I admit it. I am a Days of Our Lives junkie. It’s my guilty pleasure. A mindless escape from reality. My way relax and reset at the end of the day. While my “Days” obsession has ebbed and waned over the years, it’s been in full force recently as new writers took over and returned Days to the old Days, bringing back old favorites such as Bo, Steve a/k/a “Patch” and Shawn Douglas and reuniting the super-couples of “Bo and Hope” and “Steve and Kayla”. I don’t know about my fellow resident Days junkie (AHEM . . .Corey Pietranton), but if the current story line that is setting Bo up to die of a brain tumor isn’t just a publicity stunt to increase ratings (and it is garnering huge publicity and ratings), I may just be done with Days once and for all.
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I recently had the pleasure of spending a relaxing weekend in Cumberland, MD, a place I have driven by more times than I can count over the years, hurriedly en route to the east coast beaches. Little did I know how much this little city had to offer. The Rocky Gap Casino Resort is a lovely retreat overlooking manmade, Lake Habeeb. The dam was built by the Army Corps of Engineers in 1970, and Rocky Gap State Park formally opened on July 17, 1974. The lake offers three public beach areas with outdoor seating/fire pits, boating (no gasoline powered engines), swimming, canoeing/kayaking, and fishing. Unfortunately, due to cool temperatures and high winds, we did not get to delight in the outdoor amenities the resort has to offer, however, the scenery was breathtaking.
On a recent visit to Charleston, my family and I had the great pleasure of visiting the West Virginia State Museum, located at the Capitol Complex. Now, as a life-long West Virginian, I am fairly embarrassed to admit that I had never visited the Museum in all of my 42 years on this planet. In fact, I wasn’t even all that aware of the museum. Fortunately for me, however, I have a wife who grew up in the area, has a life-long passion for West Virginia history and wanted to expose our children to the rich cultural underpinnings of the great state in which they live. And I have to say that I cannot think of any better place to learn about West Virginia and all it has to offer.
Child number four. She’s is the most adorable little 6-year-old gal you could ever meet and she keeps us on our toes. Why in the world would anyone put an object in their ear or nose? Generally, this is seen more from a child of a younger age, but my youngest daughter has hyperactivity disorder, which essentially affects her ability to manage her impulse control. There are some times when this condition can be challenging and we recently faced one of those challenges.
Two weeks ago, Pennsylvania's voters elected Democratic Judges Christine Donohue, David Wecht and Kevin Dougherty to the Supreme Court, giving the party a five to two majority for the first time since 2009. The Washington Post called such results "one of the biggest court shake-ups in recent history."
When I decided some years ago to stop coloring my hair and let my gray shine through, people were aghast! I thought it was a great idea – I didn’t have to spend a fortune at the hairdresser or spend a significant amount of time coloring my hair myself. How did the idea that gray hair was bad ever get started?
Are you one of the millions of Americans who think that the hotdog is a sandwich? If you answered yes to this question, well, I have bad news for you. You are wrong, and clearly cannot be trusted. Look people, let’s just make this easy and use the logic of calling something what it really is. I’ll begin by making a list of items and you let me know what they all have in common.
I have never had the privilege of wearing the uniform of the United States military. I’ve never been to war; never had to pack a bag, kiss my wife and children good-bye, and head off to another side of the world to defend my country. I’ve never faced an enemy determined to kill me, nor have I held a friend as the life drained out of his body on the field of battle. I can’t begin to understand the pain of a parent whose child is killed in action, or the confused anguish of a toddler whose father will never come home. I know nothing of war. What I do know is that today, nearly 100 years and 10 wars after the end of the War to End All Wars, our nation owes our veterans a debt we will never be able to repay.
Fall is my most favorite time of the year. I love the smell of the crisp autumn air with all of the leaves changing to beautiful shades of yellow, orange and red. I also enjoy all of the wonderful flavors of the season such as pumpkin spice and apple. Fall means breaking out the warmer clothes such as sweaters and long pants and packing away the flip-flops and the shorts. Some look at the season as the closure of the summer where all the fun warm activities must come to an end as preparation for the dreaded cold gloomy winter, which, I have to admit, was my view of the season when I was younger. As I have gotten older, I have grown to appreciate the cooler days as opposed to the hot, hot summer sun when it is almost unbearable to be outdoors, and then there is having to run the air conditioner non-stop just to stay comfortable. I can certainly appreciate putting on a jacket to be warm and cozy to enjoy a stroll through the park versus having to hit the local pool just to get cooled down.
The New York Times recently published an article titled “Arbitration Everywhere, Stacking the Deck of Justice.” In this article, the authors examine the growing number of arbitration clauses used by large companies in their contracts with consumers. The article states that “[b]y inserting individual arbitration clauses into a soaring number of consumer and employment contract, companies like American Express devised a way to circumvent the courts and bar people from joining together in class-action lawsuits, realistically the only tool citizens have to fight illegal or deceitful business practices. Over the last few years, it has become increasingly difficult to apply for a credit card, use a cellphone, get cable or Internet service, or shop online without agreeing to private arbitration.” The article continued by providing a broad summary of certain key court cases on this issue.