Category Archives: John McDonald

GUEST COLUMN by John McDonald: We’re always on the move

By John McDonald

To hear Europeans tell it, we Americans are always on the move, always ready to pack up and take off to see what’s over the next hill, or on sale at the next mall, but it was that restless attitude that inspired our forebears to settle this vast continent in a little over a century.

GUEST COLUMN by John McDonald: Going fast got slow start in Maine

By John McDonald

Albert Einstein — one of the smartest guys who ever lived — once said, “There is more to life than just increasing its speed.”
Remarks like that help explain why Al never became a color commentator for NASCAR or the Indy 500.

GUEST COLUMN by John McDonald: Maine, the way fashion should be

By John McDonald

When I’m not sitting at a computer writing, I often spend a lot of time traveling around New England, entertaining at banquets, conferences and conventions.
Over the years I’ve noticed — among other things — a distinct change in what people wear to such events.

GUEST COLUMN by John McDonald: Celebrating free enterprise the old-fashioned way

By John McDonald

Memorial Day in Maine — our first “warm weather” holiday — is many things. It has always been a special day in towns and cities throughout the state, with parades and speeches.
In our town, after the parade wound its way down Main Street, folks would move on to the town cemetery for ceremonies, and then we would go down to the public landing for more ceremonies, including the throwing of a wreath on the water in memory of all those from our town who were lost at sea.

GUEST COLUMN by John McDonald: Tourists? It’s our policy…

By John McDonald

As tourist season approaches, it’s time to review our state’s policies on tourists, tourism and other seasonal enterprises. As we all know, tourism and helping tourists is an important business here in Maine.
“That’s nice, John,” I hear some of you say, “But who, besides you, knows this bit of useless information and who, besides you, cares?”

FEATURE COLUMN by John McDonald: The season of the black fly

By John McDonald

Did you see that article in the paper the other day about black flies? I had to laugh when I saw it because the headline and lead paragraph let readers know right up front that black flies were due to arrive in Maine on schedule, despite our tough winter and cold spring. After reading it – of course – I just had to laugh.

FEATURE COLUMN by John McDonald: March is Maine meeting month

By John McDonald

If the traditional New England town meeting didn’t exist, we here in Maine would have to invent it just to add a tad of excitement to our lives at this thrill-challenged time of year.
They say when our colonial ancestors first started experimenting with the town meeting concept, they tried scheduling their meetings in other months, but after a long period of trial and error, New England towns finally settled on March because — as they rightly observed – March is unquestionably the most useless stretch of days ever to occur on a calendar drawn-up by humans.

FEATURE COLUMN By John McDonald: Maine homes that move

By John McDonald

Frank “from away” has written one of the longest emails ever sent here to Storyteller Central.
He writes:
“John, I’m new to Maine, and I’m slowly getting used to different things in Maine. We moved here from a southern state, where lots of people live in mobile homes or ‘trailers.’ When grouped together — as they often are — the resulting community is called a ‘trailer park.’

FEATURE COLUMN by John McDonald: Maine March explained, more or less

By John McDonald

As I sit here writing this week’s column, the snow outside keeps falling — sometimes vertically, sometimes horizontally — but always falling.
I’ve been thinking about March storms a lot since we’ve had three n’oreasters in less than a month.

FEATURE COLUMN by John McDonald: Can you keep a secret?

By John McDonald

Since the first week in June 1995, your columnist has written a column a week every week without a break. I’m not asking for a medal or a round of applause or a one-week break, I just thought you might like to know how long this special enterprise has been going on.