Packers’ loss had some bright spots

Green Bay Packer fans shouldn’t feel poorly after their team’s lopsided 38-3 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
There were some positives, such as:
* The Packers weren’t shut out.
* Green Bay simply wanted to give New Orleans fans something to cheer about after all the tough luck they have experienced from Hurricane Ida.
* The Saints only scored 5 more touchdowns than Green Bay.
* The Packers want to keep their players fresh for the second half of the season.
* Green Bay wanted to remove the pressure of an unbeaten season right away.
* Jameis Winston’s 130.8 passer rating was only 94 points better than Aaron Rodgers’ 36.8 rating.
* Rodgers had two more interceptions than Winston.
* Packers’ new defensive coordinator Joe Barry didn’t want to give away any secrets to other Super Bowl contenders. Besides, he showed more energy than his predecessor Mike Pettine.   
* Green Bay’s regular starters played much better than they did in preseason.
* The Packers’ defensive line was sluggish because they over-hydrated.
* Green Bay coach Matt La Fleur wanted to see his counterpart,  coach Sean Payton, smile.
* La Fleur wanted to take himself out of consideration for NFL Coach of The Year right away.
* The Packers didn’t want to be the only NFC North Division team to win on opening day.
* It’s only a game. There are 16 more to be played. R-E-L-A-X!

The Lord has certainly blessed me

May 8, 2015, began like all other mornings.
The man got out of bed and said good morning to himself in the mirror. The only difference was the man in the mirror had a different look. He had an eery yellowish complexion.
Thanks to his wife’s urgency, the man rushed to the clinic. It was news he didn’t expect or want - the kiss of death - pancreatic cancer.
The weekend presented the couple with oceans of tears, endless hugs, tons of questions and round-the-clock prayers as we awaited more evasive tests that Monday.
To make a long story short, 56 fewer pounds, 37 rounds of the strongest chemotherapy allowed, 27 rounds of radiation,  a hospital stay with an ulcer resulting from the harsh chemo, major surgery to attempt the “Whipple Procedure” at Mayo’s St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, Minn., a stroke and rehabilitation, 27 CT scans, 7 MRI’s and more prayers than one could imagine, I’m here to say this man celebrated his sixth anniversary with that horrible disease last Saturday.
I am truly blessed to be able to continue with regular six-month checkups, lab tests, CT scans, MRI’s and doctor appointments.  So far, so good.
If you don’t believe in God, I hope my testimony is reason to change your mind. Without question, I realize I wouldn’t be here today without my wife, my family, my friends, my doctors and medical staff, but most of all my Savior Jesus Christ.
I always thought I was a good Christian. I was raised in a Christian family, baptized, said my daily prayers, attended Sunday school and church regularly, and was confirmed. However, I have a confession to make. While always believing I was a good Christian, I drifted away from the Lord during my college and pre-marital years.
Once married, Kathy changed my thinking. We made sure our two sons were brought up in a Christian household, following our church-borne footsteps we set before them.
Yet, I discovered I never truly found Jesus until I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer on May 8, 2015. It was a sole prayer session in a barren St. Mary’s Hospital Chapel in Rochester where I truly found my Lord and Comforter. Whatever happens, I will always remember that day where it was just God and me.
Thanks be to God, I’m still around to write about it.

How do I say goodbye to an old friend?

He was more than a La Crosse media rival.
He was a longtime friend.
From the time he knocked over a typewriter on his first night on the job in our old newsroom office, to the times we shared a radio studio, and to the final road trip we took together for a basketball tournament game, he and I always got along extremely well.
It was a perfect match in those days. While he provided on-air radio coverage, it was my job to report the news in written form. He drove while I pecked away on my old typewriter with a flashlight in my mouth. Then we stopped at a bar or restaurant, called the office, and I dictated my story to make deadline for the next day’s newspaper. There were no cellphones back then.
In those days, it was traditional “them against us,” media wars between newspaper, radio and TV as we attempted to be the first to get the latest scoop. He and I had a pact. If one of us got the scoop and reported it, we always had the courtesy to let the other know what we had.
We not only shared the same WKTY van, but also countless hotel/motel rooms and golf courses at media events through the years. It didn’t matter what event, time or place. Whether it was Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers media days, or corporate events right here in God’s Country, we were together for it all.
He was one of the first to call and console me after learning I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer on May 8, 2015.
I wish I would have been the first to call him after he suffered a stroke, and then a sudden heart attack a couple years later.
We drifted apart the last two years, but I prayed for him each and every day and I know he prayed for me, too.
There aren’t enough hours to share all the stories we produced back in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s.
When I called one of our longtime friends Jamie Thibodeau last week, Jamie told me to say an extra prayer for our friend. According to Jamie, our friend was now suffering from leukemia and his time on earth was growing short.
I, and I’m sure all of his friends, said many more prayers in the last week. However, God chose to take our friend to his heavenly home.
I know he is in a much better place now. That’s the best part.
God Bless You Always Mike “Mikey” Kearns! I know I will see you again some day.
Your old friend, Bob Lamb

Also see "It Hurts" - Kathy's Korner Blog at

Kick off your racing season with a party!

WEST SALEM, WI - Here’s your personal party invitation for the 2021 stock car racing season.
WHEN: Saturday, May 8.
WHERE: Exhibition Building at the La Crosse Interstate Fairgrounds (next to the speedway) in West Salem, WI.
TIME: 3 p.m.-7 p.m., with awards ceremony beginning at 4 p.m.
COST: Free and open to the public. Food and beverages will be available.
DETAILS: Due to COVID-19 pandemic  indoor "group gathering" issues, the La Crosse Fairgrounds Speedway annual Champions’ Banquet has been changed to a "Champions' Party." The annual event recognizes track champions, rookies and other titles from the 2020 season.
PRE-PARTY ACTIVITIES: Prior to the Champion's Party, the track will feature its annual drivers’ tune and test day from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. All race fans are welcome to attend.
POST-PARTY: The 2021 racing season begins at 2 p.m., on Saturday, May 15, with the Kwik Trip Late Models, Lawnkeepers Sportsmen, Auto Value Hobby Stocks, ANTS Pest Control Hornets and Street Stocks racing at the La Crosse Fairgrounds Speedway.
MORE INFORMATION: Log onto or contact (608) 786-1525.
See you there!

Badgers have nothing to be ashamed about

The 2020-2021 basketball season is finished for the University of Wisconsin Badgers. The same also can be said of four other Big 10 teams.
The No. 9-seeded Badgers lost to the South’s Region’s top seed Baylor Bears, 76-63, in Sunday’s second round.
Wisconsin fans, coaches and players would probably admit that the Bears were a better team, although the Badgers put up a valiant battle to the wire. While they didn’t quit against Baylor, the Badgers’ effort wasn’t as good as - in my estimation - their best performance of the season Friday night with an impressive 85-62 victory over No. 8 seed North Carolina. Why was it so impressive? Wisconsin shot 51 percent from the field and 48 percent from 3-point land. It was also a supreme defensive effort, a complete game.
However, Baylor’s tenacious defense was more than Bucky could handle.
Let’s give the Badgers some credit. Eight Big 10 teams gained NCAA Tournament berths.
Two of those Big 10 teams nabbed top seeds in their respective regions, 2 more as No. 2 seeds and 1 other as a No. 4 seed.
Top seed Illinois, No. 2 Ohio State, and No. 4 Purdue were eliminated before Wisconsin. No. 11 Michigan State, the other Big Ten qualifier, lost in a ”play-in” game on Thursday.
That leaves Michigan, the top seed in the East Regional, Iowa, No. 2 in the West Regional, and No. 10 Maryland as the only three Big Ten teams left. Michigan meets LSU, Iowa faces Oregon and Maryland goes against Alabama in second-round games today.
So much for the Big 10 being labeled the strongest conference in the nation this season.
Overall, I’m proud of the Badgers, although they disappointed me more times than not this season. I’m actually surprised they made it to the second round in the NCAA Tournament. And I’m pleased with their “never-say-die” effort to the very last second of the season.
One other point. College basketball’s Mid-Major teams are proving they really can play with the top major schools in the country, aren’t they?