Burn Baby, Burn

FireplaceBuilding a fire is like anything else in life. You have to work at it. I’ve been living in upstate New York for several months and have been experiencing a fireplace for the first time. I just assumed that you piled wood, lit a match, and allowed things to run its course. Not so. Trust me, it’s a workout.

When I stand in front of the fireplace—not too close of course—it feels like the heat is giving me a body massage. It’s like you’re wrapped in a warm blanket. It’s great when the temperature drops or there’s a slight chill in the air. I’ve been told we can continue to burn a fire until the end of March or beginning of April. It depends on the weather. And we know how that’s been going. Continue reading


Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing

Sin-Death-and-the-Devil-GillrayMany years ago, a group of coworkers and I were talking about the Catholic Church. The subject came up because one of the guys in the group was getting married. He was a devout Catholic and the wedding was not far off. I remember that a few of us were attending the wedding.

One person in particular wasn’t familiar with the Catholic religion and was eager to find out more about the ceremony. As the future groom spoke, I suddenly heard the words…venial sin. I almost keeled over. “Wait,” I said. “I don’t know whether to genuflect or cross myself. I haven’t heard that since I was in school.” Everyone laughed. Continue reading