News: Columnists

Jun. 14, 2015 @ 03:55 PM

Neil Offen: 7 steps to a happy marriage

Recently, my wife and I celebrated a numerically significant wedding anniversary. It was numerically significant because to reach that anniversary number I figured I must have gotten married at the age of seven (My wife points out that she was five.)


Jun. 13, 2015 @ 03:40 PM

Baumgartner Vaughan: Let it rain on graduation

It rained at my high school graduation, so we had it in the gym. It rained at my college graduation, so we just got rained on and let our mortarboards wilt before the sun came out again. There’s a message in there somewhere.


Jun. 13, 2015 @ 03:25 PM

People's Pharmacy: Testosterone gel smelled up the house

Q. My husband recently had to switch testosterone gels due to a change in insurance coverage. The new product was a generic testosterone. After he used it just one day, our whole house smelled like floral-scented dryer sheets. It took me a day to figure out that the culprit was the chemical pentadecalactone.


Jun. 07, 2015 @ 03:34 PM

Neil Offen: Making a date with your update

An update is currently available for one of your intricate pieces of technology. This update will enable you to make improvements to usability, security and laundry sorting. Would you like to download it now? Or would you rather be left further behind and continue to be the laughing stock of most middle school kids?


May. 31, 2015 @ 03:08 PM

Neil Offen: No whining about our wine list

Let’s take a look at the wine list, which has hints of papyrus and an ethereal bouquet of late-harvest No. 2 pencil. But first, let us explain our wine philosophy and why one bottle will cost you more than next month’s mortgage.


May. 24, 2015 @ 03:37 PM

Neil Offen: It’s on my schedule (maybe)

This is a cautionary tale. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket, particularly if the eggs are digitally dependent and the basket comes with a multi-language instruction manual (also, don’t do it if you have high cholesterol and your cardiologist has told you to cut down on egg baskets, but that’s a cautionary tale only for those who know how to spell angioplasty).


May. 23, 2015 @ 03:50 PM

Blue Greenberg: Hillsborough’s thriving visual art scene

Hillsborough is no longer the sleepy little town in the shadow of Chapel Hill and Durham. It is an art destination with galleries, festivals, gardens, restaurants, a world-class auction house and published authors everywhere.


May. 23, 2015 @ 03:43 PM

Baumgartner Vaughan: A minute on Memorial Day

At 3 p.m. on Memorial Day, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, if we are so inclined, we should pause for a minute of silence to remember our war dead. Not to remember why we fought, or who won or lost, or what it means today. But just to remember our war dead.


May. 17, 2015 @ 03:22 PM

Neil Offen: The walk of life or, mettle tested

At 7:30 a.m. precisely, my daughter Nora and I began The Great Saunter, the 32-mile circumnavigation of the island of Manhattan. Why did we do it? Well, of course — because it was there.


May. 16, 2015 @ 03:54 PM

Baumgartner Vaughan: A Duke’s walk home from war

Reenactor Philip Brown is on the road now for “A Soldier’s Walk Home,” following the walk that Washington Duke took at the end of the Civil War, headed home to then-Orange County. Duke walked from New Bern to Durham, and Brown, dressed like Duke would have been, has taken to the road for a 160-mile trek on foot.


May. 16, 2015 @ 03:14 PM

People's Pharmacy: Diabetes drug triggers billion-dollar settlement

Q. I am concerned about the Actos I take to control my blood sugar. I’ve seen lawyers’ ads on TV and in the newspapers advising that this drug could cause cancer. At first, I thought the ads were just a money-grubbing tactic.


May. 10, 2015 @ 03:04 PM

Neil Offen: And let us commence ...

Please stop texting. Thank you, and let me now be among the first to congratulate you for the tremendous accomplishment of completing your college education and for the even greater accomplishment of not staring at your phone while I offer your commencement address.


May. 09, 2015 @ 05:36 PM

Baumgartner Vaughan: Moms laugh and play

One of the things I like most about my mom is that she’s funny. We laugh together. The ability to be silly is a key part of parenthood, I think, because it makes life better. We sing in the car. We dance in the living room. I do these things with her, I do these things alone, and I do these things with my own child.


May. 09, 2015 @ 03:04 PM

People's Pharmacy: Injections less costly than Viagra

You have occasionally gotten questions about Viagra being expensive. Some men would like a different treatment for erectile dysfunction.


May. 03, 2015 @ 03:57 PM

Neil Offen: How my garden grows

In 1974, after four months of watering, 13 pounds of compost and regularly scheduled pitiful pleading, I began my vegetable gardening career by growing the smallest recorded radish in the western hemisphere.