Skip to content

Monthly Archives: April 2022


HBO Max Who could have guessed that one of the most unforgettable Americans to come out of the 1960s would be Julia Child? And who could have guessed that we’d be as interested in her life as in her cooking? I’ve watched only the first episode so far of this new series, but clearly it’s […]

The world we’d like to live in

A Brief History of Equality. Thomas Piketty, Harvard University Press, April 19, 2022. 274 pages. Is much of the world better off now than it was, say, 200 years ago? Yes, undoubtedly, says Thomas Piketty. He does not use the words “the arc of justice,” but I would. The transcendentalist theologian Theodore Parker was quite […]

Why do the media try to scare liberals?

Presidents Macron and Biden in Cornwall, June 2021. White House photo. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Before the people of France voted on Sunday, the media were filled with stories suggesting that Marine Le Pen just might win. Bunk. Marine Le Pen was never going to win. The result was 58.5 to 41.5. In the United States, […]

Sir Walter Scott: a great writer, but oddly Frenchified

Once again, unable at present to find any newer fiction that seems worthwhile, I have turned to Sir Walter Scott — this time, Ivanhoe. Reading Sir Walter Scott can be hard work for contemporary readers. Even in the early 1800s when his novels were being published, Scott’s style would have been pretty florid, I think. […]

The Batman (2022)

If it weren’t for the occasional blockbuster, woods-dweller that I am, I’d know next to nothing about popular culture. The super-hero genre wasn’t really my thing even when I was eleven years old. But I did love comic books. Batman and Uncle Scrooge were two of my favorites. The new Batman movie will require two […]

Everything is turning green

The lettuce actually was planted by Ken last fall. It wintered over in a cold frame. Yesterday, during a cold rain, I picked it while it was at the peak of perfection. I washed it, chilled it, and ate it 40 minutes after it came in out of the rain. Who knew that lettuce could […]


Particularly now, with Russia attempting to crush and take over Ukraine, it is important to know the history of World War II. The film Anthropoid is based on events that occurred in Czechoslovakia in 1942 under German occupation. The Czechoslovak government-in-exile (in London) sent highly trained Czechoslovak soldiers into Czechoslovakia by parachute to assassinate Reinhard […]

If you were a deer, would you be scared?

It irks me that I have to uglify my day lily bank to try to keep the deer from eating the day lilies. This year, they started eating them very early, without waiting for the flower stalks and blooms. With luck and good rain, this bank will be a green jungle of day lilies by […]

Twitter, schmitter. And Musk, schmusk.

A breakdown of Twitter content. Source: Wikipedia. From its beginning, the whole idea of Twitter seemed ridiculous to me. How could 140 characters possibly convey anything useful or meaningful? Surely the contemporary attention span can handle at least 190 characters! And (glory be!) now we’re up to a breathtaking 280 characters, doubling the speed at […]


This is to be a post about a 30-year-old BBC Scotland series, “Strathblair.” But first let’s talk about a theory of stories. Orson Scott Card is the only writer I’m aware of who has a well developed theory of stories. (In mentioning Card, I should say that I respect him as a writer, though he […]