My 5 banned words for 2018

News came about recently that President Donald Trump was banning the use of certain words the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention could include in its upcoming budget. The words include “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based” and “science-based.” As one Washington Post article points out, this ban on words is not just a Trump thing,… Continue reading My 5 banned words for 2018

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Finally: U.S. fesses up to UFOs

In a recent report and downright chilling video, the U.S. government has admitted to running a program that investigated UFOs. And if the video released along with the report is any indication, it gives credence to years of sightings and unexplained phenomena and is an official admission of the greatest discovery in human history. Also:… Continue reading Finally: U.S. fesses up to UFOs

Your sibling could be your greatest asset

That brother or sister you have disagreements with now—or maybe even refuse to speak to for some reason—could someday be the one who you need most. Look no further than the Wright brothers. Glider after glider and study after study, my heroes and fellow Dayton, Ohio, natives the Wrights tried for several years to achieve… Continue reading Your sibling could be your greatest asset

The best gift I ever got for Christmas

As much as I bemoan Christmas, there was a time when it held a great deal of magic for me, before I realized that Christmas could be very different for other people. What gifts would I get? I can't sleep from the excitement! The smell of new toys is the best smell! Putting a toy… Continue reading The best gift I ever got for Christmas

Put a bird (in) it: I built a birdhouse

For the first time that I can remember, it actually snowed here in Austin on Dec. 7. As temperatures fall below freezing for the first time each year, I always think of people who don't have anywhere to go, who are in the cold outside overnight. Then I get really sad. I noticed there were… Continue reading Put a bird (in) it: I built a birdhouse

Native Americans did gift-giving right

I wrote this column in 2008 for a newspaper at which I worked. I think it's still relevant: It's December, which means my parents are going to ask me what I want for Christmas. I assume they pass my wish list on to Santa Claus. Santa has yet to bring me most of the things… Continue reading Native Americans did gift-giving right

What I want for Christmas

Since my mid- to late teens, the inevitable, though heartfelt and always sincere, question from my mom and dad has been a source of heartache for me: What do you want for Christmas? The older I've gotten, the harder it is to answer that question. Isn't the season about Jesus Christ, a renewal of faith… Continue reading What I want for Christmas

‘Listen closely, as our options have changed’: Why all the changes?

I was on the phone with the fine folks at a large retailer the other day, but before I got to talk to a person, I went through the chain's automated system so I could be directed to the proper department. "Listen closely, as our options have changed." The familiar robotic voice we've likely all… Continue reading ‘Listen closely, as our options have changed’: Why all the changes?

I’d rather go to Paris, Texas, than Paris, France, anyway

There's a commercial from the folks at Signet Jewelers that has been making its rounds lately, and it features a young couple—the woman is blindfolded and wearing a necklace from what I assume is Signet's Interwoven jewelry line—throwing a dart at a map to decide where to go on a trip. The dart lands on… Continue reading I’d rather go to Paris, Texas, than Paris, France, anyway

That time we worked in a race car pit

There's a saying out there that I love: "Friends help you move; real friends help you move bodies." I helped my Capricorn brother and close friend, Matt, move a few times during college, and one time during our college years we found ourselves moving not bodies, but stock car tires. Through someone who he knew,… Continue reading That time we worked in a race car pit