I have described elsewhere how my wife Nell, our two daughters—one in 4th grade and one in 6th grade—and I were already coping with social distancing and the closure of the public schools in Brookline, Massachusetts until at least April 7, 2020. Besides staying inside as much as possible, we converted our dining room into … Continue reading Dispatches from Brookline: Home Schooling and Social Distancing VII
I have been deeply immersed in preparing final first drafts (how is that for an oxymoron?) of early chapters of the book I am writing, whose new tentative title is Interrogating Memory: Film Noir Spurs a Deep Dive into My Family History…and My Own. We have also been preoccupied with various illnesses, injuries and anniversaries. … Continue reading Four stories and 12 years ago…
This site benefits/suffers/both from consisting of posts about a wide range of topics, all linked under the amorphous heading "data-driven storytelling." In an attempt to impose some coherent structure, I am organizing related posts both chronologically and thematically. When I first launched this blog in December 2016, I decided that if I were going to … Continue reading Organizing by themes IV: Bipartisanship and civil discourse
Having written and thought a lot about the 2018 United States (US) midterm elections, the first things I read each day (after my e-mail) are Taegan Goddard’s invaluable Political Wire and, of course, FiveThirtyEight. On May 19, 2018, Goddard linked to this commentary by Washington Post columnist Paul Waldman. Waldman argues Democrats should abandon the … Continue reading Manifest(o) Identity
Following ratification of the United States Constitution (Constitution) on September 17, 1787, debate ensued over whether it sufficiently safeguarded individual liberties. James Madison, then a United States House of Representatives (House) member, responded by drafting a set of Amendments, which he presented to the House as directed in Article V. Seventeen Amendments won the necessary … Continue reading Unpacking Twitter arguments, both coherent and incoherent
I spent many nights in the liberated summer between high school graduation and enrolling at Yale taking long solo drives, exploring outer suburban Philadelphia. One night, meandering along Route 23, I saw this at the intersection with Route 113N in Phoenixville: My idea of heaven was, and remains, a 24-hour diner, though less so when … Continue reading Two distinct restaurants. Two different conversations. One unanswered question.