Kelly: Son's hidden 'time capsule' spared in flooding - Omaha.com
Published Monday, August 26, 2013 at 12:30 am / Updated at 8:54 pm
From the notebook
Kelly: Son's hidden 'time capsule' spared in flooding

» A water emergency at home flooded two floors, but Harriet Mullin of Omaha found something that stayed dry: a “time capsule” note from her son, written 40 years ago.

“Amid all the chaos and damage,” she said, “this was a silver lining.”

One morning last week, Harriet awoke at her home in the Dundee neighborhood, where she and her late husband, Pat, raised seven children.

A second-floor toilet had overflowed.

She called for help, got in touch with an insurance adjuster and began airing out the house, which required 16 fans. It was a mess.

But in a plastic bag that had fallen from above into a breakfast nook, she found a note that, unknown to her, had been written by her oldest child when he was 8. He had placed it behind a bathroom wall when it was re-tiled.

“This is Wally Mullin,” the note began, adding that “whoever finds this” should note the date, Feb. 17, 1973.

“Our president is Mr. Nixon,” he wrote. “This year on Friday nights, they have 'The Partridge Family' and 'The Brady Bunch.' Here is a TV guide for you.” He included a World-Herald TV listing.

Wally P. Mullin is an economist at George Washington University in the nation's capital. He graduated from Creighton Prep and Boston College, earned his Ph.D. at MIT and is researching the deterrence of corporate crime.

When I reached him, he said he vaguely remembered writing the note and sealing it in plastic. He was pleased that his “whoever finds this” turned out to be his mother and that the note buoyed her spirits.

Said Harriet: “It was very heartwarming.”

» The widely recognized Council for Community and Economic Research ranks Omaha seventh out of America's 100 largest cities for low cost of living.

The Omaha area typically ranks 10 percent or more below the national average on cost of living, and it was rated at 87.7 percent of the average for the first quarter of 2013.

A lesser-known entity, ­GoBankingRates.com, ranks Omaha second in the nation (behind Houston) on a similar measure — the greatest spread between average salaries and low cost of living.

» Janet Raddish of Omaha was baby-sitting her 3-year-old grandson, Bennett, and was asked to deliver him to the Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium to meet his mother and sisters.

When he awoke from his nap and found out where they were going, he got excited about seeing “the monkeys.”

As Janet exited Interstate 80 and turned onto 13th Street, an excited Bennett shouted, “There they are, Grandma! I told you we would see the monkeys.”

What he remembered weren't actual monkeys at the zoo but advertising figures at the King Kong restaurant, including a large gorilla.

Bennett, son of Brandon and Staci Raddish, might be like other kids in seeing that as the unofficial entrance to the zoo.

» One more ranking: The real estate website Movoto.com ranked the 50 funniest cities, and Omaha came in — 50th.

Huh? THAT is not funny.

The site ranked cities on their number of comedy clubs or festivals, where comedians were born and currently live, and where they died.

Yes, where they died. Is that a joke?

(When comics succeed on stage, they say they “killed.” I know some who have died onstage.)

Atlanta ranked first, followed by Chicago and Los Angeles. Omaha, whose very name ends with a “ha,” is supposedly not so funny?

Hmmmpf. That's a laugh.

Contact the writer: Michael Kelly

mike.kelly@owh.com    |   402-444-1000

Mike writes three columns a week on a variety of topics.

Omaha police investigate two Sunday shootings
Sole big donor to Beau McCoy says he expects nothing in return
Firefighters battle brush fire near Fontenelle Forest
Sioux City riverboat casino prepares to close, still hoping to be saved
Omaha high schoolers to help canvass for Heartland 2050
Mizzou alumni aim to attract veterinary students to Henry Doorly Zoo
Grant ensures that Sioux City can start building children's museum
Party looks to 'nudge' women into public office in Iowa
For birthday, Brownell-Talbot student opts to give, not get
Two taken to hospital after fire at Benson home
Grace: Pipe organ concert a tribute to couple's enduring love
Omaha-area jails and ERs new front line in battling mental illness
Convicted killer Nikko Jenkins might await his sentence in prison
Kelly: 70 years after a deadly D-Day rehearsal, Omahan, WWII vet will return to Europe
Civil rights hearing to consider voting policies in Midwest
17 senators in Nebraska Legislature hit their (term) limits
It's a pursuit of pastel at Spring Lake Park's Easter egg hunt
Financial picture improving for city-owned Mid-America Center
No injuries after fire at midtown's old Mercer Mansion
29-year-old Omahan arrested for 22nd time in Lincoln
Police: Slaying of woman in Ralston apartment likely over drugs
Explosion near 29th, Woolworth damages vehicles
Omaha police arrest man, 19, accused in March shooting
Earth gets its day in the sun at Elmwood Park
Beau McCoy strikes Obama doll in TV ad; Democrats are not happy
< >
COLUMNISTS »
Kelly: 70 years after a deadly D-Day rehearsal, Omahan, WWII vet will return to Europe
A World War II veteran from Omaha will return this week to Europe to commemorate a tragedy in the run-up to D-Day.
Dickson’s Week in Review, April 13-19
On Twitter some guy tweeted that the spring game isn’t taken as seriously as a regular-season contest. What was your first clue? When the head coach entered waving a cat aloft?
Kelly: A California university president returns to her Nebraska roots on Ivy Day
The main speaker at today's Ivy Day celebration at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a college president who grew up roping calves and earned her Ph.D. at the prestigious Oxford University in England.
Breaking Brad: Stuck in a claw machine? You get no Easter candy
I know of one kid in Lincoln who will be receiving a lump of coal from the Easter Bunny, just as soon as he's extricated from that bowling alley claw machine.
Breaking Brad: Mountain lion season's over, but the bunny's fair game!
Thursday was the last day of a Nebraska Legislature session. Before leaving town, legislators passed a bill to hold a lottery to hunt the Easter Bunny.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
PHOTO GALLERIES »
< >
SPOTLIGHT »
Omaha World-Herald Contests
Enter for a chance to win great prizes.
OWH Store: Buy photos, books and articles
Buy photos, books and articles
Travel Snaps Photo
Going on Vacation? Take the Omaha World-Herald with you and you could the next Travel Snaps winner.
Click here to donate to Goodfellows
The 2011 Goodfellows fund drive provided holiday meals to nearly 5,000 families and their children, and raised more than $500,000 to help families in crisis year round.
WORLD-HERALD ALERTS »
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for Omaha.com's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »