In February, I wrote about a story I never wrote. This is another one of those.
This post first ran on August 29, 2013.My beloved neighbor Joanne was 87 years old when her son found her dead in the hallway of her old farmhouse on Monday. They’d gone to a funeral together that morning — a younger relative had died of pancreatic cancer — and after lunch he’d dropped her off at […]
A few months ago, in a dark club on the always-busy 6th Street in downtown Austin, there was a very odd party going on. To get in, you had to show a thin metal badge with a dancing woman etched into it. Projected onto the wall above the DJ playing house music there was a […]
For the better part of 30 years, my head was firmly stuck in English. But when I moved to Italy three years ago, I also started my first genuine effort at picking up a second language. My barely remembered high school Spanish prepared me for some things about Italian, like the gendered nouns and overwhelming […]
The other night I was in the midst of writing about the Ice Age when I strayed to the internet. Up came the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography that went this year to New York Times photographers Mauricio Lima, Sergey Ponomarev, Tyler Hicks and Daniel Etter for their coverage of the European refugee crises. Fresh from writing a […]
The hard thing about teaching nutrition to college students is that, as far as eating healthy is concerned, they’ve heard it all before. In fact, Michael Pollen’s phrase, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”– is about the best 3-second nutrition message around. I find myself wanting to repeat this phrase to my students and […]
Last year, I abandoned a story. It happens, journalists don’t write every story they think they might. But this one I still think about. It started innocuously enough. A paper caught my eye about looting and archaeology. The premise was somewhat counterintuitive: the author argued that in places where the economic situation was particularly dire, […]
Time is a jail that we’ve built for ourselves, I think as I look at the clock and realize this post is due by some daunting hour of the morning. How could this day have been contained by a big hand and little hand on the face of a clock? Sometimes, or some places, the clock […]