Monthly Archives: January 2013

An American Family

In 1973,  the entire country was captivated by PBS’s An American Family, the revolutionary first reality show.  In twelve one-hour installments, it followed the Loud family— parents Pat and Bill and their five teenaged children—through the parents’ separation and the … Continue reading

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High Heels for Men

The BBC website has an interesting article on the origin of the high heel, how it started with men, and how they largely relinquished it to women’s fashion. It seems the high heel started in 16th Century Persia as a … Continue reading

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Clever Polynesians

The Polynesians occupy a huge triangle in the Pacific marked by Hawaii, New Zealand, and Rapa Nui (Easter Island).  Most Polynesian islands are tiny (Tahiti and Fiji are the exceptions), and the inhabited area on each is even smaller.  The … Continue reading

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Scam Spam

We recently received a curious email supposedly from Ellen, a friend who we knew was safely at home.  It read: I’m writing this with tears in my eyes,my family and I came down here to London, United Kingdom for a … Continue reading

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The Three du Pont Cousins—How They Bought DuPont and How Pierre Took Control

The Cousins.  The three du Pont cousins were childhood friends, but unlikely business partners, as different as any three people could be.  The oldest, Thomas Coleman du Pont, who went by his middle name, was a big, athletic man—a loud, … Continue reading

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For all of those who insist they prefer authentic Asian food, they are welcome to my portion of congee.  Most westerners have never heard of it, but it is a very popular breakfast and lunch food with different names and … Continue reading

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Witch Hazel

I begin looking forward to spring before the cold has even begun.  I note the milestones of the winter solstice, then January 7 when the mornings begin to come earlier (see 1/14/2011 posting), and finally, the beginning of March when … Continue reading

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A Fine Example

Last week, as was widely reported, our country’s noble John Boehner wagged his finger at his counterpart in the Senate, Harry Reid, and told him to “Go f___ yourself.” an epithet we have all heard in our lifetime, but rarely … Continue reading

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The Pacific

Now with the advantage of a little hindsight, the most memorable impression of our cruise of the Polynesian South Pacific was not the extravagantly luxurious meals, not the personal service always at hand, not even the bantering with fellow passengers.  … Continue reading

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