"It was not long after Thanksgiving that I started getting terrible and constant headaches. My wife suggested that I go to the hospital and get checked out. 'Better safe than sorry,' she always cautioned. After a series of CAT scans and MRIs Dr. Rabinowitz, a Jew, broke the devastating news: Cancer."

"The winter of '67 was especially trying for my family. The mill closed that November so I was out of work again. Also, the Chinaman who was supposed to fix our furnace didn't do a good job. Not that I was expecting him to."

"I had finally managed to scrape together enough money for an engagement ring. I had to hock my beloved guitar in order to do so but seeing the look on Grace's face when I popped the question, I briefly forgot she was half Italian. It was beautiful."

"Her first weekend home from college, my daughter introduced us to her new boyfriend, Jamal. Terrific, I thought to myself, I guess we can kiss our VCR goodbye."

"On his seventh birthday Eldon, my youngest son, received a badminton set from a schoolmate of his. We had hardly finished dessert when a wayward shuttlecock caused him to put his racket through our sliding glass door. He was always such a clumsy cracker."