What Do You Expect?

What Do You Expect?
I’ve been called cynical from time to time. (Yeah, I know— me?) Like many words in the English language, the meaning of cynical has changed a bit over the years. Cynic has come to mean a pessimist, someone who only sees the negative, Eeyore, a Debbie Downer. Originally, cynicism was a philosophical movement in Greece... Read more »

Nerd Is the Word

Nerd Is the Word
I guess you could call me a word nerd. I like words. By themselves. Strung together, twelve at a time, three at a time. Blurbs. Phrases. There are some words that’re just fun to say: like nomenclature. Or miasma. Or skullduggery. I like the way some words are spelled: like phlegm. Or bookkeeper, with three... Read more »

A Good Use of Your Time

A Good Use of Your Time
I was privileged last night to have been invited to a memorial for an icon of Chicago theater: Bernie Yvon. Bernie was on his way to a rehearsal two months ago when a semi broadsided his car and killed him. The memorial was less of a “service” and more a celebration of Bernie, his life,... Read more »
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Political Ad Nauseam

Political Ad Nauseam
It’s that time of year again… The leaves displaying their fiery colors. There’s a chill in the air. The darkness of evening arriving earlier. And the airwaves are clogged with political ads. 30-second spot after 30-second spot accusing the other guy (or gal, sometimes, but not often) of something or other that may or may... Read more »

Making Fun of the Less Fortunate

Making Fun of the Less Fortunate
I saw a meme last week; you may have seen it, too. It’s a paragraph from a newspaper article, circled in highlighter like Jay Leno used to do on the Tonight Show. A woman named Debra Jackson is quoted in the article saying she likes shopping at the Dollar Palace in her area because she... Read more »

Trend Spotting: Misreading the Future

Trend Spotting: Misreading the Future
When punk/new wave band Blondie released Rapture a jillion years ago, it was the first mainstream pop song to feature rap. The origins of rap are a bit fuzzy. Its roots go back many years. But it seems rap in its modern form wasn’t around for very long before Debbie Harry laid down rhymes like:... Read more »
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Do You Let Other People Define You?

Do You Let Other People Define You?
I’m an impressionable guy; at least I used to be, more so before therapy. I mean: it’s taken me a long time, decades, to finally call myself a writer. Even though, on and off, people actually paid me money to string words together into sentences and paragraphs. Sure, I wrote jokes for Jenny Jones but... Read more »

A Robe Is a Robe

A Robe Is a Robe
Something happened to me five years ago when I got back from the hospital after my quadruple bypass. Besides feeling beat up with intermittent aches in my ribcage and unexplained feelings of depression, there was something else. None of my doctors warned me of the risks. The hospital staff, specialists, nobody alerted me to the... Read more »

How will your kids turn out?

How will your kids turn out?
One of the nagging questions in the back of every parent’s mind from the moment their child is born, pretty much, is: “how will your kids turn out?” It’s like he or she is a soufflé baking for 18, 19 years. You worry about how your son or daughter is going to end up pretty... Read more »
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Are Your Glory Days Ahead of You?

Are Your Glory Days Ahead of You?
Our recent move/downsizing/crap purge has me strolling down memory lane. Besides the treasure trove of Throwback Thursday snapshots, I’ve rediscovered collections of things I created: student films, fashion photos, commercials, videos, and of course, audiotapes of several comedy shows. “…life is just a collection of moments all strung together in beautiful random order… it is... Read more »