Stories are important not as simple entertainment, but also as education and indoctrination. What we believe happened in the past and the stories we highlight shade our present and influence our future. The best stories not only have a moral, where good triumphs over evil, but engage us intellectually and also emotionally.
February 21, 2013|
Well, we've gone and done it again. Our state has turned up on a list that we'd rather not be on. As reported on CBS Morning News this week, researchers surveyed 10 million Twitter messages for words like "sad" or "happy" and ranked each state on scales of happiness or sadness. Sad to say, Georgia is deemed the fifth most unhappy state, behind Louisiana, Mississippi, Maryland and Delaware. The happiest states are, in order, Hawaii, Maine, Nevada, Utah and Vermont.
My fellow Americans: (Yea! Clap! Clap! Clap!) I come to you today to report on the state of your column - and it is your column because without you, I would be writing to myself which doesn't make any sense. (Yea! Clap! Clap! Clap!)
Around 20 years ago my bedroom TV committed murder/suicide. It was sitting on a gate leg table whose leaves were folded. The TV was one of those very large and heavy ones, and its weight must have made the table legs begin to separate. That slight tilt led to the TV jumping to its death in the middle of the night, and it took the VCR with it. The crash scared me and my husband to death.
It happened again today. Something was wrong with the gents' toilet and I wanted to wash my hands. What to do? What to do? Yep. I did it. I washed my paws in the room marked "Ladies." The door was wide open, no one was in there and the sink was calling my name: "David ... David ... come wash up in here." If you've ever heard a sink calling your name, you'd best just give in and not argue. It's bad enough to admit that sinks talk to you, but once you're seen arguing with porcelain fixtures ...
Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" has been a box-office hit and nominated for 12 Academy Awards, including best picture, best director and best actor for Daniel Day-Lewis, who portrayed our 16th president. I haven't seen the movie; therefore, this column is not about the movie but about a man deified by many. My colleague Thomas DiLorenzo, economics professor at Loyola University Maryland, exposed some of the Lincoln myth in his 2006 book, "Lincoln Unmasked." Now comes Joseph Fallon, cultural intelligence analyst and former U.S. Army Intelligence Center instructor, with his new e-book, "Lincoln Uncensored." Fallon's book examines 10 ...
As someone who exchanges ideas and discusses opinions through social media, writing a printed newspaper column feels a bit odd. I'm used to the back-and-forth interaction I experience online or in person. Dialogue is a vital exercise where I learn from different perspectives. Forced to explain myself, it sharpens, clarifies and sometimes causes me to challenge my own thinking.
The House again saw only a handful of bills during our third week, but that situation won't last long, since the committees have begun to pump out a steady stream of new legislation. Our main work was getting out the "little budget," as the bill to adjust the current, fiscal year 2013 budget is called. This bill makes adjustments to reflect the actual rate at which revenue is coming in, and is also used to alter priorities on some programs. Revenue is off very slightly from projections (by less than 1 percent), so that part of the adjustment was ...
Native Americans of the Pacific Northwest coast of the United States and Canada had a long tradition known as potlatch. Hosts would invite other tribal members and family to a grand celebration that marked milestones such as births and marriages. Typical activities included singing, dancing and eating, not unlike festive occasions we celebrate in our own lives.
Tomorrow is Valentine's Day. I will get some cards from my children and grandchildren. And I will give them cards, but that's about it. I don't expect fancy flowers and candy from my husband and he doesn't expect presents from me. That doesn't mean we aren't happy with each other; we are. It just means we are happy without the presents.
A senior Defense Department official said the ban on women in combat should be lifted because the military's goal is "to provide a level, gender-neutral playing field." I'd like to think the goal of the military should be to have the toughest, meanest fighting force possible. But let's look at "gender-neutral playing field."
Last week was bad - or so it seemed then. Work days were jam-packed with stressful moments, evenings were too short, nights were sleepless, and I could never catch my balance or my breath. Even finding time to write a column was a chore.
She's single and lives in a small town where, she said, "Everybody knows everybody." She won't do the bar scene, and there aren't many other options for meeting single men where she lives. What she'd like is a serious long-term relationship and she doesn't rule out marriage. So what's a woman to do?
It seems the Republican Party news is getting worse. This past fall, we suffered the defeat of our nominee for president. Based on the economic conditions, Republicans should have won. Many Republican pundits tagged Mitt Romney as the winner days before the election, talked about a possible landslide and were flabbergasted when he lost.
February 07, 2013|