A feel-good holiday story with just a hint of cynicism
Emmett couldn’t make out the words carried by the voices in the hallway outside his apartment, but he could tell their instructive intent by their tone. He could almost always tell the mood and identity by the tone, and that was the way he liked it. He had no interest in the personal details of his neighbors lives, but he preferred to have a general outlook on each of the people living around him. Long-divorced and retired, social observation had become his primary form of human interaction.
Putting a hand…
The New Year strains against the crossed pikes of Yule and December, struggling to gain access to the ancient plaza beyond. “Let her in,” booms a thunderous voice from inside the plaza. Stoic, the sentries slide their weapons apart, permitting her entrance. Her face retaining it’s countenance of determination, she storms swiftly inside.
“What have you done?” she cries before even reaching the center of the courtyard. Prosperity, once over-tended, now lies withered, spilling out of its beds in unruly gnarls. Humanity and ethics lay stunted and shrunken, choked out by prosperity’s overzealous spread and spoiled by toxic self-interest. …
A Christmas poem between two worlds
Through streetlamp pools,
and snowflake swarms,
glide numb and frigid feet.
Green glow of yule,
red blossom bows,
warm carols ringing sweet.
Just off the main,
down alleys dark,
the burg’s forgotten souls
lie huddled in
their wraps too thin,
adrift in tides of cold.
No shopping rush,
no trimming scene,
no pageant breaks the drone.
But steady howl
and longest night
creep closer to the bone.
Joy to the World
belongs to those
tucked inside chapel doors,
away from grime,
stiff matted hair,
and seeping, stinking sores.
Yet hope resides
in kettle plinks,
While the global community is preoccupied with its mortal battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, the world’s two most populous nations have been creeping toward what may become a large-scale armed conflict to determine future regional dominance in central and southeast Asia. The outcome of such a campaign could firmly seat China at the head of the highest international tier of power, yet almost no one outside of the region is talking about it.
The Chinese government under President Xi Jinping has already begun embarking on an extroverted campaign to increase China’s international influence, the likes of which are relatively unprecendent…
Let’s face it: the folks chanting “Fill that seat!” behind Trump at his rallies and across the nation are going to vote for him even if he doesn’t announce his Supreme Court nominee before the election. They want Trump to be re-elected, and they want that seat. Neither of those things is going to change between now and the election.
This blatant disregard for what should be a tremendous re-election advantage is dripping with hubris and is potentially catastrophically short-sighted for those who wish to see Trump remain in power.
Sure, they might be slightly disappointed if he doesn’t offer…
For the first time in the 19 years, I feel more frustrated than encouraged by the collective American remembrance of the tragedy of September 11th, 2001. The hollow lip service we pay to honoring our fellow Americans and to grieving their loss is hitting me especially hard this year, as I wrestle with the disingenuous affectation of it.
The American response to COVID-19 cruelly highlights the fact that many of us are motivated by and enraged by the needless loss of American life only as long as we are not ourselves called to sacrifice in any real way, no matter…
I am heartbroken.
I’m having a difficult time accepting what we are, and it’s becoming harder and harder to deny. That humans are always flawed and often ugly is not a realization that I’ve come to for the first time recently, but my hopeful faith that there’s enough goodness buried inside us to at least balance us out is waning.
As a young man, after recovering from the harsh slap of reality that initially steals the doomed innocence of all aging children, I comforted myself with the idea that some level of goodness must still be inherent — that there…
Life-Destroying Predation Blinds Us to Another True Tragedy
CW/TW: Child Abuse/Pedophelia/Incest
It is one of the last bastions for widely accepted hatred in modern western society. Few topics rouse the intensity of anger, aggression, and judgement that commonly accompanies the idea of adult sexual interest in children.
Because it comes from a justified desire to protect innocent children and to avenge those who have been so profoundly and permanently devastated by sexual abuse, a hostility toward pedophiles is difficult to condemn or decry. Our hostility presumably originates from a noble and understandable place. …
Far too many of us are confusing unnecessarily manufacturing artificial outrage with being “woke”.
It was bound to happen sooner or later. There’s always someone who wants to voice their displeasure without fully understanding what there is (or is not) to be upset about, and the recent negative response to the Peloton commercial “The Gift That Gives Back” is the latest shining example.
We do need to be on the lookout for inequality, sexism, and toxic behavior. That’s different, though, than injecting those things into situations where they are not naturally present just so we can attack them.
Earlier this week, police in Austintown, Ohio, noticed a pickup truck without taillights cruising through the city’s streets in the dark. The driver was an 89-year old man, gaunt of frame, with a horseshoe of wispy white hair encircling his tender, liver-spotted scalp, and a pair of thick bifocals that framed nearly half his face.
The dreaded Silver Burglar was nabbed. Despite shuffling feebly into his arraignment in a neck brace and providing police with the address of a rundown house sporting building permit in the window in the rustbelt steel industry ghost town of Youngstown as his place of…
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