Sunday, December 31, 2017


Tonight, whether you’re dressed to the nines, at a small party with friends, freezing your butt off at Times Square, alone at home with a 6-pack, snuggling with your honey, on a cruise, watching a football game or a zombie movie, trying to figure out how you got there, trying to act as cool as you can, entertaining the party with you buffoonery or anything else, have a safe and happy launch into 2018.

Friday, December 29, 2017


They say that confession is good for the soul. But how to go about it?

Well, find a quiet place to give yourself space and time. Start to confess to yourself and listen with attention. If God is anywhere, God is inside you. So the two of you team up to figure out how to forgive yourself. This is important since no one likes a sullen martyr.

Forgiving yourself doesn’t require self-flagellation—that’s way too Medieval. But it does require some form of positive personal transformation. And, after all, who doesn’t want to be a better human being, even by a little bit.

Thursday, December 28, 2017


A year-end look at the policies and actions of Donald Trump clearly indicate they are prehistoric. He denies climate change, puts his money on coal, finds lying to be the best public relations move, has no interest in wealth equity, has no compassion for the poor and disadvantaged, has demolished the stature of the USA as a moral and ethical leader in the world, makes significant decisions with no thought or understanding of their real impact, chooses private use over public access in national parks, portrays himself as the anti-Obama and is an isolationist at heart.

All in all, he’s a dinosaur, and a mean and nasty one to boot. That’s why I like to call him T-Rump.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

2nd Amendment

The NRA and even the Supreme Court act as if the 2nd Amendment was clear and simple. That’s because they ignore the “militia clause” as if it didn’t exist. But obviously the militia clause by its existence puts some restrictions on the ownership of guns.
What does “militia” even mean in 21st century America? What are the roles and responsibilities of gun owners in the context of militia? Who calls gun owners to form a militia? Are they leaderless vigilantes who empower themselves? Is such a militia a part of the government or a protection against a rogue government? Can members of white supremacist legitimately claim they are functioning as a militia?
What other questions need to be asked?
This is all sticky business. It seems much easier to follow the rabid and rigid NRA line, ignore the terrible toll of gun deaths in America and snuggle comfortably in the pockets of the NRA counting the stacks of money while consciences go up in flames.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

How to turn art into wallpaper:

1. First, of course, is to put a barn, a sunset or a pot of geraniums in it.

2. Make the art less interesting and less well-designed than the wallpaper.

3. Put the art in a gallery packed with coutouriad, wine-sipping, chit-chatters.

4. Replace the art with posters of the art.

5. Select art that has a short shelf life.

6. Select art that is pleasant, but has nothing to say.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Buckminster Fuller

Buckminster Fuller once remarked that we have the resources and wealth to provide everyone on the planet a middle-income lifestyle. Someone else commented that if we did that, in time we would just be back to where we are now.
But that’s only true because talent and opportunity are not equitably dispersed andwhen dignity and justice are taken out of the picture.
But dignity is equitably dispersed. And justice is not the work of God, but the work God delegated to us.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

No dream

Where we were, no dream was possible. Even with a young, pregnant wife, we had to leave. The boat ride was grotesque, the mass of us all suspended in hell. We stumbled onto the shore and must have walked for hours we couldn’t count, hoping only for a place we could belong. Finally a bright light directed us to a ramshackle barn, and we settled into the hay. 
The baby came soon after, miraculously healthy. A baby boy, welcomed by two chickens, a cow and a mangy rat. Three men, a father and two teenage sons, heard the baby’s cries and searched us out. They nodded, left and soon returned with blankets, water and fragrant soap.
This is our story. Our child was, for us, a savior; because the birth of any child is a hope to save the world.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Blessed Christmas

Bottom line: Christmas is truly about understanding the meaning of the Christ Child, about showing how much we love and appreciate those in our lives and about making children smile. But that does not mean that Christmas can’t be about:
--keeping the retail industry in the black
--creating Simpsons themed Nativity scenes
--building live Nativity scenes with escaping cows
--stealing gifts rather than giving them
--torturing ourselves with endless Christmas muzak
--cutting down and stealing Christmas trees from college campuses
--returning the gifts so lovingly and thoughtfully given
--populating our lawns with all kinds of inflatable creatures.
In the end, though, it’s all okay because we are human beings: loving, greedy, spirit-filled, comical, thoughtful, thoughtless, bumbling, sentimental, generous, needy, compassionate.
Have a Blessed Christmas.

Friday, December 22, 2017

The $6000 penis

The Style section of yesterday’s NY Times discussed a spa for men that had recently opened in California. It was essentially a glorified man cave, with amenities like poker and young female attendants. Men could wait there in preparation for procedures like liposuction and tummy tucks.
One man selected a procedure that for $6000 would add additional girth to his penis. Since I am retired with nothing better to do, I came up with some questions to ponder.
How many individuals exactly would ever see this new $6000 penis?
How long did it take the doctor to get used to holding and injecting penises?
How many yachts does the doctor own?
Did this man give his penis a new more macho name after the procedure?
How often each day does he take a selfie with his improved member?
Does he get a discount if he refers friends to the doctor for the same procedure?
Does he also get pubic hair implants to make his tuft tuftier?
Is the result for him a lifelong dream come true?

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Every human life

Every human life begins as a miracle, and every human life ends as ashes or as flesh rotting in the earth or the sea. In between is life searching for meaning—in joy, sorrow, conflict, love, transformation, spirit, sin, glory, failure and achievement. 
That is why every human story is worthy of being told. Artists—writers, dancers, musicians, visual artists, filmmakers—bundle these stories into fictions of human truth that let us see ourselves for what we are and what we could be. They put us on trial and, at the same time, let us off the hook.
They remind us that it’s possible to live up to the miracle that started us on our journeys jn the first place.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Easy beauty

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of easy beauty. Flower pictures, beach scenes, barns. You know what I mean. They are comfortable and undemanding, cute and colorful. Eventually they disappear into the walls or the furniture or their cuteness wears thin. They evaporate.
I’m also tired of easy beauty in adverting. Have a few seconds? That’s all they want or need. They’re filled with pretty people in pretty houses. They are young and beautiful in stylish bars having the time of their lives.
I’m tired of the easy beauty of sun-drenched spaces occupied by seniors in medicine commercials who in their ecstatic joyfulness fail to hear the side effects that will likely kill them.
Yes, I’m tired of the easy beauty whose emptiness washes over us daily. I want images that are the poetry of the visual language. I want images that stay fresh and keep asking questions. I want images that won’t let go of me. I want images that make me work.
I want beauty that is tough on me. How about you?

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

America, the land of plenty

America, the land of plenty

Plenty of wealth for the 1%
Plenty of diabetes
Plenty of corruption
Plenty of guns
Plenty of violence
Plenty of racism
Plenty of low wage jobs
Plenty of hunger
Plenty of poverty
Plenty of single mothers
Plenty of homelessness
Plenty of drug addiction
Plenty of debt
Plenty of distrust

Plenty of plenty used in the wrong way

Monday, December 18, 2017

Hollywood adjectives

It’s time. In fact, it’s way overdue. I need some of those Hollywood adjectives for myself: excellent, riveting, masterful, uniquely original, magnificent, beyond compare. So, let’s go. Heap them on me: magical, visionary, one of a kind, radical, exceptional, bombastic, thrilling, perfection at its best, scintillating. It would make me feel so much better about myself. So give me some of: courageous, mind-bending, grandiose, performance of a lifetime, ravishing, work for the ages, incomparable, fabulous, hot, jubilant, lavish, opulent, quintessential, sensational, triumphant, wunderbar.
Gee, now I feel so much better.

Sunday, December 17, 2017


Democracy is supposed to be active and vital, but it’s coughing and wheezing.
Democracy is supposed to be smart, but it flunked 7th grade Civics.
Democracy is supposed to be for everyone, but it sucks up to the big bucks.
Congress is supposed to protect democracy, but it’s too busy in bed with the lobbyists hoping for an orgasm.
Democracy is supposed to be watchful, but it’s busy binge watching on Netflix.
Democracy is supposed to care about it’s self-image, but it’s lucky to vote at 25%.
Democracy is supposed to be vigilant, but it’s sitting on the couch eating nachos.
Democracy is supposed to be a model of government, but the rest of the world can’t figure out what’s going on.
Democracy talks a game, but it’s time to put up.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Power as weakness

We attach to power the expectations of control, position, wealth and status. We admire and often envy power and the celebrities who have it or whom we give it to.
Measured in reality, power often leads to greed, corruption, arrogance and the control of others. Wealth and status are acquired at the loss of dignity of others and results in the accumulation of material things beyond any concept of personal need.
Measured in moral terms, power becomes weakness. Weakness demands endless material wealth to build esteem. Weakness looks the other way at the needs of others. Weakness is vain and must be surrounded by and covered in the finest of everything. Weakness looks down on others and is mindless of their dignity.
So it is up to us to decide who gets put on the pedestal.

Friday, December 15, 2017


As the holidays draw near, just a reminder to keep X in your Xmas.

Thursday, December 14, 2017


President Trump’s
A political chump
When he goes on the stump
His hair is a frump
HIs body’s a lump
From his head to his rump
Got an ego to pump
And an ethical dump
He gave me a bump
Then he wanted a hump
All I did was jump

Wednesday, December 13, 2017


Every man must come to a conscious understanding of what manhood means to him. This is not an easy task since manhood is not a simple thing to inhabit. It is a complex of many interrelated qualities and behaviors: power, dominance, bravery, dependability, sexuality, fatherhood, intimacy, compassion, relationships, work and more.
Some men choose to remain stuck in an adolescent view of manhood. Others navigate manhood through power and control. Some seek in manhood a healthy balance between the forces of libido and culture. For many men, manhood is a fluid concept that changes with intellectual growth, responsibilities, family, the waning of virility and changes in the understanding of intimacy.
The coming to grips of manhood for men is also a necessary concern for women. It is not only about respect and appreciation of women, but also about the ability to embrace whatever of the feminine principle that may a be a part of their nature. This way masculinity and femininity are not split into a duality, but are human characteristics and capacities distributed across genders.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Judge Roy Moore

Judge Roy Moore
A political whore
A man to abhor
Knocks on your door
For the Senate floor
You find at his core
A sexual lore
That all should deplore
So please I implore
Bring sense to the fore
Your vote should mean more
Thus this blowhard ignore

Monday, December 11, 2017

Images are powerful

Images are powerful, from the Nike swoosh to the Mona Lisa. They comfort, challenge, explain, propel, educate and tell us how to be human. But in our culture they play second fiddle to the word. How to make images and “read” images is generally a largely neglected area of serious study in our educations. We’re awash in images and are often manipulated by them, but we aren’t equipped to make sense of their intent or their meaning.
What sophisticated techniques area at work to make images that seduce us?
Why do images illustrate words rather than words illustrate images?
Why is fine art inscrutable to most people?
Why do people seek to be comforted rather than challenged by artists?
Why is art expected to decorate rather than infect consciousness?
What are artists doing about this?