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YOSHITAKA HAMADA
Shawn Adams, of Pelham, holds her cat "Pippin" at her house in Pelham, Friday, Dec. 19, 2014.  Pippin went missing for six months and was hit by a car Dec. 17, which left the cat a brain injury.

Shawn Adams: The cat who came in from the cold

Sunday, December 21, 2014

PELHAM — For many, this time of year is a time of memory. Looking back on the past year, we reflect on the significant events that have shaped our lives. Some of these memories can be full of joy, and others of loss. About three days ago I was standing on my deck looking out over the trees that surround my home in Pelham and I uttered a small prayer. “Pippin,” I asked, “why did you leave me? Come home.” Pippin is the name of my cat, adopted seven years ago from the animal shelter in Springfield. I am biased, as all animal-lovers are, yet …

Claire Streeter: A father who tried once before to quit — and must again

Friday, December 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Dear Daddy: I’m writing to talk to you about something extremely important to me, and I’m not sure how to say it in person. I’m writing to talk to you about stopping smoking. I know you’ve been smoking since you were 15. Daddy, I’m worried about you. Smoking is really bad — from the tar in it, to the millions of …

Kristin Carter:

Friday, December 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Dear Mom: Do you really know just how bad smoking is for you? Not only will it kill you, it is a habit that will cost you a lot of money each year. It affects your hygiene, causing bad breath and smelly clothes. It also causes tons of health problems such as lung cancer — especially if you are a heavy …

Peter Vickery: When it comes to Ebola, it’s not paranoia if the virus reaches you

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

AMHERST — The Ebola outbreak reminds us that there are always a few self-appointed experts quick to offer medical diagnoses and prescriptions, despite the absence of symptoms and their own lack of scientific credentials. I refer, of course, …

In Close Proximity: To frack or not to frack?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

AMHERST — The Sept. 27/28 Daily Hampshire Gazette story “Rate shock” reported that our greater region’s supplier of gas and electricity, National Grid, would increase its electricity rates “by 37 percent over last winter’s rates starting in November....” The story explains that: “The spike is a result of …

Jasper Lapienski: Blue-state revolt: Why he’s glad he voted for Evan Falchuk

Monday, November 10, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Baker, 48.5 percent. Coakley, 46.6 percent. Falchuk, 3.3 percent. I’m not a Republican, but results like these make me smile: Thanks to the courage and principle of over 71,000 fellow Massachusetts voters, Democrats have been firmly put in their place by democracy. I assure you, I …

John Sheirer: When polar winds blow through Facebook pages

Sunday, November 9, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A recent Pew Research Center study showed that 44 percent of liberals have blocked or unfriended someone on social media for political reasons, compared to 31 percent of conservatives. Some folks are heralding the study as proof that liberals are intolerant. But that interpretation misses an …

Rev. Andrea Ayvazian: News value and climate change

Friday, November 7, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — The photograph was striking. There on the front page of the New York Times on Nov. 3 were two Kenyan runners about to cross the finish line at the New York Marathon. The two were in full stride and those cheering them on were visible on …

Rich Szlosek: Did FDR have a PR presence in Northampton?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — When I was a preschooler, I had a dentist named Dr. Williams. His office was in his house on Elm Street not far from Smith College. The story is that there was a tropical fish tank …

Paul Newlin: Answers to Whately’s town building needs require help from all

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

WHATELY — For the past three years, the Whately municipal building committee has been trying to solve two problems. The first concerns our town offices. They are split between different buildings, making communications among departments inefficient. They are …

Jay Fleitman: Let’s exercise caution on Ebola by acknowledging what we don’t know

Monday, November 3, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — It was the spring of 1980 and I was an intern in my first year of training working in our hospital intensive care unit. We had a young man and a user of intravenous drugs being supported by mechanical ventilation because of an extensive pneumonia that …

John Bos: Where men help men face the ‘Big C’ in Northampton

Sunday, November 2, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — We call it the “Big C” (along with some other things) in our weekly men’s support meetings at Cancer Connection just across Locust Street from Cooley Dickinson Hospital. Founded in 2000, the nonprofit Cancer Connection is at heart a “living room” where each Wednesday at noon …

Bill Newman: Let science, not fear, guide on Ebola health care workers

Friday, October 31, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Many scary things — ghosts, goblins and IRS agents — undoubtedly came to your door last evening on Halloween. I like Halloween. I remember as a kid going house to house dressed as a gunslinger, saying, …