April 16, 2008 As is sometimes the case in a single edition of a weekly newspaper, this week's pages contain stories of the highest and lowest capabilities of the human spirit.
A truly low point is marked by news of a thief or thieves targeting churches. Break-ins and home invasions of any sort are bad, but somehow it's a lot worse when a church is the scene of a crime. Regardless of one's religious beliefs, churches have long been held as sacred places, safe refuges from the world. When that unspoken trust is breached or exploited, all of humanity is weakened.
On the other hand, we're strengthened by Ed Pask's determination to avoid becoming another statistic in the doom and gloom Michigan economy. His story illustrates the resiliency and resourcefulness of human nature. By thinking outside of the box—and in this case literally outside of the state—he was able to expand his Almont Pool, Spa & Billiards business into a booming success. Developing a Web site and marketing in areas that are warmer, sunnier and frankly less economically strapped than Michigan upped sales 125 percent from a year ago. In turn, the company's added six full-time employees, which ultimately boosts the local economy. Acknowledging their loyal local customer base, Pask says he had to come up with something new in order to stay in business and continue to meet their needs. This refreshing success story is welcome news and helps tip the scales in favor of the best capabilities of the human spirit.