America Runs On



I’ve worked in medical publishing of one kind or another for nearly 30 years. I sit in offices, respond to email, talk on the phone, and attend meetings where people say things like, “We need to T up resources,” “What’s the opportunity cost?” and “Are they a stakeholder group?“ Everything I need to do my job is contained in a 14” laptop weighing 4 pounds.

But most of what I know about the business world I learned years ago from pouring coffee and bagging donuts at Dunkin Donuts. I worked at franchises in New Jersey and Boston, throughout high school and college. Here’s what I took away from those years:

  1. Understand where your paycheck comes from. I was 16 and thrilled when I got my first real job at Dunkin Donuts. Surrounded by racks of glistening French crullers and jelly donuts bursting at their sugary seams, I breathed in the scents of fried dough and chocolate frosting the way other kids breathed in pot smoke. For a girl teetering on the edge of chubbiness, it was a dangerous environment to work in.

I never drank coffee, so hadn’t given much thought to selling it. But I quickly learned that “America—does indeed—run on Dunkin.” Though we sold a lot of donuts, it was the coffee that lured customers in. Starting at 6:00 each morning, they’d queue up in lines that ran out the door and along the front of the building, sometimes enduring rain and snow just to get a cup of coffee. As a non-coffee drinker, it amazed me. Why didn’t they just make it at home?

Identify your company’s priorities so you know where to direct your efforts. At Dunkin Donuts, that meant we were grinding beans and brewing a fresh pot or two of coffee at all times. That’s what kept the registers ringing, and that’s what allowed the owners to pay us the grand sum of $2.50 an hour.

  1. Anticipate your customers’ needs. At first, the “regulars” annoyed me simply because they were always there: Taking up seats on the long Formica counter, lingering for hours at a time nursing a mug of coffee and a cigarette (back when Dunkin had counter service and allowed smoking. I’m really dating myself here). But I quickly realized that regulars tipped well and made my job easier. As soon as I saw them getting out of their cars, I’d pour their coffee, grab their donut, and have it waiting on the counter when they walked in. If they did take out, I’d have their coffee bagged and ready to go. In the midst of the morning rush hour, it was a relief to have regulars stream through because I didn’t have to stop to take their order.

Everyone likes to be known. To be understood. Give people what they need before they even ask for it, and you’ll (possibly) have a customer for life.

  1. Show up. According to Woody Allen, “80% of success is showing up.” In the world of fast food, where staff are often young and always underpaid, and the work is physically draining, it’s a constant problem: Somebody assigned to a shift doesn’t come in. Doesn’t call. Up and quits without telling anyone. The rest of the staff are left scrambling to wait on long lines of angry customers. I still remember the names of co-workers who called in on Saturday nights claiming to be sick. I’d stay on after my own shift to work midnight to 6:00 am (we were open 24 hours), serving customers, filling/frosting donuts, and trying to keep my donut-tree smock clean. So please: Show up, punch the clock, do your job. Your colleagues are counting on you.
  1. Plan your vacations far in advance. While we’re talking about time off, let’s talk about the planned kind. One night while working in the kitchen, I noticed that the baker’s hand was bandaged. He’d asked for a few days off, but the manager wouldn’t let him take it. So he stuck his hand in the fryer. They had to give him a week off to recover.

There are less painful ways to get a vacation, of course. Submit your request far in advance. Get somebody to cover your work while you’re away (if needed and possible). And work your butt off before and after your vacation.

  1. Accept that some trade secrets are better left unknown. I was in love with Boston crème donuts long before I worked at Dunkin Donuts: The plump shell of custard. The thick layer of chocolate frosting. Sometimes I wonder if I chose to go to college in Boston because it was my beloved donut’s namesake.

When I wasn’t waiting on customers, I was in the kitchen finishing donuts for the “showcase,” as we called it. Giving me the job was akin to appointing an alcoholic as bartender: A Munchkin here, a cruller there….I’d eat my way through my shift.

Finishing donuts was a messy, time-consuming, and potentially unclean process, depending on who was doing the finishing. Custard and jelly were stored in big plastic buckets and scooped—with a spoon, a spatula, or even bare hands—into tubs with spigots on the end. The tubs attached to a machine that made the custard or jelly shoot out of the spigots into the warm, yeasty interior of the donuts, two at a time. The donuts were held by bare hands.

Sometimes the plastic buckets of jelly and custard were left uncovered and you’d find flies or cockroaches in them. Similarly, the glaze we dipped donuts in sat exposed for hours, subject to the same insect invasions. I had other issues with the cleanliness of the kitchen, and I’m sure those issues are shared by all commercial bakeries.

Over time, it became more and more difficult to enjoy the gush of custard in a Boston crème donut without imagining the bucket from which that custard came. Or the hands that might have held the donut as it was being filled—I worked with a lot of strange people (see below). I stuck with donuts like chocolate honey dipped that weren’t handled very much after frying. It seemed safer.

There are similar trade secrets at all companies that may dampen your enthusiasm for the product or service you sell. Try to accept those things if you can’t change them. I did. Despite all I knew, I never got tired of eating donuts while working at Dunkin, and to this day, I still enjoy a Boston crème from time to time. Go figure.

  1. Learn to get along with different types of people. People are weird, and I’m not just talking about customers like Moon Man, who brought me stories he’d written for a fictional publication called “Moon Magazine.” My co-workers could be challenging as well: The lazy ones who never mopped up counters or washed coffee pots; the competitive ones, who tried to pour coffee and box donuts more quickly than anyone else (yes: seriously); and the ambitious ones who aspired to be key holders and flirted with the manager (again: seriously). Go with the flow and don’t try to make people act less weird than they are (it won’t work). Ultimately, you’ll be happier and more successful.
  1. Don’t shit where you eat. My friends and I called him “Kinky Kevin” because there was something a little seedy about him. He’d come in every day or so dragging his club foot and settle onto a stool at the counter. Staring up at me through glasses so thick they made his eyes look fuzzy, he’d order coffee and a plain donut. Even when he wasn’t sitting, the top of his balding head only came up to my shoulders. He wasn’t an attractive man by the usual standards, of course. But I had a crush on him. I was young and naïve.

The night we were supposed to go to the drive-in, he got lost trying to find my house. Suddenly overwhelmed with just how seedy he might be, I sat in my bedroom listening to the phone ring on and on, frightened at the prospect of being alone with him in a car.  There was no such thing as a GPS back then, so he never found the house. Much to my relief.

Needless to say, it was awkward every time he came into Dunkin after that.

Don’t get involved with somebody you work with—or around. We all know this, of course, but it’s difficult to follow. Sometimes such relationships work out—I dated a baker for 5 years. But usually, you’ll end up like Kinky Kevin and me: Embarrassed, resentful, and unable to look each other in the (fuzzy) eye. But hey, the way I figure it: He could have gotten his coffee elsewhere.


(Sue, Jake, and I have been sitting near telephones since last week when we thought our daughter-in-law was ready to give birth to the twins. Sherri kindly offered to pinch hit since it sure looked like a road trip to New York was about to occur. Well, Alyssa hasn’t had the babies and we’re still by the phones. Thank you Sherri for covering. Zach)

Vital Signs by Sherri Frank

Maybe it’s time, maybe it isn’t. With my other cat, Cleo, it was clear when I needed to put her to sleep. She’d had surgery to remove tumors in her belly. A year later, cancer filled her lungs with fluid and she was panting, her mouth hanging open as she breathed. At the animal hospital, they drained the fluid but said it would come back. I had three more weeks with her before she started panting again. When an animal is in pain and struggling to breathe, the decision is clear—though never easy. I called the hospital and took her in.

But with Gino, it’s not so clear. For months, he’d been losing strength in his back legs. He went from limping, to falling over, to not being able to stand at all within a year. Diagnosed with a degenerative spine disorder, he dragged himself around the house using his front paws, his lifeless legs trailing behind. But his appetite was the same, his energy was the same, his spirit was the same. Surgery wouldn’t fix it, a specialist said, and his functionality would only get worse. But he wasn’t in any pain.Gino 2014

So be it, I thought. He just needs a little help.

I helped him walk upright by looping a cotton sling beneath his back legs and walking alongside of him. When he had trouble getting into the litter box, I cut the front part of it so he could drag himself in and out. I held up his hind quarters while he did his business: Love, it seemed, had no limits.

But little by little he became incontinent, leaving a trail of urine—and sometimes feces—wherever he went. Soon, he bypassed the litter box altogether. I tried puppy diapers, but they slipped off his skinny haunch no matter how tightly I secured them. Most of the time, he stunk like piss and shit, so I bathed him on a towel in the bathtub, holding him so he wouldn’t fall over; soothing him while he cried.

“Maybe it’s time to put him down,” a friend said.

I shook my head. “Not yet.”

I spent a fortune on paper towels, bleach, and Swiffer wet cloths, wiping up urine and disinfecting floors. It was a lot of work and took up a lot of time.

Still, he was my “Gino Love.” The same “Little Man.” “Handsome Boy.” “Sweet Potato Fellow” whom I’d loved for 17 years. Eating his food with gusto; sitting on my lap with a puppy pad beneath him. How could I consider ending his life just because it was getting difficult to care for him?

At night, I used plastic garbage bags and towels on my bed so he could continue sleeping with me. Good thing I was single. I’d lift him onto the bed and he’d pull his body up to my pillow. Nuzzling his head in my neck, he’d fall asleep purring. Several times each night he’d slide off the bed for food or water, crying when he was ready to get back up again. I kept a flashlight nearby so I could find him in the dark.

To be honest, there were days when I couldn’t take anymore. Days when work had been too long and too demanding, and when others in my life were also clamoring for attention. Coming home to a house that reeked of piss, and a cat that kept pissing even as I tried to clean him up, was more than I could handle. I’ve yelled at him. I’ve picked him up roughly to move him to another spot in the house. I’ve wished he were gone. Though I know those feelings are normal for anyone who’s taking care of a sick person or animal, they left me with a guilt that was difficult to shake.

“It’s selfish to keep him alive,” my friend said. “You need to think about his well-being, not yours.”

But it felt selfish to even think about putting Gino to sleep. I worried that I’d be doing it for my own sake: So that my house would smell clean again. So that I could come home, drink a beer, and eat dinner right away instead of mopping floors and washing towels. So that I could go out after work and not fear the mess I’d find when I returned late at night. In short, I worried that I’d be putting my cat to sleep because it would make my life easier; not because it was the best thing for him.

In the absence of pain—or other obvious signs like vomiting, listlessness, and loss of appetite—what constitutes suffering? What constitutes a diminished quality of life for an animal who can’t tell us what he thinks or feels? That’s what it came down to.

According to the American Humane Association (AHA), it’s a judgment call. “You may ultimately need to make the decision based on your observances of your pet’s behavior and attitude.” I wasn’t sure I trusted my own judgment, which was blinded by love and (sometimes) exhaustion. Yet, because I knew Gino so well, there was no one more qualified to make the decision. The AHA provides a list of signs that might indicate a pet is no longer enjoying a good quality of life. Gino displayed two of the seven signs:

  • He cannot stand on his own or falls down when trying to walk
  • He is incontinent to the degree that he frequently soils himself

Rather than help, this only made it more complicated. We don’t put people to sleep when they can no longer walk, or when they’ve lost control of their bladders and bowels. Should it be any different with our pets? The answer is debatable, of course.

These days, I remain diligent about watching for signs of Gino’s deteriorating health. I take him to the vet for regular check ups, where we no longer talk about treatments, just palliative care. It’s getting more and more difficult to keep him clean, keep the house clean. But he still enjoys lying in the sun curled up next to my other cat, Josie. They groom each other. If I’m late feeding him, he slides over to the electrical outlet and gnaws on my computer cord until I pay attention. He paws at my feet when he wants to sit on my lap. He purrs while I pet him and bats at the ties on my sweatpants. He wants to investigate any new box I bring into the house.

When I look at him, I see an animal still engaged in living and loving, despite his disabilities. And perhaps that’s the best indicator of what he wants.

For now, it’s all I have to go on.


by Kent Ballard

You wouldn’t think it to look at him, but our esteemed blogger Zach is actually a pretty bright fellow. Recently he gave me an idea that’s worth pondering and perhaps implementing. I was complaining about all the tourists who come to my county for two weeks out of the year to see the brilliant fall foliage and to attend the county-wide festivals each little burg has during this time. If you are a local, if you actually live where people visit, you soon learn that all tourists are major pains in the ass and most consist of folks whom even Wal-Mart wouldn’t allow in their doors.

I was complaining about this at some length with Zach and he more or less said, “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”

I do not have a machine which makes cotton candy. I don’t sell deep fried watermelon on a stick. I don’t have suppliers who sell me eight hundred pounds of cheap, worthless socks made by slave labor in Somolia or genuine Americana “antiques” which were made last summer in China. These are pretty much what all the booths and yard sales in our festival sell and I want no part of it.

Zach said to simply charge the rubes a few bucks to swim in my pond. I have 71 acres of forest in which I live and two ponds, one rather large. I dismissed his idea originally, but thought about it later…

The last time I checked, the state of Indiana had more nudist colonies per capita than any other state in the union. Nobody seems to know why, but we do. Why just charge people to swim? Why not put up a couple of dozen cheap cabins, throw up an eight foot wooden fence around my acreage, hire some security, and start my own nudist camp?

The initial cost of starting up such a colony would be pretty high, but have you ever checked what they charge families for two weeks to a month to relax in the nude at a skin camp? It’s appalling. A king’s ransom. But people line up to cheerfully pay every year. Established nudist resorts rake in more money than Vegas. Money interests me.

Let’s see…I already have the land. My home is so remote there is a plaque along my half-mile long driveway commemorating this as the place where dark was invented. It’s nothing but deep valleys, high ridges, ravines, and I think if you could flatten it all out it would equal Vermont in size. It’s mostly hardwood forest and, I think, rather pretty country. We have deer, many of them. We have huge barred owls that call to each other at night. We have coyotes who form choirs to serenade folks in the wee hours, driving every pet dog into howling fits for miles around. Off and on, we have bigfoot though I might want to leave that off the advertisements.

I’d need a tall wooden fence around the entire property, and probably a very wicked inner fence of razor wire to keep out the curious riff-raff. And I would need a few roving perimeter guards. I would hire the bigfoot, as they would be champs at this, but they’re not trustworthy when it comes to punching a time clock. So, instead, I would hire rural women to be the guards at my colony. I know many country women who could score “expert sniper” on any military gun range and most of them are quite attractive.

They also take no crap from anybody. Yes, rural women would be perfect perimeter guards.

I could buy a score or two of those prefabricated tiny houses or largish yard tool barns and convert them into rustic cabins lit by kerosene lamps. A few porta-potties scattered about would take care of those needs, and I could put small wash basins in the cabins. I’d have to build a shower house, but there would be no need to build a laundry. Those who wished to could bring their own camping gear and enjoy all this beautiful scenery and nakedness outdoors if they chose to.

We’d have nightly cookouts, card games, bingo, swimming contests, all the usual campground activities. I’d buy a few yards of cheap ribbon and hammer out some large medals for the Ms. & Mr. Nudist Camp contestants every month. It’d cost a ton to get everything set up, time before word got around to the nudists themselves (which means advertising), but once that was done and the colony established, I would be filthy, stinking rich.

I’d drive a custom-made Jeep. I’d hire people to cut my winter’s firewood. Hell, I could afford a new tractor! (Don’t scoff. The big ones run close to a quarter-million dollars. Google them if you think I’m kidding.) Best of all, I could make lots of nice, new, naked friends.

In rural Indiana the most savage enemies I would have would be the fine church-going people. They would protest. They would organize. They’d picket my front gate. I’m nowhere near a school or other public facility and I suppose a lengthy court battle might beat them, but I have friends in low places and it would be both cheaper and faster to identify the church ringleaders and grease a few of their palms. Failing that, a little detective work to get photos of everybody who’s screwing everybody else in their congregations would calm them down pronto.

So I’m now doing cost-study analyses and pricing lumber. Also checking on the cost of Viagra by the case. If I went full-tilt boogie and invested everything I have (and what I could borrow), I could pull this off. The critical point would happen when I bring this plan up with my lovely wife. Foolishly, I taught her how to shoot years ago and she’s quite good at it. As a rule she’s kind-hearted and gentle, but I cannot outrun a hail of 9 millimeter bullets so this would take great planning and preparation. She’s interested in money too, and that would help.

So…someday when you are perusing your favorite porn site, should you find an advertisement for Indiana’s newest nudist colony, contact me at the provided web address and I’ll send you brochures, maps, rates, and everything you need to know. Then plan your summer vacation here. And pack very lightly.

I may even treat you to shameful, horrible stories about Zach while grilling hamburgers, some of which would even be true. But for so kindly giving me the idea of how to become a rustic, backwoods Hugh Hefner or Larry Flynt, I’ll alter the names and dates which should give him a chance at explaining all this to his beloved Sue. If that doesn’t work I’ll send her a season pass.

You will have the vacation of a lifetime. You’ll broaden your horizons and eventually relax and embrace a tolerance of alterative lifestyles. Besides, it simply feels good to run around naked. Life is too short for Puritan prudishness. Try it and you will be surprised at how quickly you take to this refreshing and wholesome (by Indiana standards) lifestyle. You’ll get a killer tan too.

But we ask you. Please….no peeing in the pond.

You can’t get a suit of armor and a rubber chicken just like that. You have to plan ahead. Michael Palin


Spider Season by Sherri Frank Mazzotta

Spider season is coming. Spring, summer, fall:  Every time the weather changes, those 8-legged predators appear. Clinging to the kitchen ceiling. Scuttling over counters. Rappelling down walls in the shower like….well, like Spiderman. I’m not one of those shrieking, jump-on-a-chair girly-girls. I don’t mind cockroaches and I love mice. But spiders scare the bejesus out of me.

We have a variety of breeds in our house. True, these are not the spiders of my Jersey youth; those baseball-sized “beauties” that lurked in our toothbrush drawer and under garbage bags in the garage. But they’re just as evil.  With their segmented bodies. Multiple eyes. Spindly legs stretched like claws. Waiting-sometimes hours at a time, I’m sure-to catch me alone.

Spiders are intimidating, and they know it. They have motive. They mean harm.

I get up before my husband each day, when it’s still dark. Nervously, I turn on the kitchen light but don’t step into the room until I’ve scanned the ceiling.

“If you hear me scream, it’s always a spider,” I tell him. “So come quickly.”

I don’t care that they eat flies and ants and other insects-I want them out of the house. I want them dead. Though I sign the execution orders, my husband is usually the one who kills them. He uses a wet paper towel to squash them with his bare hands. If they’re too high to reach, he grabs a mop and crushes them into the plaster. That’s what I call an action hero.

At one point he bought an expensive bug vacuum that was marketed as a “keep your distance” way to capture pests. It touted a telescoping nozzle and a 22,400-rpm motor that sucked insects into a tube and stunned them on an electric grid. According to the catalog copy, the stunned bugs could then be dumped outdoors. “Screw that,” I said. No spiders would be set free as long as I manned the vacuum.

It worked beautifully the first time we used it. Steve positioned the nozzle over a quarter-sized beast and turned on the power. The spider whooshed backwards into the plastic tube and we heard a sizzle. I smiled.

A few days later and alone-once again-in the early morning hours, I was confronted by those creepy legs. Confidently, I grabbed the vacuum  I placed the nozzle over the spider and hit the switch, but nothing happened. There was a sucking sound but no sucking. The spider began to move, so I pressed harder on the tube. I turned the vacuum off then on again, but the spider still clung to the wall. It was a terrifying moment of face-to-fangs intimacy, but I was losing confidence and the spider knew it. Finally, I dropped the vacuum and backed out of the room. I woke up my husband.

The “Keep Your Distance” vacuum hasn’t been used since.

Arachnophobia is one of the most common fears in the world. According to the website, Celebrities with Diseases (, Andre Agassi, J.K Rowling, Jessica Simpson, Rupert Grint, and Justin Timberlake all have an aversion to spiders. Johnny Depp, Emma Watson, Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, and Woody Allen….the list goes on. Perhaps the real question is, who isn’t afraid of spiders?

“Various therapies and self-help groups can work wonders to overcome arachnophobia,” the Celebrities site claims. “Gradual exposure to spider’s pictures or even touching the spiders can be of great help in beating arachnophobia.”

I’m not interested in beating arachnophobia. I think it’s wise to avoid anything that has fangs, injects venom, and liquefies its prey. But spiders seem hell bent on making my acquaintance. I’ve had spiders appear on the inside of my windshield while driving. Skitter across my table at a coffee shop. And parachute onto my salad while eating al fresco. Charlotte’s Web be damned, I’m not going to pet them!

One summer, I walked into our bedroom and found hundreds of spiderlings crawling over the walls and ceiling. Of course I screamed. It was my personal Nightmare on Elm Street. I’ve read that a female spider can deliver as many as 3,000 eggs-and judging by the number of tiny creatures scrambling over the walls, that sounded about right.

Steve and I grabbed wet paper towels and started crushing the seething mass. In the face of such an invasion, I was suddenly brave. Fueled by fear and anger, I dabbed hard at the walls. It took more than an hour to kill the ones we could see, and afterwards, I still imagined I felt them crawling on my scalp. Lice, I wouldn’t have minded.  But spiders?  I’d have to set my head on fire.

The only place in the world that doesn’t have spiders is Antarctica. But since the job market is especially tough in that neck of the woods, I’m resigned to fighting these seasonal battles. Sometimes I wonder if the spiders are keeping track of how many of their relatives I’ve killed. I wonder if they’re plotting revenge and just waiting for Steve to take an extended business trip. Then they’ll corner me in the basement and ensnare me in their silky webs. Descend upon me with thousands of fangs….It’s a horrifying thought.  And one reason why I’m thankful that my husband doesn’t travel much these days.

 “Naturalists have pondered this for years: there are spiders whose bite can cause the place bitten to rot and to die, sometimes more than a year after it was bitten. As to why spiders do this, the answer is simple. It’s because spiders think this is funny, and they don’t want you ever to forget them.”   – Neil Gaiman, Anansi Boys

An’ It’s 1-2-3 What Are We Writin’ For? -OR- Para-vice Lost

A big thanks to Rawrahs from for starting the new year in a style and voice all his own. Please visit him regularly at the link above. You won’t regret it.  …Zach

Writers write. Different writers write for different reasons. And please, make no mistake, all writers are “different”. The moving writer writes and having writ moves on.

The objective measure of writing success is: Readers? Book sales? Technorati rating? A byline? A paycheck? Critical praise and acclaim? A movie deal? Being aggregated on Huff Po, The Daily Beast, The Great Orange Satan? A six-figure advance on your next work? A Pulitzer? A Newberry?

Where better than a writer’s blog to pose such questions? I’ve attained ONE of the above.

Is it purely money, compliments, and publicity by which we measure?

Biographer, columnist, comedian, composer, creator, dialogist, essayist, freelance, ghostwriter, hack, ink slinger, journalist, novelist, originator, playwright, poet, producer, prose writer, reporter, scribbler, scribe, scripter, speech writer, word slinger, wordsmith, word whore, words-for-hire, will write for food…

Does where one writes matter?
Does what?
Does when?
Who decides what words are seen?

If number of readers is the determinate, does that mean that David Fucking Brooks is a great writer? Any better than the graffiti artist whose work is seen daily, by millions? What about the shithouse poet?

For twenty bucks you can buy the paperback edition of Writer’s Market. For ten bucks you can get the Kindle version. Do you write first, then find a market or do you find a market then write for it? If a particular market is squat upon by a stable of nags who’ve been wrong about everything, by what dint do they continue to get paid to occupy their lofty writing aerie to spew out another thousand words of bullshit?

If one manages to infiltrate the villagers’ circle jerk, does one have to abide by the “say nae a bad word towards another villager” creed?

Is there a more dysfunctional career path than writing? …Anything one could do that is more soul-crushing? Anything more fickle?

Who do you read? How did you find them? I realize these are impolite questions, perhaps unanswerable even, yet I ask all the same.

Is there a hierarchy of writers? A club? A selection committee? A secret handshake?

You are here reading. You arrived, probably expecting to read Zach’s latest insight, but instead find me beebling on about this crap. I’d apologize, but that’s not much help to you, since it’s not particularly heartfelt.

It this occupation too diluted or too deluded?

If you’ve read this far, did you expect an answer? You know the answer for yourself, but how does that apply to those of us who construct words for your reading pleasure?

I look for answers in works that seem to attract readers and find little rhyme or reason beyond the mass-hysteria herd mentality. There isn’t much of a market for anything you don’t want to hear, regardless of how desperately you may need to hear it.

We read to escape. Does that mean that writers who can’t cater to the escapist market are trapped? I read many thousands upon thousands of words each day, and sometimes attempt to distill what I’ve read into a palatable quaff; trying to turn something distasteful or absurd into bite-sized, digestible nuggets. It’s a processing process that ingests, excludes; then extrudes.

I am about to start ingesting a compendium entitled “Deadline Artists” billed and touted as THE best of the absolute best in the fine columnist tradition. Wish me luck.

Should not our daily word-gruel contain a minimum RDA of useful nutrients. Our diet determines our fitness. I am Brussel Sprouts?