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Stories, True and Otherwise

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The Tomato Nation advice column addresses your questions on etiquette, grammar, romance, and pet misbehavior. Ask The Readers about books or fashion today!

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Articles in Stories, True and Otherwise

Are We Penn State
November 12, 2011 – 9:33 AM | 80 Comments
Are We Penn State

Then it took a week and a half before the graduate assistant was asked to tell his story to Curley and Gary Schultz, who oversaw the Penn State University police department. And then, the grand …

Phrase Of The Day: "potaper cut"
November 10, 2011 – 8:24 PM | 7 Comments
Phrase Of The Day: "potaper cut"

potaper cut: n. A paper-cut-esque incision of the finger or knuckle caused by a very crisp potato chip. See also: "tuber-cuticle-osis."

Who Here Gave Their Lives
September 11, 2011 – 6:08 PM | 69 Comments
Who Here Gave Their Lives

Abraham Lincoln passed his last hours in a cramped back bedroom in a boardinghouse across the street from Ford's Theater, mercifully unconscious, folded awkwardly onto a bed too short for him, laboring to breathe. A …

Irene-y Days And Sundays Always Etc.: Hurricane Open Thread
August 26, 2011 – 9:59 PM | 124 Comments
Irene-y Days And Sundays Always Etc.: Hurricane Open Thread

I just spent an hour playing cards on our new backyard deck with Mr. S and Gen. All quiet on the Brooklyn front, except for one romantically desperate cricket who didn't get the memo. "Um: …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 22: Northwood, OH to Brooklyn, NY
August 23, 2011 – 10:44 AM | 20 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 22: Northwood, OH to Brooklyn, NY

I had a hotel room reserved, near Williamsport. It seemed prudent. I wanted to get home, but not to push too hard. The little wrench that appears on the dashboard when it's time to bring …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 21: Davenport, IA to Northwood, OH
August 22, 2011 – 4:40 PM | 22 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 21: Davenport, IA to Northwood, OH

I wished I could stay at the hotel longer. So big! Such good coffee in the lobby! So tired of portaging my bags in and out and up and down, getting stuck in doors, making …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 20: Lincoln, NE to Davenport, IA
August 19, 2011 – 10:15 AM | 10 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 20: Lincoln, NE to Davenport, IA

I've found on these trips that biting off a big mileage chunk on a weekend day is a mistake, so I decided to take it easy today, a Saturday — stop and browse around where …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 19: Boulder, CO to Lincoln, NE
August 15, 2011 – 9:31 AM | 4 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 19: Boulder, CO to Lincoln, NE

I got a perfect country night's sleep and woke up at 6:30 AM, unprompted. I actually swung my feet to the ground, yawned, and stretched. I never do that. I'm out of bed with my …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 18: Rock Springs, WY to Boulder, CO
August 15, 2011 – 12:26 AM | 5 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 18: Rock Springs, WY to Boulder, CO

Jay told me the day before about a little Siamese that wandered into his room a few times. When I got up and pulled my curtains back, I saw her in a sunbeam in front …

Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 17: Elko, NV to Rock Springs, WY
August 14, 2011 – 10:04 PM | 19 Comments
Big Country Little Car Tour II, Day 17: Elko, NV to Rock Springs, WY

There are two kinds of women in the world: the kind who are like, "Sam Elliott? He's a pretty good actor, I liked him in that Cher movie," and the kind who would knock you …