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Random Thoughts: Wait, what day, what month is this?

February 22, 2013

Just had a look at this last week's newspaper and found out I almost missed it.

A next-town-over restaurant was advertising its pie for only $1.99 a slice, which would mean that one pie alone could rake in almost sixteen bucks.

Not bad for February being National Pie Month.

The bad part of having this column published on the last Saturday of the month is that we missed some really neat days to celebrate.

Zak of All Trades: Our new, quite skewed, American Dream

February 15, 2013

If you asked me back when I graduated high school — just 13 years ago — what the American Dream was, I would have told you, "If you work hard, you'll get what's coming to you."

That was the American Dream of my childhood. We were brought up being told that hard work and determination can go a long way.

Now, it didn't promise us all kinds of wealth or a pain-free life. It was just a way of life.

Even in my short time on this earth — in this country — the American Dream has become skewed.

McGuire's Musings: Forget half full — these glasses are completely empty

February 15, 2013

This past week, I had the privilege of interviewing Nancy Jones, who was retiring as an art instructor following 38 and a half years of teaching at Punxsutawney Area High School.

Thoughts during and following the interview brought to mind the memories of art class and my high school days at Valley Forge High School in Parma Heights, Ohio.

The minute I walked into her classroom, the familiar old smells of clay being molded and tempera paints being used brought me back to those good old days of dabbling in the arts.

No, it's not leprosy; I'm just a single guy

February 8, 2013

It's a phrase I've heard over and over again from well-meaning folks in all sorts of situations: "Don't worry. She'll come along someday."

If you read the headline, I'm sure you've already figured out what this column is about.

With the beloved St. Valentine's very own day approaching, love is in the air, and especially on the television waves.

And you know what, I couldn't be happier for all of those involved in mushy-gushy relationships who choose to celebrate this day — and while that probably came across sarcastically with the "mushy-gushy" addition, I sincerely mean it.

Zak of All Trades: Punxsutawney — 'This is my town'

February 2, 2013

Friday morning, while I was wiping the sleep out of my eyes — after sleeping in knowing that I had a long day ahead of me — there was already a song running through my head.

As is often the case, it was a song that was rather randomly placed in my thoughts, but at the same time, it was also quite appropriate, given the date.

February 1st — Groundhog Eve as those of us who grew up in Punxsy have always known it.

Zak of All Trades: Pondering the unavoidable fate of 'vincibility'

January 25, 2013

Sometimes, I go through an interesting chain of events to arrive at what I'll be writing about each particular week.

This week, with the temperatures in the single digits and the wind chill dipping into the negative numbers, it was kind of hard not to start thinking about the weather — in particular, how much I dislike
single-digit temperatures.

On an unrelated note, I've also been doing a lot of other thinking, mainly surrounding the news of the death of my close friends' father, who made it evident time and again that he cared for me before he was taken away from us far too soon.

Random Thoughts: Let's boot the thing and bite the mouse

January 25, 2013

In traveling around, we have all found that certain professions and industries have a language of their own, a language that, at times, hopes to exclude us from knowing their inner workings.

This is true in the world of computers.

The only thing here is that most of us who have computers should know the language and why we use it.

Now, if you are really into computer usage, you might want to stop reading at this point because you know it all.

McGUIRE'S MUSINGS: Don't be fooled: The Mouse is in Control

January 18, 2013

This little break from winter that we received last week made me think of one of my favorite times of year — summer!

Yeah, you remember it, sunshine, blue skies, warm temperatures and air conditioning.

Last week's warmer weather gave me a reminder that my lawnmower that I purchased for $15 eight years ago died at the end of the mowing season, which prevented me from mulching my leaves in the fall.

And that we finally disposed of our 30-year-old window air conditioner.

Air conditioners have changed over the years.

Making the most of the name we've been given

January 13, 2013

This morning in church, a wide variety of facets were part of the service, including a goodbye to our 20-month interim, Pastor Wayne, who has served the church selflessly over that period.

He was honored at a dinner after a message about new beginnings — quite fitting given his and our circumstances.

But another part of the service that really stood out to me as something meaningful was the dedication of several of our church family's children — from newborn babies to a 13-year-old young woman.

So what's the deal with microcars?

January 11, 2013

So what's the deal with these microcars people are driving now?

Everyone already knows the benefits of driving these cars: better gas mileage, less expensive to purchase, easier to park, go nicely with a Matchbox car collection.

I suppose they are more environmentally friendly and help prevent greenhouse gas emissions which, in return, reduces the probability of global warming.

That concept seems mute to me because I feel global warming will be pretty sweet — we can swim outside in November!

It will, however, force the ice caps to melt in Antarctica.

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