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In my first newspaper job 30 years ago, I worked for higher-ups who were, to put it mildly, cretins. One boss, dead now, stood out for his screaming, insults, and the glee he took in being outrageously offensive.

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It seems we are all thankful for the ability to get together this year. Last year we had to cope with words like “social distancing” and “nuclear family gatherings,” with suggestions of holding dinner outdoors. Well, good riddance to 2020. 

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Have you ever wondered, what is the real purpose of the kitchen’s center island? Ponder this question no more, dear readers, as I think I have found the answer. It is a place to collect, stack, put, place, spread, leave, toss and lose things! It is a trap for all things unrelated to cooking.…

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If you want to conduct an experiment in the sociology of pandemic behavior, try a quick jaunt to Las Vegas. Always a petri dish for freaks, Sin City has gotten stranger in these strange times since it continues to have a mask mandate for everyone, vaccinated or not, gathered indoors.

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Becoming homeless for many, if not most, can be as simple as a job loss plus a major unexpected  bill. When people need food and shelter, their need is often obvious. Legal problems can be just as significant — but are often hidden. Thankfully, there are some resources available.

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Whoever thinks there is no divine sense of humor may want to reconsider — especially after the latest occurrence of “the first Tuesday following the first Monday in November.”

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Will you enjoy a Veterans Day parade? Nov. 11 is the one great day to honor our men and women who served, watch the bands, the flags and the display of pride as we are reminded just how much we owe those who wear and wore the uniform.

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It’s a scary world out there. Sometimes, we just need a friend. A buddy who will walk miles through a scorching desert, escape the perils of predators, suffer through the wind, rain and dust of monsoons with no map, GPS or cellphone, just to make it up your driveway, saunter in through your …

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Every story requires a headline, so when Grant Woods left us Oct. 23 at age 67, the headline writers called him “Former Arizona Attorney General.” This is absolutely true — Grant served two terms as AG between 1990 and 1998 — but also a wretchedly poor summation of everything he encompassed …

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If airline and orbital miles were interchangeable, Sen. Mark Kelly (D-Arizona) would never have to purchase a plane ticket. Kelly, who logged more than 22 million miles orbiting the earth as an astronaut, hopes voters will upgrade his status and grant him a full six-year term in November 2022.

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The first time I poked fun at the Rolling Stones for being too old to rock ’n’ roll was in 1997. The band, led by then-54-year-old Mick Jagger, was in Tempe to play Sun Devil Stadium.

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Do all dogs go to heaven? Yes, of course they do, along with all of our other beloved pets. Sometimes, they just get there too quickly, leaving us bereft and broken. Maybe we love our dogs so much because they love us unconditionally and completely — flaws and all. 

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Today’s revelation should surprise exactly no one: There is a difference between what each of us says in public and what we say in private to friends. 

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You get a few years under your belt, you develop a few pet theories about how to live your life. One of my favorites concerns the avoidance of what I call “optional danger.” 

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Last week, this column chronicled a curious confrontation on the Tempe campus of Arizona State University, involving harassment of two white students by Black students affiliated with the Multicultural Solidarity Coalition.

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Are you good with money? Yes, I thought so. We have to watch our pennies even more closely with inflation. However, it seems there are a few folks in the “art world” who have money to burn. No pun intended. 

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Used to be, college was a place where new adults smacked face-first into life. You met people unlike any you’d known before. You confronted new ideas and cultures. You got challenged a little. You learned a lot. 

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I found something. When my parents died a few years ago, I was left boxes of recipes, photos and papers to sift through. I have browsed through everything but recently came across a file folder of old recipes and found a letter my father had written to his mother. The letter was dated Sept. …

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If you go back to the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, January of last year, you discover that in this state so far, we have lost 36 young people to this stinking virus. Three dozen in 20 months. Every loss like this is tragic, but such losses also demand perspective.

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Time flies when you are having fun. Especially when you are stuck for four hours on I-17, on your way out of Phoenix. The hands of time move very slowly. One hot afternoon I was forced, with a few thousand other motorists, to finally discover what it means to be trapped liked a rat in a vehi…

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Most of us like to believe we’re decent people. We give a few bucks to charity, we volunteer, maybe even help a friend move. But be real: There’s being a decent human and then there’s going above and beyond.

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I wear lipstick. And I dye my hair. There, I have said it. All the secrets are out. I am admitting to you, dear readers, that some of my “beauty” comes from a tube and a bottle. Guess I am not alone. But I have a grandson (who I hope is not reading this column) who believes that all chemical…

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The scroll of the dead contains 49 names: 48 men and a woman killed between April 2004 and December 2014 in Afghanistan. To my way of thinking, each of these Arizonans is a hero — a neighbor of ours, a defender of freedom, killed nearly 8,000 miles away in a fetid foreign hell.

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Newton H. Minow, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) under John F. Kennedy, denounced television as a “vast wasteland” in 1961. But at that same time, the nation’s children viewed the flickering images inside the electronic box as a “vast wonderland” — especially on Satur…

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Oh, those Olympics. Inspiring, incredible, heartbreaking, fun and heartwarming. No other sporting event on Earth can produce so many plots, twists, turns and moments to enjoy and ponder as the summer games. 

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Stay alert! Watch the crosswalks! Yes, school has started again, and parents everywhere are rejoicing. For kids, the boredom and long coronavirus closures have ended, to be joyfully replaced by the hectic schedules, homework and neverending list of school supplies to buy. Kids are trying to …

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Don’t look for a Broadway revival of Irving Berlin’s musical “Annie Get Your Gun” anytime soon. New York’s “Great White Way” has become the “Great Woke Way,” so the show’s title would prove offensive to gun control advocates. 

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America has long been a stronghold of freedom. The first few amendments to the Constitution guarantee freedom of speech and religion, freedom of the press, freedom to assemble, the right to bear arms, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, the right to due process, and the right no…

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A 1972 poll named television anchor Walter Cronkite “the most trusted man in America.” The designation stuck until Cronkite passed away in 2009, and it was featured prominently in his many obituaries. 

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Lord, could we get some rain? Our prayers were answered. OK, can it stop for a while now? It was a doozy of a storm that trounced Arizona. The destruction to lives, livestock, trees and property that comes from a “100-year monsoon event” showed us that Mother Nature can be fierce. In Arizona…