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Happy New Year 2018

| "Drop a giant ball and hope for the best" — pretty much sums it up.  more

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You get what you pay for

| Driving at night has become a little unnerving, especially after having my cataracts removed. There is so much glare from oncoming headlights that it's a little hard to see, especially on older roads with faded lane markers. Although my optometrist says he can make that better, I also know that it will come with a hefty price tag, so I went looking for other solutions.  more

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Superbowl 2018

| Although some of the usual suspects were missing, the annual peripatetic Super Bowl party came off in splendid fashion.  more

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Opera in the Park 2018

| After days of punishing wind, Sunday dawned calm — too calm — and the skies were crystal clear — too clear. In short, Opera in the Park 2018 would be a broiler for anyone not under shade. And that turned out to include the usual suspects.  more

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Made in 1943

| Well I'm counting! Being able to celebrate another birthday now seems like a pretty fair accomplishment. The problem is I've lost count of how many times I have to use each toe and finger to do the math.  more

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Windows f*ing updates

| It seemed that for weeks Windows would announce, almost every day, that there were updates available and my computer had to be restarted to complete the installation.  more

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Double debacle

| This past weekend, Donald Trump put on one of the most repugnant and disgraceful displays of his presidency, proving once again that just when you think it can't get any worse, it does.  more

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I'm calling to cancel my account

| A few years ago I switched my internet provider from Time-Warner Cable to Verizon FiOS; they were offering a sweet rate and blazing fast speeds, both uploading and downloading. I couldn't resist. Then Verizon was forced to sell its California FiOS business to Frontier as a condition for allowing a merger to go through (I think it was buying AOL).  more

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Humiliation in Helsinki

| Having spread chaos in his wake in Brussels and London, Trump moved on to Scotland to play golf at his resort and rest up from the ordeal of dealing with our "foes" at Nato and the UK. And not only that, it was an opportunity to suck more money out of the US Treasury. Depending on whose reporting you look at, the US paid Trump's golf resort $60,000 (Money Magazine), £53,000 (The Guardian), or $77,000 (Reuters) for staying at his own property.  more

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The faces of Brett Kavenaugh

| For weeks now, these are the images we have of Donald Trump's latest nominee for the Supreme Court: a beaming Brett Kavenaugh being escorted through the halls of the Senate office building, flanked by two attractive female minders, closely tailed by his sherpa Jon Kyle; or, a beaming Brett Kavenaugh posing for congenial pictures with senators who will decide his fate. Looks like a nice guy, right?  more

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Hello, Mac!

| In recent months my trusty Gateway laptop, now 9 years old, has been showing signs of senescence: sluggishness, random program crashes, and so forth. But most troubling were the blue screens with cryptic messages about memory failure. It was clearly time to start looking for a replacement.  more

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Close encounter with a roadrunner

| This morning I opened the garage to carry a couple of things to the curb for clean-up week and reset the clock on the irrigation system. When I turned around after setting the clock, there was a cheeky little roadrunner right behind me.  more

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Sowing and reaping

| Each year the red agave sends up a tall stalk, four or five feet long, on which appear lovely red blossoms that eventually turn into seed pods. Leave them long enough, and the seed pods dry up, open up, and spew red agave seeds all over.  more

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Palm Springs Pride Festival and Parade 2018

| This past weekend was the annual Greater Palm Springs Pride Festival and Parade, featuring a new festival venue and a full weekend of activities that drew people to Palm Springs from all over.  more

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Palm Springs Festival of Light parade 2018

| The Festival of Lights parade was Saturday evening, and the usual rule prevailed: if you want good seats, get there early, really early.  more

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