A Christmas Postcard

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classic-christmas-postcardThere’s something about this season that evokes bygone memories. These aren’t sepia toned memories – I’m not that old – they’re more like a mix of warm vibrant colors filmed with a soft lens. In other words, they bring forth feelings both nostalgic and pleasant. Think of a classic Christmas postcard, its snow covered landscape offering the perfect contrast to the brilliant but somehow muted colors surrounding a heartfelt home filled with love and the joy of expectation. This paints the picture of the memories I’m writing about.

Except my memories aren’t make believe. They are very real, although the distant years sometimes make me wonder if the soft lens distorts more than the crisp definitions we’ve become all too accustomed to in the digitized world in which we live. No matter. The price of a slight distortion here and there is well worth the comfort of the inner smile they bring.

Of course these memories, as they do for everyone and almost by definition, come from Continue Reading “A Christmas Postcard”

Ode to Curt’s Stop-In: An Era Ends

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Like a scene from The Wonder Years, I remember the feeling of youthful exuberance when, in the dark of evening, we crossed the six lanes of hectic highway as only Buffalo, NYreckless eight-year olds could. The thrice daily shift change left Route 5 abuzz with a cornucopia of cars – from speeding muscular sportsters to equally vigorous family sedans. I wasn’t looking at the traffic, though. Instead, my eyes fixed on the heavens above as I followed the path of a faintly glowing satellite arc through the starry sky blanketing us. I pointed it out to my friend, who also had a thing for astronomy. It was the early summer of 1968 and I was about to experience something I would never forget.

We survived the treacherous crossing and made a bee-line to a place I had never Continue Reading “Ode to Curt’s Stop-In: An Era Ends”

Thanksgiving Thinking

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[This Commentary originally appeared in the November 23, 1989 issue of The Mendon-Honeoye Falls-Lima Sentinel.]

CarosaCommentaryNewLogo_259Act II, Scene 5 from Pass the Cranberries and What’s the Score

(The scene is a Norman Rockwell-like Thanksgiving dinner setting, complete with all the trimmings: grandma, mom, dad, two older sons and two younger daughters. Grandpa is in the family room sleeping on the couch and an old B-movie plays on the television set. Though dinner is nearly over, dishes are busily being passed and the clinking of silverware against a plate rings incessantly.)

Mom: Come on boys, finish the vegetables. There’s too little left to put in the refrigerator and we need room for the rest of the other leftovers.

Son #2: (Looks to his older brother.) OK, I’ll take the peas and mushrooms and you can have the corn.

Son #1: No problem. (Turns to his youngest sister.) Pass the salt.

Daughter #2: (Stretches her arm across the table, knocking over her glass of cherry-red Kool-Aid on the formerly brilliant white tablecloth.) It’s too far for me to reach. Could somebody pour me some more Kool-Aid?

Daughter #1: (Giggles.)

Dad: (Angrily.) That’s not funny. (Places all available napkins on the ever growing spill.)

Son #1: Oh, oh. I think I just saw the EPA pull up in the driveway. (No one at the table Continue Reading “Thanksgiving Thinking”

A Personal Reflection of A. Bartlett Giamatti

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[This Commentary originally appeared in the September 7, 1989 issue of The Mendon-Honeoye Falls-Lima Sentinel.]

CarosaCommentaryNewLogo_259I sat in Woolsey Hall with 1,300 other Freshmen nearly 11 years ago to the day. At the podium stood the newly ordained University President, who’s very pompous pontification my Gates-Chili classmates had earlier warned me to be wary of. “Remember, Chris,” they advised me prior to my departure in early September, “don’t let their fancy words and snobby accents intimidate you. After all, they’re only Continue Reading “A Personal Reflection of A. Bartlett Giamatti”

From a Bachelor’s Cupboard

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[This Commentary originally appeared in the August 31, 1989 issue of The Mendon-Honeoye Falls-Lima Sentinel.]

CarosaCommentaryNewLogo_259WARNING:                        BUTTER IS COMBUSTIBLE.

Such a message never graces the sides of butter packages. As a service to all culinary illiterates (like me), I must urge you: pay heed to this warning! But, more on that story in a moment.

As much as I hate to admit it, everyone has certain limitations. Like a recalcitrant halfwit, I often refuse to abide by such diminished expectations. I have, however, never Continue Reading “From a Bachelor’s Cupboard”