Category: Life lessons

Trendy vs. tried and true

Game of Thrones sure is in our faces as its final season begins. Whether it’s the greatest television show of all times, I couldn’t judge. I haven’t seen a single episode. I never was good at keeping up with what TV shows are in. ER was several seasons along before I became a fan. Neither... Read more »

The difficult task of sentimental decluttering

Other than Donald Trump and Nancy Pelosi, the person whose name it seems we’re hearing the most at the start of 2019 is Marie Kondo, author of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and focus of a new Netflix series. Netflix’s Tidying Up with Marie Kondo began this month, inspiring people who made new... Read more »

Don't tidy your place for me

For the last few of my building’s monthly game nights, only two of us showed up. Before he moved out of town in mid-December, my game-playing partner invited me to his apartment for a meal and a last game of Scrabble. The invitation for that evening was issued spontaneously during his workday, so he had... Read more »
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Intrusiveness vs. showing interest: how to ask questions

In the December issue of Chicago magazine there’s a short piece on how to make small talk at parties. Anne Libera, director of comedy studies at Columbia College, suggests asking, “What’s the weirdest food your family eats on a regular basis?” or “Tell me about the most exciting thing you ever did as a teenager.”... Read more »

Having an undecorated Christmas

Having an undecorated Christmas
December 18, the calendar says. Only a week until Christmas, and I haven’t put up any decorations. I may not.  Has a bah-humbug attitude overtaken me?  I don’t think so. I’ve happily gone to the Chicago Greeter and my building’s holiday parties. I eagerly read the cards that are arriving and will email holiday notes... Read more »

Before moving on from the big 70 . . .

Since the last two posts were about turning 70, maybe I’ve milked the topic ad nauseam. But those posts mostly reprinted other people’s thoughts, and now that the big birthday is past, my own feelings are clearer. * Friends and family made it one of my best birthdays ever. The wishes via text, email, phone,... Read more »
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Other people's thoughts on turning 70

I wasn’t going to pressure myself to write a post on my milestone birthday, but while waiting to get together with friends this afternoon and evening, I felt that reading others’ thoughts about turning 70 would help me. Thanks to the fellow septuagenarians quoted here — not just for their wisdom but also for making this an... Read more »

With the big 70 coming up

My 70th birthday, coming up next week, presents an obvious topic for a post. But I keep putting off exploring my feelings about it, which may indicate how I feel. So, instead of naval-gazing, I’m reacting to pertinent recent newspaper pieces and a book. An Associated Press story reported that a 69-year-old Dutch positivity guru has asked... Read more »

A struggle to restore a dead smartphone

This is a technology horror story with blame to go around. For the nearly two weeks I was without a working phone, I must have spent half of that time trying to figure out what had happened to my Moto G4 Play and to bring it back to life. The ordeal started on July 4. Sitting... Read more »
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Fortunate are those who find a purpose

My brother just retired after 35 years as sports editor of the Herald-News in Joliet. The outpouring of thanks, congratulations, and good wishes from a sports-crazy community must be immensely gratifying to him. Of course I am very happy for him. But also a bit envious. He found his purpose and pursued it for 35... Read more »