OMG! A Weekend in New England!

At the age of 15, I had my first piece published in the Barry Manilow fan club newsletter. And so, it was his song Weekend in New England that played in my head as I made my trip to Connecticut for the conference of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. In my mind, New England is a […]

Remembering my mentor and friend

I am often asked how I got started writing a weekly column.  Many folks assume that I have a degree in journalism, and that this gig is something I picked up on the way to a more serious newspaper career. The truth is, I intended to become an English teacher, but dropped out of college […]

It’s time for Family Feud!

In spite of what the title suggests, this article is not about the in-laws, or the outlaws, or even my sister. A few months ago, my Aunt Shirlee decided to pursue her lifelong dream of being on the game show, Family Feud. With the surname of Pickel, pronounced just like the small cucumber preserved in […]

Aging Gracelessly

At forty-three years old, it’s probably time to stop saying, “when” I become middle-aged, and accept that I’ve arrived. I don’t know what the official marker is for middle-aged, but I seriously doubt I’m going to make it to eighty-six. I have found that aging is actually kind of fun because all of my peers […]

Amber hues of moody blues

When I was a kid, I had a mood ring that was perpetually blue, signifying contentment and peace. That is, unless my younger sister was getting into my stuff; then it would turn as black as the midnight sky… It’s a good thing I haven’t been wearing a mood ring the past few weeks because […]

My name is in Barnes and Noble!

Yep! Just walk into any Barnes and Noble bookstore, and pick up a copy of this newly released book: Turn to page 126, and sure enough, there is a story that I authored!!   I am unbelievably excited!!

Memories Not For Sale

My dad called to let me know he found a buyer for the old family homestead. I was last there ten years ago, right after the death of my precious grandmother. The house was going to be rented, and my job was to clean it before the new tenants arrived. The task proved to be […]

My Ricky Schroder Fantasy

Recently, I was perusing my junior high yearbooks when I found the following inscription from 1983: “Gingeretta, you’d make a gorgeous model, ya know. I think Ricky Schroder doesn’t know what he’s been missing! You’re really sweet. I hope you stay that way. Someday, when you’re a rich, famous model, and I’m a rich, famous […]

Pretty girls say the darndest things!

“Your articles are so cream-puff. Does a substantial thought ever flit through that head of yours?” “I shan’t subject myself to your unladylike writings any longer! You have offended my delicate sensibilities by using the word poop!” “Why do you hate puppies and small children?” It might surprise you that in the twelve years I […]