It was 1948 or so. I was five years old, and living in a little town of 300 Norwegian farmers called Badger, Iowa. My father ran the "corner store." I don't remember when he brought home the TV. I just remember that he opened a soda fountain (he was a teetotaler) in the basement of the store and invited the locals in to watch. I don't remember what was on back then, but I became an unapologetic TVidiot and remain one to this day. Read more about Don't Kill MY TV!
A couple of weeks ago, I watched PBS' American Experience, The Amish, which was fascinating on several levels, not least of which was a re-introduction to the power of community.
I was struck by the high percentage of young Amish who, when they are given the choice in their late teens to join the church or no, choose to remain. There is comfort in the familiar, in acceptance, in knowing where you fit in the general scheme of things. Read more about Me or We
Caught a bit from Santorum's French Revolution speech.
Oddly enough, he makes a point for my own explanation of why humans have needed a god. Because, I have argued (and still do), we refuse to take direction from each other.
Santorum is arguing that "fraternity" implies that it is our community that grants us rights. That we must understand that "unalienable" rights can come only from an ultimate source, a creator god. I (reluctantly) agree. Read more about Fraternity
I have a memory of years ago in Chicago, looking up at the skyscrapers and thinking, why, they're pyramids. Not actual pyramids, of course. LSD was still fairly far in my future. But pyramids all the same. Read more about It's Natural
You're reading along in a book you enjoy, when suddenly you notice something wrong. Maybe it's a fantasy story in a medieval setting and somebody refers to "oxygen." Maybe an awkward description makes you think a woman is dangling backwards to the floor instead of being carried romantically across a threshold. Maybe it's , and you notice a character is on the wrong side of the Seine. Read more about Thrown Out of the Story
Way back in the olden days when I was a young(ish) wife and mother living on a farm in Door County, Wisconsin, I joined the local chapter of NOW, the National Organization for Women. We were a small but enthusiastic group in the heady days of the burgeoning women's movement, reading Friedan and Greer and de Beauvoir, religiously consulting , and attempting to spread the Good News to our fellow [sic] women of the Door Peninsula. It was all about change. Read more about Change
Years ago, when I so wanted to write but had no idea of how to go about getting anyone to read it, I conjured up a little fantasy.
If it came down to it, if I had enough that I wanted to say and nowhere to say it, I would write it down, a paragraph at a time, on sheets of paper, climb to the top of the Empire State Building, and sail them into the world in the form of paper airplanes.
I've become somewhat adept at constructing paragraphs that say what I want them to say, but I never really mastered the art of the paper airplane. Read more about Paper Airplanes
Martin Luther King Jr.. How do we begin to measure his impact?
Ever since the election of President Barack Obama, there has been a lot of loose talk about a "post-racial" world. Any African-American who hasn't been lured into the smarmy embrace of the Republican Party will tell you that's a lot of hooey. Only they probably wouldn't say hooey. Read more about MLK Day