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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Pittsburgh’s First Great Hockey Rivalry: The Needle and the Great Wall

In the 1950s, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns were well on the road to what eventually became known and celebrated as the Turnpike Rivalry. But that wasn’t the only rivalry at that time between sports teams from Pittsburgh and Cleveland. While Pittsburgh sports fans were in the early stages of hating the Cleveland Browns, …

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How Many Calories Do I Require Each Day?

Question: “How can I determine how many calories are required daily to maintain my present weight?” Calories are units of energy obtained from the proteins, fats and carbohydrates that we eat and drink. Maintenance calorie requirements can vary widely from one individual to the next due to a variety of factors that include age, gender, …

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“True, but Irrelevant”

Speaking of peace, Merry Christmas! As noted last week, some aspects of the domino theory were correct. Following the defeat of the Nationalists in China, South Korea would certainly have become Communist absent U.S. intervention. The same can be said for South Vietnam, although in that case the Communist takeover was only delayed (albeit by …

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A Peaceful Respite

At the bottom of the steep, rutted trail lay a deep green five-acre pond, lush at its shorelines with cattails, multiflora rose and staghorn sumac, its surface glossy in the early-morning mist. Ridges rose abruptly on three sides, sporting stunted red pine and white spruce near the swampy bottomlands with red oaks, silver maples and …

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Remembering Prominent Pittsburghers Who Passed Away in 2020

We’ve said goodbye to many influential Pittsburghers this year. Remember those who have passed away and their impact on the region—and the world—in this compilation of our Last Chapter department. Editor’s note: After we published this compilation, a reader astutely asked, “Why would Paul O’Neill, 72nd Secretary of the Treasury, CEO of Alcoa for 13 …

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Perfection

Driving Rt. 48 I see the Lokay Lanes sign celebrating a 300 game and I am filled with longing. Never have I done anything the best it can be done; the feat must feel like the first big winter snow where new lovers shut themselves indoors stay in bed while white piles in inches on …

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As Local Virus Cases Surge, Other Regions Fare Worse

The surge in COVID-19 cases continued in December across southwestern Pennsylvania, where all but one county saw infections rise, some dramatically. Still, the region fared better than most in metropolitan America. Meanwhile, new survey data suggests the number of southwestern Pennsylvanians willing to get vaccinated against the virus increased during November, when two drug makers …

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Springer, Dickerson, Fink, Betters, Cozewith, Smith, Piatt

Eric Springer, 91: A man of erudition, letters and the law, Springer was a founding partner of the Pittsburgh law firm Horty, Springer and Mattern. He was an avid writer who was involved in the arts, civic progress and social justice. He was the first black president of the Allegheny County Bar Association and former …

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Consumer Worries Mount as Pandemic Toll Worsens

Southwestern Pennsylvania businesses face the prospect of a rough holiday season with a large share of shoppers expecting to spend less than they did last year as the relentless COVID-19 pandemic continues to wear down consumer confidence. Confidence in the economy, personal finances and prospects for employment fell in November to some of the lowest …

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The Unknown History of Vietnam

“No country ever profited from protracted warfare.” –Sun Tzu, “The Art of War,” Chapter 2 Now that we’ve Sun Tzu-ized Korea, let’s take a look at America’s most destructive proxy war since World War II—indeed, more destructive than all the proxy wars in American history put together. Vietnam Since the beginning of the American Republic, …

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Silver Linings, Part IV

We asked a broad array of Pittsburghers—the pandemic has certainly brought hardships, but what “silver linings” have accompanied it that have affected your life in a positive way? At least three important positives are evident in this time of challenge. First, professional silos are coming down, and we are making great strides in organizational collaboration. …

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Courtney and the Mallows

The marshmallows will get shipped all over the place. Hawaii. Alaska. Central America. Mexico. “We haven’t done Europe yet,” says Courtney Taylor-Turner as she flips on the KitchenAid Pro 600 that sits on the kitchen island in her home in North Huntington. “Our most popular flavor used to be the toasted coconut, but not anymore. …

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