Archive for the ‘What’s Happening Now’ Category

So where have I been for the last year and a half? Why have I not been writing regularly, though I whine about it to nearly every friend I have? I’ve been asking myself those questions for quite a while, and some of the answers I’ve come up

with aren’t too comfortable.

Yes, I miss journalism, and asking questions all day, and telling other people’s stories. But I also miss the instant cred and name recognition that came with having a

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regular newspaper column.

I’ve been worried that if I admitted I was still a journalist — or still wanted to be — it would somehow be a step off the hard-won path to my cialis online without prescription newer vocation, as someone who cialis pills is painstakingly learning how to be a fundraiser, school communicator and manager in a culture I’ve never experienced before.

But almost every day I come up with a column idea, or get mad about something, or see a story — not all of them are at St. Mary’s, though some are — and think: I should be writing about that.

So here goes. Please read, comment and help me find my voice again. I hope it never really went away.

No Comments | Category: What's Happening Now

Holy crap, ya’ll. This weekend I went to the grocery store and a gallon of milk was ALMOST FOUR DOLLARS!! I’m shocked and appalled by how high the cost of food is climbing, and then I find out that the price on the sticker isn’t even the end of the problem.

The Consumerist blog talks about the “grocery store shrink ray” – that evil force that is shrinking the SIZE of the products we buy, while the COST remains the same! Excited that your box of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes didn’t go up in price? Yeah, don’t be – it’s now 2.4 ounces smaller. That 20-lb bag of Purina dog food? It’s been “upgraded” to 18 pounds. Read the rest of this entry »

4 Comments | Category: What's Happening Now

If you watch the news, then you know that the following is imminent:

  • Eating tomatoes will kill you.
  • Global warming will kill us all.
  • If Iran doesn’t do it first.
  • If you live in the Midwest, you’re going to be washed away.
  • If you live in California, you’re going to be burnt up in wildfires.
  • If you live in New England, your heating bill this winter will send you into bankruptcy.
  • You’re going to lose your job.
  • You’re going to lose your house.
  • You’re going to lose your health insurance.
  • You’re not going to be able to afford food.
  • You’ll have to eat poisoned tomatoes.
  • The terrorists can’t be stopped.
  • Obama is too inexperienced to run the country.
  • And he can’t save us from the terrorists.
  • McCain is too old to run the country.
  • And he can’t stop the war.
  • Paul Newman has cancer.
  • The athletes are on steroids.
  • Memphis is one giant crime-infested slum.
  • Led by corrupt city and county officials.
  • With failing schools.
  • And a losing NBA team.

Did that cover everything? No? There’s more? Of course. There’s always more. Because the news makes a business of scaring us to death. The more frightened we are, the more we’ll tune in. So we’ll know what we need to be frightened about. Up go the ratings, up go our insecurities.

But I don’t need the news to tell me what to be afraid of. I have plenty of my own worries.

  • I worry about my kid riding with teenage drivers.
  • I worry about drugs, and smoking, and drinking, and unprotected sex.
  • I worry about crazy drunk drivers hitting us on the streets of Memphis where no one really knows how to drive all that well sober.
  • I worry about fraternity hazing, and my son’s only a sophomore in high school (I like to plan ahead).
  • I worry about my aging in-laws.
  • I worry if our retirement account is growing fast enough.
  • I worry that I waited too late in life to start exercising.

What worries you?

2 Comments | Category: What's Happening Now

Memphis Twitter GroupThis is a photo of a group of people that I met on the Internet.

Now there’s a sentence I wouldn’t have typed five years ago.

There was a time that meeting someone from the Internet insinuated, at best, a desperate personal ad and at worst, a possible interaction with a serial killer. I still firmly contend that it is ABSOLUTELY NOT SAFE FOR MINORS and if you are a teenager then listen to me and take me very very seriously: YOU BETTER NOT EVEN BE TALKING TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET THAT YOU DON’T KNOW. But for the rest of us, for consenting adults, especially those of us that spend a helluva lot of time communicating over the Internet, it’s really not so weird. Read the rest of this entry »

6 Comments | Category: What's Happening Now

South PacificThere’s been quite a bit of media coverage of the South Pacific Broadway revival. And rightly so. This is the first revival in 60 years of a show that was phenomenally successful in its time, running for five years and winning a Pulitzer and eight Tonys. The original cast album was also a big hit, with all those great songs: Bali Hai, Some Enchanted Evening, Nothin’ Like a Dame, Wonderful Guy, Younger than Springtime, Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair…  

I never knew that the play is based on two short stories by James A. Michener. (I didn’t know he wrote anything less than 900 pages long.) I also didn’t realize that South Pacific boldly questioned core American values about race and class. In 1949, no explanation was necessary for Nellie Forbush’s shock at discovering the man she loves is the father of biracial children. The audience totally got why that kind of news would be grounds to call off an engagement. In the revival, they’ve had to “over-explain” it. I suppose that’s a good thing.

Early audiences didn’t care for the song You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught, and recommended it be taken out of the show. Apparently, audiences were familiar with  racial prejudices, they just didn’t like being reminded of them. Michener, Rogers and Hammerstein all agreed that to remove the song would remove the guts of the show.

Bartlett Sher, the director of the revival, says that part of what makes South Pacific  a classic is that “it can return to us from our past to give us lessons about our future. And it can give us a sense of both who we were and who we can become.”

You’ve got to be taught
To hate and fear,
You’ve got to be taught
From year to year,
It’s got to

be drummed
In your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade,
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late,
Before you are six or seven or eight,
To hate all the people your relatives hate,
You’ve got to be carefully taught!

1 Comment | Category: What's Happening Now

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