Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

April 27, 2013

In the middle of it all

By Janet Jacobs
Corsicana Daily Sun

— It’s been a big week, and as of this writing there’s still plenty more to come, but I am struck again by how fortunate we are to live where we do.

On Tuesday, the Mildred One-Act Play students did a benefit for Derrick Days with their performance of “Boxing Normal.” It was absolutely charming. It was written by the students’ teacher, H.R.H.Powers, and while the play was fun and uplifting, there was more to it than just a nice night out.

The generosity of the kids, and their absolute fearlessness left me in awe. Danny Hanna, who looked like he could have been a defensive lineman for the football team, wore pigtails and a green tutu and tights and danced like no one was watching — doing it center-stage at the Palace Theater surrounded by his friends and family and tons of strangers, for criminy’s sake.

I couldn’t have done it, but this senior in high school was just in that role and he sucked us all in with him. All the students did a marvelous job, and I wish they had another public performance so you could all see it, it was that cool.

On Wednesday, it was the Derrick Days kickoff luncheon and I talked to some folks who looked like those yuppies you see in a TV commercial. They were nice, though, and they said something that I’ve always felt but never expressed half so well. They said they try to go to all the Derrick Days events because that’s what makes a small town special — the fairs and festivals they host. So much work goes into this event, and for 90 percent of the people involved, it’s a labor of love. They don’t get any money. They’re doing it from a sense of community, and that’s a gift.

On Thursday, I went to the fireman’s memorial at Baylor in Waco. It was heart-warming and sad but there were some funny moments and some that had me bawling like I’d sprung a leak. Baylor did itself up proud, with lots of staff and thoughtfulness not just for the media but for the families and first responders, too. It was cool of the President and First Lady to come, and I was proud of the Governor and John Cornyn for thanking him so nicely, even though they’ve opposed his policies with a purple passion in the past. I talked to a fireman outside the Ferrell Center who was saying that tragedies pull the fire service together, and it made me feel proud and humbled that these men of power could respect that, too.

So yeah, I’m feeling pretty high on America this weekend, and Texas in general, but also about Corsicana. This right here is the center of the universe — at least this week.


Janet Jacobs may be reached via e-mail at Want to “sound off” to this article? E-mail: