A Doll Comes To Visit

You are a fifth-grade girl who comes home from school to find a doll on your front porch. The doll looks like you, is dressed like you, and there is something about the eyes. Who left it? Why is it here? And what makes this doll so special?

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Stories Short and Strange

19 short stories for general audiences ranging from the unusual to the unbelievable to the just plain strange.

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The Boy Who Could Wiggle His Ears

Learning how to wiggle your ears is really hard. But you can do it if you keep trying. And if you learn to keep trying, no problem is too big. So if you can wiggle your ears, you can do anything!

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All Lives Should Matter, Part II

On July 7th, I first wrote about how all lives should matter, but they never have, illustrating my point by listing six instances of massacres of Black communities in this country between 1898 and 1923 (https://www.bobwelbaum-author.com/all-lives-should-matter/). Today, I’m making the point that systemic racism wasn’t always violent, but has been part of the fabric of

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The First English Printer

I’m sure you know Johann Gutenberg invented the printing press with moveable type in Mainz, Germany in the 1450s. But who brought the printing press to England? Credit is given to William Caxton, who was born sometime between 1415 and 1424, most likely in Kent, England. His career path was set when he was apprenticed

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Measuring Our Economy

Are we in a recession? The classic definition is “a period of temporary economic decline during which trade and industrial activity are reduced, generally identified by a fall in GDP in two successive quarters.” (Google) Certainly the GDP falling by a heart-stopping 9.5 percent in the second quarter of 2020 got everyone’s attention. But what

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So You Want To Be A Scientist?

Studying wildlife can sound exciting, but the truth is there’s a large element of unpredictability. Like when a bird runs up your phone bill. Researchers from the R.R.R. Conservation Network have been tracking the migration routes of 13 endangered steppe eagles since 2015 in an effort to refine conservation efforts. They thought they had a

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Who’s Buried in Grant’s Tomb?

I know that’s an old joke, but I thought of it while reading about how August 8 was the 135th anniversary of Ulysses S. Grant’s funeral. With all the talk about the statues of Confederate generals, I thought General Grant should have equal time. According to the print edition of The Writer’s Almanac (http://www.garrisonkeillor.com/radio/twa-the-writers-almanac-for-august-8-2020/): His

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The Other Rosa Parks

On Aug. 1, 1952, 23-year-old Black Women’s Army Corps Private Sarah Keys boarded a bus in Trenton, N.J. to travel to her home in Washington, N.C. for the first time since joining the military. When the bus stopped in Roanoke Rapids, N.C. just after midnight to change drivers, the new driver told Keys to give

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How Mickey Mouse is Coping with COVID-19

The last time I visited Walt Disney World was January of this year. Since I knew WDW, and actually all Disney parks, shut down worldwide due to the pandemic, I haven’t given much thought to planning a trip back. But even though COVID-19 is still raging, the Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom theme parks reopened on July 11, with

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