How Baseball Saved My Life

He dove into a garbage dump exploding with flies to avoid shrapnel from a Commie mortar bomb, lobbed just over the hill in North Korea. Diving into that dump may have saved his life.But what really saved his life was diving after a long fly ball and making an impossible catch. Well, not impossible when …

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Enjoy Hiking the Improved Trails in the Laurel Highlands

People in Western Pennsylvania are fortunate to have the beautiful Laurel Highlands nearby as a destination for hiking, fishing, hunting, boating and all kinds of exploring. One of the many great places in the Laurel Highlands to escape and explore is Bear Run Nature Reserve, a 5,100-acre natural area owned and managed by the Western …

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A Pittsburgh Wedding

It all started in March of 2020, when my daughter’s boyfriend flew to Pittsburgh for lunch to ask for her hand. Liking him a great deal, I said yes, not knowing that, thanks to the vagaries of COVID, we would have 30 months to think and rethink the wedding, and experience all the drama accompanying …

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Asymptomatic Spread

We’re going over examples that demonstrate how difficult it is to “follow the science,” especially in the early months and years of something as novel and complex as COVID. Let’s take a look at the phenomenon of: Asymptomatic spread Previously in this series: Panic is a Virus Part V: Bad COVID Science When we say …

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Breaking and Healing

Artists begin with one question regarding any new creative work. Most might think artists ask themselves, “What should I create?” But the question really needs to be, “Why should I create it?” Intention. It is the driving force behind any project, plan or goal. Without it there can be no satisfying end result. Without it …

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Getting Published at 70

I could write a book. we’ve all said it one time or another, whether it’s because we know a lot about a certain topic, or because we’ve had it up to here with our circumstances. But in my case, I wrote a book because I couldn’t find any women’s fiction I liked. I’m not all …

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The Fledgling Wren that Wouldn’t Budge

What must it feel like for a baby bird to fledge? To take a leap (of faith?) and fly for the first time? I couldn’t help but wonder one warm day when I watched a clutch of birds fly off our front porch. I feared, however, that if I wrote about birds’ feelings, I’d be …

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Bad COVID Science

Last week I reported on the World Health Organization’s pigheaded approach to how COVID is transmitted – by droplets, they said, so we all needed to wash our hands constantly and sanitize all surfaces. Handwashing and sanitizing didn’t kill us – it was hygiene theater – but the panic engendered by WHO’s bad science did kill us. Previously in …

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Gabriel Welsch Surveys the Human Landscape with “Groundscratchers” Collection

In the world of landscaping, the term “groundscratcher” is derisive. It’s also the title of Gabriel Welsch’s revelatory short story collection from Tolsun Books. In it, the titular story finds Michael Petrin, ground supervisor of a large estate, at odds with the “maximal Minimalist” Japanese Zen Fusion gardener Yoshi Higashide hired by his boss, the …

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The Fall 2022 issue:

How Baseball Saved My Life

He dove into a garbage dump exploding with flies to avoid shrapnel from a Commie mortar bomb, lobbed just over the hill in North Korea. Diving into that dump may have saved his life. But what really saved his life was diving after a long fly ball and making an impossible catch. Well, not impossible …

Fall 2022 Read More »

Enjoy Hiking the Improved Trails in the Laurel Highlands

People in Western Pennsylvania are fortunate to have the beautiful Laurel Highlands nearby as a destination for hiking, fishing, hunting, boating and all kinds of exploring. One of the many great places in the Laurel Highlands to escape and explore is Bear Run Nature Reserve, a 5,100-acre natural area owned and managed by the Western …

Fall 2022 Read More »

A Pittsburgh Wedding

It all started in March of 2020, when my daughter’s boyfriend flew to Pittsburgh for lunch to ask for her hand. Liking him a great deal, I said yes, not knowing that, thanks to the vagaries of COVID, we would have 30 months to think and rethink the wedding, and experience all the drama accompanying …

Fall 2022 Read More »

Breaking and Healing

Artists begin with one question regarding any new creative work. Most might think artists ask themselves, “What should I create?” But the question really needs to be, “Why should I create it?” Intention. It is the driving force behind any project, plan or goal. Without it there can be no satisfying end result. Without it …

Fall 2022 Read More »

Getting Published at 70

I could write a book. we’ve all said it one time or another, whether it’s because we know a lot about a certain topic, or because we’ve had it up to here with our circumstances. But in my case, I wrote a book because I couldn’t find any women’s fiction I liked. I’m not all …

Fall 2022 Read More »

The Fledgling Wren that Wouldn’t Budge

What must it feel like for a baby bird to fledge? To take a leap (of faith?) and fly for the first time? I couldn’t help but wonder one warm day when I watched a clutch of birds fly off our front porch. I feared, however, that if I wrote about birds’ feelings, I’d be …

Fall 2022 Read More »

Gabriel Welsch Surveys the Human Landscape with “Groundscratchers” Collection

In the world of landscaping, the term “groundscratcher” is derisive. It’s also the title of Gabriel Welsch’s revelatory short story collection from Tolsun Books. In it, the titular story finds Michael Petrin, ground supervisor of a large estate, at odds with the “maximal Minimalist” Japanese Zen Fusion gardener Yoshi Higashide hired by his boss, the …

Fall 2022 Read More »

Expanding the Strike Zone

Baseball, once considered “America’s pastime,” has increasingly begun to feel irrelevant as games routinely last more than three hours and options for bored eyeballs abound on the internet. This year’s 99-day labor dispute over how to best divide billions of dollars in revenue has further alienated frustrated fans, who in Pittsburgh have only had a …

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Weak Regional Jobs Picture Continues

Employers in the seven-county Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area shed 25,000 jobs from December 2021 to January 2022 – a 2.2 percent monthly loss, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Seasonal job losses are typical in January, but other data offer little hope that local jobs will snap back to pre-COVID levels. Annual revisions …

Fall 2022 Read More »

A Little Slice of Heaven

My chainsaw is little. Like, really little. A baby chainsaw. The love child of gas-powered monsters that guys twice my size use to slice through the trunk of a 200-year pine as if it were a stick of butter. Those blades are as long as my leg. This blade, the one on my chainsaw, is …

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Infrastructure Bonanza

It promises to be a busy couple of years for Vincent Valdes. As the federal government begins to pump $1.2 trillion into the nation’s infrastructure, the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission he leads is in the thick of discussions around how to spend the region’s share, which will be counted in hundreds of millions of dollars and …

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America – Where Agency Flourishes

“In the beginning all the world was America.” — John Locke Previously in this series: On Agency Part VII Turning from China to the West Last week we observed human agency as it collapsed in Rome but was championed by the Germanic tribes that would eventually defeat the Roman Empire. The “freedom of the German …

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Night Out for the Aviary

The National Aviary’s “Gentlemen’s Night Out” at the PNC Champions Club at Heinz Field included cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a four-course dinner with wine pairings, live music, and an assortment of premium cigars. Michael Mascaro, Aviary trustee and Executive Vice President of Mascaro Construction, hosted the benefit which included guests: Pittsburgh Steelers alumni Matt Spaeth, Craig Bingham, and JT Thomas, …

Fall 2022 Read More »

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