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On Sunsets and the Importance of Hanging Around

I have a thing about dusk, my favorite time of day, and sunsets. I think sunsets are nature’s most exquisite art. They never fail to put me in a relaxed state of awe. They are never the same, even second by second during the same sunset. The clouds, the color, the intensity…they keep shifting. It’s […]

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The Phuket Dinner Ritual: What is Your Name and Why Won’t You Look At Me?

For the observant, dining at local restaurants in Phuket, Thailand can be a spectator sport. You will notice a phenomenon among other diners. There is the Western man, the sunburned farang, either European, Australian or American. And then there is the silent Asian woman, perhaps young enough to be thought of as a girl. I […]

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The Perils of Koh Samui Driving: To Flow or Not To Flow?

In a very Thai way that was quite generous and blind to dangers and the possibility of disaster, the proprietor of our bungalow (The Sundays, highly recommended) gave my wife and I use of a little jeep for a day of sightseeing. The exquisite tropical island of Koh Samui sits in the Gulf of Thailand. […]

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Date with an MRI: Welcome to the Machine

Here’s some mean-spirited irony: it all begins with a recycling bin. Save the planet, small carbon footprint, and feel like I’m not among the decimating and despoiling human herd. A big blue plastic bin, overflowing with magazines. It’s impossible to drag from the sides without busting it, the damn thing is so heavy. So I […]

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My First Beatles Albums, My First Albino Hippie

Charleston, South Carolina, where I grew up, is a wonderful antebellum town, containing descendants of the remarkably stubborn and contentious people who gleefully fired cannon balls at Fort Sumter to start the civil war. A town where everyone knows how to shuck an oyster, sail a sailboat, and owns a seersucker suit. A kind of […]

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Mystery Postcard Flashes Back To Woodstock

The universe is one strange mofo. Exactly one week after standing in the rain and hearing Paul McCartney remark that it was the anniversary of Woodstock, this postcard of Southeast Asians on a bicycle arrived in my mailbox. It said: Robert, 40 years ago you bought my Skidmore t-shirt in Woodstock. Hopefully this card will […]

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Paul McCartney Rocks the Faithful in Piedmont Park

Paul McCartney played Piedmont Park on August 15. I was there. Keep in mind, I am no lover of celebrity. I don’t want anyones autograph. Saw Andie McDowell walking through the airport. Didn’t care. Reality celebrities? They deserve to be trampled. I’m a Beatles fan since the 5th grade. When Paul took the stage at […]

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Paul McCartney: Beatle and Goofball

My eyes were glued to the man the entire concert at Piedmont Park. I glanced at his rocking guitar mates occasionally, but quickly zinged back to Paul. My discovery — the man is a goofball. He’s wacky. When he first strolled onto stage, he said,“When I’m at these things, first I like to take it […]