Greg Correll


Greg Correll

Greg Correll
New Paltz, New York, US
September 21
Founder, Chief of Deselopy (small packages); Editor (
small packages, inc.
I write.


Greg Correll's Links

MAY 30, 2010 5:38PM

my favorites

Rate: 54 Flag

 I recently sent a PM to promote my latest post, and I made a sacred oath to comment on everyone before I posted again.

So I did.

NOTE: There is a longer note at the end, and the presence of avatar images means nothing. I started to do it then stopped. See hobgoblins/minds.


(The formula, per set: email/avatar name/, post title & link/my comment)

" hello,="" she="" lied=""/"Hello," she lied
Vigil /
Like Emily Dickinson's last three line letter, but a lot better. A volume of adult understanding in three perfect lines. please / please
Can I tell you? Can you tell me? Can I? /
Oh dear one. This is original and wrenching and beautiful and as father to a daughter who ____ and ____ and finally got on and stayed on meds and succeeded beyond my wildest dreams I say my heart and your heart, I know what you say here.
Beautifully written, painful.
"How do you draw a picture
Missing it’s own form
I want to tell you how
How do you explain the return
Of someone your not sure of
The new birth of a child
Long ago born"
O my, so good.
1WomansVu / Nikki Stern
The Burger That Ate My Conscience /
tallow??? oh no. But bacon fat, yummmmmm. Go figure. (Actually go enlarge one's figure. But bacon fat is soo delicious) YES to not pressing the burger down. A rube's mistake. And toast! and cucumber dill salad!
1_Irritated_Mother /1_Irritated_Mother
Remember. Always walk in the light. /
Beautiful and then some
AAutumn /AAutumn
My Mother's Hands /
Your mother has a good daughter. This is so plain and beautiful, how you walk us through what happened; who she is emerges as it should in Good Writing. The line about her flowers and dog broke my heart. My mother is disintegrating now, month s left. I have lost some of the use of my right hand. God Damn mortality.
aging hippie chick / aging hippie chick
MRSA, nose picking, and pulse oximetry
You make this technical information transparent with brief, clever asides. You have a calling for science/medical writing.
This should be a wake-up call. All together, now, 1.2.3: Oh, ZIP-LOOOOCCCCC!
aim /aim
I said goodbye to Sallie Mae /
oh aim. I am unable to appropriately say anything worthwhile. I want to buy you a ride on a ferris wheel, sitting next to someone you adore. I want to give you a better world, and pay for the move there. I can say this: I forgot utterly about writing as craft, so I re-read it. That's only happened twice before in my 1.5+ years on OS. This is exceptionally good writing. I don't know how to get out of my own way like you do here. {lifting your heart a millimeter from afar}
Akopsa /Akopsa
The IFPC: $3 million of your tax dollars at work 
Hubris indeed. These religious orgs know darn well it takes grim determination to uncover their malfeasance. They are untouchables politically, because of the pervasive belief in Sanctity.
3 million dollars of our money to promote junk science aimed at oppressing people who "sin against Jesus". The dark ages live on in America. Thank you for this professional, fierce report.
Alicia PhD / Alicia PhD
Personal request - Any ideas for evolution page?
OK, first, I love you doing this, the Evo page.
Next: my personal "crusade" for years has been to make Logical Fallacies fun. A la Mythbusters. I think it's a natural.
The anti-evo folks have almost cornered the market on logical fallacies, so at least some of the time choose a few fallacies and make real-world connections for people. Most Americans let evo and ID fall into a grey middle, thinking them somehow co-equal. (The ID'rs WANT that of course.)
Helping people understand how fallacious thinking confuses us, would be a real service, and a heck of lot of fun.
Your writing is not polemical. You have a Genial Voice and are a good science writer.
Anyway, my 2 cents.
(her Squidoo page)
all4word /Randy Smith
I continue to exist
Cogent, thy name is Randy. Viva persistence! Andy Heizeler Andy Heizeler  no posts. I must have favorited him from coments.
Ann Nichols / Ann Nichols
The Places I Can't Forget
You exceed and instruct me here. I am florid by comparison; I feel compelled to add raw and flourish to the simplest thing.
You prove simple -- spirea -- has power and majesty. THIS:
" flirt with the lacy white edge of ocean that rushed up to meet me. "
Not the first time I am enlightened by your prose.
annette2009 /annette2009
Meeting Marcela in Buenos Aires
Asada makes my mouth water.
I envy you getting to meet Marcela, one of my main favorites on OS! and the bridges over falls, the social event meals, and now I want to bend to Argentina, bad.
An excellent travel piece. I wanted more.
AnniThyme /AnniThyme
Just 'cuz
I want a sampler, framed, with this:
"(What can I say? I am embracing my inner "dog" right now. Go on. Wag your tail. Shake your butt. Slobber over the ones you love. Live in the moment. Why? Just 'cuz.)
I mean, why not? "
I can't stop smiling at this. And the dog is quite fetching. As it were.
Anthropologist Underground /Anthropologist Underground
Andrew Wakefield Shenanigans Updated-Struck Off
And now he is saying he is undaunted, won't give up, etc.
THIS: "I was thinking that the whole anti-vaccination movement is based on the incredulity of privilege. "
Yes. Ignorance outpaces understanding as a factor of comfort. Wait: I claim that! Correll's Formula for Slack-jawed Belliegernce Regarding Vaccinations and Evolution By Affluent Moderns (for short: Correll's formula)
ariana.paz Ariana Paz
healthcare in one line
Closed for comments so I will provide the 'latest' post in its entirety here:
" "Obama is not a brown-skinned anti-war socialist who gives away free healthcare. You're thinking of Jesus." -- John Fugelsang"
artmasters / artmasters
Getting to Know Modern Art
Thanks Alicia! It is more useful than perhaps you realize, to share your 'fresh eyes' on a challenging exhibit. We engage with modern art in ways that make us new.
Ashley Pungsnotded / Ashley Pungsnotded
New York’s Angriest Banjo Player
you wrote this while playing bingo with a five-year-old?!? OK. I bow to you, queen of multitasking.
And I will, I must, pursue this angry banjo player, Curtis. I suspect I will be changed forever
OK you are right! "Sugar in my Coffin", wow.
'There's ain't no Elvis from the waist down.' Yep, I remember the 50s.
aspasia411 /aspasia411
Knee Deep in Peas
Incredibly delicious. why o why didn't this burst like an overheated, crushed tin on OS, splattering us all with bits o green?
"the smell of canned peas, that sickly, tangy-sweet odor"
Now I know what I already knew but didn't know I knew: there IS a smell to it. I knew exactly what you meant.
Ans the image of all of you in bright yellow rubber with green peas everywhere, well...psychedelico.
Perfect pitch, every word.
AtHomePilgrim /AtHomePilgrim
The Hub (Dianaani’s Open Call)
Swell, convivial, homey and good details. A kitchen counter as hearth. I am turned.
atlbch / Gabby Abby
Repost Saturday
I post when I must. Which is rarely the right time for the Editor's perusal. I kick myself often. Like this afternoon. I posted one of my all time best posts (::caughghcoughahhck:: *), "no, you hang up" and I KNEW it would have a shot at EP if I had waited til Monday but there's a part of me that doesn't want an EP if it doesn't come "naturally. I am so full of shit I always want an EP and I have no clear idea what "natural" means in this context. I am perverse about my work. OS 'timing'? um, what's 'that'? (whistles, scuffs shoes) I like Repost Saturday. A lot. But I just promised about 80 OSrs i would not post again until I commented on all 80 of them at least once . I have a list. Gabby, you are #6, so far. This is actually fun! Who knew there were OTHER good writers? * I stole this. Just now.
chc2001 / jane bourne ultimatum smithie
simmered down, but still great school update
I am in wonder at how you drop this stream of consciousness so perfectly into place. This is Mom processing it all, Mom who loves her son like a blazing nebula loves a new star, but knows she lives in a pretty arid, mostly vacuum reality. your honesty and processing is impressive for its plain-spoken realism. You wake in me important parental feelings, many of them damn uncomfortable, some of them sublime. And you write with such clarity.
Con Chapman / Con Chapman
Cats Nap as Science Races to Re-create Feline Brain
"That's like asking a fish to explain water," he said contemptuously. "Cat see mouse, cat catch mouse."
Con, this is deep water. It shakes up my long-standing assumption that cats have no brains at all, just a tinfoil ball staple to their skull tops via a broken rubber band. There's ontology here, and then some. Who knew you and cats had such subtle, serious sides? Then again your cats might just be playing with you. They do that.
femme forte / femme forte
Lie to the Pope? Nay, never! Ooh, so gross, the floor mat gelatin. This engages me. I am a good crust maker. My wife is better. No matter how hard I try I roll too hard. My flakiness isn't. My Nana used to say "to learn to bake a pie you have to burn some crusts." Two tips: Cream cheese has about the same fat content as butter. See where I'm going with that? They will never know why it's so creamy dreamy. Next: finely chopped apricots (or even dates, in a cobbler) will make a cherry or peach pie seem more jellified, and give it a mysterious tart yarlminess. FINELY chopped and par-boil with juice before adding arrowroot or cornstarch, to soften those fine bits. They met into the fruit. (hormones register on seismo? fine, I buy it, but fwoot? you're funnin' us here.
Joan H. / Joan H.
I Now Pronounce You Husband And Wife
the efficiency of this is a marvel. We see it all, and feel you, here. Weddings are what we make of them, and you made yours Good.
Kat Hudson / Kat Hudson
Why you probably won't hire me anytime soon
Excellent. Funny, original working of what in lesser hands is trite. Your honesty and self-awareness is matched by your command of language: "How is a 41-year-old fat college dropout who has problems with authority supposed to compete with that?" Out of respect for your parents I will moderate this: "Dang them!" I left college in my senior year to be a full-time single parent. Never got the degree. We auto-didacts have the advantage tho of continuing to learn, always. Next to last paragraph: you and me both, Kat.
kitd /Kit Duncan
Memories I Never Had
paragraphs 2 and 3, in their entirety, hooked me firm. In 2 have potent observations of the photographs themselves, how you respond, and the ways of days gone. In 3 you put everything in poignant focus.
I feel deep envy. Two generations back in my family and we find a black mother and and Cherokee mother, so photo albums went sideways; then my mother walked away from all her children and all our belongings and we lost most of our visual family history. So I live vicariously through your piece, and you give me such riches here. Lizzie was someone's somone, so why not your aunt? Exceptional writing. /Kyle Dykman
I Love My Neighbor - I Hate Their Tree
wise and true. Hate the tree, not the neighbor. Probably OK to kick it once in a while.
Nurse_PhD /Nurse PhD
Nurse Brown Starts a Class War
VIP patients, brought to ground. What a concept. well of course they exist, why didn't I suss this out before? Thank you for the hard look. "I am special" = I have money. Ain't that America. You write forcefully but without polemic or rancor. Good post.
philipfromga / Philip Rodgers
waiting is fullness. Except when others are full of it. Or lacking it.
zumalicious/ xenonlit xl
Designer tortures
I am floored and levelated, utterly. a meditation on unsound found & objectionable object. most wonderful and I am still captive. I live across the river in new paltz and we do NOT pick our toes here except in private
Matthew DeCoursey /Matthew DeCoursey /
Hatred of Men II /
I think your larger point about the statistical difference between violent men and women is sound. It's rare and aberrant in both genders. That's the most salient feature. But I am not quite convinced it's mooted, that difference intra-gender for just the violent. That's a big gap. Nonetheless you make an important point. And it extends to other male behaviors as well. I know few men, for example, who share classic "locker room" talk about women's bodies. Then again I live in the civilized Hudson Valley. Good post, Matthew.
Owl_Says_Who /Owl_Says_Who /
101 Word Fiction Flash, Inspired by the Great and Mighty X./
all we get in life, at best, is "a fresh dish and apologies."
annaliese /
This touches me deeply. I have been married twice, and have watched as my wife Deborah, mother of two of my daughters, struggled mightily to sort out her relationship with my oldest. It made it hard that I was "first", and raised her alone for 7 years.

But now Molly is in her 30s (posts on OS! Molly Lilly) and she calls her mama sometimes. It worked.

I admire brave writing, Constant Voice, above all else. Yours is honest, and keen. Thank you for daring to say these palsied truths.

Bagheera25 / Liz Emrich
Little Man Graduates

You write this dry and clear. Your love for your son, your realistic expectations, accurate observations, and clear understanding of his abilities -- and the world he lives in -- is remarkably steady.

He is a lucky kid to have a mother like you. And to have school resources of merit.
I loved reading this. You never pause to educate us or qualify/rationalize. This is in itself rare, whatever the topic. And yet I learned a ton about both Aspergers and your daily reality. Most of all: your love and respect for your son shines here.

bbd / bbd
Memorial Day 2010
The balance in your thinking is, as usual, an encouragement to those of us who believe in deliberative democracy. For example: "We remember now on this Memorial Day, and in every one that has passed, those that have fought and sacrificed for our freedoms. I'm not opposed to war, but it must be a last resort and not as cavalierly preemptive that we've seen in recent years. Leaders must be held accountable for the decisions they make and must own both triumph and tragedy. "
This is an exemplar. I share it, every letter of it. Battles of all kinds are demanded of us. To invite war, to cynically manipulate the press and patriotism for political and financial gain is our peculiar vulnerability, America's, in 2010. And it is a special kind of evil, too.
Truman, starting before war's end and continuing for years after 1945, held all profiteers to account. Many went to jail. We need that again.
"we put guns and sharp swords in the hands of young children" (Bob Dylan) -- we must always know why, and the cause must always be just. And desperate.
My adopted father was a medic under Patton, from the hedgerows to Germany. Later he drank himself to death, because he couldn't, wouldn't, talk about it, except in fits and starts. I honor him still.
Yours is my favorite Memorial Day post.
BellwetherVance / Bellwether Vance
Goodwill Shrimping
You personalize the reality of shrimping here, with (gulf) breezy style.
No, not selfish. This is all about kitchens, one at a time, across the US and around the world. What these greedy sons-a-predators have done to us, until we rise up and regulate, bust trusts.
That long paragraph, that ends with italic paradise? gold, a gleam in the dark shoals of this catastrophe. Such fine writing.
Ben Sen / Ben Sen
Why I Am No Longer a Roman Catholic
A minor masterpiece, Ben.

Not because of forceful soaring manifesto language or comprehensive coverage, but because it is intimate, tightly bound to recent events, and a personal history that makes sense of all this, how religion must finally stand naked before human beings. And answer to ordinary human morality, with out the disguise of "sanctity".

These lines:
"The collective "shadow" of the establishment is eclipsing its intentions. "

"What was once an institution whose purpose was to raise the communal conscience and still is in some parts of the world simply is no longer in the advanced cultures where it began. "

And that last paragraph is more powerful for being so direct, unadorned.

Beth Mann / Beth Mann
Doing Stuff is Overrated
Well this is just about the best OS post ever. I love this with the burning intensity of a thousand suns. If only i had written this I could retire and do nothing but laze in my pool. Heck I could afford a pool to laze in, finally.

This: "Sleep is a good example of doing nothing and is by far the most interesting part of the day. You never know what’s going to happen, who you’re going to meet and what magical powers you may possess. I like to think of my waking hours as a 16-hour preparation for going back to sleep."

But I do a dis-service to the piece by extracting one upstrangequark from it. The whole hilarious thing is exactly done, not one character less or more. And the sad and awful and hysterical thing is: it's all TRUE.

I am on a mission to read all my favorites. I have found rewards along the way, everywhere. But this, this, Beth, is a Golden Ticket.

Hey, actually, one quibble: Lassie was a big help every time little Sally Jean fell into the well. But that's cause he marshaled his resources and panted ahead.

Bill S. / Bill S.
Where are you Bill?

Boanerges1 / Old Soak
Goodbye To All That
Better use than on those Churchills. American GIs complained they were shit.

A sturdy and engaging piece. You know how to trim sentences and how. Gruff Voice, authentic, and I tracked every detail.

The ending is sad but wise. Better not to see our youth reclaimed by another. And great final quote

Bob Sloan / Bob Sloan
Open Call See
lyrical telling, and I like the plain talk about your mom, that she just didn't see what she wouldn't/couldn't/didn't want to see. That's a compact detail that conjures her for us.

I like the oddity of this, this picture with a convoluted and sweet connection. Well-selected, well-old.

Bonnie Russell Bonnie Russell / Bonnie Russell
San Bernardino - DA Vic Stull For Judge? No Way

You offer a perspective rare if not unique on OS, given your background in social services for women and children, and the intense scrutiny of  locale you offer. You are lively and direct, and so make a local judge race in San Berdoo matter to me in NY. The trick isn't  an artifice, a veneer of universalism, the success you have is in the particularity, the juicy local inside detailed info you offer. Weirdly, that is the secret to truly universal storytelling, and you know it well.

You walk us into a gothic horror here, the back stories, the suicide, the arrogance. and circle back to the ban adroitly. I so like this kind of craft. I find myself reading twice; once for the ripalong of it, then again to see the method: the declarations of just-so, the short paragraphs, the to-the-edge but not beyond of basilisk examination.

Your life's work gives your Voice here authority, and you wield it effectively

BuffyW BuffyW / BuffyW
Hey Chicken!
sheer entertainment. a bird flying from a chicken's mouth and into our hearts.

C.K. Dexter Haven C.K. Dexter Haven / C.K. Dexter Haven
A Road Trip For A Fellow Wanderer
Vastly entertaining.
Foggy Crab Shack as picture and phrase is way cool. I now want to start a band with that name. "Why ME?" truck -- ah, the mysteries of American life.
Yes, banana groves can and must own all yards in which they grow.
Love the handrail.
I suspect Roadside lady had some bad scrapple.
And yep, if you like typography, you have the design disease.

cartouche / cartouche
Words and Pictures
You are one of a handful here on OS who convince me it is a Salon, old-school. This post is the personal aside from Woolf when she stays in Italy, Joyce's letter to his editor and bete noir/best friend, Cheever in a sane moment reporting on juicy eavesdropping at one of his close-enough-tables cafes. Few here can manage the illusion of presumption: that we are your real friend, love art, care about your abilities without peevishness, and bring us all up to date. I feel treasured, reading this.
I want one of your paintings. I commented on FB; there was a deep cobalty blue one. Love "three square" here.
But most of all I want to walk into your studio with a few choice OS friends be handed a wine glass from your paint splattered hands, inhale Syrah and varnish all at once and look at what's new (THEN buy one).
And if technology had but one neck, some days, I would thromble its beheissimus to the inch and beyond. And revert to walking sticks, the one true and lasting technology.

consonantsandvowels / consonantsandvowels
birthday picnic
Oh my, candv.

There are moments on OS when I am just chilled to the marrow, at the consequential beauty and immense sadness I feel about  being a human being. And it is from writers like you that I draw this bitter succor. How is it that longing and sorrow, gives us sustenance, when it is drawn fine with beautiful words?

How did you do this? "We try Harder", dropped in there like a koan.

How did you do this? with an editor's eye and a writer's eye and verbal skills sharp as ginsus.

The orphanage blankets make my eyes burn.

You compress several lifetimes into so few words here.

Of course you laughed some, before and after. But you gave us the far better picture here.

cristinly / Bill Maher (Bill Maher?!?)
Statutory Tape
Everything you post is good. Love you, love your show.
Someday you will get hip to how Dach here on OS? and all those anti-vacc folks? are effing anti-science nutjobs.

Critical Mess / Critical Mess
The Daily Scrawl: People's Picks (no Pans) 4/21/09

My hat is off to you, and I bow deep, because I at last see what this takes. I am in the midst of a one-time effort to actually read and comment closely on all my favorites. It is taking me weeks, and I will not let myself post until it is done.

And it is changing me, improving me, helping me to see how OS is "the keys to the good car", a pure-d wonderment -- and how I still have a lot to learn about writing.

Thank you for what you do. I now add you to my Great Post of hundreds of comments, with a special notation:

The Daily Scrawl People's Picks: Happy Anniversary Edition

The Daily Scrawl: People's Picks (no Pans) 4/11/09

The Daily Scrawl: People's Picks (no Pans) 4/5/09

The Daily Scrawl: People's Picks (No Pans) 3/15/09

All hail Critical Mess!

DailySally / Sally Swift
From SATC Review to Muslim Cartoon, Connecting the Dots?
If we were Martians and saw humans for the first time, peeking from our invisible space ships? a lot about these apes would be confusing.

But one thing would be crystal clear: Some of these ape groups hate women. Hide them from sight. Guard them as if they were private toys. And for some perverse reason some of these ape women go along with it, unable to break out and away, assert themselves, even in 2010, with cable TV and the internet and all. "What a weird medieval leftover" Say the Martians to each other.

Good on ye, Sally.

Dan Shapiro danshapiro / Dan Shapiro
Kill Jews
As a Jew with holocaust survivors in my immediate family i startled at your post title.

But this is an exceptional piece. You will reach many, I hope, with this thoughtful, deceptively casual, well-crafted exploration of the feelings and signs, for Jews, of our times.

Damn bicycles. But God damn nazis, various and sundry.

Dave Cullen Dave Cullen / Dave Cullen
The best I've ever read on Don't Ask, Don't Tell
I read this the day it was published. It is a moving post, and should be eye-opening to someone, somehow.
I find your constancy remarkable, Dave. You post here  from a moral perspective, but without the pulpit or admonishments. You are in the best sense a regular guy.
I watch on facebook as you post about meeting with high school students and how it affects you, and am affected in turn. I envy you in a good way the experience of having such a direct connection with them, and I am certain you have been a powerful force for compassion and good in the world.
Finally, your prose style is seemingly effortless. Accessible and plainspoken, you enlighten and instruct me as a writer. It's an honor to be able to say these things to you.

David Brin David Brin / David Brin
Can Libertarian Conservatism Find Its Way?
Bravura coherency. From the first sparkling paragraphs, this post gleams with Thinking and historicic acumen.

I used to detest Reagan, flat out, for his support of the Contras. It seems he was both more complex and simpler than we realized. I have always thought it intriguing that he had to be yanked back from complete eradication of nuclear arms stockpiles in Rekyavik.

You enlighten and enlarge me with the quotes from Smith's earlier work (!) and the  gloss by Lewitt. You underscore my emphatic if somewhat inchoate feeling that entrepreneuriall capitalism is inherently progressive.

"Ought to be" -- what precision you show here. While i read and admire, generally, "Reason" magazine writing, they are no ones 'cosm. They  are an articulate elite. Most real-world libertarians have struck me as unrealistic in the extreme, no matter how orderly their 'reason' seems on paper.

I like your distillation of "Freedom and Fair Competition". But then it would appeal to me and thee, since you argue effectively and I agree with the case you make. Most Libertarians interpret those terms in idiosyncratic ways that are emotionally satisfying, in the sense that we are all tired of nuance and complexity, and isn't it pretty to think infrastructure pays for itself. 

You dare to declare them an underpinning of science itself. Hm. I'll think about that.

But you sir are an emerald among well-cut glass bits. Thank you for this post.

David Decker David Decker / David Decker
Fathers and Sons, Part I of II: Kindertransport
You are effective here. The alternation from history and such intimate details -- I am especially moved by your father helping you when you were sick -- gives palpable life to this recounting of dreadful events. You hold me throughout.

And it is news to me that the Nazis prohibited the "goodbyes" at the station. The inversion of civil mores that was that ideology an regime still stuns.

David Sirota David Sirota / David Sirota
Access and Stenographic Journalism In the Obama Era
I feel unqualified to evaluate some of the arguments and the overall perspective of your post. It plays into my assumptions and presumptions as a skeptic and progressive. I admire and respect Taibbi.  And take on 'faith' your desciption of the contre temps with Fernholz.

I am interested in your opinion of writers like Leon Wieseltier  at TNR and Tony Judt of NYRB. Though not investigative journalists, they are careful and meticulous, and effective writers.

I am glad you post on OS.

dcvdickens dcvdickens / dcvdickens
Anyone Else Have a Bad Feeling About New Seinfeld Show?
Yeah. What an unexpected post.

I like a good Lifetime movie wallow as much as the next probably-not-gay guy, and The Biggest Loser proves reality shows can do Social Good. But on the whole reality shows debase us and pervert civility and self-respect.

I wanted to like this show, I like so many of the "guests". But...ugh. Double ugh.

Debbs4 Debbs4 / Debbs4
Please Join Me While I Ditch This Crab Shack!
A good rant. I find, though, that the few here I have a problem with (_______, ____, and ___) are, weirdly, exaggerated versions of the Me I don't like. I should say Me's. As in multiple.

Knowing that helps. I focus on the hundreds I love, like, respect or see merit in.

Deborah McEachern / Deborah Young
So This Is Colorado
eloquent and fetching portrait of your new life. Went to school in Boulder, know the state well. Brilliant thin blue sky, nose bleeds, yep.

You make me ache to return. Dang. Tell the pikas Greg says "hey".

Dennis Knight Dennis Knight / Dennis Knight
How to Become a Curmudgeon
At last. I have found you, foul beast, the one who trained my sweet daughters to be outrageously intolerant high schoolers who can't bear the thought of me. Have at thee, varlet, and a clean cut, what ho!

(o geez, dad's doing, what is that, his renaissance faire thing?)

jay leffew depfox  / jay leffew
Small World And Herculean Tasks
I tracked the Malawai story, too. In a usually sad world that was a pretty good outcome. But as you say, one story we know, a thousand that are untold.

And I did not know about the Russian Gay Pride march. I stumbled when i got to "riot police". For goodness sake.

You wrap this up so well. We are all connected now. History watches us, replays us as we speak and text and type into this megaphone and archive. Who are we? What do we stand for? good post/.

denese denese
When is a comment disrespectful: How much is too much?
This is the question of our age.
It's so complex.
For a-theists (not anti-), the issue is compouned: we don't believe there is a being to be anti- to.
So we are a-theists.
Religion an faith gets preferential deferential treatment. Constitutionally it is not supposed to be this way. And it politicized religion, implicitly.
Look at the skyline of all of DC. Hundreds of steeples. Same in every city (mosques, synagogues, temples & steeples). Opportunities abound for worship.
But nonbelievers feel our right to assert our disbelief and it is abridged and compromised at every turn. We have to sue to keep the public domain fair.
Christians are not oppressed.
And in the last 15 years Christians have escalated the politicization of faith, radically, leaving compassionate believers like you and compassionate nonbelievers like me on abattlefield we did not choose and don't want.
Conclusion? I don't have one. I offer this as a perspective, in this, the 'neutral' free marketplace of ideas, OS.
I welcome the plain and honest engagement you offer here. Namaste.


ElizabethMcDonald DesignatedKnitter designated_knitter / ElizabethMcDonald DesignatedKnitter
Is Crying Against The Law??
Wait! I was so enjoying the vision of you knitting while doing 3 foot jumps, maintaining your diagonals without dropping a stitch. Dang.
And know I am trying to imagine putting on a bra without bending my wrist. Or vice versa. Stop with the interesting visuals!
Wait. all funny business aside. They arrested you for crying!?
I was getting ready to be diplomatic about you giving them reason but you got all balanced and honest and self-deprecating. You offer here what OS wants and needs: our common humanity,  in the revealed moments of  tumulus life. And funny! 
dianaanidianaani / dianaani
Re-Dedication and 125 Years
You remind this unbeliever of the depth of Good done by small congregations since, well, forever. Love the images. Texas = (my) Kansas, flatness-ness-wise. We seculars have centuries of work ahead of us to get such communities functioning. Loved this.

diary of a food addict diary of a food addict / diary of a food addict 
A Good Day To Detox
"Haven't wanted to write because there was so much messing up." This sums up 13.7% of my life.

Sorry you had this tsurris. But it made for a droll post.

Diary of a Hopeful Starving Student Diary of a Hopeful Starving Student / Diary of a Hopeful Starving Student
We Stood Together in the Vineyards
I feel this all over and in my marrow. Admirably compact writing. Full of meaning.

My grandpa, my garden, my daughter's inheriting my plots...sigh.

Dina Horwedel / Dina Horwedel
Letter from Afghanistan-The Gardener and the Guard
Gripping and immediate from the first line. 10% literacy?!? and all the facts of the para. More landmines than people is a tragic banner sentence.
THIS "We then set about replanting the flowers I had uprooted as bats swooped overhead and the moon rose." made my heart flutter.
Not since "Among the Believers" has a first-person account of Muslim society touched me so deeply. This is a first-rate work. Tell me when the book is published; I'll buy, review on Amazon, promote in every way. The literary resonance of this is brilliant.

dirndl skirtdirndl skirt  / dirndl skirt
Hell's Kitchen and All That Jazz - 1971
I lived in the city for 10 years, and love this evocation of it. And you saw fosse's Pippin. Jealousing.

docaye / Anne Madsen
no posts??

rahul k. parikh docrkp / rahul k. parikh
Jenny McCarthy vs. Jenny McCarthy
Another excellent post, Rahul, and so glad Salon picked it up.

And Ken: goon on ye for the math. I think 15 mins minimum tho, plus meal and potty breaks., so at least 2 years of straightforward listening. And how as it recorded? if note taking then she has carpal tunnel, if electronic add 30% more time for setup and tape changes, plus a lot $. Either way, written or recorded, can we see this anecdotal data please?

I know of at least a dozen rational skeptics here on OS who simple haven't and might not chime in here. But there are far too many on OS who feel mild to rabid sympathy for the anti-vaccine hoax. Tragic.

Thank you, Rahul, for your support of science and good critical thinking.

DogWoman DogWoman / DogWoman
Missing Mom on My First Mother’s Day Without Her
I like the timing of the hospital milestones with bloomings. The image of the pill tray bends my heart a bit. I know from this. But the following paragraphs, tracking the care, and that image of your mother's head in curlers tear me up.

If not for the photos I would not have been able to stand finishing this. For personal reasons

Your writing transcends the artifice of craft altogether. This is a letter home. It has lasting power. I am so glad you had oak tree.


Donna CarboneDonna Carbone / Donna Carbone
Dressing for Sexcess: Deborahlee Lorenzana vs Citigroup
What a direct examination of What We all Know. I enjoy the un-PC honesty of this. My daughters have or are all learning thiese lessons. My youngest blossomed recently and at 16 is grimly enduring how the boys who loved her beanpole hilarity are now unable to talk to her with eyes up and some girls are calling her slut just because her figure is full.
I hope life for women in business steadily improves and they manage it all.

Dorinda Fox Dorinda Fox / Dorinda Fox
Contemplating David Bowie's Balls and Eating Lots of Cheese
First I laughed hearty and was goggle-eyed at the specifics of giant balls and Cain and Abel playing Grand Theft Auto and thought: Dorinda sees so many comics live, she is perfect to present these two performances to us. Your style, I finally figured out is an intimate, elegant and droll pastiche, done up with first-rate prose.
Then I read on and morphed. Only you, Dorinda, could write this line: "So I sat there in my blue funkiness with fluorescent tubes on my head drinking the most excellent Chardonnay." and make my heart break a little. By the time I got to the end I had to re-think the whole piece. There's some William Burroughs in you. Except the insects you see -- us -- are better than his, not insects at all, but certainly more than human. Alien, certainly. You stay at a distance, but it is the right distance to reveal how splendid and absurd we are. Life loves you.
Dorsey Shaw Dorsey Shaw / Dorsey Shaw
“There May Not Be a Heaven, But There Is a San Francisco"
Wonderful edited seletion of SF quotes. I went there in 1971, stayed in the Haight, and loved every minute,

Dr. Ayala Dr. Ayala / Dr. Ayala
The TV ad diet and your health
What an eye-opening examination of diet, through the filter it most deserves: tv ads. Why hasn't this been done before? Exceptional.
And viva critical thinking skills! If i could make us all do one thing,it would be to teach/understand Logical Fallacies, along with the Pledge of Allegiance.

D Art Duaneart / D Art
True Power - A Repost
hear, here! A Good and Simple paean to the power of OS.

Elliot Scott elliotscott / Elliot Scott
Dave Cullen's Columbine quoted in USA TODAY!
Good on ye for promoting Dave. His book is great, his life and riches well-deserved.

emma peel / emma peel
Last hippie standing
No. You are not.

Come see New Paltz. All of it is still here: the good, the bad, the sitting on the streets playing guitar with a hundred other tie-dyed souls.

And almost all of them under 25.

When our mayor (the youngest mayor in America at the time) married gay couples several years ago in our town park it subsequently attracted those Phelpian God Hates Fags types. Several hundred people showed up at the counter-demo, turned their back and sang Beatles songs.

With you, Emma.

fingerlakeswanderer fingerlakeswanderer / fingerlakeswanderer
This Doesn't Happen in England
I love your Writing. I am both engaged and horrified by the material.

I want the world to be different. I want the most disturbing thing for children to be fantastic stories about Joe and Raquel. Jane smithie recently wrote about her son's reaction to being told yes, there really are massacres at schools. We have to re-do this world. Perhaps un-do some things.

Brady Bill is a good start.

Floyd Elliot Floyd Elliot / Floyd Elliot
Why I Will Never Use the Word "Fuck" On OS Again
No! Say it ain't so! your last OS post!
Never take them down, buddyroo. We need them like grass needs clipped, like stink needs waft, like dull needs shine.

Frank Indiana Frank Indiana / Frank Indiana
The Art Of The Open Salon Blog Novel (or I Am Frank Indiana)
I am so glad I found this. Another startling examination of familiar, unexpressed writer's Truth.
I confess I have only read selected chapters -- but raved about them each time. Sign me up for the PM announcing its inevitable publication.
You give me hope, to do as you do. BIG THANK YOU!
freethinker44 freethinker44 / freethinker44
Highway Memorials
Beautifully written doesn't do this justice. You weave this with skill and close-by feeling.
I used to live in Missoula. I know Lolo, both sides of the pass, intimately. It made reading this harrowing.

froggy / froggy
The Bard on Netflix: Favorite Shakespeare Movies?
I guess i must say Branagh's "Ado".
But honestly i feel queasy about all of them. I want my Willy LIVE, as it were.

FrogTown Diva / FrogTown Diva
Women Could Be Running the Country - Finally!
This gives me hope for my daughters, despite my distaste for Blanche.
Here's more good news: women in the "hard" sciences grows yearly, and woman now hold a slim majority of working astronomers!

gail williams gail / gail williams
Appreciating people who reach out: influencers revisited
I loved The Tipping Point as writing -- his anecdotes are so entertaining --  but looked askance at the science of his conclusions. You give wonderful depth to the debate here.
It's bittersweet, living through the glorious birth of the Age of a Billion Good-Enough Writers. Influence or no, since it's so dilute, I love the riches.
Gary Fandango Gary Fandango / Gary Fandango
Problems with the concept of Heaven
the truly compassionate would leave heaven and volunteer time in hell to fetch water and alleviate suffering.

The irony of rewarding goodness with an eternity of indifference to horror is immense.

Gary Justis / Gary Justis
Thoughts on Memorial Day
I feel this inversely, see it through smoky glass. I so much wanted a father who's "light was splendid" -- what a beautiful line -- that I pretended it was true at times. This is how it is supposed to be. And I am so happy to read it today. No one on OS writes with such say-it-plain affectionate prose poetry as you do; it is in those amazing boys-on-the-plains posts you write, where everyone has a bit of Gary Cooper in them, and it is touching to see it turned to your father. I honor his service, and the light he brought into this world: you.
GaryBaumgarten GaryBaumgarten / GaryBaumgarten
Are blockade runners really about humanitarian aid?
I appreciate the methodical examination -- and the important acknowledgment of how complex this is, how partisan people tend to get. I am dismayed and wearied by demonization and over-simplification by all sides. Thanks for this. I learned a few things.

geezerchick geezerchick / geezerchick
Conversations in Yoga
"Leopard Shorts" he he.
But wow this is a lot of interesting perspective in such a short piece. You floored me in two sentences with the impact of metaphors on our accuracy and thinking.

gracielou gracielou / gracielou
Oh, This Child of Mine
Isn't it remarkable how we know our daughter is talking to a boy on the phone? "I know, right?" -- I could hear them say it. Good detail selection.
This: "This beautiful heart, born without the stops the rest of us carry and use as weapons." oh la la, gracielou
My thirty four (!) year old still puts her head on my shoulder, anywhere, any time, if she feels like it. sigh.
You upend me here. Lovely post.

greenheron greenheron / greenheron
Conversation with Corot, One Hundred and Fifty Years Ago
oh greenheron, you and I, soul sisters, we know how to render, we know what limn is, what a just-so line is, how it twists our arms and hearts when it goes right; when we catch up to our own work and beauty, days after a limp drawing rests and then reveals itself; and Corot Corot Corot you make me all lost syntax and grammar here and we know a secret we who can draw like this; few want to hear this our secret how writing and making fine lines is a gift inside us not of us not the deliberate show/off but the emergent property of art in us hand/eye/line just-so, restraint, feather tip of pencil ordinary pencil press down at the right time bold stroke how do we know? how do we just know? shhh yes it is in us it is unfair it is just in us we did nothing special to be special we were born with art in us i am you are we have this and then everyone can look! see! we are someday dead forever but these lines live something moved in Corot I see it is in you too forever in us forever oh big post oh plain pencil post just pencils just plain pencils and marble is built and carved just-so to house to house with grandeur paper, pencil, just so; no other ape can do it, and i surrender to the gift that swims thru me not me; whole me; you, too

grif82600 / grif
Angels hover all about you...You can relax now...
Calming, sweet music. Thanks for this.

Gwendolyn Glover  / Gwendolyn Glover
Seeing the Light
A meditation on light and art. I stayed on a farm in Belgium or a week in the 1980s. I know what you mean.
Beautiful post.

Gwool / Gwool
Admiral Thad Allen Is Long Lost Murray Brother
he he. good'n

Harry's Ghost Harry Homeless / Harry's Ghost
Billboards To Mock The GWB "Presidential" Lie-brary
Previously I have read your (brilliant) posts about homeless life, the shelter. I had no idea you could raft an essay with such skill and humor.
Reading the words "George W Bush Policy Institute" made me horselaugh.
What a joke, his mandating archives that are selectively available. He is still the decider about our mis-remembering, I guess. Feh.

Harry Knapp / Harry Knapp
Who is Marc Andreessen?
What a keen mind he has. An important reminder about his place in history, and why he deserves it. He still Gets It.
It looks to me like his skull kept expanding to accommodate his bigger brains.

HawleyR / Hawley Roddick
When iPhone Workers Are Worth More Dead than Alive
An important and sobering story. Our techno playthings come at a cost of misery, and debasing workers in Asia.
Worker's paradise my ass. Company towns are company towns, ideology not withstanding.
Piercing journalism. ferocious post.

Herron / Y Heron
Why I fell in love with Noahvose
oh goodness. What a complete love this is. Well, as complete as love gets.

this: "I watched you come as a sparrow would

A storm across the prairie. "

hiddenotlost hiddenotlost / hiddenotlost
Someone Other Than My Husband
I am at a loss to express myself about your piece. The best thing I have ever read on OS. As writing, as honesty in writing, as a sustained work of prose with a constant and compelling Voice.

You bare arteries and veins, but far beyond that: you give us the arc of relationships such that nearly every significant civilized norm is laid bare, every assumption about correctness in relationship is turned on the lathe of Real Life, exposing the essential shapes, the disturbing, ecstatic forms that move under our skin.

Brilliant, and true to the core. And as if the miracle of this kind of direct connection to the heart wasn't enough: the miracle of its economy is worth study, in writing classes and workshops.

I am haunted by this piece already, after a few hours of consideration.

I choose my relationship, every day, for 25 years, and have recently fallen deeply in love with my wife again. We want what we want.

Hillbilly Aunt / Aunt Shelle
Godpotter and the Ghost of the Door
Wotta post title!
Wonderful history. I lived in Colo for years, UCB, and love Marble the town.
And he moved his door. I love human beings. Well mostly. Most of them.

iamsurly / iamsurly
One Girl's Treasure...
An appetite killer, for sure. The again, it could control over-eating, Who wants to find that punim under the fruit loops?

idahospud44  / Dr.Spudman 44
Breakfast with the Maltese Falcon and Lunch with Atticus
Love me some Dash Hammett. I have read all his noir novellas and all his Cont Op stories, most more than once. It's a lesson in effective writing to read him.
And I like your bold sub-hed format here. Easy-breezy to read. Digestible road-trip parts, good regional history. (an Esotinian Dash movie?!?)
The Coen Bros connection is apt.
Break a leg with The Review!
I used to live in Missoula which also has a river in the middle of town. Yep, cool.
Have you been up the road to Lolo Pass? There are wild Hot Springs within walking distance of the Lochsaw River Road. No, I won't tell you where. We're too old for that stuff anyway.

imijis / Linda DeMerle
Where are you?

j buss /  jay busse
Criminals Writing Their Own Laws Dooms History to Repeat
US banking is a criminal enterprise. We must bust these trusts. Gimlet eyed accountants did it during WWII war profiteers, we did it to Standard Oil,we can do it again
I look forward to reading the Big Short. Sort of. Uneasy. Maddening.

Jeff Howe  / Jeff Howe
Such Is Life These Days... (Semi-GNS)
Looked in vain for the GNS here.

I hope for you and yours.

Jeremiah123  / Jeremiah Horrigan
In the Morning Kitchen: A Grand Mother Remembered
I am in awe.

I like your writing. Sturdy and funny and deceptively simple; that is: well-crafted.

But you pierce me with this. I see her squint thru the smoke and love you. I smell that bread, taste it, feel the chilly Buffalo morning. I know you; we've broken lesser bread together. And I can see, with this gem of a post, that boy, the slightly boyish startle and aw-shucks you STILL have, my friend.

The deference and quietude of you, the way you listen so well? Now I know some of the history of how-come.

Damn, Jeremiah, this is fine. So fine.

Bumpetty bump says my heart. I loved my Nana, too, is what it says.

You make me want to write something this good. Right now.

jimmymac1025  / jimmymac1025
Illinois primary skews democratic process
You amaze me. yet again I discover i don't really know the writers here like I think I do.
You are a good reporter. You build this steady and make the local politics universal.
And you checked your assumptions, reported the facts, contrary-wise. I guess you know this puts you half a parsec above pro journalists.

Joanne Jacobs  / Joanne Jacobs
Not everyone needs Algebra 2
eye-opening. I was formulating a polite disputation but you persuade me here. My two youngest daughters sailed thru A2 and embraced higher AP math -- so it skews my opinion. You make a good case for making our math training realistic.

JoanWalsh  / Joan Walsh

er, hi Joan!
Jocelyn Testes-Harder  / Testes-Harder
Drive politely!
I keep my hands at 10 and 2, watch for lane switchers. Ask my wife.
Hm. There's at least a half-entendre there. Maybe its you rubbing off on me. Ha! a full double!
Racing county teens is American, by gum.
And that wasn't me that time. You followed me and thrombled my beheissimus by mistake. There's more than one silver Focus you know. You owe me for the dental.
I am beginning to think your avatar name is a drollery.
john walker / john walker
Mayor's Blog, Stardate...
Seriously? An OS'r is a Mayor!?
How cool is that!
And from this it sounds like you know what you are doing.
My 2 cents: safety trumps sign dislike.
You write cogently. A pleasure to read.

Joy-Ann Reid / Joy-Ann Reid
The fall of Marco Rubio
What a schmeck Rubio is. No, not schmuck, schmucks are hapless, slobbish evil-doers. Schmecks are small-minded evil-doers. The paltryness of his political machinations win him this.
Such a clear-eyed, well-done piece of reporting this is.
"gonna feel weird" should have him disqualified out-of-hand. I remember when pols at least sounded semi-eloquent. What cruel ignorance he shows.

jsomethingk  / Saturn Smith
The Gulf Oil Spill: Worst-Case Scenario Now Even Worse
Once again you manage to best other journalists. I saw parts of this all week. But you tie it together like a pro -- AS a pro -- and add necessary perspectives.
An I am enraged at this. Nationalize Oil now, today!

Judy Mandelbaum  / Judy Mandelbaum
Israeli students draft plans for "Kurdish freedom flotilla"
Another piercing work.

The haplessness of us Jews, at times. This is inane, this Kurdish flotilla idea, and why didn't they see it?

JulietW  / Juliet Waters
Book/app review: The Good Man Jesus and The Scoundrel Christ
Doppelganger Christ and twisted revisionism, from a non-believer perspective. What's not to like?
Plus you point out he is a-theist, not anti-theist (not that believers usually get the difference). I like that.
And agree with Pullman: fundamentalists pervert the good of small congregations by politicizing faith.
Great post.

junk1  / junk1
OPEN CALL-the best and the worst-superlatives
OK I have scanned past most of these but I really like this OC response.
anti-bully --YES!
twat -- yep, not that as a guy  i can ever use it but the word forms the mouth nicely, as a word.
surf -- sigh
do it again -- yesyesyes, alas

kaseyleigh  / Kasey Everly
My Grandpa the Soldier: Reflections on World War II
I am so very glad I saw this.
My adopted father was a medic under Patton, from Normandy to war's end. If only he had found his voice he would not have drank himself to death.
I love the perspective in your grandfather's work, about soldierly compassion. I have read dozens of first person accounts, rather obsessively, and he writes the Truth, again and again. His resonant humanity comes through in every line.
You honor him your preface and give us a gift with his words.

Kate Gould  / Kate Gould
The Worst Books I've Ever Read
Why in the world did you read them, finish them? And why did I feel compelled to read this, to share your misery? what is the deal with bad writing?

It's like snot on a suede coat. We pick at it, fascinated, until every little awful flake is gone, leaving us satisfied and disgusted and rotating the sleeve, wanting more.

Kathy Riordan  / Kathy Riordan
George W. Bush, Facebook, and You
shudder. he still creeps me out so bad.

Keka  / Keka
Hekua Oya--the winds of "change"
Origami/thumb tack darts?!?
What a strangely  gratifying and heart-rending experience, to go thru the confiscated items with you, the survey of young lives, the weirdness of human beings you were witness to, framed by your Decision and departure. I could sit and quote back to you well-crafted lines and startling anecdotes but there are too many. This whole thing is an immersion into an ordinary bizarre world: our "normal life".
But the ending of this made me cry. I know, another weepy OS'r. It's not like that, Keka.
I was that boy begging for food in school. I won't go into it. My daughters will never know what this is, I made sure of it. But my mom was always gone, days at a time, and our cupboard was bare. It was the 60s so I acted all hippie about it -- but I wish I had gone to your school. Food is everything when you don't have it.
You describe your two goodbyes so beautifully, you make us understand them as rare persons. I am lifted up. I think I like you, a lot.

Kind of Blue  / Greg Thomas
So, Just What Has Been Going On Since I've Been Gone?
Welcome home, Greg.

A good look-around, this post. Strange how familiar certain people are here on OS. We've never met and yet this feels as comfortable as that old sweater, pulling in close and being caught up.

You remind us just how bad the aftermath will be with our young soldiers. AGAIN, goddamnit.

My only quibble: I can't see Michelle's Bachman's face anymore without needing an antacid. Perhaps we should all agree to use something less icky, like a picture of cave guano, over-grown with mold and fungus. We will all know to whom we refer.

Lainey  / Lainey
On Self-Deception, or Being Clarence Thomas
This. Is. Superb.

Really, Lainey, I am blown away by the care and craft of this. You articulate things I have felt and thought about him for a decade. His is full of anger. and has minimal self-awareness. Or perhaps acute self awareness of his lies and deceptions. We will never know for sure. But he is fascinatingly complex and tragic, as an American, a judge, and a 20th century black man who rose so far above poverty.

But he is not, never was, qualified to be on SCOTUS.

Just excellent, Lainey. You set a bar here.

LaRae  / LaRae Meadows
Gay? No Civil Rights For You. (Have a Problem With That?)
I read another piece about these poor guys. So good you posted this. It just baffles me how Americans, with so much, can begrudge one another.

latethink  / latethink
The Big Lie
I love Mary Astor.
And I love the breathless way you tell this. I feel like we just made tea, and you said, "Anyway.." and then launched into all this, just  for me.

Lea Lane  / Lea Lane
My Surprising Flirtation with a Naked Actor (repost)
First, nothing about should surprise us. If you posted 5 years from now that oh, by the way, you once rode on an orca at Sea World wearing a cowgirl outfit, we would say, yep, that's Lea.
Second, what would be surprising is if you DIDN'T flirt with him. "In it down to me bum", said by a stage door? is disarming.
WAIT! stop the presses -- Jude Law?!?
I will have to amend that first one: cowgirl outfit plus sparklers and a spangled hat

Leeandra Nolting  / Leeandra Nolting
UPDATE: The Fuck-You-I-Built-A-Goddamn-House Fund
neato peachy keen. Indescribably delicious. I like you even more now.

Lisa Solod Warren  / Lisa Solod
WHY Are We in Afghanistan? And Other Pressing Questions
Yes, that's me too, hunkered in the garden. I just can't stand IT anymore.
This is a rant of rants. It cuts so close to my bones I felt an itchiness half way thru, could hardly bear to finish it. Understand: you writing is so effective, I'm saying.
But I am maddened by it all. I have been de-friended by a handful of ultra-leftists here and on FB, some of them people I still like and admire, just for saying the middle east is vastly complex and maybe Weisletier and John Gray and other writers who criticize Israel but still allow for Israel to exist mught be worth reading. The hippie in me sings along still to Universal Soldier and I also understand the real-politik arguments for an  Afghan presence, viz a nuclear Pakistan. It's all such a mess.
Thank you for giving this all a voice. I fear too many are trying to relieve their frustration by jumping to Simple, to In or Out, As bad as it gets -- and it will get a lot worse i think, we are not excused from the Thinking table.
Look, my beans have grown a foot this week!

lissahoop / Melissa Miles McCarter
Bravo Tv's new show "Work of Art"
I have a daughter starting at FIT this fall so I was saturated with Bravo for the last 3 years.
I think most reality shows are soul-sucking monstrosities. The Biggest Loser redeems them all, flawed as it is.
But when I saw the trailer for this one my heart sank. The end of of 550 years of movement away from the commodification of art, flawed as THAT history has been.

lonbud  / Lonnie Lazar
My Life in 3, 2, 1...
Succinct and enigmatic.

lorianne  / lorianne
Being Of Sound Mind
hairless knuckles and this: "He’s probably screwing his way through the friggin’ Mormon Tabernacle Choir by now."
a good read.

LuluandPhoebe  / LuluandPhoebe
Fiorina & Whitman: Open Mic Night
a crisp snark and highly enjoyable. The hair remark is an exemplar of the Republican Political Woman's perspective on the universe

mabinogi  / mabinogi
Fake Facebook Friends.
This in a nutshell is what I enjoy so much about reading OS:
"Unfortunately, I'm also a non-confrontational intolerant bitch"
Also this is a good post about a weird new phenomenon. Ancient Sumerians didn't have these problems. They promptly forgot you when you moved from Babylon to Nineveh, even if you went to the same chariot-racing school. Cuneiform on clay tablets had an upside.

MadamRuth  / MadamRuth
Britain releases its X-Files
Pin-headed angel dancing, with an accent.
I experience triangular humming overhead all the time and I don't bother the home office about it. This is so rude of some Brits.
Wait -- Gary has a spread sheet??? Then it MUST be true!

Malusinka  / Malusinka
Five Books That Changed My Thinking About Race
I read two of these (Lee and Angelou), about 50 pages of GWTW. I read about Lucas' book.

I like the format here, filtering it through books.

My grandmother passes as white her whole life. She introduced Mockingbird to me when I was a precocious 5th grader. As an adult, getting her real story in bits and pieces, that novel gained added poignancy.

Mamie Chen  / Mamie Chen
Corn Salad Fit for Mr. Darcy
It was all made off-premises? Hmm. No, I guess I am not offended. Mildly surprised. It's a private label world, and we are all-day suckers.
The lust for luxury picnic baskets is surprisingly deep in me. Weird, that. You tap a vein.
Where was I? oh yes:  yum!

mamoore  / mamoore
Of Report Cards and What a Great Teacher Knew
This post requires a new word or phrase. "Charm" is too thin, too eager, "deeply charmed" is adverbial, so no good.
You give me an out-of-body experience here. No, not quite it. I feel my heartbeat too intensely.
See i am like your mother; have done this bizarre thing: I have kept all the art (and more) of all three of my daughters. I fantasize holding a gallery exhibit some day, a "what three girls did" thing. "how they came to be" through art.
And here you give me a gift I might never have in this world: to see through a daughter's eyes what a gift it is to have one's childhood, in documents.
My middle daughter graduates high school in two weeks, high honor roll, varsity athlete -- but shy her whole school life. You give me the most precious thing: a glimpse into her soul, into the depth of resonant possibilities.
I wipe away tears here. Thank you o thank you mamoore

maria heng  / maria heng
Moon Nights Pine Trees

You are a Writer. Through and through, down deep. And in a river of six am fluorescence -- where mystery gives way to plain light -- from your lovely and skilled hands.

You tear me up. You re-assemble all of us.

Lev Vygotsky, in "The Psychology of Art" (1925), wrote of Ivan Bunin's story "Gentle Breath". He explained how the story had 'an impact of lightness and breath' despite its sad plot because all of the details are moving in 'the opposite direction from the anecdote'.

I have marveled at this, as a writer, like a boy alone on a cliff with a special, multi-veined rock. Appreciating its beauty, wondering at its value.

With your "pregnant" moon, opening a description of terrible suffering, you give me instant clarity about what he means. With this whole piece you demonstrate literature that embodies his idea. In a post that should be sad and fill us with despair, you bring us to a ancient height, to sit and look at the pan-piped beauty of the wide world, where lumbering musk ox appear in the distance, haul in wheels of joy for our descent later, when we are whole again, and a child from the other side of the world hums our favorite song, ribs us, until we finally can't help it, we lay down our grief -- nearby -- and join in, providing the words, full-throat, to his eager ears to learn.

You transform your story in the art of your telling, and I know you, in that tawdry real world we share, so I know this is but a manifestation of what you achieve in life.

You add a year to mine with this beautiful work.

Mark Hopkins  / Mark Hopkins


Hi Mark!

Mark Pritchard  / Mark Pritchard
Huckabee's classic conservative state of denial
You prove that dissecting a genial windbaggy viper like Huckabee is actually worth doing.

marygrav / mary gravitt
I loved Phillips book on American Theocracy. I used it as a source on a long post on Domionism.

This is a Good post. I am surprised at how much of this I hadn't tracked. Thanks.

marytkelly / marytkelly
Shattered Dreams
This jumped out at me: "college students today score 40% lower in empathy skills than those 20 or 30 years older than them." -- I blame the compassion vacuum that is most of reality TV (No I don't include AI!)
Empathy requires comprehension, an ability to imagine the Other. I recently postulated this:
" Ignorance outpaces understanding as an inverse factor of comfort.
(Correll's Formula for Slack-jawed Belligerence Regarding Things Like Vaccinations and Evolution By Affluent Moderns; in short: Correll's formula)"
After reading this intelligent post of yours I think it needs a corollary:
"Empathy diminishes in direct proportion to Correll's formula"
I read but usually don't comment on your step-parent posts. I'll take the opportunity to say they are relevant to me and I love what you do.

Matt Paust / Matt Paust
Virginia was for white lovers... (repost Saturday)
Astonishing, new and sadly familiar. I know I am supposed to be an adult about this but sometimes history offers us things: the "Plecker/Trinkle" race laws?!?
1975, then 1979, before the last of this literally Nazi-styled law was utterly expunged?
But Bill O'Reilly said race is no longer a factor!
An excellent post, restrained even. You let the horrific zeal of racilasts and their enablers to speak for themselves. All the children of color growing up in such a state, having to emerge into an awareness that their debasement was ingrained in their state's legal system. I can think of one Virginia grave that should be disturbed, whose remains should be dumped in the bay.

Michael Fox / Michael Fox
My Kenyan Birth Certificate -- Revealed!
I want one!

MindiTheMagnificent / MindiTheMagnificent
In Case You Hadn't Heard.......
o yay!

And what a shana punim. Absolutely adorable

Misidiomas / Marcela in English
From our parents
ah Marcela. a gift to me, this day. love to you.

MissingK8 / MissingK8
on reflection, a poem
raw. and it works.

MJwycha / MJwycha
Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem play Phish
No! Are you kidding me?

We are amused.

 mm_motoyoshi / Michelle Motoyoshi
Can Atheists Be Spiritual?
Yes, emphatically yes.

I've struggled to write this several times on OS. I like your list. You convince.

I refuse to surrender rapturous feeling and ecstasy and connectedness just because I don't believe in the supernatural. All religious feeling is a subset of the human experience.


Moana / Moana
What happened when I emerged from under my rock
I admire this brave, forthcoming post. You are charming here. And I agree: the internet works, We are on to something good, mostly.
moistowlette / moistowlette
For Amy with love
"chairs out of popcorn" -- ha! I went to 4 art schools and those 4 words pretty much sum it up.
I am not surprised at the intolerance you descibe here. Well-educated brats are thus ever so.
I think colleges make a mistake sequestering kids in dorms the first year. It should be the opposite: you should earn the right to live with grad students. Freshmen should be asked to earn living and survive in the real world. The sooner they are purged of High School BS the better. Yeah, I know. Unrealistic.
This is a good post and you are brave to share your college writing! Braver than me.

Molly Lilly / Molly Lilly
I know nothing
o sweetie. I know who this is, and you bare your pain with eloquence.

You show you know the main thing: those we really love, we want them to have Good Lives.

I applaud your adulthood, publicly.

MoniqueC / MoniqueC
Mom in 1950
Kent was her name? My Nana's first name was Douglas. History is weirder than we realize.
You evoke the legacy of inadvertant neglect and family habits so well here.
I share a profound thing with you: we both wish we could have spent chum time with our parents, be children together. My father was physically abusive and cruel; it is the only way I can find the track f his heart, to imagine him a boy of 12.
I love your final picture. Fetching, wistful, lovely.

Monsieur Chariot / Monsieur Chariot
M. Chariot - 10 Utterly Captivating Books
some good leads, lovely reminders. Everything but Camille and Tolle for me. Merci, Monsieur!

Monte Canfield / Monte Canfield

Hi Monte! I like and admire you and your posts, even when we disagree about religion and how to discuss it.

Mortimer Hayden Smyth / Mortimer Hayden Smyth
What IS "Terrorism," anyway? No One KNOWS!
Vastly entertaining, love the CAFT, you are charming in the video, and SO articulate. And as to the point: like religious opinion, terrorism is a Useful Tool in the hands of those who would bend it to a purpose.

Mungular / Mungular
The Tapestry Series: My Bro
Charming end to end. My two youngest daughters are less than 2 years apart and have hilarious closeness so i take that comment as literally true: be close enough in age and you have a magic relationship.

mypsyche / mypsyche
I was the Kool-aid mom
This rates as one of the most moving and compact posts on OS ever.
I had to read it twice just figure out how you did it, how you packed so much into this relatively short space.
I decided this: it wasn't special craft -- you simply got out of your own way and told the story. Which is a miracle of craft in itself.
It's mostly the intensity of the story details, the way you invoke him in your waiting room, and the kool-aid mom idea, and the adroit way you position it all. Most excellent.

Myriad / Myriad
Canadian Liquor Police Bash Dan Aykroyd's Skull
o good night nurse. o christ in a holy bucket.

Less "'upthrust' and 'evident'"?

Do they really think ...I mean...o I give up.

Glad you posted this but how dismaying. Humans. Sheesh.

nadaholland / Nada Holland
Nada in Love: COME (Fiction Friday)
Fascinating; the formalism stripping them of sentiment: i like that.
I also like the complex layers of this whole post.
I like: "burning into the leg of my pants"

Nancy Davies / Nancy Davies 
Peace Out - or Thoughts on a Teenage Suicide
beautiful, moving poem.

thank goodness there is no Jesus, not really. No critical choir of clean angels, no judgment by smug, perfect beings over us frail monkeys. It is so damn hard to be human.

neilpaul / neilpaul

no posts?


newsflash / newsflash
face of gulf slick emerges...

NLQ / Vyckie Garrison
10 Lies I Believed About "Worldly Parents"
Because not having kids til you drop dead and then refusing normative worldly medical help for them makes baby Jesus cry.
EXCELLENT, deeply satisfying post. Love all the links (Mr. Deity!)
And yeah your are right, at the end there: arrogant know-it-alls include nonbelievers as a subset.

NoisyNora / NoisyNora
Winter Oasis: Chicago's Garfield Park Conservatory
the pink ruffled edges picture!
The delicate marble hands!

Norwonk / Norwonk
The Book Glenn Beck Loved So Much
yep, yep, yep and yep. Well done.

O'Really? / O'Really?
Customer "Service" Explained
If I were to write my response to this as it really occurred it would be something like this:
hahaha! haha! hmmm--hahaha! hahahaha! ha! hahahahahaha!
etc. for about 15 lines
I never had more fun being hopeless or abandoned
Oahusurfer / Oahusurfer
Life as a Slave in these United States
the photo: anger and resignation, side-by-side

Occam's Taser / Occam's Taser
Palin goes to Clinic for an Argument (Not Health Care)
Oh, the precision and aptness of this. She even Walks Funny, like life is a pageant.

odetteroulette  / odetteroulette
It's An Ending, Not A Beginning REPOST of ODETTEROULETTE
THIS: ""It's a demoralizing situation," said Aifaohfaoi'noo, wiping the slime from his eyes and rubbing it into his thorax." -- has never been typed or uttered before you created it. I know this with great certainty.
And "ironic" oil, in hell.

OEsheepdog  / OEsheepdog
Inside the Numbers: The Prolific Bloggers of Open Salon
The forgive-the-word synergy is too perfect: i am on a quest to make a post of a comment on every one of my favorites.

In this compact report you resonate much of what I have discovered: OS is enormous and enormously good. It is at once many things: a familiar place for good writers, a nurturing environment for new ones, a social community, a formal eZine, an writer extension (AAA team?) for Salon proper, a meet n greet/potluck. No one person defines it (though some try) and no one sets rules for what is or is not proper writing (though some try) .

Thus big thing I have discovered: it is like the marrow of the world,, It is international and seamlessly intimate, personal. It is a pure-d wonderment.

And the interface needs to be changed to meet the needs. We need accordions and auto tabs, and we need to each make our own choices about what modules and tools we want on our blogs, and the content therein. The stage should stay in place, sacrosanct. All that surrounds it should be customizable.

onvacation / The Biblio Files
Kindle's Robot Voice
OK the moment I read it I immediately thought: Bay-rake O-Bam!-aa.
Kindle robot voices used for Wrath of Khan is inherently funny.

Outside Myself / Outside Myself
Open Call~Words That Brought Me Tears~A Letter From Smithery
Well, you convince, or rather Smithery does. This is a love letter of love letters.

Tom Pantera Panther58 / Tom Pantera
Writing's not as hard as it looks

I like this on so many levels.

As a piece of candid writing. As a good essay demonstrating depth of knowledge. As a controlled polemic. As a deflation of the mystical view of Art. As a sharp jab at the post-modern obscurantists and their mis-use of florid, empty rhetoric.

Most of all: as a living demonstration of its subject. The prose is crisp and keen as a just-snapped head of Romaine.

PaulLev / Paul Levinson
New Threat to 1st Amendment from 'Protecting Cyberspace' Act
It's also ignorant. Getting access to records is one thing, but there is no "internet" to get control over.

Penrose / Penrose
Picnic in Purgatory Gulch, or High Side!
I've driven such cliff roads and old mining traces, in the Rockies, in 4 states. This brings such rides to life, vividly.

pontificatrix / pontificatrix
Prozac for the unhappy marriage?
what a pickle. The way you describe her as tendon-taut, wanting out of there, stays with me.

A look at reality we rarely get in the west. Thanks for this.

pretend_farmer / pretend_farmer
How to Dye Wool
THIS: "stare at the wool"
This describes an important early step in nearly every project of any kind I have ever started.
Also the "look at pretty wool" part.
Dang funny, pretend

Procopius / Procopius
The Political Divorce That Changed History
Wow! What a ripping yarn. I am usually immune to gossip journalism -- Al Gore's marriage does not interest me -- but this is a gothic story with weird details.
The description you give of Sam Houston's scarred and oozing body on his wedding night. Holy Fudd.

rabrown167  / Cranky Cuss
GNS: My New Office
I like this and not because my name appears in it without scandal attached.
I agree: I like the interwebs. They are a force for good. / john blumenthal
A Few Questions about Political Correctness
I get this. 'Tis a fine line we tread even discuss-essing it.

What if one wants to be a defiant person, always daring oneself and others to go beyond their "limitations" -- but lack the chutzpah? Does that make one challenge-challenged?

RavingBits / RavingBits
Foodie Tuesday: Eat like a whore!
i am educated, entertained and made hungry

Real Live Preacher / Real Live Preacher
I kick the Mac's ass at chess!
There are 20 reasons I like the post A LOT. I see myself all over how you describe your relationship with chess.
But also this is just ferociously good writing. "Savage beauty". "FOR LINUX". Imagining the laser beams.
I am a smart guy, I think, and in real life I usually see a few moves ahead. But it takes a special kind of brain for chess, something I always felt frustrated about lacking.

ReikoEoh / Reiko Eoh
2010 BP
It took me a moment to get this. I'm slow sometimes. or maybe our times are just so perverse and counter-logical I was looking too deep. A fine cartoon, Reiko. / rita shibr
Open Call: Words that Can Bring Tears ...
a good selection.
"I kneel in the nights
before tigers
that will not let me be."

"chips of blinking things"

Rob St. Amant / Rob St. Amant
Repost Saturday: Men earning more than women
I do so love a careful parse, and you reliably deliver. Your reveal of Surgeons viz nurses is a good example of this.
There's a difference between trust and faith. I tend to trust your work.
I have read in several sources over the last two years about the steady headway of women in hard sciences.

Robin Sneed / Robin Sneed
Take Stock: Salon Media Group, Using Your Content For Free
Money? for writing? I' don't quite follow...I can't grasp the concept at work head hurts.

royjimenez / Roy Jimenez
What's wrong with this picture?
fuckety fuck fuck.

It's time for US Congress to tell these bankers and oilmen and royal gonifs to fess up, pay up, shut up and go away forever.

Tar and feather, I keep thinking.

Samantha / Audrey Ohley
You Want Me to Work in Payroll? (Now, Read by the Author!)
This is so satisfying. It makes me want to write something like it, to turn tables on someone, for the bloody good fun of it as a writing romp.
You go beyond exercise here. You risk life and limb (well, potential employer's good opinions anyway) by pointing out painful obviousness.
Can't stop laughing at this: "therefore you have had in your offices today a literal parade of lion tamers, acrobats, truck drivers and firemen, none of whom know anything about payroll, but some of whom may at least be qualified to work in this one ring circus you’ve got going here. "
sampost /  Sam Post
A few notes from the navel-gazing-sphere
Hm. Anniversary, writing a play --wait: you took her recycling AND the garbage to the street!?
New delivery guy, you like summer. You walk 10k steps a day? seriously? I am impressed for reals. I walk a shi-tzu every day.
Some other visit your mom. I like this. I like the whole post. Droll and intimate without being cloying.

sax / Steven Axelrod
Owners: Cop Shop Morning
Peppermint schnapps and reefer makes sense, in a way.
I like this "the reek of fertilizer from a ploughed field"
I like the way you help us know the narrator via his opinion of the superintendent. Shrewd, that. One's a cop, but the other a martinet.
You kept my interest.

scanner / scanner
The Autobiography of Mark Twain
I can't wait! I have a Twain collection and an early release of some of this material, in a miscellany. A complete intelligent parsing is manna from non-existent heaven.

You write so casually, it conceals the craft you have, scanner. Reading you is like being grabbed in the halls by the one guy you can stand to eat lunch with most days, and it pays to stay and listen, Your information is fresh, you don't waste our time, and give the natural storyteller's illusion that it's just a ramble, while you fill us, happily,  with who you are and educate us.

(twofer, because of scanner's dudefulness)

Atheists, Get Out of Town~
because ordinary, moral people who don't ask wrathful almighty sky pixies to help them get one of those cool new Mustangs with bluetooth while forgetting about the kids in the Congo who have their hands cut off? make Baby Jesus cry


Scarlett Sumac / Scarlett Sumac
See Jane Run: My Technicolour Muse (poetry repost)
I groove on this. Entwining school primer language with finessed lines.
This: "where flesh and trust
play.            "

sciencechick /  sciencechick
DWI update
Painfully honest.
I think you should give us a drinking driver class post, and...wait: you went to high school w Glenn Beck? oyez. tellit, tellit.

scottros / Scott Rosenberg
Memo to Steve: We already are a nation of bloggers
You tell 'im! We might be an inferior order as bloggers but we are a TALENTED inferior order! Some of us have even learned to eschew adverbs.
Besides, professional journalism's shining hour has not been the last 9 years. As it were.
And we are the future: 1 billion Voices, homo sapiens sapiens limnus. Damn fine post.

scrivend / Dave Scriven
"Religion and a Dead Man Named Jesus"
I will defy expectations and say this is a credible distinction about your faith. It is, precisely, what you believe.
Happy summer!

SeattleK8 / SeattleK8
On Worry and Wingflapping
Oh, sweetness itself, your distinctions about and identification with the mother. "She observed  circumstances and decided to ignore the danger." Defines sturdy parenting.
And I feel you in all the rest. I say hurrah to living our own lives! Dang kids.

SFine really / Sandra Stephens
The Ruining
A bitter pit, this. Full of suspense, too.
Crawdad mudhouse: I know about those, growing up in Kansas and the Ozarks.
And what mystery you create here.

SFreeborn / Dr. Susanne Freeborn
A View Into the Woods Renewing
What luscious views you had.
I mourn all cut trees.

She Blogs / She Blogs
How I Got Uninvited To The Club
What a hoot. Suburban --excuse me, "little town" -- marm-ism, to a turn.
Bunco indeed. They are everywhere. The costumes change but the snip-snip goes on and on. Good dissection, She.

siobhancurious / Siobhan Curious
Ten Wonderful Things, Part Ten: "Thank You"s
Common civilities are not common. Sincere, enthusiastic appreciation is rare. Weird, that. We have so much, we act like it's legacy, entitlement.
I like reading this, someone who notices appreciating someone who notices.

skeletnwmn  / skeletnwmn
What if God WAS One of Us?
Well if those old Books are to be believed he would be the busiest and most successful multi-tasker, like, ever!
Also I would get his address, go to his house, and give him what fer! For the Congo, my kidney stones, most of those reality shows, etc.

Snappy Sam / Skip Williamson

No posts?


Spaceman's Hairdo / Spaceman's Hairdo
Gotta find some way outta here...
Rates as one of the most intensely and carefully hyperlinked posts EVER on OS.
I think the reason we don't see other civilizations out is space is this: when they reach our level of achievement they go virtual, look inward.
Sparking / Sparking
We are New 'Foster' Parents! (with Photos)
Mazel tov!
I want to do this. I want chickens!

StephenMcGuire  / Stephen McGuire
Sunday Funnies: Do Not Try This At Home
Two upstairs bathrooms, four kids and your mother came too. This should be good.
600 trips...dooflotchey..."Bible Tire"?!? ( do they sell diehard briss sets?)
OK you set the only-one special screw down in the sink so it wouldn't get lost. The suspense is killing me, but I'm smiling. like at Buster Keaton.
Ahh. So satisfying, and the feckless sledge is a good touch. Why is it guys love shim stories so?
(btw: when you missed and got her with the sledge, did your mother come to?)

Steve Blevins / Steve Blevins
A Beautiful Heart
Steve, this is why I write on OS , why I read on OS, why I stay in spite of rwnutjobs and flames and foolishness. You are why, now.

This is singular.

I know his woman, she was my Nana. She cared for me, simply. Abused by my father, abandoned at 11, she filled my unfurnished life with books and goodness.

You write well, Steve. Every line builds upon the other, and the portrait you paint of her life, fer devotion, her physicality, is indelible.

As with her, you reveal yourself by describing another: a professional who takes life personally, who knows soul when he sees it, who drinks deep from Good and True and is instructed, uplifted by it.

I am a non-believer, but i wish with all my heart there was a heaven, and that she and her son were there now, delighting in the buttoning of his shirt. Thank you for the great gift of this.

Steve Klingaman / Steve Klingaman
Health: If we spend so much why don't we live longer?
There's stats and damns stats and then there's stats that tell a story, deployed with finesse and deftly placed in the ac of well-argued narrative. Yours is the latter. These numbers hould make us as furious as Zeros at Pearl Harbor, and we did it to ourselves. Well, allowed it to be done.
The colloquial ease whith which you interleave these numbers is impressive.
I follow with dread the obesity case. But your 1.2.3 still surprised me. And resonated. Thinking back to the health care I have endured or sought out for the last 8 years, only once did I find a proactive doctor. And she was let go from budget cuts.
The US is like a Lifetime movie, where the small Missouri town is controlled by the local honkytonk bully. He pounds the table -- his only exervise -- and bellows More McManwiches! Siddown, yer blockin  Kendra! And we all comply. Well, too many of us.

Still Loving It / Natalie K. Munden
My 10 Answers: Pilgrim's Open Call
Selected responses:
for 2. I am probably not gay but cunt makes me uncomfortable as a Word. It sounds wrong. I like Twat (say it! See?) but as a gentleman the closes I can come in company is twaddle.
6. YES! Barking of any kind. Having a shi-tzu is a daily zen experience.
9. But  would you attend the testicle festival?

Susgail / Gail Walter
Endless Lunch With Our Men In Africa
A progressive who has paid attention would be hooked hard by your opening. Old-style journalists, and Africa beat vets, and you get to chat with them.
And now I sit, so satisfied. You reported this well. It's rare to find an essay by either gender that is comfortable with old-school male ability. There's no macho nonsense in this. I mean men who did well, know things, paid attention. If a veteran woman reporter had come over -- if she was known to have chops -- it would be just as well-told about them
This is hard to explain.. Maybe you just get what I mean. I like people who know how to do things, whatever their plumbing. If it's male reporters o women surgeons, the joy of breathing their fine acuity and memories is a treat. The maleness or femaleness of them is just what's real.
You bring them to life here. I had an uncle who could repair any truck or earthmover. He resonated it from a chair.
Good post.

SweetScandalousSkeptic / Amanda G
My discharge
No refrigerated creamer?!?

The horror. The horror.

___a twofer for Amanda because she is a Skeptic! ____
___and has noodly FSM in her banner_____
Coulter's Angels
Not Vietnam, and not no indochina neither!
Where does Putin go?
Solstice is a spinoff of Baby Jesus day?
huge entertainment, Amanda

T-Bucket / T-Bucket
A Birthday Wish From Our 8 Year Old
First: Mazel Tov for that 4.o and all!
Then: her letter when 8 is so earnest and loving and hilarious.

Tam O'Tellico / Tom Cordle
"Fine raiment or the worm?" Yep.

tequilaanddonuts / Deven McKay
Karaoke on the Edge
This made me laugh til my cheeks hurt.
"Me: "This slip is blank."" I teeter from my chair.

A comedy masterpiece for my book of OS memories!

Teramis / Deborah Teramis Christian
Socialism, Fascism, and Obama
First-rate post.

I have been carrying this argument forward to several recent posters on OS, some of whom I admire. You do a better job than I.

I particularly like the distinctions about what people in truly fascist environs think of US using that term, and the symbolic/normative/popular culture understandings vs the accurate & historical definitions.

Precision MATTERS. Bush et al were able to laugh off absurd claims of his fascism -- and experiment with Authoritarian changes here and Totalitarian/Corporatist effects abroad -- because it was so easy to make such claims look ridiculous.

Now the Teaparty right makes the same mistake.

We are a profoundly Nationalistic, Corporatist, and selectively Authoritarian deliberative democratic republic. No one, not even Classical Athens, was a genuine Democracy. Until and unless we have brownshirts beating minorities with impunity on our streets, and meet a half-dozen other significant criteria, we are just as profoundly NOT fascist.

R and L hold on to these terms like fetishes, rating someone's correctness by their willingness to also mis-use such broad, banal brush strokes.

Progressive change and preserving our rights-based system is far too important to waste energy with such useless litmus tests on each other. Or to diffuse our passion with hysteria, and the inevitable, tiresome, circa 1969, skull n' mushroom cloud imagery (cough BBE cough) that is supposed to "rile us up".

The world and its advantage seekers are far more subtle and ruthless than that. They have media budgets and spin doctors and Fox.

Stalin, the numeric winner in the history's worst sweepstakes, was a Nationalistic Totalitarian, not a Fascist.

And as Tom Cordle and Feral Conservative here on OS correctly point out, Corporate Socialism is the real socialist threat, not the beleaguered poor getting cheaper Simvistatin.

Yours is a fierce, cogent, and intelligent post, Deborah. So glad I found you.

(Now please tell me you are theosophist in just an ironic way, so I can favorite you? Crowley and Blavatsky were first-order cons and charlatans. Oh heck, I will favorite you anyway. This piece is that good.)

The New Number Two / Damion Chaplin
The Top of That Hill
Taut, lean and well-done

the ranting boomer  / the ranting boomer
Keka's Open Call and Living the Dream
Sweet and tender reflection

the squirrel / the squirrel
Impressions of me.
Ha! "A neurotic, agitated Yogi the Bear."
The parsing of suck, and how customers obsess about it.
Determining the best place to smear boogers.

You have a preternaural ear, and the ability to remember and type it, squirrel. You and Denese M and Con and me , someday, on a porch with drinks. Sigh

thebloggesd /  thebloggess
I am worthy
You're darn tootin you are (if not your own horn, as it were.)
(parse that sentence, i dare you.)
This was touching writing and funny.
As a half-assed Buddhist i know you are inherently worthy blah blah. But your writing earns you quantifiable worthiness. in extremis.
Plus your hair will look nice, later, after that sets. Don't over-comb.
Extra points for Wilfrid Brimley Minotaur, which should have gotten OS cartoon of the year.

trilogy / trilogy
My Obsession Before Open Salon: Genealogy
I have an off and on obsession about genealogy too. You make me want to drop everything and go those sites and resume my quest. I envy you the riches you found. My search will reveal far more polyglot and sad results. But I still want to know.
You came from a cool place

tysonkoska / tyson koska
“New Atheists’” Bad Rap
Count me among the number.
Some confuse, deliberately or not, anti-theist with a-theist. I am only rarely anti-theist, from frustration (about many of the things on your good list).
A definitive list, it is.

Unbreakable  / Unbreakable
My Name is Unbreakable and I Am an Unrepentant Smart-Ass
What a Voice. Dish it, sister.

v. seijo / vanessa seijo
My Father
"stories of indifferent headstones" -- now there's a line. They are all indifferent, and all mute, in need of a storyteller.
You bring him to full life here for me. Mason, gardener, laughed a lot, all the good and right things. And true love? Lucky Vanessa.
As a father of three daughters I wish I could promise it didn't matter to him, that trampling. But from all you say here, it didn't matter more than you, and the tangerine tree.

vera war / vera war
The Easter Egg Hunt
Not hunters, just treasure gatherers. I like that.

Verbal Remedy / Denise Montgomery
Your Horoscope
I am on the cusp of virgo and libra so i went out to the car and popped the hood and gas pus went everywhere.

If that had happened on the highway it would have ended badly. Your astrology saved my life. I have to go mop the drive now. But thank you so much!

vixie66 / Vikki Warner
Holy Land and the Brass City

and you write with laconic insouciance. GREAT opening sentence; um, divine details. what. a. place.

and whyowhy indeed do we Amuuricans insist on doing it over again and again, until all is mudgrey and mall-ic?

terrific piece.

voicegal  / voicegal
Re-learning to Wait
I want to laze in Greece with the burning intensity of a thousand suns, to stroke and ply the wine-dark sea in the the temple by the moonlight wah-dee-doo-dah.
Spraying cats. Ha!
You transport me.
This: "I am re-learning that there is always a wait, even between every exhalation and inhalation."
Writer Adam  / Writer Adam
Forget celebs for a minute--I saved a poodle tonight

Good on ye, mate.
You were a 12-year-old with honor. You give me hope.

Writer to the Stars Writer to the Stars / Writer to the Stars
Fine as bat's hair...

I like the finely-written and soul-tired swirl of it. Teeters on tragedy, but comedy after all. Sort of.

The first sentence made me chuckle, audibly.

And I know this in my scots-irish genetic bones. For what it's worth, I married into a Jewish version of it too. ("So? From what? DO something! Then you'll have something to really be tired about!")

yekdeli yekdeli / yekdeli
Teetcherlaydee addresses bullying...yes we do care...
By telling this personal story you make the bullying issue intimate and universal, too.
OK. But you tear me up. This boy wanted his life to go right. He did a terrible thing. He was bullied. You make it all believeable, you don't romaticize or embelish.
I hope you keep doing as you did for this boy, and improve from it, as you (clearly, here) see fit.
Last year I saw Peter Yarrow in an intimate benefit concert setting, for his organization against bullying, "Operation Respect". ( Let me add it to the worthy links you provide. Thank you for this



This was my journey through OS, catching up. What I have learned so far:

• I am not the best writer on OS.
• OS is full of amazing talent and intense variety
• OS writers are neurotic, needy, ego-driven, and brilliant, and a joy to behold, en masse, one after another.
• I have pretty good taste
• Some writers I thought I favorited years ago? I did not. I have no explanation for this, and apologize to anyone who thought it was deliberate.
• I am an ass at times. Some say often.
• A lot of people who comment pretty regularly on my posts are sorely neglected by me.
• This is a sobering and thrilling exercise; I had not one single negative experience reading ANYONE.
• I have a lot to learn about writing

I keep my promises.  I can now post again

If you think this means I will now go back and read everything everyone ever sent me on PM? I am not quite that neurotic. (shrug, sheepish, apologetic)

Some of this was painful: some little part of me thought I was, well, pretty special...

But I am part of something splendid. OS is better than I knew. It's like reading the soul of the world. Here, above, to my delight and perhaps yours, is what I found, and heartily recommend.


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Omg you take the idea of "what goes around comes around" VERY literally! I am stunned, impressed, and more than a little concerned for you. Here, have a bacon burger...
you are a wonder. and wonderful. and those things you said you had learned, for instance, the first four? ditto. i am constantly amazed at the depth and the writing skill at this place.

i was one (you know) who said i didn't think you could do this. boy, was i wrong. thanks for all of it, greg.
Oddly, I feel a bit left out and yet I am touched by yet another piece of yours. Perhaps I simply live in a world of my own.
You're a generous friend, Greg. I am trying, through a week's worth of illness, to get here and do what I can to promote my fellow writers and offer up the same love and encouragement I've been given.

This place has become to mean a lot to me in a short period of time. It's having fellow writers like you who make it worth coming back even with the crazy Spam Kitties, scary/meanie posters and some of the other negatives. OS is an overwhelmingly positive place to be.

All the lessons you've learned so far...oh, I'm so there. Except for the stroke meds, I'm so there.
I see my name!! Now I'm beaming!! We share a lot of the same favorites, though (like yours) my list is constantly growing. It's a nice problem to have.
Greg. Thanks for the excellent post. I have been trying to learn the ways of OS, specifically related to comments and responding to them. This post was what I needed.

I have taken more seriously my own commenting. I also have tried to respond to those who have commented.

You, Sir, are a truly outstanding man.
Jonathan: thank you. and added as favorite; I have long liked your politics and clear way of expressing ferocious ideas

And in your latest on Malawi Gay rights you use the word "suasion"! (

(because engagement parties make baby Jesus cry?!? excellent, Jon)

Nikki: YUM! bacon burger, Stern-style!!! thanks

femme: you and 3 others. I feel so much less pathetic, having started this, but it turned into a wonderment. I have always tackled it hit or miss, commenting and favoriting. Reading so much has made me immensely proud to be part of this community, this OS. I mean, damn, we're GOOD.

anna1liese: resolved. See post, updated, above. You made it easy for me, writing an unflinching portrait of motherhood. I undid, the step-, just now. Seems just.

Kat: I finally understand what Cat and a few others were doing, the joy they felt at sponsoring and advocating. I would quit my day job and live on sustenance just to read, comment, dozens a week -- and earn the right to post on OS once a week.

Yes! Overwhelm me, positive OS; drench me, pierce me with precise and compelling prose and poetry!

Vanessa: my advice: avoid both stroke and its meds. thank you

Bellweather: you and I have a special connection: I was able to pay it forward with you when you first came here, but it was luck of the draw (and your good first post title). It would have taken 24 \hours for SOMEONE to promote you.

My list is out of control big. But I no longer see it as a problem.

RARobertsJr: we honor each other with close reads. We can't always do it, time-wise.

I heartily recommend EVERYONE on this list. thank you out standing in my field, collecting lightning bugs! thanks!
What Nikki said, except for the bacon burger. I leave that between you two.
This is excellent, Greg! I really appreciate your work. The only thing I disagree with is your note that you are not a good writer - I have enjoyed many things you've written very much! Thanks for the great contributions you make to this community!
This is my new reading list and I'll be better for it, I'm sure. What a wonderful tribute to the incredible writing that is here on OS. You included. And you made me beam as well.
You may not think you're the best here, nonetheless, you're still in the pantheon.

Humans, sheepdogs, squirrels, weasels, but no baboons. It's speciesism, I tell you. Speciesism.
Aww, Stim. If not for you, there'd be no us. Have a banana, bubba.
I have just now read this piece again in the light of day and realized the enormity of what you are attempting. I didn't mean to sound peevish last night and sorry if I did. My own edit button wasn't on when I wrote it, I guess. I am grateful that you took the time to go and read my last piece given your self made task here. Many thanks for such a generous post.
Bonnie: no excuses, no guilt! This is my selfish OCD whatsis, my need to find balance when I feel too out-of whack. thank you

Padraig: see, you are one. Someone I have read and enjoyed, being a half-assed buddhist myself, and imperfect compassion-ist. I will amend all.

Gracious AND humble (he he) thanks

Matt! it's a failing of mine, one I can't indulge much anymore.

Kit: well, i didn't actually say I WASN'T a good writer...

thank you.

LadyHistory: Yours sounds more serious than mine. I am left with a sometimes stutter, and some shakes. Yay to recovery!
I am a recovering ass. thank you

Maria! yes it is a great list!!! (beaming back!)

Stim: pass that nectar, Aphrodite. Say, have I ever told you you look l just like...Hey! Hermes! Not so fast!

Yes OS is a Zoo. An open air veldt.

qiasdjkh askdjlk: ah, what compendium would be complete without you or one of your ilk!
I like your line: "You don't miss it! Ah! Ah!" You are too kind.

anna: naw, it went like this: "anna! I like her! I never favorited her?" (goes, looks, finds a gem of a post, adds to list)

And I wish, again, I could do this full time for three days. I have decided just to add to this post, incrementally, then make a PM to all. Saves me time.

Now I am off to protect my phony baloney job and earn some money!
I'm like "wow!" & "huh?" nice post, great effort.
This is an incredible endeavor, my friend. And a great service to all of us since we get the benefit of your reading and comments about writers we may have missed. Wow.
Greg, this is a noble gesture. Thanks for doing it. We can all use a kind gesture.
Greg, you continue to grew in my amazement, which means you're either growing or revealing more of your talent with each post. Your mention of the stroke - as I recall, it happened awhile ago. That is one helluva wake-up call. I totter along in relatively good health, taking meds for type-2 diabetes and feeling age eat away at my physical vitality, and there are times when I think all that's left that's worth anything is what's in my head, that it's the only place where growth is still possible.

You are one amazing, encouraging example - not just for fading reprobates such as me, but everyone who follows your blog must sense, if they don't see it outright, the powerful, burgeoning light that comes from this place and gives OS an exciting promise that brings folks here as moths to the flame.

What you're doing now is heroic. Epic, herculean heroic in its kindness and as a touchstone, a rallying point for all who are here to see a humanity that's as good as it gets, and that keeps getting gooder.

You are an exemplar, sir. You are The Exemplar, and may you live long to write and teach and prosper.
This is an impressive collection and you are obviously a thoughtful reader.
I have the same experience you mention where I think I've made some people favorites ages ago who I have not. Don't know what that's all about.
I find it impossible to keep up with deserving posts, much less contribute as much as I once did. The site has gotten better with time, despite the departures of many good writers. Much better.
Holy bejeweled cheeses, Greg.

You have more discipline in your pinkie than I do in my own body and seventeen other random bodies, as well.

I am gobsmacked.
from all you've gone through, grown through, from your father to your daughter, the pain and come out on the other side with kindness and empathy in your heart...and further, to deliver it—whether it's in your own writing or in the comment gifts you give to others—this shows a person of character, one to exemplify. Thanks for the model Greg.
Greg, I don't mean to distract, but aren't you supposed to be a very busy bee planning the Montauk Writers conference right now? and aren't I supposed to be jealousing about not being in CT this season? A++ on the very complete post including your favs, you are off the hook of your promise, now scoot! You have a lot of work to do buddy! (and so do we all, so do we all - you've inspired us here)
A twofer, thanks Greg. I had a threesome one time that wasn't half this good. (if that makes sense)
You know, sometimes people comment on YOUR comments - you're that good!
Greg, This is an ambitious project. That's what I like a man of his words. Hey, do we get to recommend which one you read?? I think I've posted a lot if trite shite of late ...
I'm sorry about your mother, and I wish you the best possible health.

This is an amazing work in progress. I put it through Readability and then copied it into a Word document so I can work through the list as time permits. Can't measure up to your achievement of reading so many but will be able to make informed choices thanks to you.
So many OS writers out there. I recognize some, and will have to check out the others. Thank you for this generous list.
There is something very seductive about a man who keeps his word...this is great Greg!
quite remarkable...I've never heard of anyone doing this before.
What a tremendous amount of time, energy and thought went into this.

You may be like me... I go in spurts. Hey, no laughing.

Thank you for doing this and, at times, liking my work.

This new features on OS allowed me to see this post. I miss most of yours as we post opposite times.

Your post appears meant to unite OS. I applaud you for the attempting to unite us.
You sir, might be a literary bodhisattva. What a lovely task to set. I will try to follow you around, reading.
Given that you are a fantastic writer yourself, being placed on this list humbles me to my core. Thank you. And I'm blown away by your project.
Greg.Number One,you are a stunning writer.
Number Two,you are a stunning writer.
Number 3....etc etc.etc etc
Number four,you are one of my favs as well. Here is why.When I read your work,I usually talk out loud to my computer screen.....I say things like "Are you kidding?Whaaaaat? Oh my God! How the fuck did he get to be such a great writer."As I told you before...then I have to stop reading your work because of bad jealousing.I feel very full to the brim when I read your work and sometimes a little drunk in a good way with your wordplay.I learn from you and I have not been the best of students.Blessings for your health and heart.
Incredible gesture, and the timing was perfect (on this end). My spirits needed a lift. Thanks.
Thank you Greg, first I am honored to be on anyone's list let alone someone who I feel is an amazing writer himself. Second, I was hoping to have up something you would like when you got to me... Bukowski is a worthy one to have found there... Thank you Greg.
You are amazing, and I just love your comments. They are so thoughtful. You make it evident that you really dig in to the piece before you comment.
This is a monumental undertaking...
Holy!.....Greg, thank you for your kind heart, good soul and hard work.
All the best to you.....G

This post should serve as a primer on exactly how to graciously comment on others' works.

Just another thing you've mastered on OS.
G'dalmighty, Greg. This is truly ambitious. I consider myself the lousiest of commentators on OS; partly this is due to grim time constraints, partly it's due to being a freelance print writer. Being a freelancer is like dropping stuff into a big hole, never to hear a word more except for yeah or nay. I'm still getting used to the great generosity of OS, while coming across as rude, or at best, as having some kind of writerly Asperger's Syndrome. Anyway, you really did it here, and I'm humbled.
oh my goodness what a list of wonderful writing, by a most wonderful writer, to boot! How many times can I rate this? Only once? Well, ok... but do know your friendship is priceless and I rate it far above rubies! muah, Greg.
Wow - what an enormous undertaking. I agree with you that OS is simply an amazing place chock-full of undeniably fine writers. I am humbled to be on your favorites list, Greg, as I consider you one of the finest of the fine.
Thank you.
Commenting again in protest of not being allowed to rate again. And because I cannot stay quiet. Not only is your writing incredible (as food addict says - you get us "drunk" on your fine wine of words), your comments themselves are works of art, works of the heart and a real fine critical intelligence. Thank you for what you have given me, and for the example of excellent and generous encouragement and tribute you give so many fine writers here. I am honored to be included. By you.
Wow! That's an enormous amount of time.

(I really have to work today! Really! But I want to read every one of these posts!)
Thanks for the inclusion, Greg (R)
You are the Comment God, the Zen Master of Open Salon, the Jedi of the jeremiad. I bow down. I am not worthy. And I hear you say, "Read, Padawan, read; the response will come if the heart if open and the mind is keen."
Quite a tour de force!
Greg, I'm honored to have made your list. Needless to say, this collection is a keeper. I can't wait to get started.
What a labor of love very wonderful of you!!!

You are aware, I trust, Greg, of the Correllscan program someone (to whom I am not privy) is using to parse these generous and insightful comments to establish a list of your preferences in descending order, based on length of comment, which post you chose to comment on and certain key words and even verbs, syntax and punctuation idiosyncracies that appear in these comments. I tell you this not to encourage any additional stress to the herculean effort you are undertaking, but actually to help relieve the unnecessary-yet-teeming concerns that might be bubbling up from within your cosmic soul that some folks here - except those who are not included at all, of course - may be wondering wondering wondering... The prioritized list, with automated comments, should relieve much anxiety all around, and put your mind to rest that the wondering may cease. Should cease, I should say, because there will always be some who are never satisfied, as well it should be.

Oh, don't bother with the "no good deed goes unpunished" thing. We're a loving community here, and all is forgiven that can be forgiven and that that cannot can be jettisoned as a sacrifice to Booblesby, the god of insatiable unforgiveness, whom no one worships.
Oh, the generosity! Thank you for this.
I just saw this (I'm a little behind, too!)...oh my lol you've been busy!

Thanks for the shout out :)
If only scientists, engineers and other problem solvers working on the gulf oil disaster could be as energetic as you, Dear Man. R