Iron Cowboy family

James Lawrence and his family members during the Conquer 100.

THUMBS UP: To the Utah County commissioners for taking steps to encourage residents to conserve water during this extended drought. We encourage all members of the public to be aware of their surroundings and the safety that is needed during these times.

THUMBS UP: To the Orem Summerfest committee for bringing back the city’s celebration and providing Orem residents a great way to kick off the summer. We commend them for all of the hard work they have done.

THUMBS DOWN: If you praised Sen. Mitt Romney for following his conscience and voting contrary to his Republican party interests in President Trump’s impeachment and insurrection trials but are cannibalizing Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., for his stated principled stands against the For the People Act and weakening the Senate filibuster rules — congratulations, you are a hypocrite! Just a reminder that lauding anyone — especially a politician — for sticking to their principles under immense opposition should occur even if you are on opposite sides of a particular issue.

THUMBS UP: To Lindon’s “Iron Cowboy” James Lawrence, who completed a triathlon — with a full marathon — for 100 straight days. Yes, you read that right. ONE HUNDRED STRAIGHT DAYS! The human spirit is a marvelous thing. Well, other people’s human spirit. I exhausted myself just typing this thumb up. Kudos to the Iron Cowboy on his record-setting feat. In the words of Kosmo Kramer, “Giddyup!”

THUMBS UP: To the Utah County Commission for approving irrigation water conservation measures amid the state’s unprecedented drought. The measures approved by the commission include reducing the Utah County Parks Division’s water use by 40% and the Utah County Buildings and Grounds Division’s water use by 35%. As Commissioner Bill Lee pointed out, we can’t control the weather or make it rain. We can, however, control our water consumption.

THUMBS UP: To Utah’s firefighters who are already getting to work on what will likely be a very bad wildfire season. Though summer is just getting started, crews have already responded to a number of fires, including this week’s Bennion Creek Fire near the Utah County and Carbon County border. Let’s all show these largely unsung heroes our gratitude by skipping out on fireworks this year and taking other necessary precautions.

THUMBS DOWN: To fire season. Just this week there have been many fires reported throughout the state of Utah, two of them being right along the Carbon and Utah County border. People need to pay close attention to dragging chains, hot ashes, exploding targets, and more this year. One mistake could lead to a large amount of damage and with the water shortage, the state needs to conserve as much water as possible. Please be mindful this fire season.

THUMBS UP: To praying for rain. Governor Spencer Cox received some backlash for telling people to pray for rain last week, but you can’t deny the fact that it worked! While there was not much precipitation, it was there. The way this drought season is going, I think we all need to start praying, or hoping, for rain a little more frequently.

THUMBS UP: To all the Utah Valley high school cowgirls and cowboys competing at the state finals this week in Heber City. We applaud the passion, dedication and perseverance of these athletes and wish them the best as they finish out their season.

THUMBS UP: To having a full house at Vivint Arena for the second round of the NBA playoffs. It’s great to see the Utah Jazz having the support of so many as they try to prove their excellent regular season will translate into postseason success.

THUMBS UP: To Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., who is the early leader in the clubhouse for next year’s John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award for not caving in to the torrent of attacks he’s receiving from Democratic colleagues and liberal media pundits for his positions on the filibuster and the For the People Act. (Subdued whispering.) Wait ... what? They only give that award to people whose courageous stands advance liberal objectives? OK, on further review, maybe this thumb will be Manchin’s only award. But at least it’s something.