By Jack Hackley
I am amazed at how, unlike our state and national legislators, the county commissioners seem to get along great, even though sometimes you have two Republicans and a Democrat.
The following letter is from Bob Mitchell, a Democrat, while both Harland Meiser and Jim Strodtman, his fellow commissioners are Republican:
I like your articles. Keep-em coming!
In your last article, you were talking about politicians, and how unavailable they were. You mentioned that county commissioners were the exception. You mentioned Jim Strodtman as your favorite example of a very good presiding commissioner. I couldn’t agree more. Jim, and Harland Meiser (Concordia), and myself made a pretty good team, and Jim was the strongest of us three. I have a good story about Jim. It is my favorite.
We three commissioners were going to the monthly commissioners meeting in the Missouri community of California. We left early, and took our golf clubs. The meeting would be over about 3 p.m., and we would have enough time to get in nine holes, and still have time to get home.
Like most golfers, Jim had a little trouble keeping his ball in the fairway. He hit one into a neighboring pasture. It was in plain sight, and very tempting to go over and retrieve it. Jim had stepped over many a barbed wire fence so that was not a problem.
The biggest problem was the owner was irrigating the pasture. It was a hot day, and we had a few holes left so a little water would be a welcome relief. Over the fence he went.
He walked over to his ball, and picked it up, all the time getting sprayed with the irrigation water. I’m sure it felt good! When he got to the green, Harland and I noticed a definite odor. The owner of the pasture was pumping out a hog lagoon! Jim had smelled hogs all his life, and said very little.
We had to ride back for two hours. We put him in the back seat, and rolled the windows down. I bet Marlene was happy with him when he got home.
Those eight years that I spent on the commission were good years, but I remember trying to put out more fires than I do funny stories like this one. Jim and Harland were good to work with, and I believe that we accomplished good things for Lafayette County.
Keep up the good work, and best wishes. – Bob Mitchell
Jack can be reached at PO Box 40, Oak Grove, MO 64075 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.jackremembers.com