I live to amuse/annoy

“Excuse me, sir. Is the chicken under the warming light labeled ‘hot’ because it’s spicy?” “Nooo. It means it’s not cold.” Pardon me, Mr. Crankypants Grocer. I’m pleased I’ve given you something benign to go home and complain about to your family. How silly of me to ask you a question while you put my […]

19th Century Dreamers

When the topic of conversation at the neighborhood swimming pool is: “Bicyclists deserve to be run over when they ride on streets.” Nobody wants to hear a single thought about alternative transportation, the environment, physical fitness or bike paths. Any attempts to have such a discussion will kill the conversation and get your face melted […]

just because you can, doesn’t mean you should

Every election day, I go to my community polling place to vote. I know with complete certainty that the workers have diverse political viewpoints, but not because we talk about it in that setting. One of the workers always recognizes me and asks about the children. While standing in line, most of us joke about […]

New York randomness

New York could have saved itself a lot of money by not installing crossing lights. No New Yorker heeds those lights. They cross by some kind of intuition. I assimilated and crossed without hesitation when there was no traffic, but I was less confident when there were moving cars. My solution was to follow the […]

D is the new R

My father is an extremely conservative, white, Southern Baptist male. He also loves Drudge Report and has a 1950’s attitude about race and gender. Tomorrow, he is driving to what Newscoma lovingly terms as Hoots for the funeral of his cousin. My father will be one of the most liberal people at that funeral. Today’s […]

Angry Bird Brotherhood

At one point during our DC visit, we ended up riding a bus instead of the child-preferred Metro. The bus was hot, crowded and a bit stinky. Multiple languages whispered in cell phones or to seatmates. A familiar game sound across the aisle made Doug’s head spin and in a millisecond, a dozen people on […]

Wasn’t expecting THAT

Before we left for DC, we had multiple conversations with the children in an attempt to prevent problems. Although the most repeated topic was what to do if you get lost, we also talked about big city manners and safety. “Always look both ways.” “Don’t kick the seat in front of you.” “Use your inside […]

Life lessons

Are you a teen or twenty-something who blinks your eyes, sticks out your bottom lip or whatever to get someone else to fix life’s little annoyances for you? Stop it. If you don’t, you will someday be a middle-aged incompetent, whining in the auto parts store aisle because the do-it-yourself wiper blade reference machine is […]

Car keys

Groom: “I really need to get my keys back from Doug.” Me: “Umm, yes you do.” Groom: “We’ve got a bit of a drive ahead of us and we’re anxious to get to our hotel.” Me: “I’m sure you are.” Groom: “Soooo, where is Doug?” Me: “He is still here. Somewhere.” Groom: “Umm, I think […]


The unofficial supervisors of our cove have always been the seniors who quietly monitored everything from the bug-free safety of their screen porch. They have been here longer than anyone and know decades of stories about the people and buildings in this wooded cul-de-sac. While his wife always sweetly charmed everyone, Buster stoically kept a […]