A Grab Bag of News and Views

There is a Lot Going On. Let’s Poke Around a Bit

A Time of Transitions

We are always in a state of transition, but that seems especially true now. A new administration is settled in, the Middle East is heating up yet again. We have come from the worst pandemic record in the world to one of the best. Exiting and possible game changers are popping up in technology. And more. So, here we go.

The Biden Administration Settles In

This is about as good a start-up phrase I have ever seen. The team Biden selected is stellar and they hit the ground running.

Adaptation, Survival, and Happy Endings

Family Restaurant -1, Pandemic – 0

Setting the Scene

As mentioned earlier in this space, we took a bit of a regional trip a couple of weeks ago. At our first overnight stop, we went restaurant hunting online. This was not a town known for fine dining, but we found an Italian place that had lots of good comments and hey, good Italian is pretty simple cuisine, so we decided to give them a try.

We made an online reservation, got both an online and text confirmation and we were ready to go. A day or so prior,

We Found America – At Least Some of It

 A Limited Peek – With More Good News Than Bad


On the Road – At Last

 I noted a few days ago that we were about to launch on our first road trip since the pandemic broke out. As noted, we were careful all along the way, as this fearsome thing is not yet defeated. We were careful where we went, ate, and lodged.

By the end, we had travelled through four states, visiting about half a dozen urban areas and some seriously rural areas. We logged about 1500 miles, travelling in the South East and the Deep South.

Gone to Look for America

We are Gingerly Stepping Out to See America

A First Post Isolation Trip

After a year of staying close to home, my spouse and I are about to launch on a trip of a few days. The pandemic is not over – caution remains the keynote. This is a driving trip – seems reckless to us at this point to be in airports if not absolutely necessary. The places we are lodging all have  solid COVID protocols in place. We are dining only in places that take precautions seriously. So, all in all, seems a reasonable risk at this point.

A Mars – Venus View on Polishing

Differences in How Men and Women Choose to Shine


Polishing is Not Just for Appearance

The whole idea of “polishing” oneself is an interesting concept. It is, of course, about more than appearance. There is a phycological and social aspect to this as well. More on that a bit later, but for now, just keep in mind that people go to varying levels of effort to polish their appearance for a lot of reasons, most of them perfectly fine.

Much of the rest of this posting will address men and women as separate groups.

Education in America – Part I: Public Schools, Private/Charter Schools/Home Schooling

A Two-Part Review of Lower and Higher Education in America


Education’s Unique Role in American History

Over the long term, there might be some things more important for the future of this country than education, but we would be hard pressed to make the case for what is more important. America was founded as a country of opportunity and freedom. Where we have failed to meet those goals, it is often because we have failed to provide decent education. Where we have seen inspiring examples of people rising to their full potential, education has usually been a defining factor for success.

Sleep! A Good Thing or a Bad Thing?

Yes, It Is!

What is Sleep, Exactly?

Well, as near as I understand the science, we really don’t know, exactly. Sleep, that state of being that consumes about one-third of our lives, is a bit of a mystery. We know it provides a physical and mental recharge of sorts, but exactly how that works is still not clear.

There are people who do not sleep at all and they seem no worse for that fact. There are not many of them, but enough that science can confirm there does exist a biological construct that does not need sleep.

Welcome to Table Topics

A Quick Look at a Mix of Subjects – Have Fun!


Table Topics?

What the heck is Table Topics? Glad you asked. Many years ago, I stumbled into a Toastmasters Club. What a lucky day that was! I returned for many an enjoyable meeting – and in so doing, picked up a theme for today’s blog.

For those unfamiliar with them, Toastmasters Clubs exist all over the world, bringing together 3 groups of people: those who enjoy public speaking, those who wish to improve their public speaking abilities,

How About Some Really Good Reading?

I Have Been Reading Some Great Stuff. Allow Me to Share.


The State of Writing in America

I am pleased to report that, at least from my perspective, there is some really fine writing going on in this country. I have a short list of recent work that I have been thoroughly enjoying.

Note I said enjoying, present tense. I find that I tend to slow up when I find exemplary writing. I like to kind of roll around in the luxury of stories well told or facts well analyzed.

Random – REALLY Random Thoughts

Some Loose Items in My Head to Close Out the Week


Focus? Nah, Not Today

I attempt most of the time to keep this blog focused on a given topic. But if your brain is like mine, loose change rattles around up there between your ears. Occasionally, enough of it builds up that it needs to be used and removed. Today is such a day.

If there is a connecting thread with what follows, it is not obvious to me. Just wanted to share a few items; real roll of the dice stuff.