May 4, 2022

The Vimto Prince

Riyadh Schools It is a photograph from a different time and era, conjuring up a young man’s predilection for the Middle East. Forty-two years ago, four of my seventh grade students can be seen squinting in the bright Arabian sunshine while clinging to their soft drinks. “Cheese,” I must have blurted out as I snapped their photo between classes–four Saudi […]
March 25, 2022

Saudia Flight 163

Ghost-like Fuselage Suffering from acute jet lag after a long and tedious flight from Karachi, the TWA/Singapore Airlines “Around the World” flight was one hour away from reaching its inevitable conclusion.  As a 24 year old, single male I was none too happy about returning to the austere and orthodox “Kingdom” to begin a second year teaching at Riyadh Schools.  How could […]
March 4, 2022

Tag-Teaming WWE’S Finest

Inhaling the frigid arctic air by mouth had been a huge mistake.  My lungs and nostrils began burning and within minutes my ears were frost nipped. Welcome to Fairbanks, Alaska in February!  The temperature was lower than I ever imagined–minus 35 degrees.  Later that night the thermometer would bottom out at minus 45 degrees. I cannot claim the afternoon flight from Seattle to Fairbanks […]
February 17, 2022

Lassen Adventure

Fatigued by buffeting headwinds and a 2500 foot elevation gain, we finally gained a glimpse of Lassen Peak.  Or was it?  No, this was, in fact, a false peak replete with a meandering chaos of talus, boulders and geological detritus.  The true peak still lie a few hundred yards ahead, to the right of a receding glacier–a reminder we were at 10,470 […]
February 6, 2022

The Joy of Learning a Foreign Language

At about 10 am each morning, when my sugar level begins to dip and my spirits flag, the scent of vanilla from the adjoining cookie factory wafts through the office space and everything is once again OK.  I thank the good Lord each and every day my international company had the foresight to build their plant next to the Gamesa cookie […]
January 25, 2022

You’ll Never Guess Who Kissed Me

Barely a week ago I was standing in line, in no particular hurry to check out a book from the town’s ultra-modern and expansive library–an 8400 square foot building which bore little resemblance to my 1960s library in Brooklyn, New York. A young family pressed up against the glass of the exotic saltwater aquarium while the father rattled off the […]
January 22, 2022


I’m not sure why I thought about Sparky.  Perhaps it had something to do with a grainy photo I discovered in a box of photos.   Before too much time passes, I wanted to memorialize our unexpected meeting that day–a ‘blessing’ now that I’ve had the chance to properly reflect. One spring day in 2009, I found myself at Cal Lutheran […]
January 1, 2022

They Rule the Night

With daylight receding and my wife in the City of Angels, I found myself debating where to exercise. Trudge up neighboring Tarantula Hill for a scenic view of the Conejo Valley? Head off for a staid elliptical workout at the nearby gym? Or the last resort of a not so challenging jog around the block? Some unspoken force within me […]
November 21, 2021

Coming of Age: Me and Peter Frampton

Dear All, It was a week ago Friday.  We decided to stay home and, instead of watching TV, we dialed into YouTube and selected some of our favorite artists. Peter Frampton–now there’s a name for you! We bounced around with music from the 70s and came upon Peter Frampton.  Wow!  Frampton.  Now there’s a name for you–the British kid with […]
October 23, 2021

Touching Base with America’s Pastime

A daughter rekindles her father’s love for baseball. We were so close to the players, you could almost touch them.  It had been at least a dozen years since my last baseball game.  The setting sun was bright and splashed the upper decks of San Diego’s Petco Park as the stadium lights were turned on.  We found ourselves betwixt and between both natural and […]