May 26, 2020

Our stimulus check arrived— or rather not a check, but a debit card on the U.S. Treasury.  Apparently it’s legit. I’m still working and my business hasn’t shut down, and Kathy is comfortably retired.  We’re not rich, but we’re doing well enough.  We don’t need the money and didn’t ask for it, and we’re self-isolating […]

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Idiot Box for the Isolated

May 16, 2020

Here in my isolated rural paradise I’ve been watching a lot more video than I usually do, and— for some damn reason— doing a lot less reading.  The least I can do is share my online encounters. Safe and The Stranger, both on Netflix.  Two of Harlan Coben’s thrillers (which I haven’t read) have been shifted from […]

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Mom’s Day

May 9, 2020

A hundred years ago there used to be a musical genre about how much people loved their mothers, M.O.T.H.E.R. being one of the big hits.  There are still songs about moms, but they’re not regulars on the Hit Parade the way they used to be. Here’s a song that’s only tangentially about mothers, but I […]

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Lockdown Spirits

May 8, 2020

Apparently the spirits are as tired of the lockdown as everyone else, because they’ve been getting restless.  We’ve been having an outbreak of strange spectral noises. For the last few weeks, I’ve heard mysterious knocking noises at night, between 11pm and midnight.  It doesn’t happen every night, but it happens enough to become a fairly […]

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May 5, 2020

Happy Cinco de Mayo, everybody!  Welcome to my virtual matanza! May 5 is the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla in 1862, in which an inferior Mexican force defeated a French expeditionary army.  In Mexico the day is celebrated only in Puebla and environs, but it’s widely celebrated among Mexican-Americans in the States. Some folks […]

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Ma Solitude

May 1, 2020

I woke up with this song in my head this morning, and I decided that I’ve come to the pensive part of social isolation. This is songwriter Georges Moustaki accompanied by Pink Martini, and it fits my mood exactly.

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Kata in the Carport

April 30, 2020

It’s over six weeks since we locked ourselves away.  It’s been easier than I expected.  I’m used to working alone, for one thing. I’m trying to start the day with kata in the carport.  Then I have lunch and spend a couple hours playing Horizon: Zero Dawn.  I’m no longer clear what day of the week […]

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April 25, 2020

Since I’m hanging out at home hiding from the virus, I have very little to do, so I thought I might as well try to fulfill one of my longtime ambitions, which is to become a chainsaw artist! There’s no place that teaches this stuff, you just have to fire up your chainsaw and go […]

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I Cannot Avoid the Topic of Publishing

April 22, 2020

So the other night I dreamed that I worked on the staff of an established magazine called Huguenots Today, which was threatened by the publication of a newer, glitzier magazine called Huguenots Now!  That exclamation point was like a weapon brandished in our direction. Ad revenue fell.  There were lots of meetings, and an air of desperation.  Nobody […]

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Down Home

April 18, 2020

I don’t want to cause too many cases of resentful food envy here, but I’m kinda proud of this one.  What we have here is barbecue beef brisket, potato salad, and collard greens. The brisket was cooked sous vide for 72 hours at 155 degrees F, then spent two hours in the oven to give […]

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