Did I Say That? Nature’s nurturing

My granddaughter Lennox had a life-altering experience … at 3-years-old. Things will never be the same for her or her parents. She’s been reborn. Her finicky eating habits are gone, and she eats whatever they put in front of her. At the end of the day, she hops in bed and puts her head on the pillow, where it stays until the crack of dawn when she’s ready to brave the California wilderness. And no more temper tantrums. She’s too tired. What could have produced such miraculous changes? A 12 step program for tots? Bribery, the parenting technique of choice? … Read more

Did I Say That? Weathering Watson

During the past month, I’ve been cursing a lot … at Watson. I really hate to swear at computers. It’s a bad habit that started in the ’80s when we bought our first Apple II, and I haven’t stopped since then. Cursing at computers seems like such a natural, necessary thing to do. Watson, however, isn’t like other computers because he can understand what you’re saying, or at least he pretends to. I certainly don’t want to hurt his feelings if he has any, but since he has artificial intelligence, he probably has artificial feelings. The problem is this. He … Read more

Did I Say That? Sloppy science

I didn’t take physics in high school because I was afraid it would tarnish my academic record and keep me from getting into the college of my choice with the greatest opportunity for partying. Nevertheless, I developed a scientific theory that could qualify me for the Nobel Prize in Physics if not the Nobel Prize in Stupidity. Using the same skills that made Isaac Newton the father of modern physics, I arrived at my principle after carefully observing my daughters: It takes 300% more time to clean up a messy room than it took to mess it up. Or stated … Read more

Did I Say That? Ooooh, that smell!

I’ve never dated a woman who had BO, and I’ve never been married to a woman who had BO, so I’ve probably missed out on something big. BO, according to groundbreaking research by the University of British Columbia, is healthy for a relationship and can reduce your stress level.              “Smelling a partner’s scent can help you deal with anxiety and tension,” the study said. (Of course, “scent” is nothing more than a politically correct term for “odor” and “stink.”) I read about this research in my favorite scientific journal, the New York Post, and any New Yorker will tell … Read more

Did I Say That? Pisani for president

Everyone is lining up to run for President of the United States, especially now that Oprah has pulled out of the ring even before she was in it. This development makes me think I have a chance. Heck, my qualifications are certainly as good as Kanye West’s. I was born on the same day as Thomas Jefferson, which must count for something. As one of the Founding Fathers, he penned the Declaration of Independence, which most Americans confuse with the Bill of Rights and the Gettysburg Address. Unfortunately, our fellow Americans don’t know the first thing about history or government … Read more

Did I Say That? The perfect cup of coffee

One of my fondest boyhood memories is lying in bed beneath the covers on a cold winter morning while my father got up to make a pot of Maxwell House. “Wake up and smell the coffee!” he’d yell. And we’d all groan. He’d put the pot on the gas stove, and as it started to percolate, the house would fill up with the robust aroma of coffee … until it bubbled over and my mother would scream from the bedroom, “THE COFFEE’S BOILING OVER! YOU’RE GONNA RUIN THAT STOVE!” I suppose it was a small price to pay for a … Read more

Did I Say That? The year-end brag

Summer Interns Oliver Klotz, Hannah Gluck, Isabel Connelly, Hannah Sather, and Anneliese Lomas helped organize Norfield Congregational Church's Vibes, Vinyl and Video Sale.

I went through the holidays in a funk. No amount of Christmas cheer could bring me out of it. No ho ho ho. No schnapps. No New Year’s merrymaking. I hope that what happened to me won’t happen to you … unless you’re one of the people responsible for my problem. At this time of year, our expectations often exceed reality when it comes to gifts and resolutions. For the past five years, I’ve asked Santa for a Schwinn Airdyne exercise bike, but it hasn’t been there on Christmas morning. Apparently, I’ve been naughty, not nice. Or my loving wife … Read more

Did I Say That? Putting care into gifts

This year I decided to break with Christmas tradition and do something scandalous, at least in our family. I’m going to buy actual gifts. Yes, genuinely selected, paid for on a maxed-out credit card with excessively high interest rates and wrapped in my own inimitably terrible style with parts of the box peeking through, so that on Christmas morning I can experience all the joy and angst of the holiday when I hear my daughters, sons-in-laws, wife and/or dog emit a yuletide groan or growl that suggests, “Why did you waste your money on this?!? I wanted a gift card!” … Read more

Did I Say That? Snacking in the sheets

When we were kids, there were certain rules we would never break because the consequences were too dire. Our mother was a screamer. Our father, however, was a man of few words, but when you saw him taking off his belt, you knew Armageddon had arrived. The household commandments were pretty straightforward. No sassing back (but we did). No touching the cash in the cookie jar (but we did). No swearing (but we did). And no smoking (no comment). One commandment that begged to be broken was “No eating in bed.” On the occasions when I got caught, retribution was … Read more

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