MARCH 13, 2014 7:49AM

Worst Enemies


Beat me! Beat me!" cried the masochist. "No," replied the sadist.

The concepts of sadism or physical masochism are utterly beyond my comprehension. To take pleasure from inflicting or seeking out physical pain is inconceivable to me. However, when it comes to mental masochist—to the consRead full post »

MARCH 10, 2014 8:14AM

Little Boy Lost


I have never grown up—a combination of circumstances and deliberate effort. When I was five I had no desire whatsoever to be six. I even now pay only lip service to the fact of being an adult. 

I’ve always been acutely aware thatRead full post »

MARCH 6, 2014 8:25AM

The Spider's Belch

spider 1

Okay, I admit it: I have what even I consider to be an unnatural obsession with internet spam, and though I had been fighting with considerable success of late to resist, the temptations are just too great. Internet spam is, metaphorically, an intricately woven spider's web, at the center of wRead full post »

MARCH 3, 2014 7:58AM

On Thinking

car engine  

I do an awful lot of thinking. ... No, let me rephrase that: my mind is like a car with the engine turned on, the gas pedal pushed to the floor, and the gearshift in neutral. This is to “thought” what a tableRead full post »

FEBRUARY 27, 2014 7:58AM


Flotilla 4

You may have noticed that I’m rather fond of similes and metaphors for life and the human condition. They are constantly bubbling to the surface of my mind, unbidden. 

Some time ago, I posted a blog comparing life to a leaky little boat, with each of us bailing frantically to stayRead full post »

FEBRUARY 24, 2014 7:59AM

Simple Rules


It somehow always comes as something of a surprise every time I'm faced with the fact that life ain't easy, and that the passage through it is frequently chaotic. To bring some semblance of order, rules were invented. Since life is a cumulative learning experience, the rules each person sets uRead full post »

FEBRUARY 20, 2014 8:23AM

Titan Arum


There is a rare plant, a native of Sumatra, called the Titan Arum. It can grow in excess of five feet high, is shaped very much like a phallus, and emits an odor like rotting flesh, which has given it the common and charmingly appropriate name of "corpse plant." It isRead full post »

FEBRUARY 17, 2014 8:10AM

A Book's Tale


One of the many fascinating things about being a writer is, after a book has been written, to be able to look back on its history…not just on the steps it took to being written, but what consciously or unconsciously prompted those steps. My very first published book is a caseRead full post »

FEBRUARY 13, 2014 8:25AM

Practical Purposes

annaMayWong USE  

What my fascination with statistics and general trivia is, I have no idea (as I have no idea of the why or how of so many things I do), other than that they have no practical purpose. If you ask me, there 'sRead full post »

FEBRUARY 10, 2014 7:58AM

Compared to What?

making-comparisonsI often quote one of my favorite bits of wisdom from an anonymous sage: "When people tell me 'Life is hard', I'm always tempted to ask, 'Compared to what?'" I’ve never understood what there is there in the human psyche that makes us assume that life should be easy. I think… Read full post »
FEBRUARY 6, 2014 7:59AM

Chewing on Tinfoil


Only those who have been unfortunate enough to actually chew on tinfoil can fully appreciate the title of today's blog. My mind being what it is, I found myself this morning making a list of some of the things which induce a similar reaction in me.


The endless Subway commercialsRead full post »

FEBRUARY 3, 2014 8:32AM

A Bologna Sandwich

Bologna 2

Shortly after I returned home from Mayo Clinic after my successful treatment for tongue cancer in 2003, I had the indescribably overpowering craving for a huge glass of orange juice, which lasted for days. I was at that point still taking all my nourishment through a stomach tube and was unablRead full post »

JANUARY 30, 2014 7:59AM

Cats and Dogs


I try to avoid talking about my cat for fear of being lumped in with those dear ladies who think if having 16 cats is good, having 27 is better. Rightly or wrongly, people seem to identify themselves as being "a cat person"Read full post »

JANUARY 27, 2014 9:17AM



Over the years I have become something of an expert at self-delusion. I can honestly convince myself, short of defying the laws of physics, of almost anything. I hasten to add I am not so delusional that I am unaware that they areRead full post »

JANUARY 23, 2014 7:59AM

The Swiss-Cheese Heart


It’s strange how some people can enter our lives for a relatively brief period, but stay in our minds and hearts for the rest of our lives?

I met Stu and Zane when I entered what was then Northern Illinois State Teacher's College in September of 1952. We were all interestedRead full post »

JANUARY 20, 2014 7:59AM



We live in a silly world, and the word “silly” does not always imply frivolously amusing. It is much more the dictionary definition: “Having or showing a lack of common sense or judgement; absurd and foolish.” From my personal observation, I’d say “absurd&rdRead full post »

JANUARY 16, 2014 8:18AM

A Chat


"Why are you sitting here playing solitaire when there are 10,000 other things you should be doing?"

"I don't know. Probably because I don't want to do any of the 10,000 other things."

"You have a novel to finish."

"And I will. When I get around to it. It won't be… Read full post »

JANUARY 13, 2014 7:59AM


dinosaur 2

I’ve seen photos of dinosaur footprints made in mud millions of years before Man first made his appearance upon the stage. The mud through which the dinosaurs walked has turned to rock, but the footprints remain. And like the dinosaur footprints, many impressions made by and upon human bRead full post »

JANUARY 9, 2014 8:12AM

Listen Up!


Okay, people: listen up. I’ve had enough of this crap, and am planning a coup to take over the world. Once I do, here are a few of the changes that will be instituted immediately.

As I understand it, the game of football is divided into four quarters of fifteen minutesRead full post »

JANUARY 6, 2014 8:01AM

If at first....


I don’t like being hard on myself, but how can I possibly not be? I live on a slippery slope and I am wearing shoes coated in grease. The simplest things and concepts for others are all but impossible for me. The most recent example?

I need the correct spelling forRead full post »

JANUARY 2, 2014 8:16AM

Once Upon a Volcano

Fairy tales often begin with the words “Once upon a time,” and in a way, this blog, which was originally a letter written by an achingly young sailor to his parents fifty-eight years ago today.

A World Ago: A Navy Man’s Letters Home, 1954-1956 is an e-book compilation of my lettersRead full post »

DECEMBER 30, 2013 8:29AM

To Quote Popeye, ....


To quote Popeye, “I yam what I yam.” And what I am, what I always have been, and what I shall always be, is gay.

I became aware I was “different” at about the age of five, though it wasn’t until considerably later that I found this “difference” had a wRead full post »

DECEMBER 23, 2013 8:00AM

Once Upon a Co-Op

co-op 2  

When I moved from Los Angeles to Pence, Wisconsin in 1983 to open a bed and breakfast, I soon found that unless one has an independent income, a bed and breakfast is not a good idea…especially in an area so dependent on seasonalRead full post »

DECEMBER 19, 2013 8:00AM



I suppose that for someone whose mind operates like a runaway concrete mixer, it is not surprising that when it comes to my daily life, I so seldom actually stop to think before I do something. It has been one of the banesRead full post »

DECEMBER 16, 2013 8:00AM

"The Normal Heart"

Quilt 1Y

I awoke at four a.m., thinking about last night’s performance of the current Chicago production of Larry Kramer’s searing The Normal Heart, the story…no, a story…of the emergence of an unnamed killer we finally came to call AIDS.

Like tearing the scab offRead full post »