Maverick

The first car I drove was a 1971 Ford Maverick. 2 door, dark green, and about as base of a model as you could get. No pinstripes, mag wheels or body trim, just a dark green, non-descript basic mode of transportation. The interior wasn’t any fancier. Black vinyl bench seats, AM radio and not even […]

Drivers Education

Learning to drive is a teenage rite of passage for most, and more life-changing than earlier stages like riding a bike. Up until that point, there was a tendency to stay close to home, since if you rode too far, you had to make sure you could still get home before dark. It’s the first […]

Happy New Year

I’ve never been much of a night owl, but as a kid, staying up past my normal bedtime was a rare event, and I took advantage of it when I could. That was especially true at the end of the year. Christmas had come and gone, and hanging around the house instead of being in […]

A Christmas Tail

1991. My fiancee and I had moved down from Connecticut to Northern Virginia (to find jobs, because the CT job market sucked). She was working for a pharmaceutical company, and I was working for MCI (when it was still just a long-distance company). MCI was a meat grinder. Lots of meetings, politics, and tense ‘discussions’, […]

Pageant Pandemonium

Few traditions are more pervasive, unpredictable or unintentionally funny as the annual Christmas pageant. Many kids have been traumatized by stage fright, and even more parents have been mortified by their kids’ performances. It’s guaranteed to generate a lifetime of memorable moments….not all of them painful. Growing up in a musical family, it was pretty […]

You’re the Tenth Caller!

I’ve always been a huge fan of radio. Growing up, it was a way to transport my imagination beyond my small town. Whether it was to Top 40 music, listening to the national news or just hanging on late at night during a snowfall to see if school was cancelled, radio was my constant companion. […]

Drinking Games

I’ve never been much of a drinker, and at my age, I’m not likely to become one. I don’t think I even tried to sneak a beer during high school, even though lots of my friends did, and it was a common thing to go to a party out on somebody’s remote farm, where the […]

Herding Cats

I’ve never had a time in my life where I didn’t have a dog, a cat, or multiple instances of both. I don’t know what I would do with my time if I didn’t have to walk a dog, fill a food or water dish or scoop out a litter box. Some times I don’t […]

Trivial Pursuits

Ever since I can remember, I’ve wanted to be the first to find the answer, unfold the mystery or solve the problem. That’s been true whether it was a spelling bee, board game or solving problems on the chalkboard at the front of the class. I thought of it as being smart, most others considered […]

Stand-Up Comic

Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a tendency to be a smart-aleck. When I was 10, my Mom was buying some sodas and asked “What do you want?” I said, “A Cadillac, but I don’t think that’s happening.” I didn’t get any laughs from the audience. When I was in sixth grade, I signed […]