Category Archives: Short piece

My Smart TV Has a Stupid DVR

Tweet The march of technology is like a drunken sailor on his way to the next bar. He more or less knows where it is, but his pickled neurons send him on an erratic path. Thus we get driverless cars that run over a pedestrian in the dark because the car forgot to turn its…


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How to Gum a Steak

Tweet Why would you want to gum a steak? Well, because London’s murder rate now exceeds New York’s. London’s gun laws are tougher than Chuck Norris, so would be murders have resorted to knives. There seems to be no limit to human ingenuity when homicide is the issue. London’s mayor, Shadiq Khan, has responded as…


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Investing for the Long Run

Tweet If you’ve been following the stock market for the last couple of months you’ve likely been afflicted with repeated vasovagal attacks. This is as close to either medicine or opera as I’m going to get in this piece. When the markets submerge the advice emitted by both casual and professional observers is always the…


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Moon Meditations

www.youtube.com/watch?v=tARtQkWdZSM

Tweet There’s more to the moon than that round object in the sky. You can hang it if you see someone doing something superlative. Of course, if someone does something the opposite you can moon him or them if your object of scorn is plural. You can give it to your object of intense desire…


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How Go Completely Crazy in 25 Easy Steps

Tweet The first thing to accept is that you don’t have to do anything crazy to go completely crazy – a series on rational small steps will get you there. A to B seems at least OK. The same with B to C, all the way to Z. Twenty five rational, or semi-rational, steps and…


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Random Thoughts on Addiction, the Stock Market, and Gerbils on a Wheel

Tweet Having changed the definition of sex, gender, marriage, pronouns, speech, health, victory, defeat, money, bullying, poverty, success, dress, fake news, children, and height, I thought a few ruminations on smoking, addiction, and whatever free association could bring to mind might fill a few paragraphs. On Friday July 28 the FDA announced a comprehensive regulatory…


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Montaigne on Impotence

Tweet Michel de Montaigne (1533-92) is the father of the literary essay. His three books of essays, all but one of these essays are relatively short, cover just about anything you can think of. His influence on writers and thinkers who came after him is immense. These sophisticated and learned musings are ideal bedtime reading,…


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Ostracism and “high Crimes and Misdemeanors”

Tweet Ostracism was an interesting feature of the Athenian democracy, if you can call a city-state which granted the suffrage only to adult male land owners a democracy. About 30 to 50 thousand of about 300 thousand Athenians were eligible to vote. Unsurprisingly, democracy in Athens lasted little more than a century. Ostracism derives its name from…


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Word Salad

Tweet Another damned thick book! Always scribble, scribble, scribble! Eh, Mr. Gibbon?  Prince William Henry, Duke of Gloucester and Edinburgh I got a package from Amazon that was gift wrapped and had a note attached to it. The note read: “I can tell from reading your work that you are running out of words. So give…


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The Vulture Has Landed

Tweet I’ve been out of the country for a few weeks, but am now back (see below for the gruesome details). Thus regular posting will resume. First the important stuff.  If you take a cruise bring your own salt and a shaker. No cruise line I know of has decent salt shakers. They tend to…


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