The Other NFL


Pork. The Other White Meat was on the menu Saturday night.

After an afternoon of judging at the National Forensic League’s Eastern Iowa District Congress tournament at West Middle School in Muscatine, I was in the mood to fix dinner at home.  More on the tournament in a bit.

I headed to the newly remodeled Hy-Vee, where I bought some asparagus, potatoes and two pork chops rolled and stuffed with apples and raisin. I brought it all home, baked the chops and the potatoes, steamed the asparagus and sauteed some onion, a red pepper and a green apple. If I say so myself, it was pretty good. Thanks to the staff at the Hy-Vee meat counter for recommending the pork chops, which were on sale for $2 each.

The other NFL …

Let me just say, there are some smart high school students in southeast Iowa.

Back in the day, my high school did not have a forensics team. Or, at least if it did, I didn’t participate. So I didn’t really know what I was getting into when Anna Payne, a math teacher and the head forensics coach at Muscatine High School, asked earlier in the week if I would help judge.

But from 1:15 to 4:15 p.m., there I sat, listening to a dozen or so students debate bills they had written on subjects ranging from a proposed tax on heavily caffeinated beverages to increased aid to Nigeria to help the African nation improve its water supply.

I judged alongside the forensics coach from Columbus Junction High School, and the coach from Burlington High School, who oversaw the whole exercise. My old reporter skills have really slipped, because I didn’t write down either of their names and now I don’t remember them. But I’d like to thank them for their patience while I figured out what the heck I was doing.

It’s safe to say I may have learned more today than many of the students did. They were an impressive bunch.

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