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When I was growing up in 1970’s East Texas, my experiences with international cuisine were pretty much limited to pizza, spaghetti and an occasional tamale. more
Since the Reagan era of the 1980s, we have heard arguments from various quarters lamenting the supposed “fact” that studying liberal arts or the humanities in general was a colossal waste of time. As a Generation X teenager, this message was routinely fed to me and my peers. more
It’s a question worth asking in these nutty times: how old is too old to trick-or-treat? On the question-and-answer website Quora, some people ask if the age of 12 is a good time to hang up … more
Perhaps it’s partly because my mother owns a huge antique desk from Milky Way Farm (the former estate of Franklin C. Mars, founder of Mars Candies), but I pay keen attention to the annual flurry of “filler” news items about Halloween candy. more
I’ve experienced a lifelong identity crisis, of sorts, because of my name (or names), and I’ve actually kind of enjoyed it—most of the time. more
“Were you raised in a barn?” more
Gosh, I hate debt. more
For those of you who don’t know, my more respectable gig for the past quarter century, or so, has been teaching college English. (Scary, I know.) more
Have you heard of the “quiet quitting” trend that is being breathlessly reported on social media? more
My brother and I rarely saw eye-to-eye about TV viewing choices in our teens and twenties, but we were both among the handful of people who imbibed the hilarity of a sitcom that NBC unleashed upon an unresponsive world on Sept. 30, 1982. more
With the “fall back” clock change coming soon, one thing makes me especially grumpy and confused. more
My adult life has been full of transitions—from single to married, from childlessness to fatherhood, and from virile coolness to cringey blobfish. I now find myself in the midst of a change from occupying a nest literally bursting with hatchlings frantically pecking at my wallet to now watching one last teenage fledgling perched on the edge of a limb and hoping I don’t do anything embarrassing. more
I used to love the first weekend of autumn. Now I loathe it. more
So, having earned an associate’s degree from our local community college, my son Gideon is now pursuing a bachelor’s degree in mechatronic engineering from my old alma mater. more
“No problem.” more
Now that my eldest and middle daughters are off at college dashing my prospects for retirement, and my youngest daughter has started navigating the pubescent challenges of high school, I can turn to … more
I'm confused. more
Half of that goes to the bank for your college fund!” more
When does a 500th anniversary require an asterisk? more
In recent days, the hormonal distribution in my household has become slightly more balanced as two of my three teenage daughters and several lines of credit are now off attending college. This means that when I’m at home, I only receive the contemptuous side-eye from my wife, my youngest daughter, two female dogs and a female cat anytime I produce even the most innocent of bodily noises. more
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