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Over Easy

Mackie: Resolved; Downton College

I was disappointed to see that our Vermont Town Meetings sidestepped one of the major issues of the day, namely, the conclusion of the third season of Downton Abbey. Downton Abbey, in case you were too busy watching the Let’s Laugh at Rednecks channel to check it out, is a hit PBS series about an aristocratic family and its servants. Why this show fascinates me so I am not sure, since our household staff in West Lebanon has grown woefully thin, and even a Romney

Mackie: You Can Be Happier As You Grow Older ... Or Not

I’ve read comments by two people recently, one a New Hampshire writer, the other an actress and celebrity, that claimed they were happier after 60. That sounded swell to me, since government documents allege I have been 60 since late December. My wife asks me if I feel 60 and I tell her, “Only after 9 at night.” As early as that, the Sandman sprinkles magic dust and makes me yawn like a toddler on his third picture book. Sometimes he is less subtle. He

Mackie: Ask a Mayan: Ancient Wisdom That You Can Use Today

It wasn’t the end of the world, but the predictions of doom based on the Mayan calendar have rekindled interest in the once-great South American civilization. As far as we know, the Mayan empire didn’t technically reach the Upper Valley, but even here people were wondering if they could take Earth’s final hours as sick time, or if there were any point in buying lottery tickets if the annuity would never pay out. But 2013 came right on schedule, so we have to make the

Mackie: Click Here and Make Me Popular

There it was, staring me in the face: I was no longer popular. The evidence was incontrovertible — I was an Internet has-been who had only the briefest moment in the sun. I refer to the Valley News website, which, to my consternation and shame, declares that certain articles are “popular,” ranking them from one to 10, the point after which the writers presumably must stand in the awkward corner at the junior high dance with those who are never asked to do the two-step.

Mackie: When Winter Was Tough, And So Were We

It’s come to my attention that people who’ve recently settled in the Upper Valley may not have an appreciation for what used to be called “a good old-fashioned winter.” Last winter, which more closely resembled a “good old-fashioned spring,” may have lulled them into a false sense of security, much like those cheap coats that are regularly marked down from $700 to $40 thanks to the miracle of compounding store coupons. My wife uses them so skillfully that I don’t think we spend any actual