Theft with Consent

(Originally published in July of 2003) This column is long overdue.  To put it in library terms, which I guess I already did (but I'd like to elaborate), this column is like checking out a book in 1998 but not returning it until yesterday.  And by yesterday, I really mean tomorrow.  This analogy will only grow as time continues because yesterday and tomorrow are both relative terms.  I can't wait until the space creatures read this in the year 2577.  Maybe they will e-mail me when they do, just so I feel like my previous sentence came with a purpose. As far as my purpose, I'd like to address the issue of valet parking this week because, quite frankly, I think it's the worst system in the world.  If I was still on that library kick, I'd add that Dewey Decimal -- if that <i>is</i> his real name -- would be laughing in his grave.  Now I understand that this is a "fancy" way to park because someone is doing the parking for you, and anytime s

The Five Rules of Facebook -- Still!

On July 28, 2009, I wrote about the five rules of Facebook.  A lot has changed since then.  For example, we only wore masks on Halloween or to try on Halloween costumes in 2009. Still, I don't think much has truly changed in regards to Facebook.  Here's the original column: Life has a lot of rules, which is good because they give rulers something to do besides measure things. In the summer, people follow such important rules as "No running around the pool," "No swimming in the ocean without a lifeguard" and "No accepting candy from a stranger unless the stranger says the candy is good."  I've been noticing, however, that there are a lot of rules people should be following when it comes to Facebook, the social networking site that helps its users to connect with the people that sat behind them in math class (it's about time, huh?).  Although there are probably hundreds of rules that Facebook users should follow, I have come up with just fi

That time when Jesse Ventura ran for governor (oh, and won)

I originally wrote this while features editor of the Heights at Boston College for my "Progressive Revelations" column on November 9, 1998.  And here we are in 2020 and there's actually a reason to let it resurface... John Glenn didn’t stay in space for long, but I’m sure he wondered if he landed on the right planet when he discovered the results of Election Day.  In Minnesota’s biggest spotlight since the Twins were in the World Series, former wrestler Jesse “The Body” Ventura was elected the state’s new governor.  What’s on his agenda?  Here’s a list of possible goals:             - Enclose the entire state in turnbuckles, and encase those turnbuckles within a cage.   If a person leaves Minnesota, he or she will be sent back in after 10 seconds or otherwise be disqualified from state citizenship.   If anyone wishes to enter Minnesota, that person can do so by simply climbing the cage, on the grounds that he or she will not bring in any chairs, mace or meta

If Lizzo wrote an essay about how she was feeling, it would look like this...

As an English and journalism teacher for 20 years, I have been asked a lot of questions. One inquiry is what music I listen to and, subsequently, what I think of today's music. Clearly my opinion about music matters to a great number of people, and I don't want to let anyone down. The other day, after hearing Lizzo's "Good As Hell," I began thinking about how this song would appear as an essay. So, I did what any English teacher would do: I wrote the lyrics as an essay. For the actual video of this song, click here . ESSAY QUESTION: How do you feel about yourself? How can your own experiences help others? Answer both questions in a short essay that includes self-reflection. Think about your own path in life so far before you begin to write. Good As Hell An Essay by Lizzo When I feel pride in my hair and display it to others, I like to ensure that my nails look good as well. I ask others around me if they are feeling as good as I am and then proclaim

The Maury Cycle

I wrote this on January 20, 2009. Eleven years later, nothing has changed. A day off from work has allowed me to do something I have not done in a few years: watch "the Maury Povich Show."  Although it has been a few years since I have watched it, the episode sure seemed a lot like every episode I have ever watched of this show: 1. Woman A says that Man A is father of her child, but Man A denies it. 2. Mother of Woman A yells profanities at Man A and everyone applauds. 3. Woman A then yells, "Yeah, you tell 'em, mamma!  Tell 'em!" and then Man A pushes Mother of Woman A. 4. Maury pretends to be disturbed by this, saying, "Now, we are not here to fight and yell," even though he knows that the show would be one minute long without all of this drama. 5. A string of double-negatives are yelled back and forth among Man A, Woman A and Mother of Woman A, such as "You ain't got no business not no taking care of no daughter."  I shou

Read this to get a perfect score on your eye exam.

(AFTER HOLIDAY NBA SALE -- UP TO 75% OFF: [Originally published in January of 2009]  I ran into an old friend, but don't worry, neither of us got hurt too badly. I'll just have to be more careful in the future... A lot of people like to say that the "future is now," and those people are wrong because the future is actually tomorrow. Sometimes I ponder what it would be like to see into the future. Every time I would begin to tie my shoe, it would already be tied. More importantly, it would make my next optometrist appointment more interesting: Doctor: Can you read the third line? Me: On this chart or the one that will be here in twenty years? Doctor: I'm getting a new chart in twenty years? Me: Well, no, you'll be dead. But the guy replacing you is getting a new one. Without this ability to look into the future, eye doctor appointments are not interesting enough because there is no possible way I can get a bette

Sometimes I talk to myself

Best Keurig® K-Cup® Fall Coffee Recipes! I wrote this in 2003.  When all else fails, interview yourself.  At least you will know what not to ask, right? 2/4/03 I have recently become frustrated with something at doughnut establishments, and I'm not referring to the scones, although -- seriously -- just think about the writing possibilities if I were. Rather, it's the tip cup that bothers me... To begin, I do realize that doughnut (or donut, take your pick) shops aren't the only places with these cups. But for the sake of this column, I need to be oblivious to all of the other ones in order to keep some sort of focus, so bear with me here... Yogi : That's right, I am. Smokey : Me too. At any rate, my first question is what we are tipping when we contribute extra change, sometimes even dollar bills, into the doughnut tip cup. Is it the way the employees stretch to grab the lemon-filled that is so challenging, or is coffee pouring more of an art than I