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Thursday, June 4, 2020
  • No, I’m not in Peru. It’s much worse than that: my daughter is in Peru. At least as far as my wife and I can tell, she is in Peru. It’s hard to know what your adult children are up to. It was hard to keep up with what they were doing before ...
  • Are you fluent in English? I like to think that I am but sometimes I have my doubts. That leaves me at a great disadvantage, because my Polish is limited to nursery rhymes and drinking songs and my best phrase in Spanish is lo siento pero ...
  • It shouldn’t be a surprise: Father’s Day comes every year at this time so you may as well get used to it. There should be no panic except that there always is with everyone running around wondering what to do for Father’s Day....
  • Everyone, please stay calm. People tend to forget it’s coming but hang on to your hats and loosen your belts because the first Friday of June is, at last, National Doughnut Day. Besides apple pie and dieting, what could be more American ...
  • San Francisco recently banned the use of facial recognition technology by city agencies. The city’s Board of Supervisors figured the Orwellian risks are very significant and grave, outweighing any potential benefits. Well, they never had to ...
  • I have an interest in working with electronics. I sometimes buy small electronic circuit boards on eBay that are shipped directly from China. The Chinese are very, very polite and quite aggressive salespeople. They really want your business....
  • Do you have a problem underestimating how much time it will take to complete projects? I know I do. Plans are made with the lofty expectations of completing projects in a timely manner only to have the tasks continually pushed ...
  • Before Mother’s Day, I thought it would be fun to take my wife to attend an evening program at our local opera house entitled “Moms Tell All.” What’s that? Yes, I live in Maine, where we still have opera houses in many of ...
  • Last week, my wife and I took a train trip. Yes, believe it, passenger trains still run in America. No, no, I’m not talking about Disneyland or those tourist trains that take you from Point A to Point A; I’m talking about bona fide trains pulled ...
  • Everyone likes new things. This is because they generally function as if they are new and, in general, they are really clean. Sometimes they are shiny and, for me, there is something inherently attractive and intriguing about shiny ...
  • Last week I reported on my flight from the East Coast to Seattle demonstrating the cheerless and dispiriting adventure that commercial flying around the country can be. After more than a week on the West Coast, I was taken aback to find ...
  • Not a fan of commercial airlines, I recently did consent to take a quick trip to the West Coast with my wife only because winter here in Maine has affected my thinking. I reasoned that a continental round-trip would be preferable to ...
  • Before calculators, the threat of long division loomed large. It was an academic menace riddled with traps and pitfalls. It was the demon that could transform your report card from an asset into a liability even though it might be ...
  • In order to get out in front of the pack, I was going to announce my intention to run for president of the United States this week. At first it seemed like an exciting idea and in just 48 hours I have already raised $6 in pledges toward my candidacy ...
  • People are constantly asking me how to pick a good wine to take to a party, dinner or perhaps an arraignment so as not to look like an empty-handed schmuck when they arrive. The answer is simple but the question is wrong. It is not important ...
  • I am deeply disappointed because I missed the opportunity to write a timely column about March 13th, which we all know and love to commemorate, as it is the anniversary of the discovery of Uranus. Surprisingly, my wife was quite relieved ...
  • It started out as an off-the-cuff comment my wife made about salt. As these innocent remarks tend to do in a loving marriage, it escalated into, oh, I wouldn’t call it a shouting match, but I insisted that salt is salt, as my wife insisted ...
  • In spite of the mountain of disturbing news stories coming at us every day, I managed to stumble onto a report that Allen’s Coffee Brandy has relinquished the top spot as the best-selling liquor in Maine. It’s been the most ...
  • In my youth I did not understand Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice. I had questions, but adults were dismissive and when I would ask my mother she would say, “Ask your father,” who would answer questions I did not ask. Did someone find ...
  • Do you loathe getting seated in a restaurant at a wobbly table? I know I do. Sometimes it doesn’t help to ask for another table; not after you look around and find that most of the tables have ISD’s (improvised shimming devices) ...
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