Category Archives: Friday Column

None of the kids were naughty, and they all were very nice

We are knee deep into the holiday season, the time for company and office parties and general wassailing.  I don’t remember too many office parties I have attended in the past (who does?), but I vividly recall the most recent … Continue reading

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A reader responds and highlights contrast between philosophies

“…It is ironic to think that once energy, both kinds, were free and available to everyone,…”  from your column is wrong. “Energy (and/or food) were never free.  It took enormous amounts of work by individuals and teams to obtain it … Continue reading

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Have-nots must conquer fear, and haves must conquer greed

Back in the 1950s I was living in Los Angeles with a roommate, Sally, who was confined to a wheelchair.  Among our mutual friends was a youngish doctor.  I can’t remember what his specialty was, but he was very concerned … Continue reading

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Trend to more individual haircut style seems to have developed

As the year draws to an end, people, religions and countries have traditions for giving thanks for all the good things in life they are grateful for, or in some cases, just for surviving another year.  It is a time … Continue reading

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A little Greek philosophy goes a long way in today’s world

This past week, Giselda, a member of my book club, who was reading the works of Plato when she was 13, did a book review of Marcus Aurelius’ “Meditations.”  At one point, another member, perhaps our oldest and perkiest, bravely … Continue reading

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There is something pleasant about being a state bank customer

In her article on Nov. 11 in AlterNet, an online newspaper, Ellen Brown has an article, “Want to have a happy Planet?  Just ask Costa Ricans about their banks,” In it she extensively quotes Scott Bidstrup, an expat who has … Continue reading

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Making the people count requires being a good listener

Every now and then I have an epiphany, not a great big aha! epiphany, just a simple realization of a truism.  Like this Wednesday, I realized how important other people are to expanding our worlds, to our well being, and … Continue reading

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It’s déjà vu for the Butterfly as a new arrival confronts life

These past days of heavy rains in the afternoon make me think of my friend Grady’s remark (made from the sunny town of Palm Springs where he stays when he is not living in Costa Rica).  That is that he … Continue reading

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Helping others is a way to keep the aging mind sharp, too

After reading the article about the benefits to aging minds that retiring in Costa Rica brings, I decided to check my own mind-saving activities, if I had any. I just put the final piece in a 1,500 piece puzzle which was a … Continue reading

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What the country needs is a balanced budget amendment

A drunken sailor in port on leave has a more stable financial situation than Costa Rica. The central government is spending about twice as much as it brings in. Now the finance ministry is setting up roundtables so that the … Continue reading

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Joys of the local feria extend to far more than just vegetables

Generally speaking, you can buy fruits and vegetables and sometimes even fish and meat at the open air farmers’ markets, (called ferias) for less than you can in the stores.  And you can pick what you like and buy as little … Continue reading

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When it comes to ferias, the one in Pavas appears to be better

Before I type another word, I have a cautionary note to my readers, many of whom are on my contact list.  Quora, a social Web site, I guess, has hacked my contact list and is sending invitations from me to … Continue reading

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With fog and Internet outage, Costa Rica really is a small island

Tuesday of this week my Internet went down, and so did my TV connection.  Until I opened my balcony door, my apartment was soundless.  Once I did open the door, the sounds of the city had changed.  They were all … Continue reading

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Just like everything else, the Devil is in the details of the plan

Some months ago I got a telephone call from a gentleman representing a health insurance company.  He said that for 25,000 colons a month, (about $50) which I could simply add to my Internet and cable bill with Tigo, I … Continue reading

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Giving books to children is like planting seeds for future

Just imagine….. You are a third grade student at a village primary school near Puriscal, and this is your first day of class.  Not only is this a new class, but this is a new school for you. You have … Continue reading

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Syrian situation appears to be beginnings of a Vietnam replay

I have been fretting all week over what has been going on in Washington, D.C., where the administration is trying to convince Congress to okay the bombing of Syria to teach President Bashar Assad that using weapons of mass destruction … Continue reading

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Distance is relative when you are climbing those hills

A Tico kilometer, I’ve decided, is longer than a mile.  I had the opportunity this week to get out of the city and sample a taste of the surrounding countryside.  This was thanks to the invitation of a member of … Continue reading

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Telling a story is brought to a high art by a professional

Stories have been told since there were words to tell them. Some tell the history of a people, others to entertain and others are simple fabrications to mislead.  Poet, novelist, dramatist, essayist and professor of English Reynolds Price, wrote in … Continue reading

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