Sunday, May 24, 2015
     

Columns

Saturday, November 8, 2014

In days of yore, before there was the computer, books and the written word, an account of history or a family's heritage was preserved through word of mouth, passed down from generation to generation.

As I'm writing this, it's 10 years since my dad passed away. I think of him every day. First comes the twinge of sorrow that he's gone, followed immediately by a smile, because I have nothing but good memories of my dad.

Dad was a great storyteller. Some may have even called him something else, that began with "bull" ... if you catch my drift.

Saturday, October 25, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS  The Stone Couch is a curious rock formation along the Weatherly-Eckley Road, a place some believe is haunted.

The site is peculiar in its plainness.

A flat stretch atop the mountain. No houses, no buildings. Nothing but woods.

So very nondescript. So unassuming and not to be noticed.

Except for a monolith of mystery.

It rests there alongside the road, appearing, at first, to be a large rock. A second glance identifies it as a piece of furniture, a sofa made of stone. But this is one piece of furniture you don't want inside your house.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

It seems that every year, in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas, my household gets hammered with large and unexpected expenses.

Every year.

In the midst of hoping that this year, things will be different, fate threw back his head and bellowed out a huge belly laugh, "Muah ha ha ha!" and started the fun a month early.

It began with a $1,000 auto repair bill, an oil tank fill at $400, home and auto insurance bills to the tune of $1,200, another $200 auto repair bill and the demise of our microwave oven.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Following is something I got from a friend. It compares today with 1957 at any high school in America. It's worth reading, and I think is very true. Hope you enjoy.

Scenario 1:

Jack goes duck hunting before school and then pulls into the school parking lot with his shotgun in his truck's gun rack. 1957 Vice principal comes over, looks at Jack's shotgun, goes to his car and gets his shotgun to show Jack. 2014 School goes into lockdown, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors called in for traumatized students and teachers.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

As Halloween approaches, all things ghoulish and ghostly are prevalent in stores, front yards, television, movies and, well, everywhere.

I was recently asked, "Do you believe in ghosts?"

I guess I'd have to say, "yes."

When I was a kid, why else was I scared to walk by the cemetery behind my house when it was dark? It made sense to me that if there were ghosts, they'd be hanging out in a cemetery and I didn't want any part of their shenanigans.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

I was talking with a friend of mine recently about ghosts and ghost stories, and the subject turned to our souls.

Most religions or metaphysical belief systems believe our bodies are host to a soul that makes us who we are.

The question my friend posed is what happens to the soul when we die. Where does it spend its time?

I am not an expert on religion, but I know from my upbringing the Judeo-Christian belief has different ideas depending on the denomination.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

I just finished a book about a small island that has few amenities except what nature provided an expansive sky and ocean.

There are few visitors because there are only a few rustic cottages on the rocky island and even owners only stay for the warmer months.

What intrigued me was that the author claimed when island natives encounter others, they don't say hello.

Instead, they greet each other with the words: Life is good.

I'm not sure if there really is such a place because after all, the book is fiction. But isn't that a grand idea?

Saturday, October 18, 2014

By MARY TOBIA

tneditor@tnonline.com

A recipe passed down through the generations fills a house with love.

I just finished organizing my recipe box, which is filled with my favorite handwritten recipes.

Throughout the years I have accumulated more cookbooks than I need.

But if I want a special recipe sure to please my heart, my soul and tummy, it is off to my recipe box I go.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Last week I was invited to appear on the local radio show "Coal Region Connections" with my longtime friend Mark Marek to discuss local folklore and legends, but a few callers had some questions about dream experiences they had.

The subject interests me, and I would like to share in a bit more detail how I feel about the experience of dreaming, and in the process we may answer some questions you might have about dreaming. The opinions I am providing are my own based on my own experiences and not necessarily reflective of anyone else.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

I just returned from an Old Broads Convention.

In reality, it was the 16th annual New England Traditions Convention for decorative painters, held in Marlborough, Massachusetts.

I said it was an Old Broads Convention because I swear, out of the almost 300 attendees, most were women, and one transvestite, with 90 percent of them over the age of 60. Half of them were probably over 70. Some walked with canes, others with walkers and there were even a couple with their Jazzy.