Gazing at the Face


I’ve never lost my phone or worried someone would pick it up and start snooping. Maybe I should be more concerned: imagine all my secrets revealed. And there’s always the first time it happens: you say you never lose your phone and then you do. So I recently added facial recognition to the lock screen of my phone, with a password backup . That’s how you enter the inner sanctum now. I’ve shared my...

An Encounter at the Register


The thermostat acting up and flashing ‘replace batteries’ isn’t an emergency, but I will say Julia is more comfortable and pleasant when the ambient temperature is comfortable and pleasant. The hardware store is only a ten-minute walk, and the sun is beaming this morning after the insult of several inches of snow yesterday. I’m happy to make the trip. The batteries are upfront near the register...

The Rooney Rule is Rotten


In 2003, only three out of 32 National Football League teams had a Black head coach, leading the NFL to pass the Rooney Rule, which required teams to interview a minority candidate for head coaching vacancies and other top positions. Since then, the rule has been tweaked to make the requirement two minority interviews for open positions. In addition, teams that develop minority coaches and front...

Easter Smiles


It’s a bit of a morose group for an Easter Sunday. Despite the background, this is not a cell block. On the right is the asbestos-laden fake brick siding on the unheated room we called the shanty at the back of my grandmother’s in Niagara Falls. The wall on the left is the beer distributor warehouse next door. In summer, the wall is fronted by tall tomato plants with swollen red fruit. From left...

Happy Birthday, to Two Men Who Have Shaped My Life


That’s my dad and me riding bikes past the old casino in Delaware Park, Buffalo, New York, 1973. It was late March, the piles of snow melting in the background. I’m 14 years old, a high school freshman. My father is 46, married, the father of five, a rising marketing executive at a pharmaceutical company. Today is his birthday. He would have been 95. The photo is staged because a...

The Devil in D.C.


I recently visited our nation’s capital. I walked the neighborhoods, visited the monuments and memorials, looked at art, watched the people, and even witnessed the presidential motorcade passing by—and all the time I experienced a nagging sensation of dirtiness, a troubling unease. Something has gone wrong in our nation and I seemed to be searching for clues in our capital as to what happened and...

Kites in Peril


You’re just a visitor to the National Mall and you want to fly your kite on a sunny day, you want to see the sails puff in the wind, rising into the sky, soaring and fluttering, the long colorful tail bebopping in the breeze, but if your kite flies too close to the Washington Monument then secret service agents draw their handheld mini lasers and cut your line and your kite plummets and crashes...

What Enneagram Type are You?


I’ve always been interested in behavioral assessments and personality tests: Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Predictive Index, Enneagram, and others. I think I might uncover patterns in my motivations and become more in tune with my strengths and weaknesses, my desires and fears. That kind of knowledge would prove helpful in navigating relationships, work, the self, and the world in general. Maybe...

In This Corner, Will Smith


I can’t say I watched the Academy Awards Sunday night, but I repeatedly replayed the video of actor Will Smith going up on stage and slapping comedian Chris Rock when Rock made a joke about looking forward to seeing Will’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, starring in GI-Jane 2. If you don’t know the reference, the actress Demi Moore—famously hot at the time (1997)—famously shaved her head as a marine...

Grief on a Timetable


Since the U.S. is sure to pass one million Covid deaths (970,000 and counting), it might be opportune timing that a new mental disorder diagnosis has just been added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM): Prolonged Grief Disorder. The DSM is a comprehensive classification of officially recognized psychiatric disorders. Published by the American Psychiatric Association...

Hope Springs Eternal


Fighting through a maze of rocks and winter’s dead leaves, this harbinger of spring, two crocus blooms, purple and gold, determined to be seen and I saw them, surprised and pleased. War and death and disease and hatred—and still, hope springs eternal.

Pie vs. π


That’s right, it’s Pi Day—March 14, or 3.14. Or 3.141592654 and on and on, with no repeating pattern. What does one do on Pi Day? Bake pies. For those who may not remember Euclidian geometry, Pi, represented by the Greek letter π, is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. For any circle, the distance around the edge is a little more than three times the distance across. Two...

Living Off the Land


Tapped the tree, cooked the sap, made breakfast. We’ve got four mature maple trees on our property and I tapped two of them this year.  The time to tap is when the nights are below freezing and the days warm up enough to get the sap flowing. On a good day, I get a half-gallon of sap from each tree. On a frozen day, nothing. Tapping a tree is the easy part. Drill a hole, stick in a tap, and...

Summoning The Crows


Maybe you do too, but I have days firmly in a dark place. I wake up that way. The writing goes poorly, or I say something I regret, or the news of the world has me down. Maybe Prince Happy keeps telling me how life is good, but I’m still feeling like the man in black. With all the light I have, still the shadow looms. I know the playbook. Get mindful and meditative. Savor, savor, savor...

David Klein

Published novelist, creative writer, journalist, avid reader, discriminating screen watcher.


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