Just Askin’… Anne Kraybill

Q: What’s the most interesting thing about your job? A: Meeting artists! I love going to artists’ studios and learning about their process and background. This region has such a rich history of creativity that persists today. Q: What’s the best advice anybody ever gave you? A: It is not about where you are, but …

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A Cozy Winter Dinner

It’s been the year of cooking at home. When COVID hit, there was a mad dash for canned items and other pantry goods. We cooked and cooked and cooked, then went out and restocked, and cooked some more. Sourdough, banana bread, homemade pizza, the list goes on. And yet after so many months and so …

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Tap Tap Tap

Set aside that steaming cup of cocoa and watch. Your bird feeders, flecked with last night’s early snow, beckon. That black and white blur is the first downy woodpecker of the day. There is a red streak on the head: the male. He’s a regular. The chickadees and titmice are his winter companions. They flock …

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The Winter 2021 issue:

How Can I Improve My Flexibility?

Question: “I am becoming less flexible as I get older. Simple tasks such as bending over to pick up a bag of groceries have become more difficult. What can I do to improve, or at least maintain, my flexibility?” Your situation is not unusual as most people become increasingly less flexible as they get older. …

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Why We Ended the Program That Worked

“There is nothing more difficult than military combat.” — Sun Tzu, “The Art of War,” Chapter 7 In 1966, roughly 6,000 people lived in the village of Binh Nghia, a series of hamlets strung out along the Tra Bong River in far northern Vietnam, near the coast of the South China Sea, a mere 40 …

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Seeking a Broad-Based Pittsburgh Economy

Q. What is Pittsburgh Works? How and why did it come about? A. Pittsburgh Works is a coalition that believes in the importance of having a strong and balanced local economy that includes and appreciates all of the important industrial sectors, including energy and manufacturing. We need jobs of all kinds for all kinds of …

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Where the Dead Go

Stroll through Pittsburgh’s historic Homewood Cemetery on a clement day, and it’s hard not to feel oneself shuffling off this mortal coil for a spell. The serenity of the rolling, tree-lined hills against the backdrop of Frick Park; the acres of carefully maintained plots featuring everything from angels to obelisks to massive granite mausoleums; the …

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People Are Finding New Pandemic Diversions—Both Outdoors and In

Restaurants, bars and movie theaters were shuttered. Kennywood wrapped up its season more than a month early. The Pirates banned fans. The Steelers banned tailgating. COVID-19 has upended many favorite social, cultural and leisure pastimes that offered southwestern Pennsylvanians moments of respite. But at the same time, pandemic-related disruptions of traditional entertainment have fueled surging …

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For the Small Hairs on My Ears

If I am turning wolf-like, a wolflight growing up within me now, how past fifty feels, fur just waiting to bristle, thistle, thorns, an urge to sleep at noon, pace the house all night, staring out through glass at strangers coming back from nearby bars— If I’m becoming something else, listening at the crack in …

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Ignoring What We Knew

“One who excels at sending forth the unorthodox [army] is as inexhaustible as heaven.” –Sun Tzu, “The Art of War,” Chapter 5 In the case of Vietnam, we don’t need to speculate about how Gen. Sun Tzu would have conducted the war, for the simple reason that the U.S. military already knew how to conduct …

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Closing the Word Gap: The Words We Inherit

Donald Bonk interviews Anthony Hamlet, superintendent of Pittsburgh Public Schools, as part of the Pittsburgh Tomorrow podcast series. This interview was conducted before COVID-19. The transcript is abridged and edited for clarity. View the episode archive here. View Anthony Hamlet’s profile here. “We need to increase internships and externships, and also expose our kids early …

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Unemployment Drops to 6.5 Percent

The seven-county Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 7.2 percent in October to 6.5 percent in November, according to Pennsylvania Department of Labor Center for Workforce Information & Analysis program data. “The unemployment rate is high, but not exceptional,” said Chris Briem, regional economist at the University of Pittsburgh Center for …

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Cameron Heyward, Gridiron Philanthropist

I was born in Pittsburgh on May 6, 1989. My grandma still lives here. When I was young, we moved around a lot because my dad, Craig Heyward, played 11 years in the NFL for five different teams. When I was 6, we moved to Atlanta so that my dad could play for the Falcons, …

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How We “Lost” Vietnam

Happy New Year! After all the stupidity, all the lies, all the inflated body counts, all the unnecessary deaths, in spite of it all, by 1968 an American victory in Vietnam was within easy grasp. Even Westmoreland could have managed it. Why? Because the enemy had made a spectacular and unforced error: the Tet Offensive. …

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