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Unclear wordy jargon. On the net.

Published: 2008-11-05T00:00:44-05:00




John McCain gave a gracious, lovely speech. Obama is speaking now. I spoke with my daughter, home from London, working in our nation's capital. We are witnessing a remarkable, thrilling day for the most creative nation on Earth.

It's Obama


I'm going out on a slim limb and calling the election for Obama. Whatever your politics, you must agree that this is a profound day in American history.

I Hear America Singing


A little over a year ago we moved from the close quarters of central Shadyside to the more spacious, leafy streets of Highland Park, a more diverse and easy-going East End neighborhood nestled on the slopes of one of Pittsburgh’s...

Raise The Flag.


Remember And Act.


What was: Who died: Five years later, we are still falling.

Letter From Bombay.


I know, I'm not posting anymore. I'm going against my own strictures because I think that in the face of what happened in Mumbai (Bombay) yesterday, it might be a good idea for us to throw down our petty grievances....

Blasts Hit Bombay Rails.


I have been getting some emails, so I will be putting this up. It looks like seven bombs have torn apart several communter trains in and near Bombay, India, killing what news sources are saying is up to 60 people....

Remember July 7, 2005.


As it happened. Link. Link. Link. Link. Link. BBC page.

Goodbye To All That.


With apologies to Robert Graves and Joan Didion. I have known for several weeks that I would be writing this post eventually. It has taken me multiple attempts to get my thoughts down, which might come as a bit of...

Our Town


Link: Our Town. - Iris DeMent This should work in Rhapsody. You may have to install a plug-in if you are using Firefox.

America At 230.


I was fifteen when The United States of America celebrated its bicentennial with countrywide celebrations, memorials at town squares, tall ships in New York Harbor, a long, vast birthday celebration. It was a day of great optimism and hope, coming...

Entebbe, Thirty Years Ago.


On the evening of July 3 and the morning of July 4, 1976, Israeli commandos storm Entebbe Airport in Uganda, saving hostages held there by Palestinian and German terrorists. It's worth remembering that all hostages were released with the exception...

Victory Garden.


We have been battling the rain, my tomatoes and I. The heavy soak caused many buds to drop and leave me with well formed, slender stalks of... leaves. But now that the air is hot and the sky is a...

Chesnoff On Gaza.


-This is part of an ongoing series of contributions by Richard Z. Chesnoff. PEACE PROSPECTS IN PIECES by Richard Z. Chesnoff, NY Daily News 7/3/06 That much-touted deal between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and his terrorist foes in the Hamas...

Cheney's Un-undisclosed Location: We Know Where You Live.


Right here is a humorous, or sad, depending on one's perspective, story/discussion on a number of right-wing blogs that see a piece in the NYT Travel Section on Cheney and Rumsfeld vacation homes as a secret plot to aid al...

The Press Versus The Prez.


New York Times Editor Bill Keller was on Face the Nation, stuttering through a defense of his newspaper's decision to publish the Swift report. I am sympathetic to press freedoms, but Keller is beginning to get on my nerves, not...

World Cup 2006: Portugal Ousts England, France Shocks Brazil.


It's an all-European World Cup, now, as the last non-European team is eliminated. Portugal won on penalty kicks, snuffing out England's hopes for an appearance in the finals. I would imagine that Germany has the edge, much like France had...

Supreme Court Rules Against Bush On Guantanamo.


The Supreme Court has ruled against Bush on his plans to try Gitmo detainees. The court ruled that the trials must follow the UCMJ. It also ruled that the Geneva Conventions do apply to detainees. So I guess that settles...

Thirty Years Since Entebbe: Will We See A Replay?


The latest Middle East crisis, that of the abduction of an Israeli Corporal, could be the trigger that finally unleashes all out war in the region. That the kidnapping came hard on the heels of a Hamas-Fatah agreement to "implicitly...



While flags, fags and rags are dominating the news cycle, some actual progress may be in the making in Iraq. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's reconciliation plan has been given major support from a prominent Sunni group. This is an interesting...

A Burning Sensation.


One free speech stalwart held out and the once again "topical," though always stupid flag "desecration" amendment (Yes, a Constitutional Amendment to stop something that basically never happens) failed in the Senate. It seems necessary to point out that one...

The Boss Having Some Fun.


Take eight-and-a-half minutes and watch this video of Bruce Springsteen and friends singing "Pay Me My Money Down" (from his Pete Seeger CD) on Conan O'Brien. You'll be very glad you did. I am very happy to see this effort...

NYT's Bill Keller: I Know More Than You Do.


The right and part of the center of the blogs are hopping all over Bill Keller's kind-of explanation of his paper's reasoning to go ahead with the story on the program to track financial records of terrorists. While Keller makes...

Recommended Reading: After Londonistan.


Yesterday's NYT Magazine sported an article by Christopher Caldwell, "After Londonistan." I found it to be one of the best and most fair articles on the subject I have yet read. Also see: Michael Gove in The Times Online. This...

World Cup 2006: England-Ecuadaor 1:0.


David Beckham gets a goal off of a free kick to score the only goal of the match and spends the next twenty minutes vomiting on the pitch. The best player today was Wayne Rooney who showed some individual spark...

Terror Arrest: Less Than Meets The Eye?


As I hoped, Dave Schuler (a Chicagoan himself) at The Glittering Eye provides a roundup of local media coverage. Dave shares my skepticism, here. We both used "Less than meets the eye" without checking with each other. Honest. Makes me more confident than I am right on this one.

The New York Times Exposes Yet Another Secret Program.


This isn't illegal on the New York Times part, but it might be on the part of whoever leaked this story. Once again, NYT publishes information on a secret program being run against a terror organization. Why the NYT thinks...

The New Republic Takes the Kos Bait.


The latest dust-up involving Markos Moulitsas of the Great and All Powerful Kos illustrates a few points. Democrats are still, after all these decades of family feuds, more interested in fratricide than in actually winning elections (which, incidentally, is why...

World Cup 2006: Ghana Beats USA 2-1.


The photo says it all. The US played a sloppy match which Ghana exploited well. Ghana, in it first World Cup, is into the round of sixteen along with group leader Italy. Obviously, I would have liked to have seen...

All Rights Reserved: Sloppy Or Cynical Reporting From Murtha's District.


Johnstown, PA is the sleepy epicenter of Rep. John Murtha's Congressional District Known mainly to outsiders as an old-timey former retreat for Pittsburgh industrialists during the Gilded Age and for a disastrous 1889 flood, for which Pennsylvanians are still paying...

World Cup 2006: England, Sweden Draw, Both Advance.


I called Caitlin when England when up late in the match, only to call her a few mintes later to say, "Never mind." The two teams played to a 2-2 draw, which puts England into the round of 16 playing...

Where Pig Is King.


This is what one does when visiting Paris. Or, at least, what we chose to do: As the coffee steeped, I scrambled to the boulangerie to pick up a few croissants. Down the rue Rochechouart there was a lovely charcuterie...

Thou Shalt Not Be Stupid.


Stephen Colbert nabs a 10 Commandment Congressman who can't name them. Priceless. Score one for Steverino. Instead of speaking Truth to Power, he just let Power speak and indict itself.

Happy Birthday, Mom.


Eleanor Louise Berczik is a rousing seventy years old today. Readers of this blog will know her from some of my posts here and recognize her as the person most responsible for my love of literature and writing, my sense...

The Rose Of Pentecost.


You get up early as the pre-summer sun slants around the gap in the blinds. As you leave your wife sleeping, the coffee is brewed and the paper dashed. It's Father's Day and you have decided to get out of...

Colbert Courageous: Rally 'Round The Flag, Boys.


So there's another stupid flag amendment, and this time around it is being said that there's a better chance that the Constitution will again be used to pander. How nice. On the other end of the spectrum is the great...

Egg, Meet Face.


I wanted to believe it, I guess. Then I read Michael Ledeen's take on the "safe house" documents and started to think that I got ahead of myself. Ledeen thinks that the docs are actually a misdirection perpetrated by the...

World Cup: England Into Round Of 16.


Caitlin's mates are happy. England scored two late goals yesterday to beat Trinidad & Tobago to make it to the next level. C has been enjoying the Cup, and not just when England or the US are playing. When we...

Happy Bloomsday.


It is this day, set in 1904, that James Joyce forever commemorated with Ulysses, published in 1922. Pittsburgh has a rousing Bloomsday, which entails the faithful making their way through the city, stopping at locales similar to those in the...

Not Taking The Bait.


Dave Schuler has posted some of the best-reasoned arguments for not going after Iran militarily if we can help it (which, for the record, I believe we can, or at least should look for alternatives). The reasoning for caution ranges...

Chez Juliette.


There is a fertile smell on our porch. Sherry has planted the pots and boxes, there are petunias overflowing the hanging baskets. To sit out on what is a very rare porch on the "poor" side of Shadyside is a...

Not The News.


Alberto is not a hurricane. Karl Rove will not be indicted. Israel did not bomb a family on a Gaza beach. Ben Roethlisberger was not wearing a helmet, will not be playing this season. The Steelers will not be going...

I'm Still Here.


My unintentional hiatus from blogging should be coming to an end soon. Turns out that traveling across nine time zones in short order, standing or walking for hours on end and not getting enough water and sleep doesn't exactly work...



Well, May was pretty much a bust, huh? I've been away most of the month; indeed, I am at this moment in a Las Vegas hotel, an ersatz New York where slots bloom like cherry trees. I'll be stranded here...

Memorial Day 2006.


There was always a parade which followed a short route to the memorial where there would be invocation and benediction, and Taps played, first at the small monument, then by a lucky and nervous high school trumpeter somewhere hidden and...

Walking In The Footsteps Of Une Génération Perdue.


Thirty years after first reading The Sun Also Rises, I dragged Sherry to Le Select, the locale that seized my adolescent imagination and planted a long frustrated desire for a literary life. We sat at the bar of this surprisingly...

Home Again.


It is a blunt cultural insult that the coda to one's holiday in London and Paris, in which one has dined both high and low but always well, be punctuated by a simultaneously dessicated and soggy airplane sandwich two hours...

Salutations de Paris.


Down To London.


After typical US Airways mucking-up and a few snafus, we arrived in London yesterday and found our flat in Sloane Square. I'm having some problems posting photos, so you'll have to take my words right now, but the weather is...

Bloggledygook Blotter, Euro Edition.


Um, I'm not sure if I mentioned this, but I'M ON VACATION! We'll be either in the air or sitting around waiting to get in the air much of the day, so this is probably it until, well, until I...