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The Death Problem

Death has a PR problem in our culture.  Americans tend to view death in a negative light, as something to escape.  We picture a dark, hooded figure, pointing its crooked finger toward another victim, gathering souls for judgment.  We isolate the dead behind fences, in holding pens for the dearly departed, and turn their disposal […]

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Jack Daniel Nights

Whenever heading north into Quebec to go fishing, it is necessary to stop at the duty-free store and buy a bottle of Jack Daniels.  Duty-free bottles are bigger and they cost less.  The bigger size is required to ensure sufficient quantities for use as mouthwash, followed by toasts to the morning, toasts to the fish […]

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Ghost Train

“He said he knew exactly where to hit me that wouldn’t leave a mark, but would hurt like hell.  Or I could give him all my money.”  That was how Chris described being robbed on his latest crack binge, as he sat dejected and ashamed in my office.  A frequent relapser, Chris had been clean […]

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Trusting The Miracle

I’ve been wondering what to do with myself lately.  Perhaps it’s because I turned sixty a few months ago.  Perhaps it’s because I had a heart attack shortly afterwards.  Perhaps it’s because I’ve never held a job longer than seven years, and I’m approaching that now.  Perhaps it’s because I still don’t know what I […]

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My Myocardial Infarction

I had a heart attack two weeks ago.  I woke around six and couldn’t get comfortable.  I turned this way and that, but the little cramp in my chest wouldn’t go away, so I sat up.  Soon I was pacing around the house, massaging my sternum, feeling a tingle descend my right arm, before traveling […]

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Sixty Isn’t Old If. . . .

Twenty years ago I received a t-shirt that read, “Forty isn’t old, if you’re a tree.”  Now that I’m about to increase my age by half, I find myself remembering the shirt.  Do they print ones that say, “Sixty isn’t old, if you’re a tree”?  I don’t think so, because sixty is old if you’re […]

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