My father was fond of saying, “If you can’t find something, turn the rock over. If you still can’t find it, turn the rock over again.” To this day, I still don’t know what he meant and wish he’d spent less time obsessing over rocks and more time playing catch with me.

Other than my father’s words of… let’s call it “wisdom” for the time being, the rest of this book is filled with words of my own. Well, not words of my own – I mean, I use words that other people also make use of. Let me try again: the remainder of the book is comprised of original essays. Wait, that’s not accurate, either – you’ll also find some entries where I offer my own comments in response to quotes or observations generated by other word-users. Let’s say somewhere between 80 – 85% of what you’ll read from here on out can be considered “original.” I’ll adjust the price of the book accordingly to reflect this.

These pieces first appeared in my blog, Facts Optional. I’ve been writing since 2012 (well, I’ve been writing since I was about age three, but here I’m referring to the blog), focusing mostly on autobiographical snippets (generally pointing out my failings as a human being; lots of source material to draw from). I also love to write about the complexities of the English language, which I generally do in a way that also points out my failings as a human being, or at least that I failed English in high school. And then there are my aforementioned comments regarding what others have said, which I already mentioned in the previous paragraph and so let me adjust my assessment of original content here down to 75 – 79%.

Perhaps at this point I should wrap up the preface and let you get on with the remaining pages, if I haven’t managed to put you off. A few family members, friends and acquaintances are on a distro list and have been receiving links to these columns via email. Those emails typically have a brief introduction to the linked column and I’m including them here at no extra charge to you (they’ll be in italics when they feel like showing up). I trust you’ll find at least a few moments of amusement as you meander through this book.

As my father often said… nope, I won’t repeat myself again.

Winthrop, ME    November 2015