Valentine’s Day

This week we celebrate Valentine’s Day, one of the oldest and most popular holidays observed all over this planet. From China to Finland, almost every country on earth celebrates this Holiday. More than one billion Valentine’s Day cards will be sent worldwide, but how many of the senders or recipients actually know how this Holiday came about? The history of […]

The value of persistence


Assuming a strange mixture of Christian teleology and Darwinian evolutionary theories, we tell ourselves that all change is evolutionary, that resistance to change is not only futile but that it represents a dangerous, anti-evolutionary reaction that threatens mankind’s continued advancement. Progress is natural, and change is progress. While such a narrative (however simplified I have presented it here) does well […]

Hein departs


To paraphrase a memorable line from Bogie’s Treasure of Sierra Madre, “Senate confirmation? We don’t need no steenking senate confirmation!” But is county exec Mike Hein taking a calculated risk in resigning his post before the senate even meets to confirm, or has this thing always been in the bag? As an outsider, I’d guess the latter. As the governor’s […]

Everyone loves to hate taxes

There is much that people are unhappy with in the current political environment. Politics is a messy subject in modern days. But honestly and unfortunately, it has been this way for many generations. George Washington imagined a nation without political parties, one where the government answers to the people. Somehow, things didn’t work out quite as he had imagined. While […]

Early Exposure to Catskill Mountain wilderness fosters an altruistic way of life for Gail Lennstrom

This column has always been, and will continue to be, devoted to people who—in their own, even humble, way— are making a contribution to our Catskill Mountain community. For most of us, contributions to community, if we choose to make them, form a part of our life. For Gail Lennstrom, contribution defines it. Life Begins in Queens Gail Kristin Lennstrom […]


A s we approach Superbowl Sunday, another polar vortex has descended upon the region with some ridiculously low temperatures and wind chills. I suspect that some of you are living in what appears to be ice palaces, as we enter the shortest month of the year. A reader of last week’s column about deicing salt passed on a great suggestion […]

Being alone doesn’t have to be lonely


This Valentine’s Day time of year is when those greeting card companies, florists and candy manufacturers want to convince us that we all have to be in loving, romantic relationships. But if you happen to be on your own these days, whether by choice or circumstance, it can sometimes leave you feeling a bit blue if that’s not your situation. […]

Waste not want not

I remember some years ago cutting up a deer with a friend. When we got to the less desirable cuts – such as the ribs, shanks or parts of the brisket – he would state proudly, “Waste not want not.” Odds and ends of a firewood pile? “Waste not want not.” The last few drips of maple syrup adhering to […]

Here comes the judge


Democrat Bryan Rounds formally announced for county judge on Thursday, but will he face opposition either in his own party or from incumbent Republican Don Williams in November? The answer to the first question, is probably not. Rounds has been making the rounds of Democratic committees and political events for the better part of a year to generally positive response. […]

Live with Joy!


Joy – a feeling of great pleasure and happiness; delight, jubilation, exultation, gladness, exhilaration, elation, euphoria, bliss. This is an online definition of the word “joy.” However, in my way of thinking, joy is different than happiness. Happiness is one emotion. It is the reaction to the circumstances we face, on a daily basis. Joy, however, is a matter of […]

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