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Columns

Saturday, October 22, 2011

"We have to go to Aunt June and Uncle Bobby's," I tell Harry.

"Why?" Mr. Nosy asks.

Like I need a reason to go see my aunt and uncle?

But, Mr. Nosy knows me well.

I've known for months this day was coming. I put off telling Harry what I had committed myself to. That's because I didn't want to have to deal with the eye-rolling and getting "The Look." You know. The one that says "You're nuts!" and "Can you make my life any more difficult than it already is?" all rolled up into "The Look."

Saturday, October 22, 2011

By jim zbick

jzbick@tnonline.com

A well-known insurance company's commercial shows two parents explaining how they are investing in their financial future by teaching their 5-year-old how to dunk a basketball in hopes the child can some day land a college scholarship. The advertisement ends with the company stating that there is an easier way to save – by buying their insurance.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sometimes government intrudes in our lives in absurd ways.

That's what I thought not too long ago when a local council in Naperville, Illinois, passed an ordinance banning the tossing of candy from parade floats and trucks.

The ban was enacted because town fathers said children were rushing into the street after the candy and could get hit by a parade vehicle. Officials also expressed concern that items thrown too hard could cause injury.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

JIM:

At the university where I work, we encourage our students to spend a semester, or even a year, studying abroad. When my son Marc was at Temple, I practiced what I preached. A German major (go figure), he spent his junior year studying abroad in Hamburg. When he came home the following August, the broad he was studying came with him. As soon as he graduated, they were back in Deutschland, where he works in banking. They married in '06, had a baby in '09, and haven't been back in the states in five years.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

It appears to me that our government has turned to assassination as the primary means of accomplishing our international objectives.

Whether it is the assassination of Osama bin Laden or Anwar al-Awlaki, or other targets we may never hear about, the goal is the same: eliminate a foe without a declaration of war and without a trial.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

By Chris Parker

cparker@tnonline.com

It's July, 1965, and I step out of the car into the bright, blistering heat of an Arizona afternoon.

My mother and I have traveled from our Pennsylvania home to this swath of desert near Prescott to visit my oldest brother, David, and his wife Pauline. The young couple had staked out acreage in what I, at age 14, thought was one of the most Godforsaken stretches of land on Earth.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Next week is National Save for Retirement Week. Will someone please tell that to my 401-K?

GREAT TRUTH: In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm and three or more is a congress......John Adams

Stupid trick of the week. Candy, shaped like marijuana, is now showing up on store shelves throughout the county. Is it any wonder that anti-drug activists are alarmed? And remember when we were kids and we could buy candy cigarettes? That was stupid also.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Every once in a while, I read or see something that hits me up alongside of the head and I feel compelled to share these random thoughts with you.

Recently I attended a dramatic reading of the book "Fahrenheit 451" by Ray Bradbury, written in 1953. The book is about Guy Montag, a fireman in a future American society where reading is outlawed and firemen start fires to burn books. The novel is a critique of what Bradbury saw as issues in American society of the era.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

There's an interesting site called Listverse that contains lists of all kinds pertaining to all types of subjects. I discovered while doing research on an article I saw on the Fox News website that mentioned a team of American and Russian scientists were joining forces in an attempt to track down the mythical Yeti or Abominable Snowman that supposedly lives and roams the mountainous regions of Asia which is quite a large part of the continent in actuality.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

On land it was the automobile and in the air it was the airplane. By 1911, the way Americans moved around was experiencing rapid change.

On Oct. 20, 1911, the Tamaqua Courier carried a small article that showed how change to a more mobile society was replacing one rugged animal that had provided years of service in helping move our local economy – the mule. Whether it was moving coal from the mines or helping transport it to markets, the dependable mule answered the call.