It can’t happen here.

In 1964, when Barry Goldwater was running for president, Sinclair Lewis’s 1935 novel It Can’t Happen Here came to my attention, so I promptly checked a copy out of the library and read it right away. In case you’ve never heard of… Read More ›

Sanity through math

Why is Jonathan Halabi called “Mr. D.”? I mean, it’s an excellent way to refer to a math teacher — isn’t it? — but I’m puzzled by “D” as the abbreviation for Halibi. Oh well, who am I to object?… Read More ›


Who is Karen? As Gretchen McCulloch explains, language changes more rapidly today than in the past, because internet. One current meaning of Karen is new. According to Wikipedia: Karen is a term used in the United States for a person perceived to… Read More ›

Grim fairytales

That’s grim, not Grimm. Well, both, actually. As some Americans — and all Germans — know, the Grimm fairytales can be quite grim. Some of us have gained a particular perspective on this point from Stephen Sondheim’s wonderful musical, Into the… Read More ›

The cats know what to do!

William, Flicka, and Vincent — as you can see — were observing proper social distancing as they lined up six feet apart, waiting patiently for their dinner last night. (BTW, William isn’t quite as large as the perspective makes him… Read More ›