South Dakota native Tom Lawrence, a former Pioneer executive editor, has written about the state, its politics and people since 1978. Read his blog Prairie Perspective and follow him on Twitter at @TLCF26.

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    My family members assured me no one would notice. Sure, they said, you’re wearing glasses now, but people will still treat you the same. Don’t worry about it. It will be fine.

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    He was the wellspring of a famous family, a man who dug fortunes out of the earth, controlled a powerful newspaper and served in high political office.

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    Well, another year of Pulitzer Prizes announced, another year of disappointment.

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    It would seem to be an easy decision to make: Don’t drive around barricades and onto water-covered roads.

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    OK, I was wrong. So were thousands of other people. And we are very glad about that. More than 15 years ago, South Dakota State University announced it was considering moving up to Division 1 status in basketball and 18 other sports, while competing at the Division 1-AA level in football. Fr…

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    When my dear friend Jim was dying in August 2012, his brother Joe visited him.

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    Some people reveal their inner selves in the most unique ways.

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    Congressman Dusty Johnson was in office for less than two months when he made his mark, standing for principal over party.

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    He tried to teach me to play the guitar.

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    A bookish, bespectacled astrophysicist, dead more than 30 years, is an unlikely hero for a TV series.

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    Kristi Noem doesn’t lack political skill or courage. She’s proven that time and again in the last decade.

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    We’re keeping our Christmas tree up and outdoor lights on, at least for a few more days. There’s no hurry to turn them off and pack them away.

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    It was unlike any Christmas church service I had ever attended.

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    More than 150 years after the bloody summer and bitter winter of 1862, the Dakota War and its aftermath are with us still.

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    It was an American funeral for the immediate family, all 326,766,748 of us.

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    The tall, slender man with the distinct profile looked familiar, even in the darkened upper level of the church.

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    The turkey was at the center of the table, surrounded by all its regular support staff: Mashed potatoes, rolls, cranberry sauce and more.

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    This year marks a century since women in South Dakota earned the right to vote, so it was fitting that the two most successful female politicians in South Dakota history were both visible on Tuesday.

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    Alex Johnson has been dead for 80 years. But when I lived in Rapid City, a decade ago, he was believed to ride the elevator in the hotel that bears his name.