For many years as a radio host I would offer up a collection of what are now commonly referred to as Dad jokes — typically held back for the end of the week to air on Bad Joke Friday.

Yesterday, I received a voicemail that I get frequently. It was my mother and the message left, sounding like she was almost in tears, “Please call me right away” and then click, that is the end of it.

Question: I have two questions. (1) Lately, I’ve been thinking about the word “pants.” Why is this word plural, since it refers to a single piece of clothing? (2) I read that hospitals in India and other places are having a COVID-19-related shortage of oxygen. How is oxygen manufactured, and…

Back to bacteria. In the last column, we talked about “germs,” a.k.a. pathogenic (disease-causing) bacteria. But all bugs aren’t bad. As long as we need carbon and nitrogen, digestion of food, and protection from diseases, we need bacteria.

There I was enjoying a Saturday of football when my day took a turn. When I tell you what soured my day, you will realize (if as a reader of my column, you haven’t already) that I am a deeply disturbed person as I get hung up on details in life that the average person pays absolutely no atte…