big bad eagle steals dinner from baby fox who killed an innocent rabbit

BERNI CAME HOME LAST NIGHT and immediately asked me to look up a video on the internet that had everyone’s attention—at least where she worked. It was a local story that had something to do with a fox and an eagle. I went to my trusty browser and typed in “eagle fox” and there were CONTINUE READING

caustic sarcasm ain’t the same thing as thoughtful irony

IN RECENT CONVERSATIONS and in reading articles, blogs, and comments on the internet, I hear the word ‘sarcasm’ used interchangeably with ‘irony.’ I point out that irony ain’t the same as sarcasm, which requires a caustic intent. Since we are now at a time when everyone thinks themselves as right as the next guy and CONTINUE READING

hey buddy, you wanna talk about it?

WAY BACK IN 1974, I did a favor for a friend: he was managing a small restaurant on Wyoming Avenue in Forty Fort and needed the day off. One of his responsibilities as manager was to tend the bar, which is what I did that day. This was not a drinker’s bar—the majority of drinks CONTINUE READING

pope francis puts down trickle-down and those wielding economic power

IN THE SUMMER OF 1964, I was not quite 13-years old. I was trying to stay awake in the hot, crowded, non-air-conditioned confines of St. Ann’s Chapel in Kingston, Pennsylvania. Father Devlin was performing the Mass, his sonorous voice chanting the Latin in his mildly monotonous manner which had a hypnotically soothing effect.

I was CONTINUE READING

so atheism and agnosticism don’t do it for you—are you man enough for secular humanism?

DID YOU GROW UP with a “normal” religion an then rejected it and all traditional religions? Atheism and agnosticism not enough? Want the marvels of science revealed to you? Ever want to know what the hell the religious right are talking about when they mention Humanism, or (shudder) Secular Humanism? 

First, Humanism is a philosophy CONTINUE READING

william of occam meets the reverend nemu

THE TERM ‘OCCAM’S RAZOR’ is bandied about in our culture on a regular basis in a variety of circumstances. The average joe generally uses it to mean something along the lines of “The simplest solution to a problem is the correct solution.” Say it ain’t so, joe: the definition is not entirely accurate. And so CONTINUE READING

“How the hell did I end up here?”

CHINESE CHESS PIECES? If you looked at the chess board at the top of this page and thought, “How the hell did I end up here?”—don’t worry, everything’s just fine. When I started this blog in 2013, I knew little of what I was doing: that includes what content I wanted to post and how CONTINUE READING

what do earl grey tea, vanilla bean ice cream, and dharma & greg have in common?2

WAY BACK IN 2013, I fell in love with Tazo’s Earl Grey tea. This was surprising because I had never ever liked earl grey before. I was a fairly devoted consumer of caffeine via coffee—usually a strong dark roast with lots of body and oomph! But as I got older, a little oomph went a CONTINUE READING

staring into space in the presence of others

I’M A WRITER and ideas come unbidden throughout the day and night. If they’re good, they can keep me staring into space while I ratiocinate my through them. I have learned to cease and desist whatever I’d doing if these ideas come at an inopportune time, like when I am doing something that could CONTINUE READING

flashback with olivia newton-john in another place and time

JUST OPENED ALTERNET and among the dirty dozen or so stories—including those on the White House, white nationalists and Stormy Davis—there was this splash of color with multiple images of Jimi Hendrix circling the Mad Hatter! It accompanied an article titled How LSD Makes Music Profoundly Awesome” about researchers learning more about how CONTINUE READING

I survived the great flu of 2018 … will you, too?

AS I WRITE THIS, Berni and I have been down with The Great Flu of 2018 for more than two weeks. This is a particularly virulent version of the flu, and while I can’t accurately say that I was knock, knock, knocking on Heaven’s Door, I can honestly say like it felt like I could CONTINUE READING

tim minchin really is an inspiring speaker (on life, dreams, and exercise)

I’M NOT BIG ON INSPIRATIONAL SPEAKERSor inspirational books or art or even quips and quotes. I don’t believe that I have ever recommended anything inspirational to anyone in my life. At least not in the modern sense of the word ‘inspirational’ as it relates to Tony Roberts and related go-to gurus. None of CONTINUE READING