Sunday, March 29, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
A letter from the author of "The Raven" to a publisher that had been in private hands until recently has been revealed, and includes these rather timeless lines:
Will you be so kind enough to put the best possible interpretation upon my behavior while in N-York? ... Wallace would insist upon the juleps, and I knew not what I was either doing or saying.[From Maud Newton]
Sunday, March 08, 2009
Now more than ever, it's time to find "value" in life that isn't easy to quantify or reduce to a factor of the massive global (faltering) economy. This is something of a challenge, especially when you work at a place where almost every in-depth story needs to be "trade-able" or its chances of seeing the light of day are slim. So, with a spirit of the grassroots rebel, find moments for which you can't buy a credit-default swap. Now, I'm sure you could play devil's advocate and find something to trade on these ideas. I don't care. To me these feel economy-resistant: Opening a gift bottle of wine that's been sitting on your microwave and realizing that it tastes better than the previous one. Smelling that hard-to-define yet instantly recognizable whiff of natural fragrance that's entwined with memories of warm weather on a warm Saturday. Seeing the skyline from a less-famous angle on the walkway of the GW Bridge. Meeting a friend on a street corner. Getting an autograph at the stage door from three famous stars. Shedding tears at the end of a touching television show. Chatting on the phone about the issues of the day with the people who really matter. Sharing a kiss before parting. Wishing peace to a stranger. Singing in four-part harmony, accompanied by upright bass, guitar and piano. Slipping a few folded windfall bills into a box and lighting a candle. Registering a pain-free breath and a clear-eyed view.
Sunday, March 01, 2009
You know how they say you want to try to get your income tax payment/refund as close to zero as possible so that you're not giving the government an interest-free loan AND you don't have to come up with a hefty chunk of change in the spring? Well, this year, I wasn't anywhere near zero. I got a refund. And you know what? I'm glad. I'm happy the U.S. got to keep my money for a little while longer than they should have. If I'd taken home more cash in 2008, I might've been tempted to, you know, put it in stocks or something. So instead, the government was nice enough to hold onto that money for me, and return it to me fully preserved. All of which doesn't solve the problem of what to do with it now. Save or invest?