Christopher Corbett Essay


Naughty or Nice

The words “naughty or nice” actually only appear once in the popular Christmas song “Santa Claus is Coming (or Comin’) to Town,” which observes its 80th season to be jolly this year. It’s a secular little…MORE

Neighbor's Pet

A good pet sitter is hard to find. Once, I hired a dreamy Gilman School lad to care for our cat for a weekend only to find that when we returned he’d forgotten all about his…MORE

Christopher Corbett Essays

One of the things that surprised me when I came to Baltimore long ago was the peculiar enthusiasm for our difficult-to-sing national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” This zeal is not evident elsewhere in this republic. I…MORE

Return of the Native

For more than 25 years I’ve had a William Hamilton cartoon from The New Yorker on my bulletin board that shows a couple of soignée dames talking to a guy in a checked hunting jacket. One…MORE

Closet Case

My wife has been trying to get me to come out of the closet. We’ve talked about this for some time. It’s a private matter. You can’t really involve anyone else; even family members. I was…MORE

The Cat’s Meow

What’s the chief difference between dogs and cats? Anyone who has ever known a cat knows the answer. Dogs are man’s best friend. But cats remain forever and always their own best friends. I did not…MORE

The Friendly Skies

Remember the friendly skies? Remember Delta is ready when you are? Remember up, up and away? That was TWA and if you’re old enough to remember TWA you may remember the pleasures of travel. Well, those…MORE

Car Talk

My first car was a 1969 Buick LeSabre—metallic blue. It looked like a state police cruiser. Gas was 53 cents a gallon then, and Richard Nixon was still in the White House. It was 1974. My…MORE

The old song says “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” but in our consumer culture, it was beginning to look a lot like Christmas before Labor Day. So by the time the bleak midwinter…MORE

The World’s Healthiest Foods!

My parents disapproved of new things. Why would we need new things? What’s wrong with old things? That was their mantra. This was especially true in the matter of foodstuffs. Dining. Cooking. Eating. Experimentation in the…MORE

Our School Project

For many parents of small children, child-rearing   offers a chance to relive one’s own childhood, and get it right this time. There’s no better place to begin than with the school project. The school projects…MORE

Chicken Little

Everyone remembers the good old summertime. Everyone remembers the season they worked as a lifeguard at Ocean City, waited tables at a seedy resort in the mountains, scooped ice cream, cut lawns or babysat. Even people…MORE

Summer Reading

When our daughter was young we were eager to encourage her to read. Actually, desperate might be a better word. I favored childhood classics that were read to me in my youth: “Treasure Island,” “Heidi,” “The…MORE

The Money Pit

People often refer to older houses, such as my circa 1900 barn, as money pits. But the real money pit is not the house. One actually lives in the house. A modern kitchen is a fine…MORE

My Brother’s Keeper

Our house phone number is one digit different from a pizza place and one other digit removed from a doctor’s office. Drunks call late at night wanting pizza. Sometimes I take their orders, telling them that…MORE

Hip, Hip Hooray

I had barely recovered from the astonishing news that Forbes magazine had proclaimed dear little Hampden one of the hippest neighborhoods in the Republic when The New York Times proffered advice on what any hipster should…MORE

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