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December 7, 1941 – Pearl Harbor Day

December 7, 2018

When the USS Redwood arrived at the Navy Yard in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in early December of 1941, it was slated to be fitted out with some additional equipment—sound gear, radar, depth charges—military gear the ship builder in Ohio hadn’t been able to provide, and even some non-military gear—including a washing machine. From Portsmouth its…

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Conversation with a seven-year-old old

December 2, 2018

She asked to come along when I offered to drop off the dry cleaning for her mother. It’s a short drive to Patterson Cleaners, a little over a mile—six or seven minutes each way. Who would expect to cover topics ranging from scatological vocabulary to the origin of the species in less than fifteen minutes?…

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Mass Shootings: Are you mad enough to send an email…or make a phone call? – Part III

November 21, 2018

In State Houses across the country legislators are making it easier, not more difficult for people to arm themselves with ever-more deadly weaponry. Meanwhile, on the national level member of Congress, both in the Senate and the House of Representatives, their pockets lined with bribes in the form of campaign contributions from the National Rifle…

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Mass Shootings: How the Hell Did We Get into this Hellish Situation? Part II

November 21, 2018

I checked the Gun Violence Archive this morning. So far this year 12,996 people have been killed by gunfire in the United States. 25,080 have been injured (595 of these casualties have been children; 2,517 have been teenagers 12-17 years old). And there have been 316 mass shootings.* That’s up from 312 two days ago…

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Two Lists

November 13, 2018

The breath-holding suspense of Election Day (which still continues)  The horror of Borderline, latest of the interminable succession of mass shootings, (which never seem to stop) The strong emotions surrounding Veterans Day’s (which feel particularly upsetting this year) And the California fires so close to home (which, of course, still continue). Mrs. Penfire’s head is…

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It’s All About the View

October 8, 2018

Castel Sant’Angelo. It started out as a mausoleum for the Emperor Hadrian. A massive cylindrical drum sitting on an equally massive stone base and topped by a golden quadriga—sculpture of a chariot pulled by four horses running abreast. Visualize a giant stone birthday cake with horses on top! To connect his future burial place with…

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