Blame it on Mercury

In addition to flossing, getting to the gym, watching my salt intake, and paying attention to my wife, I now have one more thing to worry about. Mercury is in Retrograde. Again. If this means nothing to you, don’t feel bad. I had not heard of it either until a couple of years ago. Apparently every now and again, and on a more regular basis than you would imagine, an optical illusion occurs in space that makes it seem the planet Mercury is traveling backwards. Big deal? That’s what I said. But apparently it is a big deal. People who… Continue Reading

Irish wit

Speakers attempting to make us laugh tomorrow night at the Greater Pittston Friendly Sons of St. Patrick Banquet have their work cut out for them if they hope to top previous banquets. One of the best at having banquet-goers rolling in the aisles was the late State Rep. Tom Tigue. (For the record, it still hurts like hell to type “the late” in front of Tom’s name.) Tom’s deadpan delivery made his jokes all the funnier. Here’s one: Pat and Mike were out fishing on Galway Bay. Mike reels in a leprechaun who tells him he will grant him a… Continue Reading

Ah, Mencken

I am too young to remember H.L. Mencken. He died in 1956, around the time I was in kindergarten. But I quote him all the time. I’m not sure how I became aware of Mencken, the writer and satirist for The Baltimore Sun, but I suspect it was through William Zinnser, author of the book “On Writing Well.” Zinsser refers to Mencken often and that sent me in search of him. I quoted Mencken as recently as a couple of weeks ago when my wife and I went to a restaurant for the first time and ran into a priest… Continue Reading

Each snowfall makes time melt away

My wife insists on buying me a snowblower. “Please don’t,” I tell her. In fall, it’s a leaf blower. Or one of those vacuum devices that will mulch them. I implore her not to. Her heart’s in the right place. Which means she’s concerned about my heart. But my heart is the precise reason why I need to keep shoveling snow and raking leaves. Not my physical heart. My spiritual one. See, I never shovel snow or rake leaves alone. I do it with my dad. He died in 1994, just a few days after Christmas. But since then he’s… Continue Reading

I don’t golf, but …

As we do every year, my wife and I went to the Philadelphia Flower Show on Monday. Mary Kay says this jumpstarts her spring fever. My jumpstart comes much earlier. It’s the first time I see a TV commercial for “The Masters on CBS.” And that happened this year somewhere around the time of the Super Bowl. True, they start plugging it early (the tournament does not begin until April 5) but that’s okay by me. Just the thought of The Masters tells me spring will come again. And although it has come in each of my 68 years on… Continue Reading

Boring is as boring does

I didn’t hear the radio show, but a friend told me there was quite a discussion yesterday after a survey listed Bloomsburg as the most boring town in Pennsylvania? Bloomsburg? No way. When I think of Bloomsburg, the last thing I’d ever think of is boring. Bloomsburg to me is the scene of some of the most exciting times of my life. Of course, those memories are close to 50 years old. The first girl who ripped my heart out and stomped on it was a student at Bloomsburg College (now University). Despite how our relationship ended, we spent more… Continue Reading