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Burton Cole

Scouring the planet for a lick of common sense

I don’t suppose you’ve noticed, but the world’s gone crazy. I suspect that’s because we’ve misplaced our common sense and can’t find it anywhere. We’ve checked under the rug, behind the dresser, in the couch cushions, even on the floor of the car, and there isn’t a scrap of ...

Standing at edge of crankiness

It’s not your imagination. People really are angrier these days. Why are we so downright crabby? For starters, politics, the pandemic and persnickety people. Possibly parsnips too, but no one’s tried to feed me any of those things lately. Parsnips make me cranky. Just about anything is ...

Quoth the dreary year of 2020: ‘Nevermore’

It’s the most listful time of the year. By that I mean we are pummeled by plenty of lists popping up everywhere reviewing the year that was 2020. Top songs of the year, top stories of the year, movies of the year, books of the year, events of the year, famous people departing in the year... ...

Coconut has largest house mammal as pet

We have a cat. Rather, my wife has a pet. The cat has me. Last night, I sat in my easy chair watching wildlife on Animal Planet when our all-white barely-more-than-a-kitten named Coconut issued an order. “Ah, listen to her cute little meow,” Terry said. There was nothing cute or little ...

Get groovy and feel the nostalgia for yesteryear, Daddy-O

How did we get so mixed up over nostalgia? By definition, nostalgia is a yearning to revisit a past period in one’s life. That leaves out my junior high school years. Speaking of which, when I was in junior high, once or twice a year, we would have ’50s Days, in which we all came to ...

Wiggle your fingers at these numbers

There has always been the notebook. My earliest memories of family trips — other than bouncing all over the back seat with my little brother — are Dad reciting the odometer reading and the number of gallons the gas station attendant had just pumped into the car. Mom recorded these in the ...

One local author plus chocolate equals happy holiday

The post warmed me more than a mug of hot chocolate: “In Iceland, books are exchanged on Christmas Eve, then the tradition is to spend the rest of the night reading and eating chocolate.” I don’t know if this is true, but it sure ought to be. Which books should we give? Mine, ...

When hide-and-seek isn’t an option, Lego is still there

Toy commercials are back! They probably never went away, but it’s the first time in years that I’ve taken notice with the rapt attention of my youth. And by “rapt attention,” I mean scribbling them in a notebook so I can detail my Christmas list for Mom and Dad. If I had spent as much ...

Don’t raise a stink or you won’t pass the smell test

You don’t have to gag your way down the cologne aisles to know that we are enamored of odors. Our speech reeks of fragrances not meant to be taken literally. Take a whiff of some our favorite idioms: • “Wake up and smell the coffee.” (Meaning, “Buy a clue, Mr. Oblivious.”) • ...

The Magazine Card Stuffings Wallpapering System

Editor’s note: Burt is goofing off again. While we try to find him, enjoy this all-time favorite Cole Classic originally concocted on Nov. 22, 1998. It’s time once again for practical decorating tips from Uncle Burtie, your home interiors answer man. Today, I introduce you to the Burt’s ...