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Good grief, how did we ever survive planes without cell phones, smart phones, tablets, and laptops? People need to learn to disconnect when they step on board. In case you missed it, today’s big brouhaha is over did whether or not actor Alec Baldwin turned his phone off soon enough to meet with the flight attendant’s… Read more »

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Why am I awake? This question poses itself as my body lays in a comfortable position on the first available secluded space I found on the Oranjestad portion of Aruba’s west coast. The sand beneath me contours to nestle, hold and support my body.  The warmth of my billions-grain fine quartz mattress speckled with broken… Read more »

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There are some plays that, no matter how many different versions I’ve seen over the years, I will continue to seek out simply because the writing is so extraordinary.  A Streetcar Named Desire comes to mind.  Then there are plays that, although they are very good—masterpieces even—I feel no pressing need to ever see again. … Read more »

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Ask a New Yorker: What’s going on? Anna: I’m having a 16 hr. day so I’m going to be working the whole day and all night. Ask a New Yorker: What kind of work do you do? Anna: I’m a bartender. Ask a New Yorker: Favorite drink? Anna: Sex on the Beach. 2/3 oz. Schnapps,… Read more »

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Richard Brookhiser wrote his first cover story for the National Review in 1969, exposing what he called the “phony” quality of a Vietnam War protest at Irondequoit High School in Rochester, NY. The sentiment was not uncommon for the conservative magazine, but the author was—Brookhiser was 14 years old. After earning his bachelor’s at Yale… Read more »

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  6:43 PM, Thanksgiving Day Carrie’s cell phone rings.  It’s Miranda.  Carrie picks up.   Carrie: Is this the annual I’m-in-hell call? Miranda: I’m in hell.  Are you in hell?  Please tell me you’re in hell. Carrie: Well…. Miranda: Carrie, Steve is leading my entire family in a Piano Man sing-along.  Please don’t let me… Read more »

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. This is the afternoon of Thanksgiving Day in 1961. It takes place in Yorkville, Manhattan. The action picks up where my last column’s action left off. Around one, we got back to my father’s family’s apartment for Thanksgiving dinner. Dad’s Mom, and Step-Dad, John Rode, Nan and Pop Cuckoo to me, always cooked our bird. Mom’s… Read more »

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Until a few months ago I had not recalled the last instance when I felt afraid, deep fear.  It happened suddenly, impressively, unmistakably, indelibly after I dropped my clothes and dipped my whole self into the pond on a friend’s Catskill Mountain estate.  My eyes opened underneath the water’s surface, below a sky and above… Read more »