Interrogating memory: The Beatles, wax museums and a diner mystery solved

To the extent my writing over the last three years has a theme (or perhaps even a brand), it is what I call interrogating memory. At one level, this is just a fancy term for “fact-checking,” as in looking through my elementary school report cards (I am missing the one for third grade[1]) to confirm … Continue reading Interrogating memory: The Beatles, wax museums and a diner mystery solved

Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Epilogue)

Following the election of Republican Donald J. Trump as president of the United States in 2016, I immediately began to donate small sums to a wide variety of organizations and political candidates. And as the race to the be the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee began to take shape, I began making $10 donations to my … Continue reading Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Epilogue)

Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Part 2)

We pulled out of our Brookline driveway in my wife Nell’s Honda Pilot, bound for the Hilton in Bath, Maine, at 10:15 am. Within an hour-and-a-half, we had left our golden retriever safely in the care of Nell’s mother and were driving north on I-95. Unwittingly, though, we had joined the molasses-slow line of cars … Continue reading Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Part 2)

Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Part I)

A few weeks ago, I finally watched Reservoir Dogs. I am very squeamish about blood (seeing it can literally cause me physical pain[1]), and I knew there was a great deal of bloodletting in Quentin Tarantino’s 1992 heist-gone-wrong neo-noir masterpiece. Plus, a friend had once informed me she could never hear the Stealers Wheel song … Continue reading Road trips and the fine art of tipping (Part I)

Remembrance of restaurants past (and present)

Father’s Day was this past Sunday, June 16, 2019. Having now been a father for more than a decade, I am perfectly content with a low-key celebration: dinner out with the family, perhaps, somewhere special but child-friendly. Maybe somewhere a little further afield, so we add a nice drive as well. Given that restaurants are … Continue reading Remembrance of restaurants past (and present)

Organizing by themes IV: Bipartisanship and civil discourse

This site benefits/suffers/both from consisting of posts about a wide range of topics, all linked under the amorphous heading "data-driven storytelling." In an attempt to impose some coherent structure, I am organizing related posts both chronologically and thematically. When I first launched this blog in December 2016, I decided that if I were going to … Continue reading Organizing by themes IV: Bipartisanship and civil discourse

And for my 100th post…100 random facts (about me)

This is post #100; thank you for continuing to “just bear with me.” December 19 is also the two-year anniversary of this site’s launch (so I should gift myself either cotton or china, and it should be red). To honor this symmetry, and to lighten the mood from my previous three posts (dealing—however obliquely—with the … Continue reading And for my 100th post…100 random facts (about me)

Visiting Philadelphia: …very few answers

The first indication of the nature of my recent trip to Philadelphia was the absence of SD’s and my favorite server at the Westgate Pub my first night there (the night before a Thor-like thunderbolt short-circuited the air conditioning in my hotel room for four nights). As I detailed here, I shoehorned seeking answers to … Continue reading Visiting Philadelphia: …very few answers

Visiting Philadelphia: Restaurants and Rituals

My preferred driving route to Philadelphia from Boston has evolved over the last 30+ years. My first route was simply an extension of departing from New Haven, CT in the mid-1980s, so I became used to taking I-95 south directly through New York City via the Cross Bronx Expressway; after crossing the George Washington (GW) … Continue reading Visiting Philadelphia: Restaurants and Rituals