Category Archives: Society

On Thanksgiving

A nice quote from the NYT Magazine: “To me it has always been clear that a dinner party is about what is said, not what is eaten. There would always be wine and salad and bread and stew; chocolate and fruit and nuts and sparkling cold duck. But those were just the props — the conduits for funny… Read More »

Aspartame

Aspartame has been tested until the cows come home and it has been consistently concluded that, unless you have phenylketonuria, it is not bad for you. If your guru, health coach, Aunt Mary, or well-meaning friend says it is bad for you and admonishes you for using it, ask them to cite their sources.   Here are my… Read More »

Why I Facebook

I have some friends and family who don’t use Facebook, including a few who tend to look down their noses at those who do. This has led me into conversations in which I end up defending it. Now, I’m not talking about Facebook as a source for news: therein lies danger. If you learn about something on Facebook,… Read More »

On Joss Whedon

In August of 2017, Kai Cole dropped a bombshell about her famous husband, Joss Whedon. In a published open letter, she talked about his infidelity, that he’d been sexually involved with at least one cast member from one of his shows, that he’d been unfaithful to her, and more. The reaction to this news, with the MeToo movement… Read More »

Stop Using One-off Plastic

Plastic bits in the ocean and in the food chain have created a big, scary problem. If all of us would take a few small steps to minimize disposable plastic usage, the cumulative effect could make a big difference. Many of us bring our own bags to the store, but we can do more. Here are five steps you can… Read More »

Divisive politics

In late 2017 I got an email from a Democratic organization venting about the just-passed tax bill that ended with: “We want to give you this anti-Republican bumper sticker!” I think this is a bad approach. I don’t want to perpetuate the us-and-them bullshit that is US politics right now, and I think things like this bumper sticker… Read More »

On Kaepernick’s Kneeling

In 2016 and 2017, there was an uproar over a black football player, Colin Kaepernick, quietly kneeling on the field during the national anthem rather than standing with the rest of his team. He was protesting the repeated killing of black men by police in America, and this lead to many months of heated arguing among Americans. All of… Read More »

Potential

Walking around in almost every one of us is a wellspring of untapped potential. Some call it inspiration, some call it god — whatever you call it, there exists in us a deep beauty, a spark, that few of us acknowledge, let alone show or attempt to express. The thing about potential is that it is nearly useless… Read More »

Philosophy Matters

I think it is important that people carve out head space in their mental lives to ponder questions of existence and meaning beyond the mechanics of how it is discussed. It’s what gives us depth and puts us in touch with a reserve of somethingness/nothingness that can be very powerful. Some people use religion to tap into that… Read More »

Who Supported Trump?

Immediately after the 2016 presidential election, I took off for a 10-day trip, first to Los Angeles, and then to Salt Lake City for an international tradeshow on Supercomputing. Wherever I went, almost every taxi driver, theater-goer, restaurant worker, and fellow tradeshow exhibitor and attendee I talked to mentioned the election results. Since this tradeshow of more than 11 thousand attendees included people from… Read More »

Anger and Lashing Out

A client who is responsible for a too-large percentage of my income shared with me an email he sent to someone in which he blew up at the recipient with the most vile all-upper-case yelling I’ve ever seen.

Positivity

Try to find the positive: it’s usually lurking around somewhere if you look. Sometimes you have to grab it by the lapels or the scruff of the neck to bring it round, but you can always find it. Happiness and positivity are choices we make: you often can’t control the hurdles life throws at you, but you can… Read More »