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Six new reasons to give thanks for too much turkey

Whole Foods French wine & cheese tasting raises palates to new levels

Recipes for humans and other fanciers

A beautifully staged and wonderfully acted ­communications breakdown

At Thanksgiving, this year’s garden continues giving

A fat eel is the best winter bait

How to lead dogs to water and make them swim

The Dog Days make August a difficult month for canines, especially the sporting variety. Hunting season is just around the corner, but it’s been many weeks since the weather has been cool enough for serious field exercise. Inactivity takes a toll on human-dog cooperation and communication, not to mention their mutual physical conditioning.     Water play beats the heat and does the job.     The easiest form of training for any dog is masked by the semblance...

Bay Weekly Route Dog

Piper, who has been on the Bay Weekly masthead as a distributor since 2007, knows when it’s Thursday. She picks up her leash, route sheet, and she’s ready. She watches over distribution partner Jim Lyles’ shoulder just to be sure he does it right. You can’t always trust humans to do everything correctly, you know. Us dogs must watch carefully.     Many people along the Northern Calvert route know she’s in the van and ask about her. She’s very...

Life on the Bay Can Be Exhausting

I rise early even on weekends, continuing the habit of a lifetime, look out and see the civil twilight and the promise of the sun. Over the flat water, dark blue now, like a sheet of glass, wisps of dark clouds with a hint of pink on the horizon in a sky of light blue. The day is already alive with morning sounds, distant traffic. Gulls cry from afar, geese honk as they fly over, a tern drifts by, Bay ducks leave their traces on the water surface like a flotilla, and a common loon emerges from...

Dog Day reflections on feline companionship

This affectionate kitty loves people and rewards you with purrs when you pet him.     So says The Capital.     That’s a healthy note of skepticism you read in my words. Or perhaps it’s jealousy. For assertions like this one crank up a notch or 10 the friendly competition one newspaper editor feels on reading the pages of another paper.     Can every cat featured in Adopt a Pet — not just the homeless little dreamcicle pictured...

An old couple learns new tricks in this ­surprising comedy

After 30-odd years of marriage, Kay (Meryl Streep: The Iron Lady) and Arnold (Tommy Lee Jones: Men in Black 3) have a routine: Kay suffers in silence as she does housework, longing for grand romantic gestures. Arnold ignores her. They sleep in different rooms and barely touch, talk or acknowledge each other in front of their grown children.     From the outside, they’re every couple of a certain age. From the inside, it’s amazing they haven’t snapped.  ...

We’ve rewarded our most loyal ­companion with three constellations

Of the 88 official constellations over our heads, nearly half are animals, serpents, birds and fishes. Admired for their beauty or feared for their strength, these are wild creatures, beasts you wouldn’t want to encounter, let alone have in the house. In fact, of them all, only a few are domesticated animals. One of the oldest recognized constellations is Taurus the bull. Goats have played a role in civilization at least as long as have cows, but their celestial reward is the...

Irrepressible fun!

Spoiler alert for readers not current on 1980s’ kitsch: The musical Xanadu has nothing to do with Citizen Kane or with Coleridge’s poem of the same name. The motif of creating a stately pleasure dome, however, does link all three disparate references to Xanadu.     Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre ends its 2012 season irrepressibly with goofy fun.  Set in 1980 — the era of leg warmers and big-hair bands — as a tongue-in-cheek theatrical send up of a...

They’ll taste great come winter

Are you being flooded with tomatoes? My neighbors are willing to take their share but they can take only so many. If you enjoy canning, make catsup, salsa, tomato juice, stewed tomatoes or crushed tomatoes. I have and still have tomatoes to spare.     I fry green tomatoes by dredging them through a mixture of corn meal and Old Bay prior to frying in olive oil. Fried red tomatoes are also a favorite for some.     If you have a food drier, try drying tomato slices...

Stretching Your Comfort Zone: We dug deep to give the War of 1812 lyrics and song

“I write books, not music,” I told the big man with the guitar. “I’m a historian, not a songwriter.”     Gary Rue — St. Mary’s County composer, musician and proprietor of the small recording company Millstone Landing Productions — had invited me to step outside my comfort zone.     “Write the lyrics for a CD album on the War of 1812,” he said. “I’ll do the rest.”     ...

Cheetahs named to honor America’s fastest man and woman

On top of their Olympic medals, America’s fastest man and woman have another cause for pride. They’re the namesakes of two of the world’s fastest animals, the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s cheetah twins born April 23 at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Va.     Girl cub Carmelita is named in honor of Carmelita Jeter, the fastest American in the 100-meter dash. On Saturday, Aug. 4, Jeter ran the 100 meter in 10.78 seconds...