DUNGAREES: casual or work pants made from a denim-type fabric

Young builder in a hardhat and dungarees standing on an outdoor building site checking on order or contract

Today we call them jeans and they are a fashion item.   You can buy them in J.C. Penney’s or you can go to fashion shops in New York City (like 3×1)  and pay ten times the Penney price. We used to wear dungarees (now called jeans) because they were cheap, sturdy, and anything but fashionable.   […]

NUANCE [NOO-ahns] : a subtle difference or distinction in expression, meaning, response, etc.

Every Governor of the State of Rhode Island is given a budget to have a portrait painted which will hang in the State House upon his/her end of term.    This past year, at the conclusion of his single term as Governor, Lincoln Chafee contracted with Julie Gearan, a New England artist, for his painting. When […]

GORGET [GAWR-jit]: an ornamental necklace or breastplate presented to signify a high honor


Tuesday was a historic day in the life of the State of Rhode Island.   It was the Inauguration of the 75th Governor of the State, and the first woman to hold that post.  Amid much traditional fanfare, Governor Raimondo was sworn into office, after which a historic silver gorget was hung around her neck by […]

UNDERDOG: a person or group in a competition, usually in sports and creative works, who is popularly expected to lose


Be careful how you respond to the public announcements about who is the anticipated victor and who is the underdog. Thomas Dewey, Governor of New York, was the leading Republican candidate for President of the United States in 1948.  He had lots of notoriety, money, and prestige.  Right up until the last minute is was […]

TANENBAUM [TAN-uhn-boum]: German word for fir tree; adopted to mean Christmas Tree


Living in Rhode Island, I’ve watched the debate (now somewhat tempered) over the past couple of years as to whether the decorated fir tree in the State House should be called a “Christmas Tree” or a “Holiday Tree.”   I tend to come down on the side of those (Governor Chafee especially) who prefer to see […]

FRIVOLOUS: unconcerned about or lacking any serious purpose.


Why is it that when things get bad, we look for the simplest answers to correct the situation?   Right now the State of Rhode Island has the worst unemployment rate in the country.  The capitol  City of Providence is in the midst of a struggling recovery from a massive economic downturn.  Industry has left the […]