Sunday, July 23, 2017


Saturday, July 7, 2012

Growing up, I was just like every other kid on the block. I thrived on being outdoors, playing kick the can and playing baseball in the street.

One day we saw a notice saying the recreation commission was organizing a summer baseball league for 9 to 12 year olds. The day of registration, I showed up at Bunker Hill with my other neighborhood buddies.

The recreation director looked at me and said," You can't play." My neighborhood friends assured him I could. They should know. We played enough pick-up games in the street. I could bat, catch and run with ease.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

It's 93 degrees and natatorium-humid, so I'm sitting in our library, one of the two air-conditioned rooms in our old farmhouse, taking a break from Saturday house cleaning.

I'm irritable and uncomfortable I don't handle heat well. Flipping on the television, I page through channels, pausing as a show about an international group of doctors volunteering to treat cases of leprosy in a remote village in the Congo catches my interest.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

("Back Again" columnist Bob Urban is off today. Pinch hitting is Bruce Frassinelli, retired award winning journalist, and Summit Hill native. Urban's column will resume next week.)


Those graphic cigarette warning ads running on television these days showing how smoking has dramatically affected the lives of those giving personal testimonials remind me of my smoking days when I would wake up coughing and hacking.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


I recently received an email attachment, entitled "8 Career Practices Millennials Can Learn From Baby Boomers," from an outfit with the address Unexpectedly, I agreed with most (but not all) of these bits of advice:

Saturday, June 30, 2012

For some Americans, the real meaning of Independence Day has been lost amid the barbecues, hot dogs, hamburgers and funnel cakes.

They will go to fireworks celebrations in their communities. There may be bands playing patriotic music and everyone will sing the national anthem as they have done all of their lives.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

UFO enthusiasts had an opportunity to make history last night as the National Geographic Channel offered those who wished to participate the chance to tweet a 140 character message to the hash tag #ChasingUFOs. All the messages were collected and they will be consolidated into a single transmission that is going to be beamed into space toward a region from which an unusual signal was received 35 years ago.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

When it came to deciding on a vacation destination a century ago, Mauch Chunk was an easy choice for thousands of tourists.

And when you added a holiday like Independence Day to that choice, the selection became a no-brainer for vacationers. Whether it was to bask in the old world charm of the town, or riding the Switchback Railroad or trolley to Flagstaff to soak up the breathtaking views, tourists flocked to the town.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

The ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah, the ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah, the ants go marching eight by eight and ruined a perfectly good Funny Cake, and they all go marching down to the ground, BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!

I'm highly upset. Not that I had ants, but because they stole my Funny Cake from me!

My Aunt Arlene use to make Funny Cakes and then my mom started to make them. Hmmm, good. This Pennsylvania Dutch treat marries a combination of all my favorites ... pie crust, white cake and gooey chocolate.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

"I'm sick of hearing about this Sandusky thing," said a man at the supermarket.

Nobody can blame him. It's been plastered in the news since last year. But don't expect it to go away with a guilty verdict. This case has only just begun. There will be civil suits brought against Penn State, Dottie Sandusky and others.

More criminal charges likely will come, too. And books will be written.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Nearly two decades ago, I left my heart by the ocean.

Every year, for one glorious week, I return to Ocean City, Md., searching for it, but instead I find that my love for the sea has grown even stronger and that it is harder and harder to say goodbye.

The grains of sand that adorn the shoreline remind me of the dozens of memories I've created at the place I would love to one day call home.