When Twitter Users Don’t Have the Answers — But Some Think They Do

Twitter wasn’t yet in existence when Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold committed a mass shooting at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999.  I recall a confusing media reaction to the Columbine tragedy which may have the same root as some posts we’re seeing on Twitter now, though. There were conflicting reports on whether Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold were bullied by classmates prior to their rampage.  Actually, the reports flip-flopped like a weather forecast.  To this day, if we look hard enough we’ll find only speculation, and very few people even want to discuss the possibility that two teenagers … Continue reading When Twitter Users Don’t Have the Answers — But Some Think They Do

Room by Emma Donoghue (Review)

Room By Emma Donoghue Mass Market Paperback ISBN: 978-0316268356 © 2010 $7.99 USD Also Available in Trade Paper and E-Book Editions Some highly educated people claim that literature isn’t published anymore.  My father used to say that. Room, the 2010 novel by Emma Donoghue, is one of the exceptions to that rule. You might recall a California kidnap victim named Jaycee Lee Dugard, who was missing for eighteen years before being freed in 2009.  She had two children by then, both fathered by her kidnapper. There is no indication that Room is based on that crime.  The novel must have taken more than … Continue reading Room by Emma Donoghue (Review)

R.I.P. Philip Roth

I haven’t read enough of Philip Roth’s works to speak with authority.  However, The Humbling, published in 2009, is one of the finest novels I’ve ever read. The Humbling is only about 160 pages, so it won’t take a lot of your time.  It should stay with you, though. Here’s a review: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/bookreviews/6407877/The-Humbling-by-Philip-Roth-review.html Continue reading R.I.P. Philip Roth

Stop Cornering Aaron Schlossberg

Aaron Schlossberg, the New York City lawyer who has been engaging in public rants against immigrants, is an asshole.  Most of us can agree on that. Mr. Schlossberg is also an unhinged asshole. When you encounter someone who is unhinged, do you really believe the answer is to get confrontational? If you see this guy in a public place, walk away.  Don’t make a production of walking away, either.  The only thing to pursue is a safe distance. I do that all the time, when I don’t think I can offer help to anyone.  Occasionally, I’ll stick around to offer … Continue reading Stop Cornering Aaron Schlossberg

Yes, I’m Part English. And Irish. And Welsh. And I Haven’t Traveled.

Please see the link at the end of this post.  It goes to a Mental Floss UK article by James Hunt, explaining something most Americans find confusing. Some of us are sophisticated with our ancestry, and some of us are not.  I blame my lack of sophistication on the fact that I’ve never so much as applied for a passport. Still, I’m learning the dialect used by people in the country where most of my father’s family came from:  England.  The internet helps, when I find a website that’s trusted to post accurate information.  The out-of-print reference book British English A … Continue reading Yes, I’m Part English. And Irish. And Welsh. And I Haven’t Traveled.

Follow-Up to Yesterday’s Aaron Schlossberg Post

Yes, evidently that was attorney Aaron Schlossberg who went into a Fresh Kitchen restaurant on Madison Ave. in NYC and shouted at employees that they shouldn’t be speaking Spanish. Mr. Schlossberg was identified very soon after the videotaped incident, which raised questions about whether the wrong person had been named.  Last time I looked, the WNYC-owned Gothamist.com was refusing to post his name in their article on the topic because his identity hadn’t been confirmed to their satisfaction. The Gothamist writer was right to hold back.  We must use caution with details that haven’t been verified — especially when someone’s reputation is at risk.  … Continue reading Follow-Up to Yesterday’s Aaron Schlossberg Post

A Hateful Rant and Too-Quick Reactions

I won’t include a link to any news stories about this.  At the moment, it’s best to address the unfortunate incident in general terms only. Yesterday, someone went into a restaurant in New York City and shouted racist remarks.  Video of his tantrum was recorded and posted on at least one news site. The site I looked at emphasized that the identity of the man had not been confirmed, but some other sites have posted the name of a professional with an office in Manhattan.  Now, an online petition is being circulated to have his professional license revoked. The restaurant … Continue reading A Hateful Rant and Too-Quick Reactions

The Infinite Reading List

Almost anyone who appreciates the printed word has one.  It’s the terrifying, insurmountable To Be Read List. My list was at its peak when a bedbug infestation hit the fan in 2009.  I had to discard most of the unread books, and the rest were wrapped for eighteen months before they could rejoin the community.  Even after a year and a half of staring at books in sealed plastic bags and gently moving them to a new apartment, I left many on the proverbial back burner. Eventually, the books were unwrapped, and allowed to resume breathing.  However, most were denied … Continue reading The Infinite Reading List