Category: Society at Large

A Mid-West Triangle 3: Designed but not Intelligent

Posted October 22nd, 2014
A Mid-West Triangle 3: Designed but not Intelligent

I was shocked when we pulled up to the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky. The place was mobbed. We had to search for a parking place. Somewhere I had read that they had upped the entertainment value by installing a zip-line; apparently attendance was not reaching goals. This didn’t look like an organization with attendance…

Sea Cloud 5: The Islands Cruised

Posted January 30th, 2014
Sea Cloud 5: The Islands Cruised

This cruise on the Sea Cloud–History and Gardens of the Caribbean–coordinated by Academic Arrangements Abroad, will be almost certainly a once in a lifetime thing. First of all, there’s the cost. We are never likely to have that kind of disposable income; had the boat been the Sea Cloud II or some other vessel rather…

The First Day of Christmas

Posted December 14th, 2013
The First Day of Christmas

Actually the First Day of Christmas should have been last week when we visited the Lion’s Club at their encampment at the local Walmart and selected a tree. My Dear One went off to do errands, leaving me with the daunting responsibility of finding the best trees so that we could select the perfect one…

What I Don’t Realize That My Students Don’t Know

Posted May 28th, 2013
What I Don’t Realize That My Students Don’t Know

Since the class of 2002, Beloit College has published an annual “Mindset List,” a statement of cultural milestones and realities that current college freshman may or may not know or share. Needless to say, it is a list that makes my Baby-Boomer’s heart clank like a junkyard jalopy. Here are a few items that caught…

Of Time and Family 1: Scranton, Pennsylvania

Posted August 28th, 2012
Of Time and Family 1: Scranton, Pennsylvania

The headline of The Scranton Times on December 9, 1914 read THIRTEEN MINERS KILLED, Dropped Dynamite Blows Bottom Out of Cage. Actually there was no dynamite. The elevator that carried miners up and down the Tripp Shaft at the Diamond Mine had a rotten floor. Regulations, moreover, allowed only ten passengers and there were thirteen…

Charm City’s War

Posted June 16th, 2012
Charm City’s War

  Since bicentennials are a once-in-a-lifetime experience, my Dear One and I found it impossible to ignore the “Star-Spangled Sailabration” of the War of 1812. That war is one of those conflicts largely ignored in American education. We’re very big on the War for Independence but leapfrog the War of 1812 to get to the…

The New York Times and the Ethics of Eating Meat

Posted April 30th, 2012
The New York Times and the Ethics of Eating Meat

The New York Times sponsored a contest: “Defending your Dinner: An Open Contest for Hungry Ethicists.” I’m a sucker for contests, raffles and such, even though I never win. This effort met with predictable results. Because I was curious about when the “winners” might have their essays printed, I poked around on the Internet.  Much…

Procreation, Politics and Power or What I Learned in High School that I Need to Know in this Election Year

Posted March 25th, 2012
Procreation, Politics and Power or What I Learned in High School that I Need to Know in this Election Year

A few years back I found myself on camera with Regis Philbin on the quiz show “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.” A few days prior to that encounter, a factoid learned when I was sixteen drifted into my brain during a trivia-cramming-induced stupor. The information that floated back concerned the 19th century Englishman Thomas…

The Remains of the Deer

Posted March 5th, 2012
The Remains of the Deer

There is nothing that speaks to the collision of Suburbia and Nature like an encounter with the skeletal remains of deer inside the city limits. March came in like a lamb and the soft air lures us out to wander through patches of sunshine by creek and through woods and fields. Sometimes we find beautiful…

The “F” Word

Posted November 7th, 2010

Why has the “F” word become so indispensable to—dare I make the pun—daily intercourse? As a verb it exudes hostility. As an adverb it displaces countless positive and negative modifiers more explicit, poetic, and expressive. The “F” word seems to be in constant use, in music, film and television, in conversation, and on Facebook. I…