This morning we delivered a loved one to the hospital for surgery. We drove slowly, spoke quietly, and carried a bag of essentials — a worn stuffed monkey and a sweaty t-shirt of mine.
Hazelnut, our four-year black lab is having her cranial cruciate ligament — akin to a human’s ACL — repaired.
My phone is fully charged and within reach as I await the doctor’s call.
I can stretch my legs beneath my desk because Hazel isn’t here, licking my ankles to remind me it’s time for a walk. It’s a discomforting comfort, this stretch.
And Huckleberry, our golden…
I find it weirdly, wonderfully ironic that our attempts at inoculating ourselves against COVID-19 have gone viral.
You know what I’m talking about: Social media is full of pictures and posts of people showing off upper arm band-aids like sailors flaunting South Seas tattoos.
The car line selfie is a mile marker on the road to healthy. Instagram influencers, white-haired grandparents, sports stars and office holders brandish vaccine cards like they’ve scored Willy Wonka’s golden tickets. Rise up, rise up — it’s time to take a shot! We’re rocking out to the Hamilton rap.
The vaccine is all we’re talking…
Lawrence Ferlinghetti died this week, at the austere age of 101. To reach a century mark — in any century — is astounding. To do so as part of the bohemian Beat Generation … well, extra jazz snaps for that.
I met Ferlinghetti many years ago when he came to speak and read at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was an alumnus, I was a student; we were 40 years apart, both journalism majors. I was serving on the university’s speaker series committee, the group responsible for selecting, inviting and hosting luminaries from diverse fields of…
C’mon, did anyone really expect Punxsutawney Phil to predict an early spring?
It’s February 2021, for crying out loud, a cat whisker’s distance from the longest and most loathsome year in history.
The global pandemic that arrived about this time last year continues to rage on — and shows no sign of leaving. (Perhaps we should have known it would be an extended stay, considering how much baggage he brought with him).
Six more weeks of winter? That ain’t nothing but a heartache. On top of a quadruple bypass kind of year.
Since COVID came to town, every freaking day…
Today was an inauguration like no other: Less grand in scale than we are used to seeing; less grandiose than we are used to hearing.
It was less, but at the same time and somehow, confoundingly and comforting, more. It was perfect for these far-from-perfect times.
The 46th President of the United States, Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., took his oath of office surrounded by more security than spectators. We were struck by the very fabric of the day — 20,000 flags on the National Mall commemorating lives lost to COVID-19; masks worn by those attending, to protect against the risk…
Every good American of a certain age has been on a field trip to Washington, D.C. After a semester of U.S. History, we piled into buses, waved goodbye to parents in an early morning parking lot and set out on a five-hour drive to the nation’s capital. Fueled by fast food, sugary snacks and sodas, Ritalin and pre-teen hormones, we were the nightmare of hotel night clerks and Smithsonian Museum tour guides.
But we are nothing compared to the field trip from hell that we watched play out on CNN just days ago. Grown men and women, playing dress up…
Christmas came early this year, as did all our pandemic holidays.
Our neighborhood began stringing lights and hanging wreaths in late October, and the decorations have been epic — inflatable snowmen and Santa’s, sleighs and reindeer and life-size nativity scenes. There’s even a unicorn on one rooftop, because, well, it’s been a unicorn kind of year.
It seems that in our quest to divert and deflect during this hardest of years, we’re not only pointing to shiny objects, we’re also hanging them from the rafters and adding extra wattage.
It struck me first in September, when the traditional post-Labor Day…
There is so much to love about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s speech yesterday. Grace in thanking her colleagues at the front end, and her verbal assailant at the end. A gritty accounting of personal abuse eloquently lifted to encircle disparagement of all women. Respect for the office she holds, her constituents, fellow members of Congress — and her own worth and dignity. Lines that reverberate and will most certainly be emblazoned on signs, memes and t-shirts soon: “Having a wife does not make a man decent.” “I am someone’s daughter too.”
And there is so much to abhor about Rep. Ted…
Hard as that is to believe, it’s truly not about exceptional, extraordinary you.
It has nothing to do with your hair, your nails, your thirst for a bar-poured beverage or a ‘poor-me’ road trip.
It’s about all of us. You, of course, and the rest of us — the many lesser planets who circle around wondrous, home-weary you.
The collective WE in the midst of this pandemic crisis.
And, if I may speak for the collective, we’d like to live, thank you very much. …
‘I can’t breathe.’
It is the refrain of the day. The rant of the night. The anthem of what may, if we sustain this plaintive note, become a movement.
Or not. Because we have been here before. In this very place — the place we visit and tell ourselves each time that this is the last time, the very last time, the never again time.
And it feels so familiar, this place of hate and race, like a back road you stumble upon in the darkest of hours.
To be here leaves us outraged and bereft. Yelling in the streets…
Writer who believes in the power of language to change minds, change moods and change the world.