Cookbooks: sublimations of a gross biological function

From one point of view, eating is disgusting.  Think about the praying mantis eating the helpless salamander on the giant screen complete with amplified sounds of crunching.  Lest you think that humans are more elegant, consider tourists in Maine, cracking open lobsters and sucking juice out of those little tiny legs.  Yikes! We could continue…read more

God is found in a Near Fatal Accident

In college, I had “born again Christian” friends who had personal relationships with God.  They had chats with Jesus… not Jesus the concept… Jesus himself.  I wondered if I would ever get to talk to God in such a personal way.  I took Religion 101.  I studied ancient mystics who also knew God.  My professor…read more

The Essence of Mediation

Little-Boiled-Frog Goes to the Spa As you will recall, there was an internal struggle of who would get to be my inner animal.  We had Pomeranian, the anxious bug-eyed-dog who had served me so well for the last 40 years; Water Buffalo, the large uncomplaining semi-domesticated bovine with “issues” who had been nominated by Janice,…read more

The Heifer Project is Confused by my Donation of a Pomeranian

Heifer Project International 1 World AvenueLittle Rock, AR 72202 USA Tel.: (800) 422-0474 12/20/06 Mr. and Mrs. Mac Cantrell 622 East B Street Moscow, ID 83843 United States of America Dear Mr. and Mrs. Cantrell, We thank you very much for your past support and for this year’s generous donation.  The Northern Indian village which…read more

Books are Terry Cloth Monkey Mothers

In his poem on Children in The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran tells parents, “You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far. Let your bending…read more

On Being 45: Journal Entry by Ex-Wife on the Whole Year

Valentine’s Day has come and gone, but I still intend to write the annual holiday letter, since I love it that I can keep in touch with all of you this way. Nobody in the family died this year, for starters.  Yup, I know, Astro can’t possibly still be alive, can she?  Well, what do…read more

Richard’s Book Review of Loving What Is by Byron Katie

Why do we read books?  The best answer to this question comes from examining the broader question of why do we do anything.   In considering the myriad of choices that face us in this very minute of existence, we will choose what, we think, will make us the happiest.  Animals, even protozoa, follow this fundamental…read more

Richard Explains the Superiority of Junk Books over Good Books

Reading a “high quality” book, perhaps one favorably reviewed by the New York Times, can make you feel challenged, confused, sad, not up to snuff.  Maybe you will have to face the fact that you really don’t understand what the heck is going on.  I say why spend money and time to feel inadequate?  You…read more

The Mystical Experience of Contra-Dancing

Dancing American Style It was about time for Rachel and I to find another fun thing to do together.    We had already of raised a dog from puppy-hood to senior citizenship, bought a house and sold it at a loss, of bought another house and remodeled it, remodeled it again, and remodeled it again, had…read more

On Being 44: Journal Entry by Ex-Wife on the Whole Year

Well, the holidays have passed and the weather is changing (and changing and changing) in that  little-bit-of-everything Seattle springtime way.  The little flowers are coming up and being pelted by hail at the moment.  And something has been telling me for a while that it’s time to write my holiday letter.  You kind of want…read more