Scarlet Letter Virus

Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Hester Prynne is the central character in the novel The Scarlet Letter. For those of you less-familiar with this story, Prynne is accused of committing the sin of adultery and required to wear a scarlet letter “A” on her outer clothing as a mark of shame. Dr. Seuss employed a similar labelling scheme in…

N95 Masks Aren’t Likely Enough

Those N95 masks we all hear about, the ones that were hoarded and often resold for multiples of their previous price, likely aren’t enough to stop COVID19 from finding your nasal and bronchial passages. This also means that regular medical masks and definitely ones made from simple cloth won’t stop invasion either. Just this morning,…

The Devouring Steel Box

“The Surabaya was a large steel box taking away his memories, devouring them” says Nobel Prize-Winning Author JMG LeClezio in his novel Onitsha. Boxes really are just simple containers. They hold things, separate them, sort them. A box has sides to it. Sometimes the sides are shapable, malleable — cardboard or paper-like material that can be pushed…

And The Sand Ran Out

Spinning, spinning, spinning, twirling, twirling, speeding across the waves, the foam swallowing in a gulp at the beach. Chomp, chomp go the waves and the bubbles hiss as they fry against the sand. Regardless of temperature, the water has been shoved and forced powerfully to the shore and the sand must bear the weight and…

It’s Madness I Say, Absolute Madness

On a normal day in a normal way, madness would define itself as something so outside of experience that we can’t register it as part of our normality. An outlier. Something that happens to someone else. Something beyond comprehension and needing immediate attention. Something dangerous, crazy, impossible to interpret. Yet here we all are, sitting…

This Weekend’s Top Ten List

I have compiled here, to the best of my ability at this time, a list you must follow this weekend as you occupy your dwelling: 1.) Get a good night’s sleep. 2.) Eat well. 3.) Stay away from other people, especially those who are ill. 4.) Watch boring TV. 5.) Read — Oh, got you…

The Day The Church Burned

At the corner of Stockton and Wessel stands the greatest monument to white people in the city of Angelo. The tall white spire of the steeple extends high into the blue sky. People who visit say that spire reaches into the heavens and allows God a direct ladder to the sanctuary. In the sanctuary, sculpted…

Staring Into The Labyrinth

What’s it like to look out into the world and see nothing? To see nothing but confusion? To see a maze of possibilities all intertwined and crawling like ants, one over the other, each blocking the other’s view? Where hope is a four-letter word that is impossible to reach? Where it is imperative that impulse…

How Much Is Too Much Cost In A Pandemic?

In my daily life wanderings, I read frequently. Sometimes I cross a sentence or series of sentences that really catch me and make me think. My mind likes to build those bridges between past texts and current applications. Yesterday, I was reading Richard Dawkin’s book Science In The Soul. In the collection, the article titled “The…

Breaking Denial’s Circuit

Oh Wall Street, the darling of our wallets and pursues. The train to somewhere better that we envision yet can’t quite see. The world of the mostly intangible with a little tangible sprinkled in. Today’s hit to Wall Street was overwhelming. To see the circuit breaker tripped within the first minute of trading tells us…

If They Can’t Read, They Can’t Write

About eight years ago, all of us witnessed the beginning of a trend toward e-reading. The idea was if we put books and material on screens rather than paper, the younger generation would literally read constantly. At least that’s what people thought would happen. Instead, we never saw that race to literature and reading among…

Hunkering In The Bunker

I wish. I wish we could all congregate in Times Square and cheer as the crystal ball slides down toward Earth. I wish we could see the sparkling lights, go to a show on Broadway, have a meal unlike any other with friends. I wish we could all be together. But we are not. We…

Lost Patterns on Planet Earth

Just Thursday, I was alerted that my school would be closing for the next four weeks. Two of those weeks are regular school weeks that we’ll conduct e-learning and two weeks are the already-scheduled spring break. Looking into the distance, that’s four straight weeks of being closed in with my immediate family and operating day…

U.S. Dances In Societal Boxing

Is it the foxtrot or the tango? A waltz? A flapper dance? None really fit, but the dancing is daily and in full-force. Living in the United States is a whirlwind blur of movement. Everyone moves rapidly and all at once. Everyone stays confined to their circle. There is no crossing over. None is acceptable.…

Just Say No To Discrimination

Here is a letter I sent today to our Hamilton Southeastern School Board Members in reference to their recent 4-3 vote to not include specified wording in Board policies recognizing often marginalized groups. Final vote by the board will be taken at the May 8 board meeting: Dear HSE Board — I am writing in…