Saturday, August 19, 2017

In the early days of fatherhood, I began the school year with a five-minute drive to the carpool line down the street. Now, the trip takes three hours. My teenage son attends a boarding school for gifted kids nearly 300 miles from us. The long dri…

Saturday, August 12, 2017
Saturday, August 05, 2017
Saturday, July 29, 2017
Saturday, July 22, 2017
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Saturday, July 08, 2017

My wife and I were watching TV in the den a few Fridays ago when a thump at the front door told us we had a visitor. I could see no face through the top door pane, which meant the presence was low to the ground, and possibly of the four-legged kind.

Saturday, July 01, 2017
Saturday, June 24, 2017
Saturday, June 17, 2017
Saturday, June 10, 2017
Saturday, June 03, 2017
Saturday, May 27, 2017
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Saturday, May 13, 2017
Saturday, May 06, 2017

I was sitting at my desk a couple of Mondays ago, quietly grumbling about the workweek ahead, when word came that my friend Curt Eysink was in trouble. He’d fallen gravely ill on a drive to New Orleans and was in the hospital fighting for his life.

Saturday, April 29, 2017
Saturday, April 22, 2017
Saturday, April 15, 2017

In 1943, Betty Smith published a novel, “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” that mentions a little tree thriving against the odds in its urban landscape. I think about Smith every time I see some wild thing trying to make a go of it in a city setting.

Saturday, April 08, 2017
Saturday, April 01, 2017
Saturday, March 25, 2017

Into the first days of spring, I’ve carried a slender volume, called “Grumbling At Large,” that had landed under last year’s Christmas tree. It’s a small collection of writings by Englishman J.B. Priestley, who was nearly 90 when he died in 1984.

Saturday, March 18, 2017
Saturday, March 11, 2017
Saturday, March 04, 2017
Saturday, February 25, 2017
Saturday, February 18, 2017

A few weeks ago, while returning some pliers to the backyard shed, I saw on the shelf a small figure perfectly made in the image of an owl. It looked like one of those plastic predators some gardeners place on poles as a scarecrow to keep pest bir…

Saturday, February 11, 2017
Saturday, February 04, 2017
Saturday, January 28, 2017
Saturday, January 21, 2017
Saturday, January 14, 2017

In the Sunday afternoons of my adolescence, when there was no football to watch or much else to see on TV, our household viewing typically turned to “Firing Line,” the public television talk show hosted by conservative commentator William F. Buckley.

Saturday, January 07, 2017
Saturday, December 31, 2016
Saturday, December 24, 2016
Saturday, December 17, 2016
Saturday, December 10, 2016

Maybe you won’t think me a terrible father for those Decembers, not many years ago, when I might briefly wish for the serenity of decorating a Christmas tree without kids.

Saturday, December 03, 2016

A season of political strife has reminded us that we generally don’t do a very good job of listening to each other. One way to learn listening, as Will Schwalbe noted in a recent essay in The Wall Street Journal, is to open up a book and read.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Men aren’t known for remembering special occasions, so only recently did I realize that you and I have a silver anniversary. This autumn marked the 25th year that I’ve been meeting with readers through “At Random,” which debuted in The Advocate in…

Saturday, November 12, 2016
Saturday, November 05, 2016
Saturday, October 29, 2016
Saturday, October 22, 2016
Saturday, October 15, 2016
Saturday, October 08, 2016
Saturday, October 01, 2016
Saturday, September 24, 2016
Saturday, September 17, 2016