Category Personal


Last week I was in Clover Boldt’s bedroom. She was not there. In fact, she was never there, and her bedroom at Boldt Castle was never finished. Today it has been carefully recreated as the room it would have been, had not her mother, Louise, died in 1904 during the castle’s construction, halting all work […]

A Christmas Story

I was a child of the Sixties, and glad of it, and one of my favorite places during that time was The Dragon’s Emporium, at the corner of South Beech and Trinity Place in the Westcott Nation of Syracuse, N.Y. At first glance it could have been loosely categorized as a “head shop,” but the […]

Coffee — Tell It Like It Is

When I was in the Air Force, I was stationed for a time at the National Security Agency. It was 1970, still part of the Sixties really, and so a great many people were enjoying marijuana and a great many others were trying to make them stop. Part of the latter campaign included articles like […]

For Roland Sweet

Grandpa Braun

May 10, 2003 After I posted a piece about my mother’s childhood, a number of people noted what a hard man my grandfather was. True, but all my memories of him are good ones. Growing up, I knew he was a force of nature and not to be crossed, but mostly I remember him smiling […]

The Bug

Time has passed, and I think I can talk about the bug now. It was Holy Week, 2010, at St. James’ Episcopal Church in Skaneateles, N.Y. I sang in the choir. The choir sat in the front of the church, a few steps above the congregation and a step below the altar. Which is to […]


It began with a gift from a friend who was helping to clean out the house of a man who died without heirs. My friend saved an oak-framed picture from the dumpster and gave it to me. A couple of months later, I was looking on the Web for information on an artist and on […]