The Prune








TODD SHARP’S FATHER, Tom, left, shows Diane Leatherberry how a cartridge tape player works as Johnson’s TV store owner George Johnson watches. It was at the downtown Ripon store that Todd’s imagination blossomed and his interest in sales began.  RCP file photo By Todd Sharp  “I believe strongly that the […]

The Prune: Imagination grows with person, experiences




by Todd Sharp There was once a time when the only farmers markets were in big cities. Over the years I’ve noticed how big, ripe ideas spread from community to community. Once good ideas start getting a foothold, it’s hard to keep them contained in one spot. After my first […]

Willy Street? Check out Mill, Watson, Huron streets


by Todd Sharp I’ve taken to a safe pattern and opted to change my car tires each season expecting to get a greater grip on the road, switching from snow tires to summer driving tires. The results have been spectacular. No crashes or slipping into the ditch. Success! This spring […]

Prune takes ‘spare’ minute to admire patterns



by Todd Sharp I started writing the Prune in part to share a synthesized version of my life’s lessons and fables with my son. Although many of the reflections have taken some wild departures from the original purpose, I hope to have clearly passed along a few bits of knowledge. […]

Advice from a prune to a freshly ripened grape


by Todd Sharp Summer always goes way too fast. I’m sad to see the geese coming back. However, instead of wondering where summer went so damn fast, I’m looking forward to fall and winter. If I wanted to extend summer I could move to Texas, Florida, New or old Mexico. […]

No summer bummer: Baby it’s cold cool outside



THE PRUNE LOOKS down Ripon’s Union Street Hill.  Todd Sharp photo by Todd Sharp It’s tough to find balance. It seems like either I’m going up or down, fast or slow, running hot or cold. Rarely finding a perfect pace, or as Goldilocks said “just right.” No too long ago, […]

Some approach hills with pedal to metal


CAN THERE BE any doubt that the Prune’s Spirit Animal is a Monarch butterfly that, by attaching itself to others, flies faster than other butterflies?         Todd Sharp photo by Todd Sharp A mystical and charming friend asked if I knew my Spirit Animal. Without understanding what […]

Prune’s Spirit Animal is a pretty hijacker



RIDERS REALIZE IOWA is not as flat as expected under clear skies on the first day of a trip across Iowa. The trip got off to a rough start when a storm wrecked havoc, flattening the tent of Todd Sharp. submitted photo by Todd Sharp There was a tremendous thunderstorm brewing […]

Viscous wind nearly blows entire ride


TODD SHARP SCOPES out his pie options at Eldora UCC Methodist Church in Iowa. Behind him is Steve Kelly from Byron, Wis.    Brian Kelly photo by Todd Sharp I know it seems like a luxurious rarity for someone working in Green Lake to take a week of vacation during […]

Biking Iowa? Sounded good in February



by Todd Sharp Serendipity, unexpected positive consequences, and exceeded expectations are real mysteries in my life. We have all seen those speed meter readers on the side of the road to publicly shame us into going the posted speed limit, yet when I’m on my bike I push the pedals […]

Serendipitous moments = many memories


Woody Harrelson? by Todd Sharp If you’re approached on the street this summer and questioned why you’re here and where you came from, don’t be alarmed. It’s a simple, honest question with easy answers. The Green Lake Area Visitors Bureau has a visitor survey going on. One delightful and intriguing […]

Were GL a person, who would it be?



THE PRUNE CONSIDERED buying a $93,500 Mercedes Benz Sprinter. Then he woke up and went back to work.  by Todd Sharp What triggers set your mind whirring? Maybe the twitch of a smile in the corner of a partner’s lip, a close-up glance of the sexy parts of a flower […]

Indulge your fantasy before it’s too late


by Todd Sharp I started writing the prune to examine the sweet wrinkly contours of being over 50. I’m now 53 and have explored many of the peaks in my life. I’ve walked through Buddhist temples carved into the tops of mountains in Sri Lanka. Yet I eat a bowl […]

The Prune is going Gruen