It is the last of August, and this ending could not come too soon. It's been a memorable month. There are great things about August: my wedding anniversary, the birthday of my older son, and surely something else. In the old days, August is the month I began playing solitaire compulsively—with cards, not on the [...]



I began using fancy pens when I was in college as an Art major. Mostly I wrote with a 0000 stylus fountain pen—a Kon-i-noor Rapidograph. The tip of such pens is a tiny tube, thinner than a crow quill, and notorious for clogging. The 4x0 tip makes a line 0.18mm wide. I used a 3x0 [...]


My step-grandmother's secretary desk has pride of place in our home opposite the front door. Yesterday, I began emptying this beautiful secretary, purchased in 1962 for $125. Baubles, birthday cards, baskets, and relics of childhood. Things my mother and grandmother kept, programs from Ian's early performances, and things I had forgotten completely even existed. A [...]