Americans are generally very self-sufficient and I think generally averse to pretension, just as I am.
Could the garment and appliance industries be in cahoots together, creating an artificial sock demand to keep us buying?
What you hear is southern Michigan, not a drawl, but a halting kind of speech where you leave spaces when there shouldn't be any. We take a breath anywhere.
I originated my own cliches, but I'm finding that's not working for me anymore.
John Muir, the famous naturalist, wrote in his journal that you should never go to Alaska as a young man because you'll never be satisfied with any other place as long as you live. And there's a lot of truth to that.
Somebody says, 'Do a Tom Bodett, a folksy kind of thing,' and it sounds like something out of 'Hee Haw,' very insulting. They turn wry humor into disparaging sarcasm, and you get what amounts to insulting advertising.
There's a lot of people around Alaska now who are actually running the place who claim to just have gone there for the summer once 30 years ago. And that seems to be what happens.
Tom Kizzia hasn't just observed and written about Alaska for three-plus decades, he's lived it. 'Pilgrim's Wilderness' is a story that needed to be told by the only man who could tell it.
Kids in Alaska don't know they're growing up on the Last Frontier. It's just what they see on the license plates, and it's something tourists like to say a lot because they've never been around so many mountains and moose before.
I went to Alaska as a young man just looking for adventure. And like so many of us in the '70s, we found it.
It's not like Alaska isn't wilderness - it mostly is. But most Alaskans don't live in the wild. They live on the edge of the wild in towns with schools and cable TV and stores and dentists and roller rinks sometimes. It's just like anyplace else, only with mountains and moose.
Professor Al Drake encouraged me to just write the way I talk. I decided if that's what I needed to do, I didn't need to be in school to do it.
People feel vulnerable when they travel. Nobody wants to be taken advantage of or talked into something they don't want. Staying at Motel 6 makes you feel smarter. In fact, I think it actually means you are smarter, but I have no hard data to support that.
Thirty-two is the age we turn into actual adults.
I know how to make adults laugh pretty well. I don't know if kids think I'm that funny.