prizes, rewards, and many perks of online programs. All ages are invited to join in on the program, youth and adult.

Tripping and Rolling

For most people, it would be a traumatic and possibly dangerous experience. To me, it was another one of my unexpected trips. Pun intended.

It happened at the end of gym class my sophomore year of high school. We didn’t dress out that day, instead we played a game of no rules basketball. When the first dismissal bell rung, I ran back up to the very top of the bleachers to get my folders. My friends and I had been sitting up there before we joined into the basketball game.

Salty Baked Potato

Whenever we are grilling out, I hate to take space for baked potatoes. Yes, they taste great cooked on the grill, but there is an easier way to do them. Just dip them in egg whites, sprinkle with coarse salt and pop them in the oven. The egg white holds the salt crystals in place and seasons the potato. You might think that is too much salt, but it isn't. Don't eat the skin if you have a problem with salt, but I do because I don't. They look pretty on the plate as well.

Childhood Memories (Not Made in Tennessee)

Hi Oh Silver, Away!!!

I was looking at an old picture not too long ago and it was like having a time machine. The picture was of me in cowboy get-up. At the sake of dating myself, I loved the old westerns on TV: Rifleman, Wagon Train, Maverick, Death Valley Days, Zorro, the ones in black and white, during what some call the Golden Age of Television. There I am in the picture, my best sheriff pose, gazing into the camera on Christmas morning. This was in Alaska; Ft. Richardson, to be exact.

The Ultimate Head Fake


I’m not talking about basketball. I’m talking about a concept known as “deepfakes”. The term comes from combining the concept of “deep learning” with the word “fakes”. It’s one of the latest emerging technologies to burst onto the scene, and you should be worried about it.

Bean and Pasta Salad

There are a jillion bean and pasta salads out there. They are all a little different and good, too. This one is a bit different from the rest. The celery is partially cooked. The onion is marinated in white vinegar. All of that does make a difference. Try it and see what you think. You can use any combination of canned beans, even add green beans, if you like. Mix it up.

David McCollough Celebrates 30 Years

David McCollough, State Farm Agent

In June 2019, David McCollough celebrated thirty years in the insurance industry. David is a State Farm Agent in Maynardville, Tennessee. He grew up in South Alabama with hardworking parents who taught him the importance of working to achieve your goals. David graduated from Troy University with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree. He has three children who live close by in beautiful East Tennessee; Jake, Abby, and John David.

George Jones Tribute Concert

This Saturday, June 15, clear your calendar and take a beautiful drive into Sharps Chapel for an evening of music and festivities at the George Jones Tribute Concert. The fun filled, family event will be held at the Sharps Chapel Community Park from 6:00 – 9:00pm with festival seating, so don’t forget to bring your lawn chair!

One of My Stunts

It seemed like any other Sunday afternoon. That was until Sara and I hopped out of the car.

Down the back driveway, my stepfather Dick came barreling toward us in his truck. He and my mom lived behind us on top of the hill. I realized he had been watching and waiting for us to arrive back home from chirper choir. That told me something had happened.

The first thing I noticed was that my mom wasn’t with him. Fear and uncertainty slowly crept up my spine. Had something happened her? And if so, why wasn’t Dick with her?


Wine and Wreaths

Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 18:00

Thursdays just got so much better!
Join us at The Winery every Thursday for
amazing drink specials and exciting activities.

In June, join us for a fun Wine and Wreaths event.
During this class, get ready for 4th of July by crafting a wreath while enjoying a glass of wine. Various ribbons are available so you can make the wreath your own. The class is only
$25 and includes all the materials needed as well as the glass of wine. Tickets must be purchased in advance by calling The Winery at (865)745-2902.

Union County Board Of Education

Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 18:00

The next regular workshop and meeting of the Union County Board of Education will be held on Thursday, June 20, 2019 at 6:00 p.m. at Union County High School. The workshop will begin at 6:00 p.m. with the meeting immediately to follow.



Area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders

Thursday, June 27, 2019 - 07:30
Area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders

"We invite all area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders to come together on the last Thursday of each month at Hardee's at 7:30 am. This is to be a time of fellowship, prayer, and discussion about how we as a community of Faith can work together to have a positive impact on our county. All are welcome!" For more information please contact Kathy Chesney at 865-566-3289.

CEASE inc., Paint and Pour

Friday, June 28, 2019 - 18:30

CEASE, inc. will be hosting a Paint and Pour event at Seven Springs Winery at 6:00 PM on June 28th. Participants will take a painting class while sipping on wine. The cost of the ticket includes the painting class, all supplies needed for the class, and the first glass of wine. Tickets are on sale for $45.00. Tickets are limited, so get yours today! We're going to have a great time and this event benefits a great cause, providing assistance to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault! Call 865-745-3002, connect with CEASE inc.


Jenny Lou Holt Byrd

Jenny Lou Holt Byrd, age 88, of Maynardville, TN passed away on Monday, June 17, 2019. She was a longtime member of Clear Springs Baptist Church. Jenny enjoyed scrapbooking, crocheting, and gardening. She is retired from K-Mart after 27 years. She is preceded in death by husband of 68 years, Charles Byrd; mother Grace Fortner Holt Chamberlain and father Clifford Holt.

Charles Edward Green

Charles Green – He often said, “Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to die.” And on June 15, 2019, Charles Edward Green, loving husband and father of two children, went to Heaven at the age of 70 in Maynardville. Charlie was born on January 15, 1949 in Kingsport, Tennessee to Roy and Willnette Green. In 1970 his son, Johnathon Edward was born. He married Kimberly (Kim) Jones 31 years ago and raised one son together, Samuel Roy. Charlie had many passions including motorcycles, 60’s & 70’s R&B music and hamburgers.

Donna Jo (Chesney) Rogers

Donna Jo (Chesney) Rogers-age 74 of Sharps Chapel passed away Saturday, June 15, 2019 at Claiborne Medical Center. She was preceded in death by husband, Marsillus Isaac (Skeeter) Rogers.

Survivors: son, Joe Rogers, daughter, Angela Buege; granddaughter, Kelly Buege; instant granddaughter, Jennifer Housewright.

Arrangements for a memorial service are pending at this time. Cooke-Campbell Mortuary, Maynardville in charge.

David Wayne Tolliver

David Wayne Tolliver-age 72 of Sharps Chapel went to be with the Lord, Friday afternoon, June 14, 2019 at his home with his wife and family at his side. He was a member and Deacon of Leatherwood Baptist Church. Retired employee of Union County Highway Department and also had a love of farming, hunting and fishing. Preceded in death by parents, Andrew and Lillie Tolliver; parents-in-law, Bob and Ethel Buchanan; sister-in-law, Shirley Tolliver.

Tyler Wayne Atkins

Tyler Wayne Atkins-age 24 of Luttrell passed away Friday, June 14, 2019. He was preceded in death by mother, Misty Dawn (Nankervis) Atkins; brother, Matthew Atkins; grandfather, Jerry Nankervis; special grandmother, Bonnie DeVault.

Survivors: father, Chris Atkins; sister, Gracie Nankervis; grandparents, Gary and Phyllis Atkins; grandmother, Connie Condry; papaw, Jimmy DeVault; uncles, Jimmy (Julie) DeVault, Jr., Shawn and Shea Condry, Jerry and Cory Nankervis. Several cousins and other family members.

Audy B. Keck

Audy B. Keck-age 72 of Sharps Chapel went home to be with the Lord after a long battle with cancer Thursday evening, June 13, 2019 at his home. Audy had a testimony of faith in the Lord, Jesus and was of the Baptist belief. He was a member of the Union County Rescue Squad. Preceded in death by parents, Warmer and Linda Keck; brothers, W. T., Joe, Jimmy and Harley Keck; sister-in-law, Nancy Keck; brothers-in-law, J. B. Stansberry and Jim Hayes.

Dorothy "Dot" Knott

Dorothy “Dot” Knott began her new journey June 13, 2019 with family at her side; Leaving behind daughters, Virginia Smothers (Mark), Deborah Hill, Lisa Gerard (Jeremy), step-daughter Donna Fisher, treasured grandkids and great-grandkids, as well as, her beloved Rocky Hill Baptist Church family and many other special friends. Family will receive friends 5:00-7:00pm Monday, June 17, 2019, at Rocky Hill Baptist Church with service to follow at 7:00pm, Dr. Scott Whaley officiating. Family and friends will meet 10:45am Tuesday, June 18, 2019, at Rocky Hill Cemetery for an 11:00am interment.

Erwin Lynn Berry

Erwin Lynn Berry – age 64 of Sharps Chapel, went home to be with the Lord on Sunday, June 9, 2019. He was a member and deacon of Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church. Erwin was an employee of Pilot Corporation for 38 years.

Eva Jean Lawson

Eva Jean Lawson – 59, born August 18, 1959 to Cecil and Thelma “Judy” Branham in Welch, West Virginia, passed away June 11, 2019 after a courageous battle with cancer. She married the love of her life, Roy E. Lawson in Monroe, Michigan on June 22, 1984. She was a nuclear security officer at Fermi II plant for 23 years and also a security officer at Monroe High School for 8 years.

Paul L. Llewellyn Obituary

Paul L. Llewellyn, age 74, of Knoxville, passed away on June 9, 2019.
Paul will be remembered as a loving and devoted husband. He was a Harley Davidson enthusiast and member of the Blue Hawks. He also loved animals, especially his dog Lucy.
Preceded in death by mother and father Addie and Tate Llewellyn; 3 sisters and 4 brothers.

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