Tag Archives: Personal

Saint Abbie Hoffman

In this excerpt from Fates Worse Than Death, copyright 1991, Kurt Vonnegut talks about one of my personal heroes, Abbie Hoffman: I mentioned Abbie Hoffman in that piece about books as mantras for meditation. I realize that most people nowadays don’t know who he was or what he did. He was a clowning genius, having …

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Special Occasions

“Growing up, my mother taught me that lipstick should be reserved only for special occasions. Now, I wear it all the time. I am my own special occasion.”  ~Blythe Baird, from If My Body Could Speak I do the same thing. When I was growing up, my parents had a bottle of wine they were …

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Changes

Adolf Hitler wasn’t born evil, he became evil. He didn’t always want to be a dictator. When they left him alone, he wanted to be a painter. Then World War I happened. He was drafted and assigned the job of litter-bearer, and spent the next several years searching among anguished and mutilated bodies for the …

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One More Thing to Worry About

I was having a cup of coffee with my Dad at his apartment when the phone rang. He looked at the phone, then looked at me with a puzzled look on his face. The Caller ID showed the call originated from my house. A telemarketer had spoofed my number. It could have been done by …

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Well,

“Peace is a very complicated concept. When the lion gobbles up the lamb and wipes his lips, then there’s peace. Well, I ain’t for that peace at all.”  ~Abbie Hoffman The president called for unity last night.  When everybody marches in lockstep and does as he tells them, then there’s unity. Well, I ain’t for …

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Tears

“If you have to cry, do it in the shower where no one can hear you and no one can see you.”  That’s the advice that my mother gave me when I was a little boy. You should know, before passing judgement, that her own mother died when she was only three years old, and …

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“Why are all these idiots mad?”

“I don’t play colleges, but I hear a lot of people tell me, ‘Don’t go near colleges. They’re so PC.’” ~Jerry Seinfeld (source) There are a few things wrong with that statement. First, second-hand bigotry is the worst.  “I don’t know any of these people, but I hear they’re just awful,”  is not something a …

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An Aside

“Astronomers know what stars are, but astrologers know what stars are for.” I don’t really believe that, but it’s a fun thing to say just to judge people’s reactions.  I bet it’d get quite a rise out of Neil deGrasse Tyson.

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The walls have ears, the screen has eyes

I used to be on a lot more social media sites, several years ago, but gave most of them up after my Mom was diagnosed with cancer. It was then that Facebook started popping up ads for quack cancer cures. They told me I could treat my mother with laetrile. They promised a complete cure.  …

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P.O.’d

Yesterday I received a Christmas card from my sister– a card she had mailed two months ago. Mona recently sent a card to my Dad, who lives three miles away.  It took two weeks to get there. The post office used to be so good, and now they are almost useless.  We’ve had to start …

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The Lesser Of

I’m paraphrasing, but already the Democrats are saying things along the lines of, “No matter how deeply flawed our candidate is, you still have to vote for him because the alternative is even worse.” This feels like the prelude to another truly awful choice.

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It shouldn’t have mattered anyway.

After 9/11 happened, the company my father worked for sent out a memo saying they would no longer use a local motel.  They said it was owned by Arabs who refused to fly the American flag. My father stopped by this motel on the way to work the next day, and saw the American flag …

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