Press-Republican

Columns

March 26, 2008

Warming up on a frigid Easter

My friend Ted's great to have around at family holiday gatherings, so long as the family gathers at somebody else's house.

For instance, his wife's side of the clan had a joyous reunion for Easter at her father and mother's house on Cumberland Head last Saturday. Sisters and brothers from around the globe converged on Plattsburgh to see if everybody remembered each other's names.

You know how those family get-togethers are -- everybody is unofficially assigned a duty. Some are cooks, some are carvers, some clean up, etc. What Ted's job was going to be wasn't exactly clear.

It's generally best to keep him clear of the kitchen, where there are so many sharp or hot things. The living room isn't great, as his yakking tends to interrupt the flow of the NCAA basketball tournament on TV.

The consensus was that the best interests of the entire family might best be served by keeping him outside, as much as possible. To that end, he was assigned the Easter egg hunt.

The egg hunt pretty much corresponded to his best interests, as well, in that he was free to smoke out in the yard. Back when Ted took up smoking, four or five decades ago, indoor smoking was one of life's great pleasures. They had items called "ash trays" back then that populated every room of every house. Now they are considered collectors' items.

The remaining smokers no longer light up with impunity in living rooms owned by non-smokers. Instead, they politely excuse themselves from the assemblage and retire to the porch, where they are free to enjoy their puffing in weather conditions that would have sent them fleeing for cover 20 years ago.

Ted will go outside for a smoke and make like he really craves the fresh air. Depending on the weather, he eventually returns to indoor society, dripping wet or shivering uncontrollably, and tells you he'd just had the time of his life out there, communing with the bracing North Country winter. He hasn't had anybody to talk with out there, of course, but it's just as well, as it's kind of hard to get your thoughts across when your teeth are chattering so hard.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • The Law and You Police search of vehicles Because a car can be moved while a warrant is being obtained, authorities are given powers that let them act more quickly.

    August 21, 2014

  • ken_wibecan.jpg Another day in the life

    Each morning I rise from bed, slowly, as is my habit, and sit quietly on the bed contemplating the day that looms before me, writes columnist Ken Wibecan.

    August 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR small talk mug 081714 Corner store is no more

    Columnist Gordie Little offers a reminder of the little grocery stores of days gone by.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR skin deep mug 081714 High-end products worth the splurge

    Regardless of the price, writes columnist Felicia Krieg, she would buy the core group of her makeup products over and over again.

    August 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • paul_grasso.jpg Tax code needs overhaul

    Corporations may be criticized for exploiting loopholes, but it is the complex tax system that is at fault, according to columnist Paul Grasso.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hagar_mug1.jpg Ideas about soil health changing

    New techniques like no-til and cover crops can make soil healthier than conventional tillage, according to columnist Peter Hagar.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Economy may have changed forever

    The Great Recession has reordered the workforce in a way that makes it unlikely it will ever be the same, according to columnist Colin Read.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry_Mattingly.jpg The dark side of fun funerals

    Something strange happened in American culture in the past decade or two: People started planning fun funerals, writes religion columnist Terry Mattingly.

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR fit bits mug Developing power key to success

    While strength is important, the ability to generate power is required for many basic activities in life, writes columnist Ted Santaniello.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • PPR you had to ask mug 081014 Time to reel in youth sports parents

    Do not scream at a child that he's a loser, at least not in a language he understands, columnist Steve Ouellette writes.

    August 10, 2014 1 Photo

Peter Black: Canadian Dispatch

Lois Clermont, Editor

Cornell Cooperative Extension

Richard Gast: Cornell Ag Extension

Bob Grady

Guest Columns

Peter Hagar: Cornell Ag Connection

Health Advice
Ray Johnson: Climate Science
Gordie Little: Small Talk
Terry Mattingly: On Religion

Steve Ouellette: You Had To Ask

Colin Read: Everybody's Business

Pinch of Time