Monthly Archives: January 2014

With snow falling in Maryland, I return for solace to, one of my favorite blogs, and add an Arthur Leipzig photo reblogged from

This picture above is from the archives at and, I believe, his own photograph. As long as we have three fellows in the water, I couldn’t resist adding, below, the three guys diving into the East River. This photograph by Arthur Leipzig is reblogged from … Continue reading

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Re-reading Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Afraid my Kindle might run out of juice, I wanted a small book for backup for a recent flight and, because I wanted something light to carry, grabbed off my bookshelves the novella Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I’d read it at least three times over the … Continue reading

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Gainsay, meaning “to speak against,” a word encountered in Mary Roberts Rinehart’s 1914 mystery, The After House: when and why do we stop using words?

“I think that if she had chosen to say that I had wielded the murderer’s ax on the Ella, I should have gone to the gallows rather than gainsay her.”–from The After House. According to, most dictionaries consider “gainsay”–meaning “to … Continue reading

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Newport Beach seen from the Balboa Pier and from the sand. The foothill in the background is Saddleback.

Twice a year–Christmas and summer–I return to Orange County. Growing up there, I knew the beach more like a relative than a place. The Pacific is cold, and I stay out of it now, but then I rode the waves–and got turned every way but up–in … Continue reading

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Santa Fe Super Chief, Amtrak Southwest Chief: Getting ready for bed like a movie star

We usually fly to California and return home by train. Getting ready for bed in our roomette as we crossed the southeast corner of Colorado, I thought of all the movie stars of the ’30s and ‘4os who had gotten ready for … Continue reading

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Dome diner on the Union Pacific City of Los Angeles, competitor to the Super Chief

This is the train that was featured in an I Love Lucy episode. Lucy thought a jewel thief was in the room next to theirs and kept pulling the emergency cord, bringing the train to an abrupt halt. Each time … Continue reading

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