A Good Dog Neighbor

(re-run) Yesterday my son and I had lunch together at the local sandwich shop. He brought his little dog, half Chihuahua, half terrier. I fed Violet scraps of lettuce under the table while we ate. She thinks she’s a vegetarian. Afterward, we followed the usual routine and came back to my house, where Violet could… Continue reading A Good Dog Neighbor

My Past Life as a Cat Burglar

I was fifteen hundred miles away from home. It was the summer of 1975. I had my sample case with me from Southwestern Books. I’d worn my hot pants to stay cool. I had already rung three dozen doorbells. Selling books door to door wasn’t always a cake walk. It was lunchtime. I had one… Continue reading My Past Life as a Cat Burglar

A Solitary Life

I am at my beach house just two blocks from a beautiful state beach along the Pacific Ocean. People find out I have a house and wonder why I spend most of my time in the Bay Area. It used to be because my kids were there, but now two of them have left, and… Continue reading A Solitary Life

A Corny Tale

It all started with a post on Facebook, showing how your average American doesn’t know how to shuck corn. If you are from Iowa in the 60’s, then you know how. We weren’t well off. As a matter of fact, people would give us bags of food, like homegrown apples, tomatoes, or corn. Our job… Continue reading A Corny Tale

Work or Woodstock?

In 1969 Max Yasgur’s pig farm in upstate New York sounded like the place to be for three days and three nights. Frank had been delivering the Woodstock tickets for weeks on Long Island at his job as a summer letter carrier for the U.S. Post office. He and the other summer carriers knew it… Continue reading Work or Woodstock?

Another Brush with Nature

My beach town has a state-run conference center in it, with rustic buildings designed by the architect, Julia Morgan. It’s what got me here back in the late 80’s and 90’s, attending a writer’s conference next to the ocean. Over the years. I’ve seen brown state-issued signs posted for mountain lion sightings. I’ve never seen… Continue reading Another Brush with Nature

More Machu Picchu

(part two) Christy and I finished our breakfast at the hotel up at the top and looked into the fog. The buses wouldn’t start arriving until noon. “Let’s hike up the big mountain,” she said. “Okay,” I said. My lost and found tennis shoes were too small, but I had cut out the toes so… Continue reading More Machu Picchu