More Columns

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Americans have a habit of reworking holiday celebrations to suit contemporary needs. Look at Thanksgiving — a pit stop at Grandma’s for fried Butterball, then over-the-river-and-through-the-woods to Walmart.

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A pride of lions. A gaggle of geese. A coven of witches. A clutter of candidates. Enough already! Twenty-one months until the presidential election and campaign fatigue has set in along with campaign confusion, campaign misinformation — even campaign comedy. As of the last week in February, …

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Great news, that the West Southern Pines Task Force is working to revitalize a primarily African-American neighborhood that once pulsed with businesses, which made it self-sustaining. However, plans outlined in a Jan. 6 Pilot editorial said nothing about a grocery store that sells well-price…

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I don’t like name-dropping unless warranted. The name is John McCain, a noble American warrior and statesman who died on Aug. 25. A name that President Trump cannot desecrate by his comments on how he prefers heroes “who don’t get captured,” as though saving the lives of comrades, then being…

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After 10 years, I know this to be a community high on nostalgia, or history, or whatever you call it. The amount of space in local publications indicates admiration, respect, perhaps a longing for the past. In mid-

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Breathe easy, ye closet royalists. The wedding’s over — went off without a hitch, far as I could tell, except for a few moments distinctly American enough to give the queen indigestion, which may be why the usually smiling monarch looked so grumpy in her bile-green (officially “lemon-lime”) outfit.

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Last year, I wrote about the need for a vocabulary czar in Washington — somebody to regulate, explain and improve what billows from the president’s mouth.

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Descriptions of the alleged neglect and abuse of the elderly at Tara Plantation in Carthage made me want to vomit — all the more so because, unlike child abuse, these crimes often go unreported, or hushed up.

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Writing this column was difficult. Reading it may be even more difficult. I hadn’t planned to express an opinion on gun control re: the Parkland massacre. Others have, eloquently and sensibly. But to my knowledge, none speaks from experience.

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Growth was The Pilot’s Newsmaker of the Year. The Dec. 31 overview presented facts and numbers confirming population and economic growth, along with benefits and downsides.

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This week, columnists feel obliged to submit thankful lists. Sure to be included — family, friends, freedom, health, food, shelter, as captured by Norman Rockwell in his iconic Thanksgiving dinner painting. Others will go global.

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I have spent the past 24 hours readying my kitties for possible evacuation, should Irma veer east. At last report, looks like the Charlotte cats are more likely to be squeezed into carriers for a trip to a school gym or armory.

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What a week. I’m no great intellect, but I do have enough experience to recognize a con when I hear one. “Build the wall! Build the wall!” was the battle cry trumpeted throughout the land, followed by “Mexico pays! Mexico pays!”

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The event that hasn’t happened since 1979 and won’t repeat until 2024 happens tomorrow: a total solar eclipse (TSE) visible over a wide swath of the United States, with Moore County on the edge.

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When my rent went up $22, I thought — yikes, this is serious. Maybe I could realize that amount by lowering another bill — which, as you know, is practically impossible.

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Before the United Airlines fiasco fades, I have a few bones to pick with the industry — small issues compared with being dragged, screaming and bloody, down the aisle — but red meat, nevertheless.

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Buzzards line the branches. Headlines blare “retail apocalypse.” The grim reaper sharpens his scythe, which his great-granddaddy purchased at Sears, the same retail giant that, like the Titanic, is sinking fast.

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Today, I will write about words — their beauty, their power, what they reveal about the speaker. My choice of subject is neither random nor indiscriminate. It rises from frustration bordering anger — almost hives — listening to a president who day after day earns a big fat F in eighth-grade …

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My mother used to say it would take a big bite out of a big apple to shut me up. At about 3 a.m. on Nov. 9, I found that apple. Shocked, stupefied, mortified, enraged, betrayed … silenced.

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Here it is Halloween Eve, and harried political operatives haven’t had time for costumes. When this happens, the solution is to fall back on natural attributes. Woefully missing in this campaign — harmless fun. Let’s have some.

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On Monday, I took a long afternoon nap. My early-to-bed, early-to-rise lifestyle portends poor attention span past 9 p.m.

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You know the expression “glued to the TV”? Given the last few months, I’m adding “Crazy-Glued” — reflecting the fascination, the horror. I can’t wait until some documentary filmmaker prepares a montage of the low, lower and the lowest moments.

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I have an awful convention hangover. Advil, Aleve, Motrin, Tylenol … useless. So I’ll try the proverbial “hair of the dog,” meaning scab-picking, opinion-mongering, question-posing and plain ol’ common sense.

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Once in a while, the op-ed gods ask me to whip up an “evergreen” column for the stockpile, which dwindles during summer months. Hmm. I’m more of a hot-off-the-griddle, ripped-from-the-headlines gal.

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I’m just so fed up with the campaign that I switch to “Seinfeld” reruns when the daily rehash airs. But I still have a wish list that has very little to do with the outcome:

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Surely our children and grandchildren must wonder as they channel-surf why so many TV stations show the same program starring a big guy with a funny hairdo, whose finger is stuck in the upright position. Should the kids pause and listen, here’s what they’ll learn. And what they’ll say about it.

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The whole thing — I can’t believe I watched all five hours of the Republican debates on Wednesday evening. That’s two hours longer than “Titanic,” an hour longer than “Gone with the Wind.” And what a ride it was, leaving me bewitched, bothered and bewildered, not to mention irritated and fri…

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Labor Day signals summer’s end, just like Memorial Day initiates beach weekends and cookouts. At least we still honor fallen soldiers on Memorial Day. But the “labor” context of Labor Day seems to have been washed away by cold beer.

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Donald Trump is well-named: The undulating lacquered hair which covers his bald pate mimics the curve of Donald Duck’s bill. “Trump” contains “rump” — a synonym for the three-letter biblical term for donkey.