At the end of the day, my wise Irish friend used to say, there is always the night, Liz Breslin writes.
In the years I spent tefling - teaching English as a foreign language - there were plenty of memorable times, mostly arising from linguistic mix-ups or sudden moments of clarity, especially when tefling in English-speaking countries with a whole range of cultures sorted according to how well they could conjugate and idiomise.
What's in a name?
Sitting around the lunch table with three generations, we wondered: Is the news mostly bad or sad these days?
You know how it is when you wake up in the morning with a supremely annoying lyric dancing around in your brain?
When I was young and ignorant, I thought the Great War sounded just that, great.
There are those who say maths is boring. But most of us know the truth. Maths is like oxygen: important and inescapable, lurking.
I do like a good conspiracy theory. Who really killed JFK? Who shot JR? Questions that keep you hanging on the edge of your seat until the next series or the newest wave of evidence/fabrication come into play.
It's a bit over 40 years since Gil Scott-Heron penned the piece that would earn him monikers like ''the godfather of rap'' and ''founder of the spoken word movement'' for the rest of his days.
There are lots of contenders for the saddest lines ever written.
I was brought up on traditional Christmas stories, the sort that saw me going to midnight Mass and arranging holy plaster figures in a home-made wooden crib.
My granddad taught me how to bowl. A cricket ball, of course; for him there was no other sport. I remember standing in the back garden, the smell of cardigan wafting from behind me, his big hands over mine.
Liz Breslin spills the beans on her trip to the formerly top-secret Bletchley Park.
Sitting in the dentist's chair is one of the last refuges of single-tasking.
The news that our terrorism alert levels have gone from very low to low in the past few weeks has brought to mind those swingometer rural fire warning rainbow charts.
After a week at home with the flu (the real sort, the doctor said), we'd tried most things.
Let's face it. There's a lot wrong with the world these days. But two things make me really mad. Stainless steel pineapple slicers and planned obsolescence. Let me explain.
As far as I can tell, there is no official mental disorder relating to sports fanaticism.
Altruism might not be such a fashionable thing these days: in the culture of the selfie we're encouraged to consider, enhance and preen ourselves before we ever get to thinking about others in society.
Here is a millstone to grow up with: big boys don't cry.