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Lots to talk about this week so let’s get to it.

What do wedding barns, crossbows and ATV/UTV’s have in common? Great ideas that have expanded beyond their original concept. Be it a simple place for wedding, a tool to help handicapped bow hunters or a machine that was created to assist farmers and off-road construction activities, people are beginning to complain that these things have grown too big for their britches. When that happens, regulations are sure to follow. Stay tuned for developments.

The penalty of unsportsmanlike conduct goes to Mr. Austin M. Galindo, 19, of, Lake Hallie and Colton Denning, 20, of Altoona. From newspaper reports: “Galindo shined a trophy buck with a spotlight that Denning shot with his bow and from (a) vehicle off road,” the complaint states.

Denning “knew people from the Chippewa Falls community were familiar with seeing the buck around the city and watching it due to its large rack and unique drop tine.” The deer was a 14-pointer. Galindo got a fine and 1-year suspension of hunting privileges, and Denning got two days in jail and his DNR licenses suspended for six years. (Denning also killed nine deer in October of 2015). Sounds to me both of them have had a lifetime of hunting experience, so why not suspend the hunting privileges forever and let them become fishermen instead? Don’t know of too many people who have shot a 14-pointer.

Big Box Pharmacy: I had been going to the Big Box Pharmacy in Lake Hallie for 35 years or so. So when I heard that they were closing a bunch of stores and pharmacies, I was upset. But when I arrived there several weeks ago the was a sign on the door that said “this pharmacy will not be closing.” Excellent!

Well that turned out to be a lie. For when I asked an employee about the sign she told me that the pharmacy employees knew it was being closed. The sign was placed in the door to ensure that a few more customers would stay a little bit longer. I really like the employees at the Big Box Pharmacy. I do not like being lied to, so I see I will have some choices to make. I want to thank the Big Box Pharmacy employees who have worked there over the years. They were a dedicated group of folks who served their customers well. As to the Big Box store upper, upper management — they can take a hike.

Unfortunately Gordy’s Grocery stores are back in the news. I have to admit to you that I do not fully comprehend why this is so. The world of high finance is equally confusing but it would appear that Gordy’s owes the Nash Finch Company some money, which I and I think others had assumed was settled in the last go around. No one likes to lose a community grocery store or a community business. So hopefully Gordy’s will be able to stay in business.

Is big always better? A couple days before Christmas I was touring a new sanctuary of a local church with my fire department. The building is very impressive and, I must say, inspirational. I asked one of our firefighters who is also a member if a congregation can get too big. He told me yes, he thought it could.

Perhaps all the things covered in this column reflect that view. Things just seem better if there is a “span of control” if you will. Firefighters go by a simple command that you have one company officer per five firefighters. That is why in many organizations, you may have one person for each employee or one manager for a division. The armed forces have a pretty ridged vertical command structure for a reason. Someone needs to know what is going on.

Maybe there is a lesson in that. The bigger an operation becomes the more complex its dealing. The common consumer likes things they can understand. The bigger your enterprise becomes the further away from its core group of customers becomes. So perhaps in many, many ways bigger is not better.

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John R. Andersen of Lake Hallie is a former state employee who remains active in the fields of fire prevention, government and education.


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