That glimmer of light? It’s fading fast.

I was driving my sons to school this morning when the youngest (soon to be age 5) asked me: “Daddy, is it a lunar eclipse?” No, son. It’s not a lunar eclipse. It’s smoke. Something fast approaching a cool million acres have burned in these past few weeks, and we have at least a monthContinue reading “That glimmer of light? It’s fading fast.”

Thoughts on the Tyranny of Merit

Let’s tell ourselves a fairy tale, shall we? Once upon a time there was a young man who longed to get into Yale. He didn’t — he got into Stanford instead — but it didn’t exactly poison his soul. Or if it did, the poison merely melded with all the other temptations and inducements, tragediesContinue reading “Thoughts on the Tyranny of Merit”

Oh how I wish I were brave enough for street theatre

I was recently directed to undertake training in a subject that has some topical relevance to what I shall call “the present situation.” The precise subject matter of the training doesn’t bear much scrutiny — it is mostly commonsense stuff, and is clearly meant as CYA for those further up the chain — but thereContinue reading “Oh how I wish I were brave enough for street theatre”

On uncomfortable questions on the playground

So I was watching my kids at the playground, as one does. I and the strikingly handsome dyke — LOVE her plaid bolero jacket, COVET her glasses, find it FUCKING HILARIOUS that she is categorically interchangeable with any one of various members of my half-brother’s extended family, because this is California, after all, and atContinue reading “On uncomfortable questions on the playground”

There’s a glimmer of light

Near the end of Half a Yellow Sun, the heroine crosses over enemy lines to procure food and medicine for her family, their bellies distended with kwashiorker. They are a privileged family; part of the tragedy of the story is her own disbelief that these children could be deformed by what is, classically, a diseaseContinue reading “There’s a glimmer of light”

What is Zoom, really, but a Houellebecquian nightmare?

So a thought occurred to me, during a recent webcast call with some colleagues from work. The platform doesn’t matter; we’ll call it Zoom for the moment, though for the record that is actually the one platform I am not allowed to use at work. What happened was this: I was the only one onContinue reading “What is Zoom, really, but a Houellebecquian nightmare?”

So. The president just went into quarantine.

What a pretty pass we have come to, when I cannot summon up from the depths of my ostensibly Christian soul even a modicum of sympathy for a man who faces a 5-8 times higher rate ratio of hospitalization than someone in their 20s if he actually contracts this disease. What a failure on myContinue reading “So. The president just went into quarantine.”