Reporting the Facts

The New York Daily News screamed that the horrible attack at the Annapolis Star was caused by right-wing extremism against the media. Sean Hannity, responding to the event, who is a conservative commentator, said that he predicted liberal Congressional Representative Maxine Waters would create extremism from the left with her reckless calls for action against President Trump. (He now denies this.) The violence was apparently from a man who had a long standing grudge against the newspaper and who had filed defamation …


Going From Where to Where

There seems to be a groundswell of interest in these services that tell you your lineage. You may find potential relatives or correct your assumptions about where you’re from. Instead of being Serbian, which you were told by your family, you’re actually Cherokee. I think there might also be a Neanderthal connection that’s provided. I find it interesting that there’s so much of a fascination about where we’re from, while at the same time most people don’t seem to focus …


School Daze

I’ve had the opportunity to be in a top private school and a top public school in the past few months. Here’s what I’ve found: • Huge attention paid to rest room labels and inclusion. My favorite was “gender neutral faculty” on one. There’s more attention paid to this than there is to homework assignments. • Political correctness in metric tons. You can’t get a drink from a water fountain without seeing signs about where to deposit bottles, the filtering …



Oskar Eustis on TED

I had the pleasure of serving on the board and working on the strategy of Trinity Rep in Providence when Oskar Eustis was the artistic director. He went on to New York’s Public Theater, where he’s won several Tony Awards, most recently for Hamilton. I’ve been highly critical of TED for its pretension, but this past week I saw their video of Oskar presenting for about 13 minutes on the role of the theater in society, “Why theater is essential …


Death Lessons

Why does it require “celebrity suicides” for people to proclaim there’s a problem? Both Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain had huge resources available to them to help battle the   emotional illnesses that plagued them. Even they weren’t enough. These deaths, as are all such deaths, are tragic. These two just happen to merit news prominence. But there are at least two things to be learned (and I once worked for a year on a suicide hotline while working on …


Here She Is (Or There She Went), Miss America….

Hypocrisy abounds. Here’s ABC’s Amy Robach, in her customary 4-inch stilettos and a tight dress above her knee, with a huge amount of makeup and her hair meticulously coiffed, commenting on the Miss America Pageant and its new director, banning the swimsuit and evening gown competition. Since when is a beauty contest inappropriate? Artists have been painting beautiful women for ages, photographers taking their pictures. Beauty contests are just that: No one is required to enter them or to watch …


Samantha Bee (Gone)

Samantha Bee is, to be extremely kind, a very minor “talent.” She is vulgar and obscene. She used a horrible, derogatory expression about the president’s daughter, was afraid she might actually lose her income (which is based on being vulgar), so she apologized, and then found she wasn’t going to be fired and lose her income, and has just about retracted the apology. She will ride this as long as she can (remember another tiny talent, Kathy Griffin, with the …


TED: Tedious, Excessive Delivery

I know this is politically incorrect, but it seems to me that there are only about ten topics on TED that keep repeating with a different person each time. How many 20-minute, carefully choreographed talks on saving the planet, recovering from disease, overcoming prejudice, and basically leftist political agendas can we listen to without becoming rather glazed and inured? At this point, 98% of the content is formulaic, politically correct, assuredly diverse, pseudo-intellectualism. I watch those cutaways to the people …