maureen burns

MAUREEN BURNS: Summer Reading List, Part 2

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We begin part 2 of our 2022 Summer Reading List with a bit more regular fiction, followed by a treasure of historical fiction.

Jan Wheelock and Hollie Stephenson found “Klara and the Sun” by Kazuo Ishiguro (about a robot) to be “endearing and thought provoking. It led to a great book discussion on Artificial Intelligence, technology and society.”

MAUREEN BURNS: The 16th Annual Summer Book List

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Let’s begin my 16th Annual Summer Book List. Time flies when you’re busy reading books. Jules Renard said, “When I think of all the books still left for me to read, I’m certain of further happiness.” Ahhh, and so it is for us. Let’s begin with fiction.

MAUREEN BURNS: The award goes to …

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Hey, folks, is it award season yet? What is award season? Who gets ‘em and for what? Who deserves them and never gets one?  

The comedian, Jack Benny, was known for his dour, banal expressions. He once said, “I don’t deserve this award, but then I don’t deserve arthritis either!”


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I remember seeing our friend, Carl Barberi walking around the lake with his wife, Alison. They did that often, so that wasn’t a surprise. The surprise was that Carl had recently had brain surgery. I yelled to cheer him on, though he didn’t seem to need it. He gave me a big smile and a thumbs up.

MAUREEN BURNS: No questions asked

I know a guy who went to have a professional photograph taken. The young female photographer asked him, “Are you a runner?” I’m sure he immediately perked and puffed up and replied, “Yes, I am. How did you know?”

MAUREEN BURNS: As my Disney world turns

When I was a kid, I used to run home from school to watch the Mickey Mouse Club on TV. Annette, Darlene and Jimmy all lit up my days. Later, others got their starts on this: Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Ryan Gosling and Keri Russell. 

So interesting!

MAUREEN BURNS: Dumb and dumber drivers 

There’s a lot of dumb drivers on the road, you know there are. Other drivers, not us! Many are sleep deprived. Many are just plain careless. Many are drunk or drugged.  

And then there’s all the distractions. Kids. Cell phones. Text messaging. Food. Drink. Cigarettes. And all those “behaviors.” Putting on make-up. Reading newspapers and books. Doing paperwork. I saw a man in Holland with a huge snake in his hands as he drove. I saw a lady driving in Jackson playing a violin. I kid you not. You can’t make this stuff up.  

MAUREEN BURNS: Mulling reverse polygamy

You hear about polygamy. So, I got thinking. What about reverse polygamy?  

I emailed some ladies and asked their thoughts. Many comments I couldn’t print no matter how much I agreed with and appreciated them.  

MAUREEN BURNS: Go for growth, grow for you

Jerry Seinfeld quips that the biggest fear people have is speaking in public. He goes on to say that at a funeral most people would rather be in the coffin than giving the eulogy.

We all have fears and comfort zones. As we age it is important to keep pushing those boundaries or they limit the quality of our lives. Every time we do something that is uncomfortable and accomplish it, our world becomes bigger. It never recedes. We can do more. We are more.  

MAUREEN BURNS: Really just a bunch of liars

We are really just a bunch of liars. Aren’t we?

I mean think of the many times someone says something to us and we reply with what we “should” say and not what we’re really thinking. Oh, and don’t tell me you’ve never done that.