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Saturday, February 06, 2016

  • I like to read newspaper articles containing the words "exercise" or "workout" in the headline, hoping that new research will prove the whole thing is a big waste of time or is actually bad for you. They keep changing their minds about the pros and cons of coffee—so you never know.
  • “What about this one?” asked Mary Ellen, as she flashed a thin paperback volume in front of my face. “Can we chuck it?” At the time, we were trying to decide which books in our basement we’d donate to the library and which ones to simply discard.  Some decisions are easy.

    You can’t throw away an old copy of Moby Dick or a novel by John Grisham, but Computers for Dummies (2002) doesn’t have much prospect for a future readership, and keeping it would only perpetuate someone’s quotient of nerdiness.

  • I was looking for a magazine to take on the plane to pass the time on our two-hour flight to Houston. The conventional wisdom is that print magazines are dying, but the truth is that special-interest publications are as popular as ever. At the airport, I had dozens of choices, many of which had to do with surviving some impending doom, building no-nonsense abs or making holiday cookies.

  • Mike and Glenda Carmichael of Alexandria, Indiana, have been married a long time, but they still have a ball. In fact, they’ve had this ball for nearly 40 years. A paintball, that is.
    You’ve probably seen or heard about it, but as a TV reporter, I will soon have the honor of covering this story again. And covering is exactly the right word.
    It all started in 1977, when Mike and his three-year-old son, Michael Jr., painted a baseball that was sitting on a shelf in their garage. Mike thought it would be a fun pastime for his family to continually repaint the ball to see just how big it could get
  • My wife told me the other day that my New Year’s resolution for 2016 should be to stop being so negative and grouchy. But my humor columns are dependent on those very qualities.  I’ve made a career out of people mistaking my crankiness for wittiness.

    I once complained to the manager at Kroger that their entrance and exit doors were on the wrong sides. “I’ll never shop here again,” I told him. “I don’t know if I’m coming or going.” But did he call me grumpy? No, he burst out laughing—and told me I should use that line in my next column.

The Paper of Montgomery County,
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