• Archive


  • Where were you when

    My alarm woke me to the news, which took a few moments to process as I mentally floated up from the land of R.E.M’s. Although the horror was occurring on the other side of the country (I lived in Northern California), the profound humanity of...
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  • iPinion Syndicate writers and belly talk

    Did you know that iPinion Syndicate will soon be releasing an ebook? You have probably heard in the news, blogs, Twitter, etc. about comedian Nicole Arbour’s “Dear Fat People” video blaming people for being overweight, and claiming that fat shame does not exist. (Yes, I...
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  • The times are not a’ changing

    Following the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Martin Luther King, Jr. asked white people to help register black voters in the South. Sherie Holbrook, a blonde 18-year-old freshman at University of California, Berkeley, answered the call. “I had never felt smothered by...
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  • Frankly, my dear

    I didn’t grow up in the South. My childhood was spent in a middle class suburb in Northern California. I didn’t meet any African Americans until high school, where there were exactly three African American students, one of whom was Barbara. Her locker was next...
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  • Universal heartbeat

    “Drums keep pounding rhythms to the brain …”  —  Sonny Bono The popularity of mainstream drummers over recent decades reflects our ancient connection to the instrument’s beat:  Chick Webb, Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich, DJ Fontana, Ginger Baker, Phil Collins, Mick Fleetwood, Dave Grohl, Lars Ulrich,...
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  • Goliath and the hemp industry

    Pop quiz! In the photographs below, one of the plants contributes to alcoholism, but another has healing properties. Can you identify them?   Answer: Photo on the top is an agave (tequila), the middle one is aloe, and the bottom one is a century plant....
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  • Eureka! California wine

    A cousin gifted me six bottles of homemade wine created by one of her Burning Man friends. There were a few varieties, including Cabernet, which I brought to my brother’s home for a family dinner. I really enjoyed it. I poured a little for my...
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  • Unusual camera angle

    “Why does she want to go to the Amazon? She can’t see!” my grandfather spurted out, looking a bit confused. We had just left the hospital, where I had taken him to visit Meg — a very dear, old friend who had been diagnosed with...
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  • Convicting domestic abuse crimes

    I was assisting an 88-year-old grandmother write her memoirs, when she quietly stated that her first husband was abusive, but she didn’t tell anyone because “abuse didn’t happen much back then.” I took her hand, so she would look at me, and I replied, “Yes,...
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