Saturday, December 31, 2011

A most physical and metaphysical man

Bruce encountered many tasks in his life which involved Herculean efforts as he enjoyed and thrived on challenges, both mental and physical. He loved landscaping, moving heavy rocks, and tending to his plants. He loved the cleansing heat of southern summers intensified by hard labor. He loved the transformation of seeds and bulbs into riotous colors, and the flow of moving water on rocky surfaces.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

I wish I did more often; how about you?

Matt loved the outdoors. He noticed the details of nature.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

An oldie but goodie from the NYT's agate death announcements

ROSE GLIEDMAN. 39 plus. Great wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother to be, educator, chauffeur and crossword puzzle maven, not a good cook, ordered in.

H/T to Lauren Casper!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What are we to make of this?

In lieu of flowers and donations, please bring a piece of nature (a leaf, nut, dried flowers, pinecone etc.) to follow Art on his journey. Nothing artificial please.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Well, why not.

She was an avid bowler and enjoyed seeking out best deals at tag sales and shopping at the Good Will store. Above all, she was an excellent mother, wife and grandmother.

"She also leaves a cat, Mikey."

In 1973, a little boy named Mikey, a notoriously picky eater, dug enthusiastically into a bowl of a new, healthy cereal called Life. “He likes it!” his stunned older brother exclaimed in a memorable 30-second commercial that ran for over a decade.

The spot was written by Edie Stevenson, a copywriter at Doyle Dane Bernbach and the divorced mother of four, including three boys much like Mikey and his brothers. Its success earned her a promotion to vice president.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

'Journalism in a Culture of Grief'

On Friday morning,” the Inquirer wrote in 1829, “Mr. Jonathon Russel of Brockport put a period to his existence by shooting himself through the head with a musket, loaded with powder and shot. Mr. R. was about 50 years of age - he left a wife and seven children in Salem, Ashtabula County, Ohio; and another wife in Brockport.”

--from Journalism in a Culture of Grief by Janice Hume and Carolyn Kitch, as reported here.

Monday, December 5, 2011

From "The New Yorker"

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Custodian of the dance floor

He was later employed at Southwest School in Waterford, retiring in 1996 as head custodian. Al had a strong work ethic and never missed a day of work. He had a wry sense of humor with a quick wit, and his unassuming manner belied his many youthful experiences as an adventuresome spirit. He enjoyed sporting events, music and dancing, and was known as "Twinkle Toes" by the ladies as they lined up to take their turn with him on the dance floor.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Just the beginning ...

Hazel and Russ were married in September 1937 and lived and raised their family in Farmington prior to moving to Groton, CT after their retirement where mom took on the role of "Base Commander" for dad's role as a "Lobster Man" and Shellfish Warden. Mom and dad moved to Bristol, CT to keep an eye on two of their sons, Jack (Claire) and Steve (Diane) who, despite their advanced ages were still emotionally unstable and needed their parents strict discipline and guidance.

(H/T to Lisa Sayers and Chrissy Belvin Farrell)

Friday, December 2, 2011

I miss this guy already

At the end of his life, Robert battled with cardiac disease and dementia. Whereas the disease did thankfully erase most memories of the '62 Mets season, it eventually also claimed his life. Bedside vigil was fueled by lively conversation, background music of Jimmy Buffet and Bob Marley, chicken curry and the occasional smuggled glass of Glenlivet.

(H/T to Lisa Sayers!)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

"In lieu of flowers, please treat yourself to a bottle of Dickel..."

He was of barrel chest, and capable throughout his life of peeing a quart, but his best health was always of his spirit.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Nice detail ...

It was during that time she tried out for the Radio City Music Hall's Rockettes, and, at that very Macy's counter, Louise was approached and asked, "are you Louise Grossman?" It was then she learned of her acceptance into the Rockettes. She set the gloves down on the counter and never looked back.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Master Restorer of Rare Violins

He is also survived by a generation of string players, now at loose ends.

Spoke French like a native, mastered physics, rode a unicycle, handled elephants, etc. and then this:

Norman's real talent lay in photography.

What a great character. Read it all!

(H/T to Lisa Sayers)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Pretty specific there ...

She was most happy when engaged in a stimulating conversation with family and dear friends, while eating seafood in a fine restaurant.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

As always, it's the details that count

She was a member of the Red Hats, enjoyed traveling, baking, and was a formidable shopper focusing on thrift stores and yard sales with an emphasis on jewelry.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

In memory of my mother, who died Oct. 30, 2009

"Betty was a natural cook who loved nothing more than gathering her family for a meal. She was a quick study with a love of witty banter. She also loved to dance and often performed a soft-shoe tap routine in her kitchen. Short of stature, she vowed to come back as a Rockette at Radio City Music Hall and invites all to look for her there. Whenever a gathering of friends came to visit, you could count on her to get everyone singing. She worked on crossword puzzles until the day she died.

"Her Maine accent was a family treasure. When the Red Sox made it to the World Series in 2004, she said that if they won against those damn Yankees, she’d be ready to go. She was, in the end, a pip."

Sunday, October 23, 2011

"Who is in there, Paul McCartney?"

Daniel Vernon Killeen gave up the ghost at 9:20 a.m. on the beautiful Saturday morning of Oct. 8, 2011. During his last days, Dan was visited by numerous relatives, distant and close, and friends, near and dear. Dan was also comforted by artists and musicians, many of whom he supported over the years through patronage or with employment at The Wine Merchant, the shop he owned and ran for over 25 years. The droves of eclectic visitors sparked such curiosity, one member of the hospital staff asked, "Who is in there, Paul McCartney?"

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Word of One Syllable Dept.

Chan Holcombe, 72 of Fort Smith passed away Thursday, October 13, 2011. He was born July 14, 1939 in a Log Cabin in Bates, AR to the late Ralph and Inez Holcombe and was circumcised with his Dad's pocketknife. He loved to fish and caught a lot of crappie. He was an Air Force Veteran, a member of the Disabled American Veterans, and an Entrepreneur.

(H/T to Gawker)

"A shovel in his hands and a poem in his heart"

Bobby Thompson lived a long, colorful life with an easy smile, little stories about people and places he's been, a few tall tales, quiet faith and a shared enjoyment of a good cup of coffee. He lived the American Twentieth Century as the guy with a shovel in his hand and a poem in his heart. He sailed freighters to far-off lands, labored for the railroads, laying track and blasting rock. He was a steeplejack, truck driver and boxer. Bobby hopped freight trains all over America and could tell you about a little diner along the way, or a bridge he used to swim off of on a little stream somewhere. He would occasionally come home to Stonington for a while and maybe have dinner with one of his brothers, and then stick his thumb in the wind for another adventure. More recently than he should have, Bobby was known to celebrate the lost art of hitchhiking.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

His career provided for his family and paid down his Sears bill.

Even though he was occasionally known to playfully pull family members from his will, they always had the chance to work their way back in.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Dream boat

In 1967, Charlie went sailing with his boss and became enamored with the sport. He purchased a 19-foot sailboat shortly thereafter and sailed and vacationed on it with his family of six for several years. He could not sit up straight in the cabin, so eventually he bought a 29-foot Bristol. Ultimately he worked his way up to his dream boat, a 35.5-foot Bristol and finally had headroom for his six-foot two-inch frame. Charlie sailed with his family to places like Nantucket, Cuttyhunk, Block Island, and Booth Bay Harbor, Maine.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Steve Jobs on death

Death “is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new.”

-- Steve Jobs in a Commencement speech at Stanford University in 2005

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

"Frank often remarked to others that he was never bored a day in his life."

I guess not!

As a young man he played semi-professional baseball, flew small airplanes, did trick riding and rope tricks in local rodeos, and was the amateur chess champion of Connecticut. For much of his life, he was an accomplished rifle and pistol marksman. Later in life, he became a ham radio operator. He developed an interest in collecting and repairing antique clocks. This talent led to his longtime relationship with Mystic Seaport where he was a fixture in the clock and nautical instruments shop. He tended the clocks at the museum for over 30 years. Soon after moving to Mystic, he and a group of friends founded the Mystic Carvers Club. Frank was well known for his exceptional woodworking skills. He took great joy in making clock cases as well as musical instruments, harps, lyres, hammer dulcimers, and banjos. Until his death, every Tuesday the "Cellar Gang" met in his basement workshop to make and play musical instruments. At the age of 91, he traveled to Phoenix, Ariz., to take lessons on playing the Native American flute.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Charles H. Hargrove

He was well read, an eloquent writer, and a penman of elegant and lucid style.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Now, here's a first.

She married her first husband, Steven Arthur Whitehead of Warwick, R.I., and began her life as a mother to three wonderful boys (LMAO).

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Breakfast at Herb's

He retired 30 years ago and was able to enjoy retirement by traveling and camping with his close friend, Lucy. He was a lifetime member of the NRA. "Bud" loved the shore, dogs, watching racing, and enjoying the simple life. He was a mainstay at Herb's Deli for breakfast every morning with a stool just for him with his name beside it. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What a dear man, indeed.

He told his children he would move but that he wouldn't talk to anyone. Within two weeks he was part of the welcoming committee.

Because money was tight he used an old car to power a rope tow behind the home in Sterling so the family had more opportunities to ski. The small slope even had lights to allow for night skiing! In the summer Ben and Judy frequently packed a lunch and the car to take the family to Ben's parents' camp in Webster, where Ben spent hours driving the boat so the children could water ski.

Monday, September 5, 2011

How Facebook deals with death ...

Thought-provoking article on how Facebook handles death (not so well). Share your opinions with the author!

Friday, September 2, 2011

On the radio ...

I got to chat with Bill McDonald, obits editor at the New York Times, on Colin McEnroe's show on WNPR and thought you'd like to hear the whole show -- about last words, epitaphs and obits. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

It's all in the details ...

After earning her bachelor of arts degree in English literature from Rockford College and her master of arts degree at Northwestern University, she joined the Army Security Agency, forerunner of the National Security Agency, as an analyst in Washington, D.C. There she met her husband, Frederic Ogden Mason Jr., who claimed to have grown up only six blocks away from her in Winnetka. Barbara found this suspect and had her mother check out his story. Not only did he live six blocks away, but his family had a three-digit phone number, which meant they were among the original residents.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Shirley had a wonderful life ...

Even though she was lucky enough to find two men to share her journey, her first love was the sound of waves hitting the shore and the sand beneath her feet. Her journey, no matter where she lived, started and ended with the ocean.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

But, wait, it gets better ...

After divorcing Leta, his wife of six years [formerly, his step-mother for 12 years], Dan moved to Spokane in June, 1980, and took up, promptly, with a former babysitter from his grade-school years. This was two weeks after Mt. Saint Helens' historic off-topping.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Ahoy, Capt. Ben!

Groton - Capt. Benjamin F. Rathbun of Noank set sail from this world on July 31, 2011.

Because he was quite uncomfortable with funerals, where he noted "most people, including the deceased, don't have any fun", in 2003, his family hosted a pre-demise "a-wake" celebration at the Latham Chester Store which included live music and a large assortment of food and drink shared by family and friends. Everyone there, including the not-yet-deceased Capt. Ben, had a great time at this uniquely unconventional gathering.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Looks like he caught the streetcar

The young Mr. Aldredge had little interest in theater, but wanted to see the inside of a grand Broadway house. He asked the stagehands -- for stagehands they must surely be -- for a peek.

“Buy a ticket,” one replied, and he did, for $1.80.

From his seat, Mr. Aldredge watched as the “stagehands” -- Karl Malden and Marlon Brando -- walked out under the lights to play “A Streetcar Named Desire,” and after that he was never completely the same.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Cliff Notes version?

Dennis Thalman, 63, of Scottsdale, AZ. Born in Oak Park, to Margaret and Marshall, attended Ascension, Oak Park High, and DePaul. Our lives were immeasurably enriched by knowing and loving him. He made us laugh. Private service to be held at the Veterans Cemetery, in Phoenix, AZ. Donations to pancreatic cancer research.

(This is how all obits would read if copy editors got their hands on them!)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

QR codes on gravestones

What do you think? Good idea or bad?

H/T to Harrison Wise!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Dickie Douglas-Boyd, WWII pilot turned peacetime book salesman

Pelham also published successful dog books, though Douglas-Boyd's affection for dogs waned after an accident when mowing the lawn barefoot: he sliced off his big toe, and before he could retrieve it ...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Can you name all the U.S. presidents -- in order? How about state capitals?

Dave loved small children and few got by him without being squeezed, pinched or even bitten, much to the horror of their mothers; but the kids seemed to love it as they often came back and offered up their arm or cheek for more.

Dave was a prodigious reader who loved history and poetry and could still recite poems he learned in grade school. His great memory also allowed him to name all of the Presidents of the United States in order and all of the state alphabetically with their capitols, a feat that he took great pride in and that amazed others.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

I love it when people are other than they appear, don't you?

Jane Marie Scott was born in Cleveland on May 3, 1919. The first record she bought was Jimmy Rushing singing “Sent for You Yesterday,” which she played on her hand-cranked Victrola. (A Victrola is something like an iPod, only larger.)

H/T to Tad Friend

Friday, June 24, 2011

Thursday, June 16, 2011

On a summer morning in 1974, a man in Ohio bought a package of chewing gum and the whole world changed.

Mr. Haberman’s committee comprised more than half a dozen type-A businessmen, and discussion could be fractious. At one meeting, in San Francisco in the early 1970s, as Mr. Brown’s book reports, Mr. Haberman found a spectacularly good way to smooth dissent. First he organized a dinner at one of the city’s finest restaurants. Then he took everyone to a local movie theater to see “Deep Throat.”

Sunday, June 12, 2011

A signature accomplishment in any era

It was a beautiful sunny morning and the birds she loved were in flight accompanying her precious soul.

A truly liberated woman ahead of her time, she adapted the world to herself. As a young woman, Trudy bicycled solo from Philadelphia to Key West, ferried to Cuba, returning home a month later.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Her husband joined his mother "in a much warmer climate."

Ida married High School friend, Karl Hadaway. On January 31, 1953, a child was born named Mary Denise. The marriage decayed and the couple divorced in 1954. Ida's marriage to Karl was a three ring circus, engagement ring, wedding ring and suffering. Ida met and married Albert Sills in 1960. Ida said "I never knew what real happiness was until I got remarried, then it was too late".

Ida Mae Russell Sills slipped away and joined her beloved daughter in Heaven. Fortunately her husband Albert preceded her and joined his mother in a much warmer climate.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

His favorite patron was Cole Porter. His least favorite was ...

He worked many other side jobs, a pattern that repeated itself throughout his life. In New Haven, he delivered telegraphs by bicycle for Western Union, worked maintenance on the New Haven Railroad, and was a busboy in the Berkeley College dining hall at Yale. When war broke out, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy, and was called up in October 1942. He trained as a pilot in Jacksonville, Fla., and Hutchinson, Kan., and flew the PB4Y-2, the "Privateer". Bill was stationed in Kearney, Calif., and left active service when the war ended. He attended Columbia University on the GI Bill and graduated in 1950. During his studies, he was a waiter at the Drake Hotel, where his favorite patrons included Cole Porter and his least favorite patrons included Frank Sinatra.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Okay, her type is gone.

In 1961, Mrs. Stefon was elected to the position of town clerk in the Town of Sprague, a post she held for 34 years. In addition, she was the town treasurer from 1961 until 1977. She always went above and beyond the call of duty in her job, setting up mock elections for the schoolchildren, bringing home fishing licenses for any fisherman needing one at five a.m. on opening day, opening her office late at night and on Saturdays for those townspeople who could not get in during regular hours and always having a supply of lollipops for the kids who came into the town hall.

There is no counting laughing hours, is there ...

Toni had a great sense of humor, which all her children inherited. She spent countless hours laughing till she cried with her three sisters. She loved to travel, and visited Italy, Mexico, the Carribean and the United States. She was an enthusiastic beach goer and loved basking in the sun at Eastern Point Beach with her friends and relatives. She was an avid reader, movie goer and enjoyed crocheting with her friends. She never missed an episode of the TV shows Jeopardy or Perry Mason.

Awww, the shy guy ... nice.

Born Aug. 30, 1922, in New London to Polish immigrants, Anna Melnicki and Stephen Pukas, he was the little boy who spoke only Polish until kindergarten, the teenager who had perfect attendance in high school, and passed shop class with flying colors. He already had first-hand experience on jobs with his dad.

Joe sailed on the Thames River in his homemade sailboat and served with the Seabees in the South Pacific from 1943 to 1946.

He was the shy guy who took two years to kiss Mildred White who he married on July 1, 1950, at St Mary's Catholic Church in New London.

Her sons came through for her.

Mystic - Jane (Johnson) Clarke took her last breath on Sunday, May 15, 2011, with her loving sons by her side.

Oh, first all of Africa and then ... !

An avid traveler, Wilma's adventures took her throughout Africa, as well as Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Cambodia, Canada, China, Curacao, Denmark, Egypt, England, Germany, Greece, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Martinique, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Scandinavia, South America, Spain, Sweden, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam, Yugoslavia and throughout the United States.

Friday, May 27, 2011

And don't miss the head shots neither. Beautiful woman ...

"From this home, which she loved, pasture in front, creek in back, she guided her family with style and wit. She welcomed good-hearted visitors from all backgrounds, even an occasional politician. She taught generosity and compassion, and made wonderful life long friends. Kathy was fond of all children and babies, and she favored underdogs and long shots."

Thursday, May 19, 2011

What was in the secret sauce, you suppose?

Her greatest passion was helping children succeed. She was devoted to helping them learn to read with patient coaching. After retiring from teaching, it was her grandchildren who then reaped the benefits of her talents and love. She also made the best tuna fish sandwiches ever!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

"Surprised and annoyed his wife by dying in his sleep"

In addition to all this, he was a trailblazer, engineer, hiker, biker, scholar, facilitator, inventor, Mensan, technician, electrician, plumber, guide, reader, leader, thinker, tinker, computer wizard (questionably), Odyssey of the Mind Judge, early member of the Crusillio movement, environmentalist, and all around really good guy. He also loved his chainsaw.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Miss Ellen McGarr, we hardly knew ye!

She managed a few semesters before realizing what a terrible mistake she had made. Miss McGarr quit full time study, but stayed at the seminary to work as a staff member and attend classes part time. This enabled her to remain a part of the seminary community she enjoyed so much while still quitting something. Quitting was an activity she had come to love and would enjoy for the rest of her life.

H/T to Jill Conner Browne

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sam requested a private burial for his children only. Remember him as he was joking, laughing, and sharing his tomatoes.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Holy smokes, the king of autobituaries! Thanks, Derek Miller, and fare well

Here it is. I'm dead, and this is my last post to my blog. In advance, I asked that once my body finally shut down from the punishments of my cancer, then my family and friends publish this prepared message I wrote—the first part of the process of turning this from an active website to an archive.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Who's going to fill the feeder now?

He really enjoyed writing and published a book, "Right as Reignin 2004." Christopher was a music trivia buff and enjoyed old horror movies. He was a New York sports and Stonington High School football fan. He appreciated nature and the outdoors and took good care of his back yard birds.

Friday, April 29, 2011

"must-read obit on billionaire you never heard of: every new detail fresh and wonderful."

He started work every day at 5 a.m.; liked chatting with old friends in barbershops and luncheonettes and, four years ago, finally built a garage. Until then he had been scraping the snow and ice off his windshield himself. Though he was a billionaire, he had no driver.

Mr. Cook fit no obvious category. He sometimes drove the bus that took his friend, the singer John Mellencamp, on tour.

H/T to Tad Friend!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"Let It End Like This"

I just learned about this show. Thought you might want to know.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I think it's still quite a wonder. What are the odds?

A wonder of their marriage were their first three children, Donna, Richard, and Robert, all born on Oct. 10 in different years. This was a newsworthy item in the early days of television, particularly considering, Don was out to sea the vast majority of their early years together. Their fourth child, Melly, was conceived around her siblings' birth date.

Good story ...

Monday, April 11, 2011

She knew how to cut a rug!

Mrs. McGuire was a gracious hostess and seldom would a party end without the furniture being pushed back and the group singing and dancing well into the night.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Born on the kitchen table of a dirt-floor shack

“No matter your fame and glory, remember that the number of people at your funeral will depend on the weather.”

One of Ned McWherter's "Nedisms." Great story.

H/T to Simon Lono!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

I guess Turkey was on his bucket list

Though told that he would only survive a diagnosis of stage four glioblastoma for six to 12 months, at eight months Anthony was climbing a 3,200 foot mountain, and at 11 months he had just returned from a trip to Turkey. He may not have won the war against this disease, but he came out on top of most of the skirmishes with his jacket and kerchief unsullied.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"Joe lived awhile down the lake. "

Joe could fool you. He talked slow and Southern, lacked pretensions, and you could talk to him for weeks without realizing how very damned smart he was.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Harry Belafonte's first and greatest fan!

Justine's family and close friends will remember her as Harry Belafonte's first and greatest fan. She had seen him many times at the Oakdale Theatre, and her sons will always remember hours of Harry's music being played in the house.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

RIP, Elizabeth Taylor

Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who directed her in “Suddenly Last Summer” and “Cleopatra,” remembered seeing her for the first time, in Cannes, when she was 18. “She was the most incredible vision of loveliness I have ever seen in my life,” he said. “And she was sheer innocence.”

“Planes, trains, everything stops for Elizabeth Taylor, but the public has no conception of who she is,” said Roddy McDowall, who was her earliest co-star and a friend for life.

H/T to Vanessa Horwell!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A subscriber to "Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure."

He liked to travel mostly in this country, exploring country roads, getting lost and finding a different way out of such experiences.

Monday, March 21, 2011

And in that order?

Hazel was an avid Boston Red Sox fan and loved Frank Sinatra, Ronald Regan, and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

A pocketful of Kisses ... just in case.

He never complained. If anything bothered him, he would just sing.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Not sure how "unexpected" it was but she leaves us food for thought

"Don't be sad, don't be blue, I may be better off than you."

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Seems to sum her up quite nicely

"She cooked countless Sunday dinners, sewed clothes, gave haircuts in a special chair in the basement, held annual summer fish frys of Erwin's catch, and made homemade candy and "grits" at Christmas. She was a skilled quilter, seamstress, gardener, and cook who usually won at the Euchre table and had an unbeatable left hook at the bowling alley."

Saturday, March 5, 2011

That sux.

Unable to grant his final request "to die like a Viking King," the family plans a simple private feast in the forest where his ashes will be scattered. In lieu of flowers Norm would want you to take someone special out to lunch.

"An Obit Writer’s Chance to Think Inside the Box"

Something different that I think you'll enjoy!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

I'm with her on this.

It was all so wonderful, she said of her life, that she only wished there were more of it. And while open to the idea of Heaven, she said she was not much interested in the communion of saints – "unless they're all like us.'' Which is unlikely, since there was no one else like her.

Friday, February 25, 2011

This is why I blog. Perfect.

He loved waking up first on Christmas, and maybe most of all, eating all the mashed potatoes.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

'Notice a grammatical error in a printed ad'; now that's unique ...

Those who wish to remember Barbara might do so each day as you work the puzzles in the newspaper, admire the last fading star in the early morning sky, notice a grammatical error in a printed ad that needs correcting, or run an errand for a friend, little things that mattered in her life.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Holy cow ...

Born on a dairy farm in Walnut, Ill., Baumgartner was prodigious with the movement of manure from an early age, and exercising these and other talents, earned recognition for his National 4-H Grand Champion Dairy Heifer, Clementine's Ramona, in 1930 at the age of 10.

Friday, February 18, 2011

"A meandering digression of increasingly unbearable inconsequentiality"

“Jerry! Hello!” Mr. Lesser, as Uncle Leo, would cry whenever he’d encounter his nephew in a social situation on “Seinfeld.” His greeting was usually accompanied by an elaborate palms-up gesture of welcome, and followed by a meandering digression of increasingly unbearable inconsequentiality, often involving his son, Jeffrey, who worked for the New York City Parks Department.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

What I'm sayin'!

Her favorite pastime was enjoying nature through her many walks in the forests.

Friday, February 11, 2011

What's the difference between an investment banker and a commercial banker?

Hence the extraordinary late-January event I attended: a touching memorial service for a deeply capitalistic banker during a time of anti-banker rage.

(H/T to Vanessa Horwell!)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Some time after Mr. Getty’s release, his mother suggested he call his grandfather to thank him for paying the ransom, which he did. The eldest Mr. Getty declined to come to the phone.

Monday, February 7, 2011

"My obituary is very important to me."

"His sartorial style was known more for its terrifying redundancy than for its distinction."

Many will miss that kind of wit.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Just your average horse and pumpkin thief ...

A pilot, hockey player and avid junior hockey fan, skilled golfer, woodworker, horse and pumpkin thief, curler and boater, he never missed an opportunity to have fun and enjoy life to the fullest.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Here we have -- a peace maker. Celebrate her life.

At the height of the Cold War, the illustrator and mother of three organized 50,000 women to demonstrate against nuclear weapons. Foes tried to paint her as a Communist, but failed miserably.

Friday, January 28, 2011

It's the simple pleasures ...

One of the many things Stanley enjoyed in his later years was listening to upbeat classical music and news on NPR.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

"He lived life on his own terms." He certainly did.

He is survived by his sister, Lee (Weber) Bialer; his wife, Judith (Altman) Weber; and his companion of many years, Seena Drilling.

Monday, January 17, 2011

New Yorker cartoon

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Cuyahoga Falls Bridge won't quite be the same.

Always in control, Gretta Kuglar made her final contract with life like a seven no-trump hand and left the table.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Patrick Andrew Clemmons, age 20

He was a tower of will, but weak to temptation. He was bright and witty, but not smart enough sometimes. He was fearless and friendly, but too careless for comfort. He was thoughtful, when he thought things through, but often impulsive. He was like most of us, only different.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

An opera singer who lost her voice

They melded their two families and settled into a labyrinthine house with enough room for five children and a series of collies and German shepherds, who sneaked upstairs and lounged on beds.

Read the whole story here.

Friday, January 7, 2011

I am so sorry, Mudflats. I know the feeling.

I watched her heart break during some dark times, and I watched her heart bloom when my dad would stand in the middle of the kitchen and proclaim in a very official tone to me, “I have something to say.” Our eyes turned to him. “I am in love with your mother. And there is nothing you can do about it.” And 19-year old me, the audience of one, would roll my eyes, and mom would giggle and keep chopping onions.