Tummy Tickler Bridge

The gently arched Hermitage Bridge carrying the Neva River Embankment roadway across the mouth of the Zimnaya Kanavka. In the background, the pedestrian bridge linking the Hermitage Museum (right) to the Hermitage Theater. A few days ago something — I’ve already forgotten what — reminded me of one of the small pleasures of life I […]

April Fools? They’ve Gotta Be Joking!

Public opinion on reparations A few days ago, with April Fools’ Day coming right up, I spotted a couple of news items I briefly thought might be nothing more than a crazy prank. If only! The items I saw were reports on discussions within the nine-member California Reparations Task Force — appointed to “study and […]

Feeling Grateful

If you’re like me, every so often you’ll find a nice graphic image in your Facebook feed, listing reasons why people like you and me should feel grateful: Because we have a roof over our heads and clothes on our backs Because our children have enough to eat Because we fall asleep in a warm […]

Dear Mr. President

Iranian missile, perhaps a type that could reach Israel with a nuke Note to readers of this blog: I am about to send the following message to President Biden, with copies to my senators and congressman. I have no realistic hope that the president will read it, much less that it will sway him. But […]

Shameful, Unforgivable

Desperate to flee Afghanistan Two weeks ago, just days after the Taliban seized power in Kabul, I wrote about the news from Afghanistan and Washington. Among much else, I said: It is utterly irresponsible and shameful for our highest officials in Washington to be telling the thousands of U.S. citizens still stranded in Kabul and […]

Chaos in Kabul

Kabul, August 2021 I’ve been following the news from Afghanistan and Washington. Perspective calls for a few bullets. Here are mine: • How we got into a fight with the Taliban in the first place: The Taliban had been ruling Afghanistan for five years on September 11, 2001 — the day Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda […]

Cause for Outrage

Building in Israel hit by rocket from Gaza  The world gives us much cause for outrage. Just this morning, I learned that the illegitimately “re-elected” president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, had his air traffic controllers and his MiGs force a civilian airliner from Ireland, which was crossing Belarussian airspace en route from Greece to Lithuania, […]

The Unthinkable Happened … Now What Do We Do?

Mob invades U.S. Capitol, Jan. 6, 2021 I am appalled. We should all be appalled. But regrettably, that feeling is not universal. What am I appalled at? Two big unthinkables. Unthinkable No. 1: The mob’s assault on the U.S. Capitol. Even worse — the fact that the mob’s Cheerleader-in-Chief was the guy in the White […]

Racism — A Few Things to Think About

I’m 75 years old. As readers of this blog know, I’ve been around the block a time or two, and I’ve seen, read and learned a lot. What I’m seeing right now — America’s racial “conversation” (for some, our national yelling match) becoming ever more shrill and violent — deeply troubles me. I’m also deeply […]

Our Deepening Crisis

Our country is in crisis. We must keep ourselves from tumbling into the abyss. The crisis is like a boiling cauldron whose four toxic ingredients — racism, a killer plague, a crippled economy and deep-seated political antagonism — are threatening to bubble over and spill us into the flames below. Racism: Nine minutes (!!) of […]