Charlottesville Is All-Right

- Certain thoughts stayed with me throughout the white supremacist rallying cries that began on Friday night at the University of Virginia. As I received texts on Saturday from a business owner at the scene of the counter-protest on the Downtown Mall, and received encouraging emails and calls from friends and family, I worked to come to grips with all of it. Deandre Harris lying bloody and beaten by poles in the hands of white supremacists—inside the parking garage I used two days ago

Happy Birthday to The Bright Light That Is Malala

- Malala demonstrates that it’s possible to chip away at seemingly insurmountable problems. She embodies the empowerment that comes with forgiveness. She breaks entrenched stereotypes as a Muslim feminist. She refutes complacency through personal commitment and action. And she is one person.

I Love a Dog Named Billy

- Your small white body wrapped around a huge heart, beating with a distinctive murmur, brings joy now just as it did when I first saw your puppy face. A surprise gift for my mother from me in 1999, independently we both picked you out of the litter. You had presence then—you have even more now. Here’s a few of the million things that I love about you.

Speak Up Against Cellphone Nonsense

- Causing deadly harm behind the wheel, careless adoption of rude behavior any and everywhere, discomfort with face-to-face conversation, mental distraction and lack of focus—the damage of cellphone nonsense continues to stun me. What I find at times more surprising, however, is the unwillingness of so many recipients of the rudeness to speak up. It’s not okay that your coffee date interrupts your conversation at every “ping.” By opting for for ongoing phone use, your passenger demonstrates what matters more. When your companion at the concert, picnic, or ballgame prefers phone use to your company, just say something. Of course, there are often good reasons to keep a phone on while with others or in public, and a quick explanation conveys awareness and respect.We all know the advantages of the phone—providing directions, making and receiving timely phone calls, ending worry with a quick update, sending a text to clarify, receiving confirmation via email, seeking a little or lot of help, etc. Why don’t we better understand the disadvantages of non-stop devotion? Perhaps it’s this addiction’s hold on us that’s at the root of the culture of “busyness.”


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