In honor of all of you who have recently downsized

Perhaps it was the hiking in fresh air yesterday, but today’s the day! I’m sorting the bookshelves in the bedroom.

I so like the trendy style of sorting books by color (as they are at the backroom bar/library at Petworth Citizen) and that’s fine for browsing, but not for retrieving. At home I make my own categories:

‘read and liked it’
‘read it but can’t remember — might try again’
‘meant to read’
‘should have read’

and then the purely esthetic traits — beautiful spine and ‘just the right size for this shelf.’



William’s helping, like this.


Alas, there are more shelves on the first floor and in the basement.


I didn’t quit the Paris accord


Standard transportation, especially for points west and south in the District. This is the designated parking space.

I thought we could relax a little…


I thought his threats could not possibility come to be, that checks and balances would play out, that the people charged to do the immoral work would shrink back. But today, the earth itself is under assault again, the nation’s foes are in charge.

I am reminded of the words of Rev. Niemoller in the Nazi era, rephrased here for our own time.

First he came for the Muslims, and I said “Guys, let’s take a wait-and-see approach here.”
Then he came for the Mexican Americans, and I said, “Let’s not be sore losers just because the other guy won.”
Then he came for the press, and I said, “What makes this country great is our peaceful transitions of power.”
Then he came for the women, and I said, “Try to have some compassion for the frustrations of the other side.”
Then he came for the black community, and I said, “I know it sucks, but wait four years.”
Then he came for me, and I said, “How could this have happened? I did everything I could.”

How about Rapunzel?

My niece is pregnant, waiting for the new little person to shape and mold. But he or she (perhaps she knows which, I do not — not that it matters so much any more…), will need a distinctive name, and pronto.

I love words in general, and names specifically, so I can’t stop thinking about this.  I started to notice that a lot of names I might like to give to a baby are already on cars.

Ranger (my favorite)
Insight (a little abstract)

Jolie, don’t worry; I have more.

Trump, escucha! Estamos en la lucha!

In my long(ish) life I’ve been to a few actions and demonstrations, the matters at hand ranging from the desire for a new stop sign to a plastic bag ban to the plea for reproductive rights for everyone.

Today’s immigrant demonstration was particularly pithy, what with the young man who wondered why his mother sacrificed everything in Central America to take her family to the US, and found out it was to evacuate him, her son who she knew was gay long before he did, to safer ground; the trans woman employed at a  prominent local university without citizenship status; and the undocumented women with children here legally, one at her hip, at imminent risk of a shredded family. All have everything — everything — to lose, by the stroke of a pen from the man in whose front yard they spoke.

to my friend’s friend on Facebook, who thinks Donald Trump is morally superior to Hillary Clinton

I don’t know you, and it’s probably not worth engaging, but I would say you clearly need more information.

I recommend today’s Washington Post editorial, but it’s very long with words of more than two syllables, and would take a lot of concentration.  It’s boldly called, “Donald Trump is a Unique Threat to American Democracy.” But the currently available piece on the New Yorker Radio Hour by the fellow who ghost-wrote The Art of the Deal is also available, and you can just listen. (When you hear the two different voices, that is the female interviewer and the male writer, so don’t be confused about that.)

While you’re thinking about this, when you aim to disqualify Hillary Clinton because she is allegedly married to an adulterer, does the known adultery of candidate Trump trouble you? If not, how do you hold both of those ideas in your head at one time?

one in twenty

I know almost nothing about soccer, but while in Reykjavik last week I attended my first soccer game, Iceland against England in Euro 2016. I showed up at the hillside gathering at the civic big-screen TV because the game — it’s more than a mere game, I suppose — was the talk of the town. I’m told by my friend the sports journalist* that five percent of the country of Iceland was on this hill in Reykjavik to watch Iceland defeat England in the doubly historic event, first for Iceland’s playing at all, and second for the ass-kickery that the English team suffered.

One of the very few things I do know about soccer is that fans are rowdy, even more than hockey fans, so I assumed that pandemonium would break out even before the game was over (they last 90 minutes I had learned), when it seemed the final score of 2 to 1 would hold (and soccer fans need not gear up to cheer foro double-digit scores). But in fact, the crowd politely waited for the clock to run out, cheered loudly in place, managed some gentle hugs, then walked home quietly. I had to wonder, “What would England have done?”

*I don’t really have any such friends, but on the bus to Keflavik airport the next day, I had a burning question about the match and asked the guy across the aisle from me. He happened to be an English sports journalist, one Andrew Butler of the Sun, in country to cover Iceland-England, ever so nice but still in a little shock. He had thought he’d have an easy night, posting a couple of sweet paragraphs about how Iceland had nobly lost to dominant empire England as ordained, drinking a few beers, and retiring after a ho-hum assignment. Instead, he had filed a several stories of the “war delared” nature, about the unimaginable loss and the fallout.