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Where’s Marlin Perkins?

The back alley reminds me of Marlin Perkins. From 1963 to 1985, Perkins hosted Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom with his trusty and faithful sidekick Jim Fowler. While Perkins remained in the studio, Jim often wrangled the wildlife, or so it seemed. Perkins was not a professional in the sense…

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Bears and moose and bison, oh, my!

Yellowstone. For those who have witnessed its wonder, just the word charges the senses and sends one into the halls of memory. The natural wonders are each worthy of study longer than an average visit. Indeed, many people visit the park for just a day or two. The great expanse…

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Charlie Markowitz’ baseball bat

We parked in the parking lot of a small bar. Steps led up from the lot to the front door. Night had fallen and the air smelled of snow. An awning hung over the door. Neon signs either side of the door read “OPEN” and “Schlitz.” I knew there something…

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When dad blew us up with black powder

All around us the neighborhood burned. Firecrackers, smoke bombs, fountains, and mortars. A couple of those really loud things—I don’t know what they are but I wished I had some—blew up and we felt the blast in our chests. They set car alarms honking and squealing. A normal Fourth of…

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