Archive for the ‘Nostalgia’ Category

Service of Favorite Foods No Longer Available

Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

Oyster Bar. Photo:

Charles Passy wrote about some of the taste sensations he misses because businesses that sold them have closed or, as was the case with the Oyster Bar and its caviar sandwich, a restaurant has deep sixed an item from its menu. Good news for the sandwich fans: the Grand Central Terminal favorite has reinstated its sandwich, Passy reported in The Wall Street Journal.

According to Passy, “The menu item, a fixture for more than 15 years, had never been a huge seller, as a typical day saw up to 10 orders. But those who liked it really seemed to like it, Mr. Ingber said.” Sandy Ingber is executive chef.


Passy reported that one caviar sandwich fan, Oli Coleman, wrote about it in The New Yorker observing “It went well with a severe martini.” It’s back on the menu as Ingber found a source for reasonably priced caviar. It was dropped to begin with because the price of bowfin caviar would have catapulted the price of the sandwich three fold.


I reminisce about a rye bread with black pepper chunks on its crust made by a bakery in Bayonne, N.J; the lightest, tastiest mozzarella I chose by chance as an appetizer in an unremarkable looking restaurant in Venice years ago and the fruit tarts and birthday cakes at Dumas, a NYC bakery that has been closed for decades. [I noticed in Google that a Patisserie Didier Dumas is in Nyack, N.Y. The name Dumas in France is the equivalent of Smith or Jones here, and checking the website and seeing nothing that resembles the sweets I remember; nevertheless I should one day check out this place.]

I’m not a fan of sauerkraut—too sour–but once tasted a wonderful plate of it in Paris at a restaurant celebrating the food of Alsace. There was that elusive mulligatawny soup at the Wabeshabelli Hotel I had in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. It was so long ago that I can’t describe the taste but I’ve never again sipped a mulligatawny soup that pleased me as much.

Sometimes my husband Homer matches the sublime taste of a no-frills plate of spaghetti with tomato sauce that I’ve enjoyed throughout Italy.

What are some of the dishes you remember that are no longer to be had? Have you encouraged a restaurant, bakery or supermarket to reinstate an item you loved and did you change their mind?



Service of Nostalgia II

Monday, July 30th, 2012


Christopher Bonanos wrote in New York Magazine, “When it was removed in 1990, few tears were shed, except maybe at Kodak.” He may have been right. I was the exception to prove the rule.

He referred to the 18 x 60 foot Kodak Coloramas in Grand Central Station. He noted: “…the big glowing billboard came to be seen not as a great piece of Americana but as kitsch unworthy of the terminal’s Beaux-Arts architecture.”

kodaksurfersIn the day, you couldn’t miss the Colorama if you entered the station’s central hall. My dad would let me know when there was a particularly spectacular image I shouldn’t miss, which may be one of the reasons I was particularly fond of the display. A loyal subscriber to National Geographic, he, too, took spectacular photos and appreciated others’ work. My nephew Edward also has a photographer’s eye.

grandcentraloldThe exhibit of prints at the New York Transit Museum annex at the back of Grand Central [open through October] is part of the great station’s 100th anniversary celebration. The prints didn’t grab me, nor did they make me feel nostalgic and I don’t think that they do the Colorama’s images justice. How could they? They aren’t oversize backlit transparencies.

And there was something else I saw in the images selected for the exhibit that I didn’t notice when looking up at the originals from the marble floor or if I did, the detail made so little impression that I don’t recall. In most, there were people taking photos of others. It makes sense as Kodak sold cameras and film. Amateur photographers weren’t in all the shots in the exhibit-there was one of deer on snow where I couldn’t find a shutterbug anywhere, even peeking out from behind a tree.

Photography has made huge strides since Kodak, now defunct, ruled. For most of the Colorama’s 40 years, you wouldn’t see photography sold at art shows and people didn’t collect it. Photoshop didn’t exist for the amateur in the 1950s and I doubt that digital photography was a beam in anyone’s eye.

I’m grateful to the exhibit for reminding me of something I shared with my dad, of my first camera–a simple Kodak box–and how much I, too, still love taking pictures. Do you remember the Kodak Colorama? What exhibits have strummed nostalgic strings for you?


Service of Looking Back

Monday, April 9th, 2012


I’ve covered nostalgia and old fashioned things. Based on recent developments and observations, it’s time to do so again.

News in the News

This headline and subhead in an LA Times story by James Rainey caught my eye: “Scott Pelley helps CBS carve an old-school identity: The anchor has assisted in pushing the network’s ‘Evening News’ toward hard news, especially on foreign affairs and domestic economic distress. That offers promise it can escape the ratings cellar.”

scott-pelleyRainey wrote: “The old-school approach offers at least some promise that the nightly newscast, long mired in third place among the three networks, might finally claw its way out of the cellar. The ‘CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley’ is the only one of the three network nightly news shows to score a small year-to-year increase in three ratings categories for the season that began in September. In one recent week, it finished second – behind NBC but ahead of ABC- among the 25-to-54 age demographic prized by advertisers. That hadn’t happened since 2006.”

What’s Boss [Translation in 1960s Speak: Cool]

It’s back to the ’60s as “Mad Men” returned to TV sets across the nation. The show inspired headlines from White & Warren that touted “shirt dresses” new for spring and a line of 60s period fashions at Banana Republic–you’ll see them all over.

When Dinosaurs Roamed the Earth

Inspired by an earlier state of mind, one candidate for US President is attracting plenty of votes for antediluvian positions that in this country predate 1775.

Listen to the Conductor, Children!

rr-conductorThere was a time children were told to hush in public so that as adults, they naturally respected other people when out and about. Funny: The railroad is rewarding such comportment now.

Ad man Hank Goldman sent me the link to this news from Metro-North railroad: “Due to popular demand, Metro-North is expanding its ‘Quiet CALMmute’ program to all inbound AM and outbound PM Peak trains on the Hudson, Harlem & New Haven Lines starting Monday, April 2nd.”

In the quiet cars, passengers may not use cell phones; must disable sound features on computers and other electronic devices; must conduct conversations in a subdued voice and use headphones at a volume that cannot be heard by fellow passengers. Good Friday morning over the loudspeaker the conductor advised all passengers to conduct themselves this way in every car!

spring-chickens2Spring Chickens

Jerry Stiller at 85 is starring in Capital One commercials and 91 year old Bob Wolff was entered in the Guinness Book of Records for “Longest Career as a Sports Broadcaster”-73 years!

Is looking back for direction and inspiration a trend?



Service of Paper that Calls to You

Monday, April 25th, 2011


A friend, writer/editor Jim Roper and I share a passion for fine quality stationery-all sorts of paper goods.  His notes and gift bags of handmade paper feel as exquisite as they look. He gave me a box of Florentine cards a few years ago. I have sent most to special people but still have a few as I have a hard time parting with them.

Jim suggested I read Lesley M. Blume’s Wall Street Journal article, “Leaving the Right Impression.” It was about the trend for people to design and use calling cards-that’s what Blume says they are, well, called these days. My husband has always referred to business cards this way but these personal cards are different in that along with a name, they provide only one bit of contact information such as a phone number.

distinguish-yourselfBlume noted that the reasons for these cards on thick, wonderful paper ranged from distinguishing oneself in a job search to “the ongoing ‘heritage’ movement-a nostalgia-tinged societal turn toward objects that last, smolder with individuality and are well-made-which has made its zeitgeisty way into the world of stationery.” She continued, “And a personalized card acts as a quiet rebuttal to the white noise jabber-jawing of Twitter and Facebook.”

I get her first reason. Distinguishing yourself in positive ways is always smart. But I wonder why people [apart from mothers and loved ones] are going to keep these beautiful cards and if they do, where. I input contact information to my smartphone as soon as I can and have no room or place to store such things whether beautiful or merely practical.

More important: toomuchworkWill the cards require the recipient to work to find you? What if a prospective employer doesn’t want to speak with you and all that’s on the calling card is your phone number? In frustration, he/she may toss the card and move to the person whose email address is easier to find.

We increasingly need to know and share everything NOW. We Google, we link, we dash off a line at midnight on a handheld phone’s keyboard. I don’t think calling cards will buck this trend. The recipient may carry the card around for ages as a bookmark [if he/she hasn’t moved to a Kindle]. My bet is that in the end, they will have no clue who gave it to them.

I’m all for encouraging face-to-face contact in favor of hiding behind a keyboard. I can’t get over being asked to jot condolence messages on websites, for example. But calling cards aren’t the answer to social networking and texting run amok.

How do you distinguish yourself? Do you think calling cards are an effective way?


Service of Back to Basics

Thursday, February 24th, 2011


I increasingly sight or recognize old fashioned solutions and thought processes for a variety of reasons–not just nostalgia.

Feeling My Oats

quakeroatsWalking east on 51st Street the other night, I noticed hanging from brownstone doorknobs and fences small plastic bags featuring the Quaker Oats logo filled, I bet, with a sample. [Wasn’t my doorknob or fence so I decided not to inspect.] Who knows how long they’d been in evidence? The bags were still in place at 8 pm! Also remarkable.

The little bags reminded me of the ones with toothpaste, mouthwash and other samples waiting for me to discover, fairly consistently, on my apartment doorknob in days of yore. Like any surprise, they were fun to get.

These days, I sample candy, granola, newspaper, juice and soda that people hand me in and around Grand Central Station, especially in good weather.

Phone it In

oldphoneTravel guru Arthur Frommer interviewed the owner of an online discount hotel reservation website who said that if you call his company on the phone you will often get even better prices than the ones published on the site. Arthur seemed surprised that the most labor-intensive option provided the best price cut. I think it had more to do with the hotels discouraging deep dish discount promotions on a website than with any relationship to traditional service.

Call of the Wild

wyatt-earpFrank Rich wrote an op-ed piece about good old fashioned business flim-flammery in “At Last, Bernie Madoff Gives Back.” Rich’s targets were the big banks and high profile businesses that partnered with Bernie Madoff.  In this regard we are still in the Wild West where bandits ride and rule largely unchecked. Wonder who our Wyatt Earp will be?

Generosity: Always in Fashion

Some may remember Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass–a sound from the past. On CBS Sunday Morning I learned what Herb was up to of late. He doesn’t compose and perform but instead, shares his wealth. He’d read in the paper last summer that the 46 year old Harlem School of the Arts was about to close. His was the largest donation–$500,000–to take the organization off the critical list and the seed to attract additional funds to save it.

Hot Topic

inheritthewindSaturday morning, on Turner Classic Movies, we watched the 51 year old film “Inherit the Wind” starring Spencer Tracy. It’s about a 1925 trial involving strict Bible interpreters who object to a teacher who covered evolution in his class. Evolution continues to be a contentious topic in some parts of the country today as is religion, worldwide. The contradiction of something that is supposed to bring peace creating friction is centuries old and always a head-scratcher to me.

What basic solutions and/or golden oldie issues in this high-tech, top speed era strike you these days?


Service of Overexposure

Monday, January 24th, 2011



Today’s post is related to an earlier one, “Service of Too Much Information,” written a year ago January [must be that time of year]. What inspired me this time was watching “The Third Man,” a 1949 movie [in black and white, natch], on Turner Classic Movies.

It achieved powerful, suspenseful moments without showing me every gory detail. One scene was in a children’s hospital ward and I saw the nurses and bits of beds but not the deathly ill patients who were there because they’d been given ineffective medicine sold to the hospital by a greedy main character. I saw no decayed body that police had freshly dug out from a grave but knew it looked horrific. The director had my imagination do the work. Great actors’ reactions to seeing these human conditions also helped.

In today’s movies, if we hear an explosion we must then see blood and guts.

It’s not just movies that leave little to the imagination: Women’s fashion trends have for several years.

radiomicAnd violent, name-calling vitriol on talk radio, cable TV and in politics are other examples of overexposure. It’s a form of taking the easy way out. It’s effortless. And it’s effective with lazy minds looking for easy answers. It takes research and thought to carry on intelligent, image-inspiring conversation.

Mind you, there’s nothing wrong with easy, efficient and effective in some instances: It’s what we strive for in our workdays and lives. Take digital photos, email, and social networking vehicles that allow us to communicate with editors and reporters  immediately and at miniscule out of pocket cost; smartphones that keep us in touch with people who need information without tethering us to our desks; lasers instead of knives that permit surgeons to remove cataracts and break down kidney stones while leaving patients far less debilitated.

Do you think imaginations need exercise like muscles? Do we do our brains harm by exposing them to and feeding them digested information and images, or should we chew on, envision, fantasize and process more of it ourselves?


Service of Nostalgia

Monday, October 25th, 2010

bathblogfest-2010-madmen-logo-v3This is my second year to join this blogfest which Christine Whittemore, Simple Marketing Now LLC, directs.

I list Christine’s blogs and those of all the other bloggers below, should you want to see a smattering of takes on the topic and to meet some super bloggers.

The theme for this year’s participants in the Bathroom Blogfest “Still Stuck in the 60s?” is inspired by Mad Men. So the second thing I did after determining my approach was to Google “1960s bathrooms” figuring I’d not find much given that some 50 years have passed. I was surprised to see so many entries about remodeling ideas for 1960s bathrooms. Either buyers through the years have loved pink ceramic tile or they didn’t have the money to remodel or didn’t know how to go about it…….who knows.

Something else was clear: I found this information in a snap when goodness knows  how long it would have taken anyone in 1960 to learn much about bathroom design in 1910.

Chances are Don Draper and Pete Campbell, two of the Mad Men characters, would have  lined up in the morning to take a turn in the bathroom as houses and apartments had fewer of them then. The New York Times, October 22, featured a New Jersey modern classic that was listed as one of America’s 10 best in the 1960s and it had four bedrooms and two baths in 1,200 square feet on 10 acres.

According to the Kohler color timeline, the 1960s “was a decade of rule-breaking styles and colors. It was a time of rebellion as men burned draft cards and the sexual revolution was in full swing. Hot pink, day-glo orange, and acid green broke with conventions for color in dress and home decor. With its introduction of vivid accent colors – Blueberry, Citron, Antique Red, Coppertone, Expresso, and Jade – Kohler captured the energy of the times.”

On to more of my interpretation of the blogfest.

hudsonhomeRichard & Greg from Hudson Home,, a stunning shop and  interior design business in the Columbia County, NY located in midtown Hudson, listed some excellent tips in “Simple Changes for Your Bath,” most of which I agree with.

I’ve commented in green where I don’t or when I want to add something and when I can, I give a nod to the 60s in pink.

De-clutter – This sounds obvious, but it’s true. If you’re like most people you have a collection of products you no longer use; half empty bottles of shampoo, conditioner and hotel soaps. If you haven’t used it in a month then toss it out. I think a month is hasty. I’d make it a year. Some people like to change shampoos so they might have a few open at once and given the huge sizes available, why waste? Bathrooms in the 1960s were tiny in comparison with the spa-sized spaces in today’s leftover McMansions so being tidy was even more essential 50 years ago. Modest sized bathrooms today often have two sinks and a separate shower and bathtub.

homeforblogfest-007Paint – A fresh coat of paint can brighten a tired looking room like nothing else. Since the bath is usually a relatively small space it’s hard to go wrong. If you really hate the color when you’re done just repaint. We painted one bathroom a succulent, saturated orange. It cheers on the dreariest, gray day. But what about wallpaper, a product I represented for eons? It’s no longer as popular as it was in the 1960s and could be a lifesaver if you buy a house with horrendous bathroom tile colors and/or fixtures and you don’t want to live through the remodeling mess. To distract from the tile color, pick a busy, multi-colored wallpaper pattern where only the tiniest accent picks up the tile’s hue. Voila!

Scent – Scent is powerful and transformative. It can bring back fond memories, help melt away the stresses of the day and transport us to a better place. Stickwith scents that are light and fresh; lemon verbena, lavender and rosemary are all good choices. Buy the best quality scented candles, bath oil, potpourri or air essences you can afford. The better brands use pure essential oils, they cost more but the fragrances are truer and they last longer. Verbena is my favorite, but some people get tremendous headaches from scented candles so take care. A splash of a perfume from a sample [I may not care to wear] shaken into running bath water also works. We’ve gone nuts with scents in my opinion though I bet the Mad Men and their entourage would have adored it especially if they’d thought of it.

Towels. In the living room we tell people “invest in good upholstery”. In the bath, “invest in good towels”. If you’ve never had Egyptian cotton towels before you don’t know what you’ve been missing. Good quality towels get softer with each laundering and will last for years. You’ll thank yourself every time you use them. Anything would last longer than the bargain towels I buy. The edges begin to unravel in record time. Bet the Made in America cotton towels of the ’60s at all price points lasted too.

Shower curtain. After the walls, the shower curtain is usually the largest block of color in the room. This is a good place to add a splash of color or pattern to the room. Custom shower curtains can be made with just a few yards of fabric. Add a contrast border for added interest. Outdoor fabrics are especially well suited for this purpose. People weren’t so germ-phobic in the 1960s as they are now. Some prefer fixed shower stalls because of the potential of mold in plastic shower curtain linings so best change these frequently.

homeforblogfest-003Mirror and sconces. This is a good place to update an otherwise dated looking space. Find a mirror with an interesting frame and add some good lighting. Bad lighting is a sure way to make a bath depressing; good lighting will brighten and open up a space. While you’re at it, put the lights on a dimmer switch so you can adjust the light; bright light for hair and make up; soft light for a relaxing bath. To enhance the walls, along with sconces and a mirror noted in the subheading, I’d add decorative plates and objects that aren’t bothered by humidity. I don’t think much wall decorating went on in most bathrooms in the Mad Men era if only because there wasn’t much empty wall space given the small sized rooms. Further, my bet is that wall tile covered a lot of each wall making it hard to hang things. Today, plasterboard helps keep the price down and achieves a less shiny look.

Richard and Greg conclude: So as you can see, there are many simple changes you can make to transform your bath. Look through books and magazines for color and style inspiration and go from there. You’ll be surprised at what big difference small changes can make.

What would you add to Richard and Greg’s bathroom sprucing tips? Do you watch Mad Men? What would their ideal bathroom look like?


Blogger Blog Name Blog URL
Susan Abbott Customer Experience Crossroads
Paul Anater Kitchen and Residential Design
Shannon Bilby Big Bob’s Outlet
Shannon Bilby Carpets N More Blog
Shannon Bilby Dolphin Carpet Blog
Shannon Bilby From The Floors Up
Shannon Bilby My Big Bob’s Blog
Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing
Laurence Borel Blog Till You Drop
Bill Buyok Avente Tile Talk Blog
Jeanne Byington The Importance of Earnest Service
Becky Carroll Customers Rock!
Marianna Chapman Results Revolution
Katie Clark Practial Katie
Nora DePalma American Standard’s Professor Toilet
Nora DePalma O’Reilly DePalma: The Blog
Leigh Durst LivePath Experience Architect Weblog
Valerie Fritz The AwarepointBlog
Iris Garrott Checking In and Checking Out
Tish Grier The Constant Observer
Renee LeCroy Your Fifth Wall
Joseph Michelli Dr. Joseph Michelli’s Blog
Veronika Miller Modenus Blog
Arpi Nalbandian TILE Magazine Editor Blog
Maria Palma People 2 People Service
Reshma Bachwani Paritosh The Qualitative Research Blog
David Polinchock Polinchock’s Ponderings
Victoria Redshaw & Shelley Pond Scarlet Opus Trends Blog
David Reich My 2 Cents
Sandy Renshaw Around Des Moines
Sandy Renshaw Purple Wren
Bethany Richmond Carpet and Rug Institute Blog
Bruce Sanders RIMtailing Blog
Steve Tokar Please Be Seated
Carolyn Townes Becoming a Woman of Purpose
Stephanie Weaver Experienceology
Christine B. Whittemore Flooring The Consumer
Christine B. Whittemore Simple Marketing Blog
Christine & Ted Whittemore Smoke Rise & Kinnelon Blog
Christine B. Whittemore The Carpetology Blog
Linda Wright LindaLoo Build Business With Better Bathrooms

Service of Memory

Monday, July 12th, 2010


We drove by a remarkable orange and magenta sunset backing a mountain view. A man had pulled off the road to take some photos and at first I was annoyed with myself for driving in the country with neither my camera nor my phone.

To console myself I remembered how I tend to best recall missed incredible photos more distinctly than most of the thousands I’ve taken and put away in albums or boxes. The mother and daughter on horseback early in the morning in either Upper or Lower Slaughter in the Cotswolds is another example. I had no film–it was that long ago–but I see the two of them emerging from the fog, dressed for the hunt.

We have selective memories. If a doctor or nurse asks me details of some disease I’ve had I have to think long and hard to remember the year or details. I know folks who can relate every gruesome detail. I may recall a childhood event neither friends nor relatives do. Conversely, they reminisce about a party or conversation that seems new to me, yet they assure me I was there.

politicianCan you imagine being a politician, being held accountable for details you really can’t remember? “You said this in 12th grade when you ran for treasurer and stood for that at overnight camp! You belonged to the such and such club as a college freshman and your first job out of college was at XYZ, tisk, tisk, and didn’t you once baby-sit for the so-and so’s?” [Actually, I remember all of that…but I shudder to think what I’ve forgotten.]

I’m amazed at some of the insignificant details I do recall–a psychiatrist would either have a heyday or fall asleep. [I’m of average size now, went through a few too-thin periods and was a blimpette until I was 14. I vividly see myself sitting in assembly hall in school looking down at the fattest thighs in America–through senior year.]

I tend to try to remember happy events or interactions and on occasion test unhappy ones-as you might touch a black and blue mark to see if it still hurts or has healed. What a fabulous feeling of relief–as when Advil erases a headache–when something that had me swiveted to the Nth degree no longer bothers: That boss or friend who lied or took advantage, for example.

anger2I’ve heard that it’s bad for your health to masticate past upsets and forever grind them around inside, keeping them alive for years. Resulting anger makes you grumpy. It’s probably best to be grouchy sometimes to protect you from the fate described in the saying “Only the good die young,” but best not overdo.

Do you tend to brood endlessly over the negative or select the happier moments from your memory bank? What seemingly insignificant details do you remember from the past? Why? Are you shocked when an old friend or long lost cousin recounts hilarious tales that your memory has dismissed?


Service of Independence Day

Thursday, July 1st, 2010



The Sunday before I left to live in the Middle East for two years, the final song at church was “God Bless America.” Prone to tear up while watching Hallmark Card Mother’s Day commercials, I burst into tears that morning.

Being chauvinistic implies fanaticism. Being patriotic is considered inappropriate by many, or vulgar, but I am, even when unconditional love is hard to maintain.

rollyoureyesI feel about this country quite like how I feel when someone I love does something I object to or makes me roll my eyes in disbelief. I may wince and speak up with voice and/or vote yet I cringe when the US is accused of doing something wrong even if I agree that it shouldn’t. [You know, the old I-can-say-something-negative-about-my-child, sister, brother or parent-but-God-help-you-if-you-do syndrome]. I also mourn when I notice how America has lost its luster in areas in which it used to shine.

declaration-of-indepI have friends whose pedigrees affiliate them to this country well over a century closer to the signing of the Declaration of Independence 234 years ago than any one of my fattest American bloodlines. They don’t feel the slightest excitement when they see the flag snapping smartly in the wind on top of a building or bridge or watch a small town dressed in flags and families following the town fire engine down Main Street to celebrate the 4th of July. I do. In fact, many don’t “get” me.

Where do you stand on patriotism?

Flag on Mid-Hudson Bridge, shot from the car

Flag on Mid-Hudson Bridge, shot from the car

Service of Old Wives Tales

Monday, April 12th, 2010


Do you avoid walking under ladders or cross the street when you see a black cat or shudder if you break a mirror or worry that you’ll have a fight if you spill salt on the tablecloth so you fling over your shoulder a pinch of the dropped grains to avert a spat?

clamshellMy husband wants to shoot me when I toss a steamed clam that in spite of the heat remains clamped shut. He made me sit still and do nothing but listen while he read aloud from “More Classic Italian Cooking” to hear what renowned cookbook author Marcella Hazan wrote to debunk what I’d been told: That you’ll get sick if you must pry open such a clam shell to get to the mollusk inside. Hazan, who grew up in a fishing village, wrote that being closed tight just proves that the clam is fresh. How did the myth I’d been told get going–because there are so few that stay closed while most open? This is no doubt why I am still suspicious of a closed steamed clam shell.

deadplant1I have a friend who believes that when a plant dies it means that someone you know will die. [She must have a green thumb.] I hadn’t heard of that one before but I tucked it in the back of my mind where it popped to the front this winter as a dear friend become increasingly sick and eventually died. Simultaneously my usually robust indoor garden, that for years shouldered cold temperatures and countless gray days with barely a shrug, suffered a lot of losses.

While on the subject of death, my husband told me that a moment after his Mom died, the woman who was caring for her opened the bedroom window to let her spirit go free.

I pick up coins and cross my fingers on behalf of a friend who is hoping something will happen because I love the concept that something can stimulate luck.  I also knock on wood to ensure that good–health, client, windfall, job offer–remains so.

These days we get piles of wild information over the Internet much of which seems too good to be true–and often is. There’s Snopes urban legends reference pages to confirm everything from news of a deadly computer virus, outrageous claims about a politician’s antics to a campaign to send a get well card to cheer a terminally sick child [who never existed].

Do you pick and choose the old wives tales and superstitions you believe in? What are some of your favorites and which have you found to be merely tales? Do some tales stick with you no matter what?


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