Author Archives: David


I can’t be the first person to have figured this out. Indeed, you have likely arrived at the same solution. Members of a certain generation will immediately know the answer to which I refer. For younger readers, here is the requisite background: A man is trapped in an underground transit system lacking the necessary fare…Read the full article

Training Your Retriever

“Training your Retriever,” James Lamb Free’s seminal 1949 tome, remains a classic. In my house anyway. Where a series of responsible brown dogs have testified to the author’s expertise. “Thurber” would retrieve from the gates of hell. He knew left from right, would respond to my instructions shouted from halfway across a lake. Not to…Read the full article


What if there were one simple answer to your unrelenting doubts? What if that unassuming solution would take away all the pain? What if that one unique answer were hidden in plain sight? What if that solution were so mind-numbingly obvious that, once you had stumbled upon its blinding clarity, you spent the next several…Read the full article

What Was The Question?

We are getting slower. We aren’t running as far. We aren’t running as often. By any objective measure, our running group is failing to meet goals. What purpose could a running group possibly have other than to improve speed, distance, and frequency? Isn’t the point of getting together at oh-dark-hundred to run faster? Don’t we…Read the full article

School’s Out

“Quick question: is this break ever going to be over or what? Because I am about ready to lose it. Am I stuck in an alternative dimension? Has time stopped? Am I traveling backwards at the speed of light? Is school ever going to start again? Are my kids ever going back to their classrooms?…Read the full article

What do you Know?

Me: “Amazing Spider-Man number 6?” One of my Running Buddies: “First appearance of The Lizard. Stan Lee, author, drawn by Steve Ditko, 1963. Record sale price, about $70,000 in near mint condition.” Me: “1955 World Series?” Another of my Running Buddies: “First win by Brooklyn Dodgers. Seven games. Dodgers lost the first two to the…Read the full article

Fruitful Multiplication

Ten-year-old Jaime is struggling with her multiplication tables. Four times nine gives her trouble. Seven times eight is particularly perilous. Four times nine frequently elicits an answer of 42, occasionally 32, seldom 36. Seven times eight can be pretty much any two-digit number. Jamie’s parents send her upstairs to do another worksheet. “Check your answers,”…Read the full article

Is There a Doctor in the House?

Applicants to medical school are aware of two deadlines. For the purposes of this column we’ll call these deadlines “the early deadline” and “the late deadline.” Indeed, all information that follows is “truthful” if not “factual.” (You have a busy day, gentle reader, and I certainly have better things to do than to complete any…Read the full article