Commentary

Putting the Brakes on the Malheur Miscreants

Editor’s Note:  After 41 days of occupation, the standoff no longer stands.  For an update by Jake Klonoski, please scroll to the end of this post.   Saturday, I sliced into a medium rare steak hot off the grill. Smothered in garlic, salt and pepper, it was delicious. The evening’s news rambled in the background. When the news anchor turned to an Oregon report about a group of armed men still holding the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge hostage, my blood pressure jumped a []

A Single Commonality in Most Faiths

I often discuss taking the high road in these matters. That is no easy task. A personal analogy would be my desire to hike trails that traverse hills and mountains, and then to have my knees fail me. This is so personally frustrating. It’s as though I can not reach the heights that I seek. And, yes, it makes me angry.

Why I Love My Pricey Juicer

The bargain juicer literally exploded while I juiced grapes! A centrifugal juicer, the juicer’s strainer basket/shredder disk dislocated itself, blasted through the plastic top cover like a terrorist’s bomb. Then the shredder disk rocketed into the air, spun like a UFO, landing 20 feet into the living room. Grape remnants stuck to the kitchen ceiling, the dining room chandelier and cabinets—about 10-feet west—and some plastered the TV screen in a protective cabinet.

New Year’s Resolutions, or Facing the 7 Deadly Sins

The seven deadly sins? Well, yes. Are we not trying to improve the basics in our life and cease and desist with at least one of the deadly seven: pride, envy, anger, sloth, greed, gluttony and lust?

When I thought about this annual listing of how I can become better person in 2015, every improvement linked to one of the seven.

California’s Rich Field Moment

…the moistened soil–autumn-sun warmed–seduced dormant seeds awake. A resurrection of green slipped through the layer of fallen leaves and dried grasses. By morning a thunderous roar filled the canyon. The Kaweah River no longer struggled to trickle through plump gray boulders.

Joni Mitchell, “In Her Own Words”

I knew I made the right choice for my next book to read when I opened to the introduction and it read, “One November night in 1966…the coffeehouse was a dark hole…on the lit-up stage…stood a girl who must have picked out her miniskirt at the Salvation Army…she turned to face the empty seats and, leaning closer to the mike she strummed a succession of chords with a surprisingly assertive hand…and then she started to sing…”

Life & Toes in Drought

See this map? See the blood-red area of California along the coast? That’s where I live. It’s Exceptional-droughtland. And less than a year ago, our local community water providers left Pollyanna-land, and informed us citizens that there was a huge likelihood of our wells going dry by late 2014.

How Apples & Pennies Defeated Terrorism

But something went terribly wrong. On Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001, horror stuck America. I asked, “Should I cancel the fundraiser?” The resounding reply was, “No! If ever we needed to do something good, and enjoy our country’s harvest, we need a day in your orchard. Keep the event!”