More From Columns

July 07, 2018

A sidewalk and a patch of lawn between West Albemarle (North Carolina) Baptist Church and its parsonage is where I spent most of my earliest outdoor time. Up to about age four is one of the few stretches of my life that I wouldn’t change even if I could.

Well, maybe I would omit the time when…


July 01, 2018

I heard her Tuesday on the BBC World Service, where she presents each weekday’s first broadcast of NPR’s Marketplace Morning Report.

The heart of that day’s segment concerned pig slaughtering facilities abroad.

Some 25 years ago, ironically, she was being dispatched by UNC-TV to…

Bob Garner

July 01, 2018

The other day, I bought a rather expensive pillow.

I wasn’t fulfilling a long-held dream, mind you, just responding to some alluring advertising promising me the best night’s sleep ever.

It occurred to be, even as I was contemplating the purchase, that buying an expensive pillow was a…


June 30, 2018

Long before I started driving cars, my father taught me about the value of keeping one clean. So far, one of my daughters appears to have adopted that appreciation.

One out of three ain't bad.

I came up during a time when washing a car required more planning, a good bucket and a quality nozzle. It…

Quarter Car Wash.jpg

June 24, 2018

We should all force ourselves to take reflective retreats.

Since most of us just can’t or won’t do it, it’s a very good thing that our wonderful American system inevitably forces all of us into a tough “time in the wilderness.”

No ideological philosophy, no political…

Bob Garner

June 24, 2018

When I was in France recently, Anthony Bourdain, also in France working on his popular and influential food and culture program for CNN, took his life.

Bourdain was in one of his favorite regions, Alsace, which was controlled by Germany for 50 years until the end of World War I.

I was on the other…


June 24, 2018

It’s a cobbler year for mulberries.

Out in the backyard, dark red dollops rain down like pinata candy at every breeze. The lawn is mulched with a magenta mess. Mulberry pawprints track squirrels from tree to tree. It’s harvest time in the cul-de-sac.

Mulberries have a a regal history as…


June 23, 2018

After two years of planning, my wife and I finally broke ground last month on a project to build our forever house. The plan was to install a metal roof so that we hopefully won’t need to address that particular maintenance issue again during our lifetimes.

That plan might not be economically…

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