The Thing From Bloggy Swamp

"Music is real--the rest is scenery." Fats Waller

KNOB NOSTER, Mo.  Lowell Studer, Jr. was disappointed last night to hear that the vote for Scotland to secede from the United Kingdom failed, but he says it won’t deter him from doing “the job the Good Lord put me on earth to do.”


“Are y’all high-falutin&rsquRead full post »

SEPTEMBER 18, 2014 9:01PM

My Bunny Hop Years

They were, in retrospect, a Periclean Golden Age; a time of innocence, but a time of experience as well. Like the Jazz Age, they burned brightly for only a brief time, but their embers continue to smolder latterly on the so-called “World Wide Web”–six decades later!


Bunny HoRead full post »

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. Michelle Trainor is a busy mother of three who admits she sometimes goes “just a teensy bit over the speed limit” in her 2012 Honda Odyssey. “There’s no way I could get my kids to all their soccer games and ballet lessons if I obeyed the law,” she says… Read full post »

WORCESTER, Mass. Three close friends of Mike Andruzzioni, a part-time cab dispatcher who also tends bar, were among the recipients of the 2014 Michael C. Andruzzioni “Freakin’ Genius” grants, awarded annually since 2010 to innovators in the arts, sciences and video games.


MikRead full post »

SEPTEMBER 17, 2014 8:11AM

Matt Slade, Esq.--Pro Bono Czar

It was one of those early autumn days when the setting sun spreads a trail of gold over the surface of the Charles River like a streak of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter!” on a murky brown morning glory muffin. Too bad it was the wrong time of day to… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 16, 2014 8:49PM

My Dog's Hipper Than Your Dog

My dog’s hipper than your dog,
My dog’s hipper than yours–
My dog’s hipper ‘cause he wears a French beret
My dog’s hipper than yours.

My dog’s cooler than your dog,
My dog’s cooler than yours–
My dog’s cooler ‘cause he digs Charlie… Read full post »

SPRINGFIELD, Illinois.  The American Life Underwriters Association, a trade group that represents the interests of life insurance companies nationwide, finds itself in an unusual position today: instead of lobbying Congress to maintain their members’ exemption from federal regulation,… Read full post »

OMAHA, Nebraska. This city is abuzz today as municipal employees paint lamp posts and spruce up planters in the downtown area for an unprecedented celebration that some say is bigger than a world’s fair or an Olympic Games. “We’re only one spoke in the wheel,” says Chamber of… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 15, 2014 1:04PM

Swamp Thing Film Festival

SEPTEMBER 15, 2014 8:05AM

My Close Brushes With Fame

Whenever I get tired of depressing news stories about overpaid fat cat CEO’s, I turn to the sports pages for relief.  There you can return to the lost innocence of youth and find depressing sports stories about overpaid fat cat athletes.


Albert Pujols, as a less-wealthy St. Louis CaRead full post »

SEPTEMBER 14, 2014 11:11AM

U-10 Girls Soccer Yakuza

NEEDHAM, Mass.  In this leafy suburb of Boston fall weekends are dominated by youth soccer, and Department of Public Works employee Paul Quichette is dreading it.  “You’d think some of these families lived in a pig sty,” he says as he pokes at a discarded orange rind using… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 13, 2014 2:01PM

Love Among the Sporks

In Clinton, Mass., there’s a factory,
straight outta the Industrial Revolution.
It cranks out product merrily
while it spews foul air pollution.

It was there while walking the streets one night
I spotted a wan factory girl;
her skin bleached white from lack of light,
her face the saddest in t… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 13, 2014 9:01AM

My Chequered Career With Older Women

In retrospect, I wasn’t ready to leave home yet. I was full of myself and thought I could handle the wider world that my older siblings had set out to see before me.

But I soon found myself lost, adrift, not knowing how to deal with the many slings and arrows… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 12, 2014 8:09PM

The River Where His Lover Lies

The river where his lover lies
is not too wide from bank to bank.
The water eddies here and there
as it flows down into the sea.

The ferry carries cars across
from Chester on one shore to Lyme.
The surface of the water’s calm,
there’s not a lot they have to say.

He took… Read full post »

POUGHKEEPSIE, New York.  Becky Balser is dying to introduce her new boyfriend to her roommates and circle of friends, but so far Rick DiMaso has ducked out of every dinner party she’s tried to arrange.  “I don’t know what it is,” she says.  “He claims he o… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 11, 2014 8:17PM

Love Among the Treetops

Zookeepers in the Netherlands are planning to link Dutch and Indonesian orangutans over the Internet in an effort to save the species by introducing compatible mates.… Read full post »

EAST BOSTON, Mass. Bobby Santosuosso fiddles nervously with his bow tie as he waits in the wings at the Aborted Take-Off Lounge, a crowded night spot that overlooks Runway 5N at Logan International Airport here. “I gotta keep myself cool,” he says to his manager Lou Valone. “This is… Read full post »

NEW YORK. It’s 6:30 p.m. and I’m sitting at Greenblatt’s Deli on West 38th Street, eyeing the door nervously. It is here that I’ve agreed to meet right-wing columnist Ann Coulter, who recently shocked a live audience and viewers of CNBC’s “The Big Idea” by sa… Read full post »

CUPERTINO, California.  In a move that caught securities analysts and tech experts by surprise, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ AAPL) today introduced the world’s first portable garbage disposal, dubbed the iDisposal to harmonize it with the company’s popular iPhone and iPad products.

&ldquo… Read full post »

FALL RIVER, Mass.  Tony Amico and Greg Brown are two “finish” carpenters who spend their days installing cabinets in kitchens and bathrooms.  “It’s not Finnish like Teemu Selanne,” Amico says, referring to the former high-scoring NHL winger from Finland.&n… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 9, 2014 9:04PM

Me and My BFFs on Ta'u, Samoa

My mom made it clear that she wanted me to finish high school and go on to college and be a cultural anthropologist.

Pop singer JoJo, who had a platinum album at age 13


“You guys are soooo SPECIAL 2 me!”

Y’know, when I look back at the fork in the… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 8, 2014 9:04PM

The Laziest Bee in the Hive

But the life of a bee is better than you’d guess. Despite the name, worker bees spend two-thirds of their time doing nothing.

Honey Trap, Temma Ehrenfeld, The Weekly Standard


“Move over, would ya–I was goofin’ off here first.”

I’ve been a worker bee for now,… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 8, 2014 8:40AM

Sunday Afternoon at the Skate Park

Sunday afternoon.  I close The Complete Plays of Christopher Marlowe–yes, the guy who said “All they that love not tobacco and boys are fools“–and try to decide what to do with the rest of the afternoon.  My choices: watch affluent young men wearing helmets knock the… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 7, 2014 9:49PM

That's His Boy

We had finished up at the Bagby place and I thought we were through for the day but Ronnie and Jim said no, we had one more job to do.

“It’s almost dark,” I said. I didn’t know if you could rig up a light on the truck and bale hay… Read full post »