Call of The Wild

I love the feel of the outdoors right after a snowstorm has stopped. There’s something about the look of the snow piled up untouched, the branches bowing with their newly accumulated weight, the wind having calmed down and the light creating the kind of blue-gray shadow effect that highlights the crisp outline of everything. We got a foot overnight, just as predicted, which is just the way you want it because it’s such a letdown when all sorts of weather advisories and winter storm watches are heralded and nothing materializes. So the meteorologists got it right this time. It was the kind of morning when you just want to cozy up, wrapped in pajamas and robe, with a second pot of coffee at hand so you could catch up indulgently on all the things you wish you could normally do indoors – like doing nothing and spending extra time together, with the crossword, or playing with the cats, and knowing that the whole day will be spent digging out and going nowhere. Last night, just before the snow was slated to begin, I put out two tubular bird feeders and within minutes they had drawn activity. “They’ve remembered,” my wife,...Read more

Freelance

A year ago this week I got laid off. With everything else going on lately the last 12 months have been interesting. As if a pandemic and the turmoil of a national election were not enough on the public side, on the private side I have had to adjust to being out on my own professionally for the first time in decades. That all became a fact of life last December, when I got a professionally polite but nonetheless depressing phone call from my managers at Golf Channel/GolfAdvisor.com that they were letting me go for budgetary reasons. There’s not much you can do under such circumstances. It had been a great place to work, which made my leaving all the more difficult. All I said by way of response was that I had given up a lot to make the move to join them 20 months before. I was referring to the fact that I had been a full time staff writer and editor for a national magazine called Golfweek for 20 years and had built up a pretty good reputation for myself. The move from Golfweek to GolfChannel/GolfAdvisor.com had been voluntary and felt like a great transition in many...Read more
Winter Chill

Winter Chill

A strange year is about to get stranger. Winter is already setting in upon us, and with it news that the Second Wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is going to be more pervasive than the first. Daily infection numbers are over 160,000 nationwide, with positivity rates on testing well over 3-4 percent.The most dangerous place in the world to be if you are worried about the virus is North Dakota. Hospitals are full, and the Republican Governor, who had refused to invoke a mask-wearing mandate in the name of freedom of choice, has decreed that doctor and nurses registering as positive for the virus can still work in health care tending to infected patients. For too many Americans there is still an air of disbelief, as if the pandemic were a hoax, or exaggerated, or simply the way another way of everyday life making things tough for some people and not so tough for others. In which case, fatalism suggests that no measures of prevention or caution are needed. So let’s all just continue with plans for large family gatherings at Thanksgivings. One of the saddest expressions of this is now circulating its way through the internet in the form...Read more