Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Abe Chabon, Prince of Fashion

Michael Chabon just wrote a beautiful ode to his son and the adventures of parenthood in GQ of all places. The tenderness it captures slays me.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Let's Talk About The Word "Deplorable"...

Behaviors, not people, are ugly. I find Trump's behavior deplorable. That does not give me, or anyone else, leave to dismiss him and his supporters as "The Deplorables". 

We cannot and should not ignore that there are a lot of people in America who are desperate enough to use Trump as a weapon of mass destruction. 

We need to listen to the fears and anger of those who feel abandoned by our political system. We need to address and heal the very real wounds of our neighbors. We need to ensure each other's access to personal dignity. We need to re-establish our hope and faith in the common good.

I was born and raised in a liberal city and call a small town in Wyoming home. From that vantage point, David Wong's assessment of Trump's appeal resonates as true. Maps of rural/urban America in the 2012 election are stunning.  

I am reminded of 9/11. How it felt like we were at a crossroads. Were we going to take responsibility for the pain and suffering American policy caused abroad or use the tragedy as an excuse to wage an impossible "War on Terror"? We chose to escalate rather than de-escalate the situation.

I think we have arrived at a similar pivot point in the history of our nation. We need to choose whether to narrow or expand our definition of humanity.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Cooking With Fire

Francis Mallmann has made an international name for himself cooking over fire in Argentine Patagonia. For my introduction to him, Scott referred me to episode three of the Netflix series, Chef's Table.

Niklas Ekstedt, a former pro-snowboarder, cooks exclusively with fire at his restaurant in Stockholm. There are beautiful scenes of him working in his kitchen on Amazon's new foodie offering, Eat the World.

Meanwhile, in Lander and thanks to visionary leadership on Nate's part, we have been enjoying some of the finest meals I can remember, cooking on a plow disc over an open fire with friends by a small creek and under a vaulted sky of stars.

Elemental (and fundamental) joys.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Emotional Agility

I recently read an article about a new book by Susan David...

The emotional skills Dr. David encourages us to teach our children are ones I need to put into mindful practice:

Feel It

Show It

Label It

Watch It Go

Our moment in history seems to be providing a rich learning opportunity...

A chance to experience and name the ugliness of the world and, rather than absorb and harbor it, transform it through love into beauty and let it go.

I'm drawn to the quote, "Everything will be okay in the end. If it's not okay, it's not the end." That's a hard faith to maintain when history consistently marries the thriving of one population to the suffering of another. But what else is there to do but try and manifest a future that outshines the present?

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Julie Flett

Julie Flett is a Cree-M├ętis artist, illustrator, author whose work has focused on the creation of First Nation children's books. Nimiweyihten. 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

May Orange Not Be The New Black

American politics right now is a can of worms. A risky thing to open, but here are some gems I can't resist sharing:

1. A tool for investing in hope... 

2. Always a sucker for a marquee...

3. Canadians are the best...

4. My favorite is Aimee Mann's so far...

5. The first debate is behind us now...

6. Can you diagram this sentence?

7. Interesting commentary on the phenomenon...

I feel threatened living in a nation where Trump's behavior holds enough legitimizing appeal to gain him any position of popular leadership.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

With Or Without Us


Israeli history professor, Yuval Noah Harari, has written a fascinating exploration of our species in Sapiens. It's a thought-provoking and compelling distillation of the most relevant changes we've experienced over our brief stint on this planet. I wish I could time travel to 11,000 BC and see an epoch in which we were well-adapted to our context. 


Meanwhile, Alan Weisman, uses our current knowledge of the world to hypothesize about what the earth would look like if our species suddenly disappeared. His book, The World Without Us, examines the potential legacy of the Anthropocene. It highlights the horror of what we have accomplished as well as the ultimate resiliency of nature. 


How do I hold my focus on this information? How is it that the most banal elements of our lives (plastic bags, tires) hold such destructive power? How do we suppress our appetites and the compulsions of the moment for the greater good? How do we both delight in and weep for our kind?