In photographs of last Saturday's women's marches in Washington, D.C., and around the United States, many pink hats are visible, most of them with ears, indicating solidarity with the Pussyhat Project that was so popular it caused shortages of pink yarn in some parts of the country. It's obvious that many thousands of pink pussyhats … Continue reading Is Your Pussyhat Keeping Someone Warm?
I was devastated by last Tuesday's election results. There are many reasons I object to Donald Trump (like his racist lies about crime) and many reasons I hoped for a Democratic majority in Congress, but what I'm writing about here is our environment. Even if you voted Republican, you may not want to live in … Continue reading How to Save the Earth from Donald Trump and the Republican Congressional Majority
I worked with crime data for 17 years, and occasionally someone would say, "Gosh, that must make you so worried about your safety!" No. It didn't. It had exactly the opposite effect. There are four patterns I saw, over and over again, that made me feel safer: Crime rates in Pittsburgh and in the United … Continue reading America is SAFER now than it used to be.
This month I read two books that were new to me and two I'd read before but didn't remember well. 36 Children by Herbert Kohl Mr. Kohl was a white, Jewish graduate of Harvard and Columbia who agreed to teach sixth grade in a public school in Harlem in 1962. The school was only 29 … Continue reading Some Old and Some New: September Book Reviews
On days like this, when the sky is so heavy with clouds that we never glimpse the sun, and the wind is cold and damp, and it seems like winter will never end . . . I think of Eminem. I guess I don't mean the rapper himself so much as the character he played … Continue reading The City of Slim Shadies
When I was born, my mother quit her paying job so she could be home with me. When my kids were born, I took 12 weeks off and then returned to my job. It's my father, not my mother, who has been my role model for balancing parenthood with employment.
The healing of our ozone layer is a great example of what Earthlings can do when we admit our mistakes and change course!
In the 1980’s scientists discovered the devastating effect we were having on our ozone layer. By using various chemicals in manufacturing, and particularly in aerosols, we were inadvertently chipping away at our precious shield from the worst of the sun’s damaging radiation. Wasting no time, these savvy scientists educated us as to the importance of the ozone layer and warned us that its existence was threatened if we did not act.
Put aside for a minute the hilarious image of an 80’s scientist; yes, they existed. It wasn’t all crimped hair and leg warmers, some people were off being intelligent and learning things! Thank God for these serious souls too, because without them we likely would have happily continued to spray away our entire protective coating by now.
Fortunately, we didn’t continue living in ignorance. We were alerted to our unwittingly destructive behaviour and could therefore make the necessary changes in order to save our skins (literally).
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This photograph, which was in Sunday's newspaper, is the image I'm keeping in my mind this Good Friday. That is a place on this very same planet where I am sitting comfortably in my office. That is a boy who is growing up in the very same time as my son Nicholas, who is visiting … Continue reading Elsewhere on Earth
I am putting this post in a variety of categories because it's kind of silly but I'm kind of serious, too. I would like to believe that in this very complicated world, my actions truly do make a difference, even in unexpected metaphysical ways. Purple is my favorite color. At this point in my life, … Continue reading The Power of Purple Is Real!!!
More than three years ago, I explained why I was boycotting Facebook. Yesterday, I joined Facebook. My intention was to join as The Earthling's Handbook, but Facebook immediately responded, "You have to join with your real name! I'm the only book allowed here!" so I joined with my own name but used The Earthling's Handbook … Continue reading Oh, all right. But they didn’t Book my Face!
It's a real holiday! It's today, January 21st. Keep an eye out for squirrels as you go about your day, and appreciate their resourcefulness, climbing ability, and cuteness. (Photos are from http://squirrelworld.lincatz.com , a site for squirrel appreciators.) I live in a solidly urban area of a major city, but even so, the neighborhood where … Continue reading Squirrel Appreciation Day
I'm an Episcopalian. In almost every service at our church, we receive Communion this way: The priest tears a morsel off of a round, flat bread and places it in the palm of your hand, and you eat it. The chalice-bearer holds the silver cup of wine as you sip from it, then wipes the … Continue reading The Common Cold and the Common Cup: Does Communion spread germs?
This article from The New York Times was reprinted in my local newspaper. In Afghanistan, a mullah who raped a 10-year-old girl in the mosque was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Most Americans would agree that anybody who rapes a child is a horrific criminal for whom 20 years is a light sentence, would … Continue reading One Brave Girl
I just happened upon this article from Wired magazine, which is undated but appears to be from right around 1994--the era when the World Wide Web existed but many major corporations still had no clue about what this Internet thing was, and when most people who did use the Internet still knew what a "shell … Continue reading The Internet of 20 Years Ago
This post is not meant to criticize parents who make different decisions, just to explain our point of view. "Do you know what you're having?" I am in my last month of pregnancy, and oh, how tired I am of that strangely-phrased question! I just smile and say, "It's a baby!" Of course that doesn't … Continue reading Why we didn’t have a Gender Reveal Party
We aren't sports fans in our family. Exercise is good, but we're not much interested in playing sports and even less interested in watching sports. But we live in Pittsburgh, a city with three professional sports teams that are a major focus of the local culture. We can't help noticing when one of the teams … Continue reading Saving Money on Sports Fan Gear
A Real Man does not mind carrying the groceries in a canvas tote bag with colorful tulips printed on it. A Real Man knows how to cook a meal, wash the dishes, do the laundry, mop a floor, and sew on a button. He considers these basic survival skills that everyone should know by the … Continue reading A Real Man
I'm not very romantic. A lot of the gooey sentiments expressed around Valentine's Day send me into fits of critical thinking. I'm kind of like this. But I am in love with Daniel, and have been for almost 20 years, and sometimes get kind of sentimental about it. In particular, I can get all choked … Continue reading My Favorite Love Song
The United States Postal Service has had a rough time in recent years. "Snail mail" just seems so slow, now that we can do a lot of things online. FedEx and UPS have made their services more convenient to use, so a lot of people no longer choose the post office as their method of … Continue reading A Positive Experience at the Post Office
Welcome to the September 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Staying Safe This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared stories and tips about protecting our families. Please read to the end to find a list of … Continue reading Gradually Expanding Range for a Child Walking Alone