#340 – Just for Richard

Would you believe? My mistaken loan of Fifty Shades of Grey to my mother-in-law seems to have softened her attitude toward yours truly. Since then, she hasn’t phoned her priest once to request an exorcism. She’s even begun saying “good morning” as if she means it. And miracle of miracles, she actually purchased a gift for me, without anyone twisting her arm. The trouble is … the present itself or, more accurately, a request which accompanied the largess.

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#341 – Not on My Watch

A new Georgia law broadens the categories of people required to report suspected child abuse, with violators facing up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine. I abhor maltreatment of children; yet I wonder whether such penalties might instill overzealous action by mandatory reporters who fear to withhold borderline suspicions of abuse. Indeed, I’ve already seen signs of potential overreaction.

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#343 – A.O.K.

I’m sure most foreign exchange students enjoy their sojourns in America and look kindly on their host families. Equally, I don’t doubt that most host families are well-meaning souls who appreciate their temporary lodgers and treat them excellently. And then there’re the exceptions, like Luis and Bill.

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#345 – Two in the Hole

Today, my friend introduced me to his younger brother. Steve, a thirty-two-year-old father of three, lives less than an hour away but I’d never met him before. It was touching to see the admiration Ron holds for his little brother. Indeed, I don’t think I’ve ever heard one sibling wax so rhapsodic over another’s accomplishments, trivial or not.

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