Snow Day

Snow Day

We are on the south end of the Polar Vortex, and our lowest temperature yesterday was just above zero, with the “real feel” wind chill temperature around minus sixteen. To ice that cake, we got a few inches of snow early Wednesday morning. My husband works as a research librarian at a small liberal arts […]

Consequences

Consequences

My son works for a non-profit in Washington, D.C. Thankfully, his employment is not threatened by the now month-long government shutdown. I innocently asked him (rural dweller that I am) if he enjoyed a more leisurely Metro trip into work from his Silver Spring home. He reminded me that Metro depends on rider revenue. He […]

Letting Go

Letting Go

I did not start drinking coffee until I went into direct sales. I had no idea what I was missing. Both my husband’s family and my family were religious about their coffee. I was embarrassed once when my brother-in-law came to our house after visiting my husband in the hospital, and We. Had. No. Coffee. […]

Shocked and Shaken Prince Philip

Shocked and Shaken Prince Philip

Ninety-seven-year-old Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, flipped his Land Rover on one of the family estates earlier this week. Reports say he was uninjured, but two women in a Kia sustained minor injuries. While no fault was cited in reports, MSN notes “Witnesses told the BBC Philip appeared’very shocked’ and shaken after […]

Goodbye, Landline

Goodbye, Landline

For the past year more than half of our calls have been spam — telemarketing calls, health insurance, the service desk for a computer I don’t own, and the like. Most of the time I don’t answer the ringing phone, something as a child I could not fathom. We are contemplating getting rid of our […]

September

The hummingbird feeder hangs empty next to feeders full of safflower seeds. In summer, the tiny birds fed for their long trek south. Now, the hummingbirds are gone. Wiry finches bounce back and forth between three feeders. Birds coast from the outstretched arms of the trees, gliding smoothly for their respite. Bluebirds attend to mealtime […]

The Treasures Within

The Treasures Within

July 22, 2018 — Several years ago my father paid to have all of his color slides put on disk for us.  He had taken more than 500 slides between 1955 and 1969.  I’m not sure why he stopped, except that my brother and I both had Brownie cameras by then and I suspect he […]

Father's Day Tribute 2018

Father’s Day Tribute 2018

Published in the Sunday Evansville Courier & Press – Father’s Day 2010 — On the day I was born my father bought a new ’57 pink Chevy. I want to believe the color was in honor of his first girl-baby; frankly, it probably wasn’t. My father—now almost 80—is a pragmatist and most likely bought what […]

I Have This Bridge for Sale, and It’s in Brooklyn

May 5, 2018  An original piece published on Humor Outcasts by Amy Abbott People often ask me how I spend my time now that I no longer fly on the corporate trapeze. As a dinosaur with a landline, I gab with Rachel from Card Services and “Brian” who wants to help me with my Microsoft […]

Opening Day

Opening Day

March 28, 2018 — With the annual ritual of baseball’s opening day, hope does indeed spring eternal in the human breast, to quote the poet. New fields of dreams form during spring training in Florida and Arizona where Snowbirds pray an errant ball doesn’t break the windshield of their rented van. I appreciate the anticipation […]

Filthy Pillows

Filthy Pillows

February 16, 2018 — I do stupid things.  I’ve contemplated the reasons and developed a list: Russians disguised as people from Ohio or West Virginia made me Senior Moment Hyperspeed Alien Abduction and Return Genetics Candy Crush Dependency Several days ago I realized I needed new pillows.  I like my pillows arranged just so. When […]

Descaling the Coffemaker and Other Duties as Assigned

Descaling the Coffemaker and Other Duties as Assigned

This piece was published on the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Website on February 11, 2018 The retired life is resplendent with richness and meaning. It does not, however, free one from the tasks of ordinary life. I often must rise from my red velour chaise lounge, set the peppermint bonbons and glass of sherry aside, and […]

Battle at Squirrel Vista

Battle at Squirrel Vista

January 21, 2018 The battle continues. Each side remains vigilant, fighting with weapons, creative and traditional. My objective in this daily skirmish is feeding the birds. I lack proper tactics because I don’t fully understand the enemy. I am not sure of his motives or his strategy. He frequently changes his patterns of attack.  The birds […]

The Glint in His Eye

The Glint in His Eye

January 17, 2018 When I was in my twenties, I visited my great aunt Zoe Trucia Evans at her Denver home. Aunt Zoe, my grandmother’s sister, and lifelong nemesis moved to Colorado from Indiana in the 1930s. Zoe’s husband Everett had a respiratory condition and needed the Colorado climate. Throughout their lives, the sisters quibbled […]

Bitter Cold

Bitter Cold

January 15, 2018 Do you remember the metal ice trays your parent kept in their freezer?  Do you remember the sticky touch of the metal against your skin when you pulled the lever to open the tray?That feeling of metal against skin describes precisely how our last week of cold weather feels to me. Any […]

Winter Nights in the Recliners

Winter Nights in the Recliners

January 3, 2018 — My retirement vision hasn’t quite met reality yet. In my apparition, I’m reading a leather-bound volume of “War and Peace.” I’m writing handwritten epistles to friends with a crystal nib and brown ink from Siena, Italy.  I’m taking long baths, getting frequent facials, and walking briskly in the mall at 8:30 a.m. […]

My Constipated Cat

My Constipated Cat

Written January 2016, published January 2, 2018 — I am buying Metamucil for our cat as instructed by our veterinarian. Fala, our aging Tom, has gastrointestinal distress. I’m hiding behind the magazines in the drugstore line, like the pimply-faced teenage hero of “Summer of 42.” I’m stacking random items, a greeting card, razors, gum, and toothpaste, […]

The Struggle to Assemble a New Vacuum

The Struggle to Assemble a New Vacuum

December 23, 2017 Our housekeeper, who is 82 and has been with our family for 25 years, is here today (Friday). We’re both pretty afraid of her (and you would be, too). We love her to pieces, but she has strong opinions that we consider, or she will not be happy. We want her to […]

Rejected Holiday Television Specials

December 13, 2017,  — Twice ousted Judge Roy Moore’s Sweet Home Alabama Christmas Special, featuring the Young Girl’s Chorale of Opp, Alabama sings “Carol of the Children.” Also starring the grown-up Cosby Kids, dancing with life-sized, animated Jello pudding pops. The Ancestry.com Holiday Program showcases a family uncovering why cousin Eddie doesn’t look like Grandpa […]

Memories of W and Ds

Memories of W and Ds

There was only one real Santa Claus.  He used the pseudonym Phil Steigerwald, but we all knew he was the only Kris Kringle.  He had the roundest, kindest face you’ve ever seen, and welcomed you to his red-covered chair in the middle of Wolf and Dessauer’s Department Store in Fort Wayne, Indiana. His beard was […]