A Montanan's Outlook

Mountain Girl in a Midwest Cornfield

Page 3 of 7

Cookies, Cookies, Cookies!

Free Food. We all like the sound of “free” attached to other words, but “free food” tends to interest college students quite a bit. In this case, it was free cookies.

We were given a box of 12 packs of cookies. Plain and simple. Our mission: to give out free cookies where no one had before. But seriously, our goal was to give out free cookies. I ripped open the box of Scooby Snacks and headed over to the activities fair.

It was pouring pretty heavily outside and the number of students walking on campus was pretty small. I hid my box close to my body so that it wouldn’t get soaked, but there wasn’t a soul around to offer cookies to.

After reaching the student center, which is off of Peters Ave, I headed inside to the Yockey room. It was furnished with tables in a U-shape along three walls, with more tables in the center. There were people at the tables talking about their organizations. I set my opened box next to our Alpha Lamba Delta sign and sat in the plastic maroon chair.

There were few people milling about, but Professor John Helms approached my table. I said,

“Good morning Professor Helms. Or afternoon, I guess. I don’t know anymore. do you want some cookies or a glow stick?” He looked at me like I was crazy, then shrugged and said,

“I’m walking around and collecting lunch right now, so I guess I’ll take some cookies.” He picked up one of the purple pouches and dropped it into a plastic cup he was holding. He smiled as he did so, looking up from the cup that now held his cookies. He didn’t look at me like I was crazy anymore but as a normal student.

We’re all crazy though, I guess.

The rain outside stopped a lot of students from coming in, so my box sat untouched for a while. Finally, one student was beyond excited to be offered cookies.

“I’ll just take one…box!” He said as he grabbed the whole thing. His black hair fell in front of his eyes and covered his darker skin as he laughed.

“No, um please just take one,” I stated.

“I know that they are basically our childhood, but don’t take them all. That’s rude,” Grace Russman said. She was laughing a bit too as she sat next to me but made sure he knew that he could only take one. He did, but he looked back at the box as he walked away.

Few people told me no outright, some said yes but then changed their mind when they say the cookie type, and I even had people like Tony Michalski who got way too into the whole “free” idea. Michalski took two during class and threw one at a kid and yelled “Baldy Award!” Not too sure what that means, but he sure enjoyed the free aspect.

All in all, free cookies are easy to give away. They are welcome in the “free food” community around college students and the questions of “do you want some free cookies?” was nearly always met with

“Heck yeah! I love free cookies.”

Rewriting the Lede for Couch Comfort

Original: What are the brothers of the Sigma Chi house hoping to accomplish with the crafty (and perhaps bizarre) placement of living room couches on their front lawn?

Standard Take: The Sigma Chi brothers choose comfort over practicality when it comes to their lawn furniture and choose to leave living room couches in their front lawn, just for the fun of it.

Whimsical Take: Sagging cushions on living rooms couches always seem to perk up in the sun, and the Sigma Chi brothers wouldn’t want to “chill” anywhere else.

It’s All In the Lede

I was scrolling through the New York Times tonight looking for a lede that would grab my attention. I wanted to stay away from the opinion pieces, and the pieces about Trump, and finally a title caught my eye.

I had been looking into the case a tiny bit earlier in the day, and then became ecstatic as I read the lede. It reads, “The morning after her upset political victory, Ayanna Pressley ascended a stage in Dorchester a few blocks from the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, greeting activists who had gathered to unify the party and to see a trailblazer — black, female, Bostonian — now poised to assume the old J.F.K. congressional seat.” It’s from the article Ayanna Pressley’s Victory: A Political Earthquake That Reflects a Changed Boston. 

For me, this lede worked. I am a female fighting for a change in American politics, and here is a female of color doing just that. This lede made me excited. It made me proud of the work we are accomplishing, and it made me want to follow the story more.

In honor of this lede, I am going to try to rewrite it. Bear with me, here goes:

Ayanna Pressley — groundbreaking, black female — upset the Boston political world yesterday and ascended the steps of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library this morning to greet party-unifying activists.

A Look into the Shaggs: Characters, Narrative, and Themes

The Shaggs, in this story, are three young females that formed a band in the late 60’s. They sang together, even though so many of their acquaintances believed that their music was awful. They are described as melancholy looking characters from the 1969 album cover picture they posed for. The girls, managed by their father, lived in Fremont, New Hampshire, a town known for its dull and boring demeanor. They were forced to find a way to claw their way out of the dark, lonely depression of the town.

Later in the story, the Wiggin’s girls are characterized again. Years after their father died and they were finally free to move away and live their lives, they were interviewed. Susan Orlean explains that they are still living close to where their childhood home was, though Betty is described as not having time to care about appearances. They work hard, though the youngest sister Helen still suffers from depression.

The characters in this story are written closer to that of a news story. They are introduced through common names and titles, and the narrative is lacking a dialogue. It does detail the story of how the girls began singing, the fear that their father placed in them if they even thought about quitting, and how they started from nothing and were jeered senselessly. later, the dialogue between Orleans and the sisters becomes more common and begins after the beginning anecdote. The narrative story begins with the story about the characters and their father and then continues into the interview and the after story.

This story tells of a trio that was forced to participate in something they hated because of a father that they feared. That begs the theme of fear itself, and the prison that it can place people in. Fear is a true strength and a weakness, as it is a theme throughout this story. Destiny is another theme within this story, stemming from Austin Wiggins Jr’s belief that the band was his destiny and what he was supposed to do.

This story returns to the beginning. It states that Dot still tries to approach her father’s dream and still participates in music performances, just not with the Shaggs. Orleans concludes her story by stating that the song the girls could never perform to their father’s satisfaction also stated that “you can never please/anybody/in this world.”

Story Ideas for Health and Entitlement

  1. Nursing career on the lives of the actual nurses
    1. Tell the story from their point of view, and how it affects their lives.
  1. Do you use the radio, or do you use a music streaming source
    1. Entitlement to be able to listen to the music they want, when they want.

Spin the Story

According to the Article “New U.S. Sexual Misconduct Rules Bolster Rights of Accused and Protect Colleges” from the New York Times, rights of accused sexual predators are being increased and colleges are being released of some of their responsibility to the victims. Sexual misconduct, especially on college campuses, has become a widespread issue in today’s society. There are so many directions that this story could go, from an emotion pull on the heartstrings to completely factual and objective.

  1. Story on the different attitudes men and women have about campus sexual assault.
    1. Is it a problem? Rights for the accused are being raised, so an emotion/opinion piece on that perspective.
  2. Story on (if willing to share) the process of reporting sexual assault.
    1. It is not easy to reach out, and now that accusers rights are being increased it may be more difficult.
  3. How do you feel about narrowing what is considered sexual assault? A female opinion piece.
  4. Why is sexual assault an issue, especially on college campuses?
  5. Is bolstering rights a way to stop sexual assault at colleges?

5 URGENT Questions

  1. Why can we make steps forward in plastic reduction, but not in the reduction of natural resource use?
  2. Why does hot air rise?
  3. What does racism accomplish?
  4.  Could we go back to a bartering system?
  5. What superhero power do the majority of people wish they had?

Why Do We Need Stories?

Stories are a part of life from childhood through death. They are told from rocking chairs, read in cars, and travel over thousands of miles, but what makes them important?

A story is the telling of events, true or fiction, in order to provide entertainment. They are designed to entertain the reader and are usually used for more than just education. Stories are meant to enlighten.

Stories are important because they provide hope and happiness, as well as offering lessons, morals, and understanding. They are meant to describe the world and average people, and made-up universes and unique characters.

They are universal. No matter race, ethnicity, culture, age, gender, or any other defining factor, stories are read and retold. They can be applied to virtually anyone.

Stories are important because they connect people. They can entwine in everyone’s life, and can be retold for years. Stories connect the human race.

The ‘Write’ Time: Reintroducing Sioux City to Theatre



Adam Gonshorowski is a rising star in the film and theatre business in our very own Sioux City.

Gonshorowski graduated from Morningside College on May 8th of 2010. A Dakota City, Nebraska native, Gonshorowski was awarded his Bachelor of Arts, one of 479 degrees earned that year. This propelled him forward towards a fascination with the arts.

After graduation, Gonshorowski went on to earn his Master’s in Film Production from Loyola Marymount University. He moved back to Sioux City soon after and began a career in film production and screenwriting.

Though Gonshorowski began with a focus in film and screen, he has recently been transitioning from film to theatre.

Theatre is a recent development in my portfolio of work,” Gonshorowski said, “First and foremost my work has consisted of film and television, but there are different challenges working in that medium that makes theatre more accessible to work in at this time.”

He detailed that his childhood was filled with great movies and films, but rarely theatre. This lack of theatrical “intervention” caused Gonshorowski to lean more towards film production. Sophomore year of high school changed that.

Around sophomore year I picked up an app called Final Draft and a book titled The Screenwriter’s Bible.  The combination of the software and book gave me an insight into writing screenplays and I unlocked the key to writing.” He began to vigorously apply to Graduate schools in Film Production and landed in the middle of the largest city in the film industry: Los Angeles, California.

“I was taught by the best in the business, everyone from J.J. Abrams, Roberto Orci, to my mentor and prolific writer, Jeph Loeb.” Loyola Marymount University left no stone unturned and Gonshorowski believed he was headed towards studio writing.

After three years of some of the best teaching in the world, Gonshorowski made a big move back to Sioux City where his first true production, “The Truman Decision,” is being performed at Evelyn Larson Theatre.“I decided to start my own production company with the goal of producing films, television, and theatre.  That brings us to today after over 15 years of trying to get here.”

Gonshorowski is leading a new era of theatre with self-written productions. Khiana Hume, a Morningside College Freshman with a passion for theatre, explained how she feels about the changing theatre scene.

It’s amazing and is becoming more culturally diverse and inclusive.” Theatre productions are now trying to push the agenda of incorporating differences. Hume also believes that the growth of theatre is acting as a new News medium.

“The audience can relate more to it [theatre] because the modern issues are being presented to them by real people and not a screen.” While Gonshorowski began in the screen industry, he is now pushing the stage and live action. “Most of them [new productions] push boundaries and that is what makes them great because they are original.”

“The more we humanize entertainment the more beneficial it will be for our society,” said Chloe Person, a Freshman English Major from Morningside College.

Gonshorowski is bringing theatre to the people. Self-written and directed plays are getting attention, which surprised Gonshorowski.

“It is amazing the outpouring of support that appeared as if by magic.”

Adam Gonshorowski is bringing Los Angeles to Sioux City, and the magic of the screen to the stage.

Mega City Mall’s Explosion Will Keep Doors Closed Until Further Notice

An explosion just before 10 am in Mega City Mall left 2 dead and close to 100 people injured.

The explosion occurred close to the Dairy Queen in the food court before the opening of the mall. There has been no indication of the cause of the explosion according to Sergeant Fuglsang. No one has yet claimed responsibility for the explosion.

Those injured are in the process of being transported to local hospitals. Names of the deceased will not be released until next of kin is notified, but one is a male from Seargent Bluff and the other is a female from Sioux City.

The Sioux City Police Department is not worried about any follow-up danger and is not referring to this as an attack.

Security footage has been found and given to police, who will review the tapes later today.


Before the incident occurred a 12-year-old boy, Stephen, went missing from his mother but has been located and interviewed.

“I was just over by the bungee jump area trying to sneak in. My mom was shopping in boring places. When I heard the explosion I ran to the parking lot and just kept running.”

Stephen and his mother have yet to be reunited but he is in the care of the SCPD.

Nathan Hoogland, a Police Officer himself, was in the vicinity of the mall as he was off-duty. Retired from the FBI bomb squad, Hoogland tried to run towards the site of the explosion but was ushered outside by on-duty police officers.

“I initially ran towards the ‘boom’ but saw a stampede of people coming towards me so I ducked into an alcove to avoid being trampled.”

Hoogland states that he cannot distinguish the source of the explosion.

“I haven’t seen the crime scene, I haven’t seen pictures, so I can’t say what caused the explosion.”

The Mega City Mall will remain closed for the rest of the day and potentially the week depending on damages and the crime scene. A crime scene investigation will need to be conducted before the doors of the mall will reopen, but mall officials hope to open doors soon for holiday shoppers.

Repairs will begin after the investigation.

A second news conference will take place at 3 pm today between Seargent Fuglsang and the media. Updates will be released thereafter.

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