Essays2017-05-19T20:27:29-04:00

The following articles were originally published in the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript.

My Wannabe Candidates and a Pre-Inaugural Conversation

I don’t usually write about presidential politics in these pages, but what else is there to talk about these days? I suppose I could pick the coronavirus, but I’d rather not. So I’m looking back to candidates I’ve seen with my own two eyes, from times past and present. [...]

My Incomplete Passes and the Glint in His Eye

Like most New Englanders, I’m a Patriots fan, at least when they win. For a long time, Tom Brady has dominated our sports world like no other player. Over the years, whatever the score, it didn’t seem to matter. Tom would turn it around, even if the Pats were [...]

My Crystal Ball and Twenty for 2020

Last year’s crystal ball predicted that President Trump would read the Mueller Report as soon as he finished Proust’s “Remembrance of Things Past.” So far as I know, neither that nor any of my other 18 predictions came true. But here I go again, with twenty for 2020, which [...]

My Improved Senses and Old Habits

My right eye has always had an uncorrectable “lazy muscle,” but the other one has worked pretty well. Even so, after I got my driver’s license I wasn’t seeing road signs clearly enough, so I started wearing glasses to make my left eye less myopic, and driving immediately became [...]

My Medical Naiveté and He Who Laughs Last

Suppose you’re going into the hospital for surgery. Maybe it’s day surgery, a hernia operation for example (I’ve had more than one of those), or maybe it’s something more serious. Whatever it is, you go in beforehand to meet with the doctor. Those meetings are pretty routine, but suppose [...]

My Jewish Holidays and the Survival of Faith

The Jewish High Holidays are based on the Hebrew calendar. So you never know from one year to the next just when the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah) and the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) will arrive. This year, the Hebrew New Year 5780 began at sundown on September [...]

My Maestro and the Gift of Music

The Pianist and I became part-time Jaffrey residents in 1986. One day that summer, we saw there was a concert in Peterborough, so we went and discovered something called Monadnock Music. The conductor was a man named James Bolle. “I know him,” the Pianist told me. “He conducts the [...]

My “Annie” and When To Love

“Tomorrow, tomorrow, I’ll love you tomorrow, it’s only a day away.” Those famous words from the 1977 Broadway musical “Annie:” were written by Martin Charnin, who died last month at the age of 84. I never met Mr. Charnin, but I have felt connected to him for a long [...]

My Recent Watches and Trotting the Globe

This article is not about wristwatches or travel. It is about three, maybe four, television series that I have enjoyed and recommend to those of you who have some time on your hands. I considered offering up some “summer reading” ideas, and if I were to do that I [...]

My Inauguration Missile and Honoring Heroes

In the fall of 1952, I entered seventh grade at Stevens Junior High School. Dwight Eisenhower was elected President that November and replaced Truman in the White House in January 1953. He and his vice-president, Richard Nixon, were re-elected in 1956. The Stevens High School Marching Band represented New [...]