Monthly Archives: September 2014

Benjamin Carson, MD

k3693774I really hate that Dr. Carson, whose medical career was genuinely spectacular — he saved the doomed, developed revolutionary surgical techniques, worked tirelessly, and left a legacy of hope, possibility, and compassion — has this horribly unfortunate political world view, and that cynical righties are exploiting him and probably laughing behind his back.

I admire him enormously for all he did as a doctor, and have to talk myself through separating the brilliant scientist and surgeon from the political jackass. And I hate that so many of his views are entrenched in his religious convictions and therefore not subject to much discussion.

For years, I had a yellowed, curled-edge newspaper article about him among the things we all post on the fridge, as an object lesson for my kids. Taking it down was kind of a poignant moment — the children are grown now. But there is no detracting from the greatness of his medical career.



About Those Book Lists…

A few people have asked me to join the daisy chains of listing favorite books, and things I’m grateful for. Total silence on my part. It took me a while to sort of figure out not listing books.

I think it’s that I connect books and context in ways that are part of their significance for me. James Baldwin somehow suffuses my life at moments expected and unexpected, the essays above all, but Sonny’s Blues, and some of the novels at times. images-1

I developed food cravings while pregnant all those years ago, but I also found
myself devouring every word by Edith Wharton I could get my hands on.


Or being a student wandering rather aimlessly around Europe reading Penguin editions – Alberto Moravia, Amis pere, and not Penguin, but volumes of the Alexandria Quartet on trains, and on Ibiza when it was only mildly decadent.










At a black lit. conference at Yale years back, we passed around the single copy of Their Eyes Were Watching God that was available to us, and looked at each other with “wild surmise.” It’s like that.

As for gratitude: beyond all imagining.


Race Has NOTHING To Do With It…


Awful news is cops seem to be trying to outdo each other in taking out unarmed black men, women and children and getting away with it. (Almost wrote “getting off.” That too.)

Hopeful news is so many people are on video alert; half the country is walking around with their phones in their hands and start filming scuffles and police action almost as a reflex. Plus security cameras are everywhere.

Weird news is that cops seem oblivious to greater than 50-50 possibility that they will be caught on camera doing this shit. Not that grand juries will weigh it as they should. But SM is galvanizing public response.

And people lose sight of the fact that even if these uniformed shooters and beaters get off on criminal charges, they often end up costing their municipalities millions in civil judgments.

Gorgeous Cat Picture

Gorgeous 1646 Head Of A Cat by Wenceslaus Hollar available at Boston’s excellent Childs Gallery. Go ahead, cat lovers (and others) give yourself a treat.


Summer’s Ending…

watercardVisited this idyllic clam and lobster shack thanks to the amazing places Dan knows about. Probably the only restaurant with a James Beard award where the restrooms are two port-a-potties near the parking lot.
Gorgeous vistas. Have the steamers. The lobster roll was so-so — but I’m spoiled by Red’s.






Charlie at WatermansMat Watermans2