David Bouchier

Commentator

David began as a print journalist in London and taught at a British university for almost twenty years. After coming to the United States in 1986 he continued to teach and to publish a regular humor column in The New York Times regional edition.  He joined WSHU as a weekly commentator in 1992, becoming host of Sunday Matinee in 1996. His latest book of essays, Peripheral Vision, was published in 2011. His other books include A Few Well Chosen Words, The Song of Suburbia, The Cats and the Water Bottles, The Accidental Immigrant and Writer at Work. He lives in Stony Brook, New York with his wife who is a professor at Stony Brook University, and two un-musical cats.

Hands Off

Jun 22, 2015

Last week we spent several hours in the cabin of a brand new state-of-the art Boeing airliner, trying to hear a stream of announcements that were all but inaudible.

When we say "The South we usually mean the group of red states below the Mason-Dixon Line that share a particular history and culture. In Europe "The South" is also a term that carries more than its simple geographical meaning.In the European imagination "The South" is a fantasy land, rather like California, or Florida, or Hawaii in the American imagination, a place where you can escape and enjoy the good life.In the Northeastern United States we get a tantalizing hint of The South every summer when the temperature rises and the pools are opened.

City Of Lights

Jun 8, 2015

Paris was looking good last week, but then it always does. It is full of Parisians, of course, and most them speak French in that annoying way they have. There's also the diabolical traffic, the wall-to-wall tourists and the combative restaurant waiters. Every successive French government launches a campaign to encourage waiters to be nice to their customers. This has been about as successful as the campaign to encourage Congressmen to be nice to their political rivals.

Our family legend (and I stress the word "legend) claims that my father's great-great grandfather fled from France to England in 1804, when Napoleon proclaimed himself Emperor. So we have always had a this slender, romantic connection, and for me France has always been a kind of second home, a place to escape to, at least in my imagination.

The Joys Of Travel

May 25, 2015

It's no accident that the English word "travel" comes from the French word travaille, meaning work. The work of preparing for a long trip is enough to persuade a person to give up travel forever. Our whole lives must be packed down to the dimensions of a suitcase and a carry-on. Arrangements must be made for paying bills, caring for cats, mowing the lawn or clearing snow according to season, and sometimes both. Time inevitably runs out before all this is done, but we have to go anyway.

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