Wait … what?

Plastic Bag Jew

Given the reputation of Mail Online, I can't say I totally believe the below-linked story.Orthodox Jewish man photographed covering himself in plastic bag during flight because faith forbids him to fly over cemeteriesBut IF it's true -- I say IF -- I have to wonder a couple of things. This was the bizarre sight that greeted plane passengers when an Orthodox Jewish man covered himself under a plastic sheet.It was believed the man is a Kohein, a religious descendant of the priests of … [Read more...]

Processing Atheist Grief: Some Thoughts

blue rose

I continue to think about death and grieving, coming up on three years after the passing of my Cowboy Dad (not a blood relative, but someone more special in my life than any of my real relatives). I occasionally have new ideas about the subject. Here's a couple:1) If you lose someone to age or illness ... Ask Yourself 'What If?' Consider the pain you're in, the magnitude of it. Now imagine that you could go back in time and change the events of your life so that you'd never met that … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: Blowing in the Wind … Ordinary People.

dust bowl

I’m thinking all at once about government and royalty, churches and corporations, unions and cultures. And us.Some of what I try to do in attempting to understand the world around me is to take a distant look at what’s going on, rather than a close-up look, searching for broad patterns and underlying motivations. I sometimes even joke that I’m an alien just visiting here to study Earth humans, expecting that eventually my real people will show up and take me back home.I’ll tell you someth … [Read more...]

Off-Topic Musings #1

off topic

I'm often moved to post things on Facebook that are far beyond the short-subject stuff that plays most well over there, and I've thought many times that that stuff should be HERE instead of there. After all, assuming a limit to writerly energy, every long piece I post on Facebook is a piece that cheats my might-be readers here.And yet a lot of that stuff doesn't exactly fit here. My main writing these days is on Beta Culture, and I want it to be.On the other hand ... I want to be VISIBLE … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: The Story Behind the Stories

ÿ

Every culture has stories. I don't mean the entertaining fictions of story books or novels or other popular entertainment. I mean this other kind, something out in plain sight, but also sort of hidden.Stories about how things fit together. Stories about relationships, about the duties children owe to parents, and parents to children. Stories about how man and woman relate, and the ways to create family. Stories about the regard each person owes to neighbors. Stories about how to do everyday … [Read more...]

The Other Side of ‘Poor Robin Williams’

Robin Williams

Some part of this is probably gonna make you uncomfortable, but I'm gonna just toss it out here anyway:Robin Williams died today, of an apparent suicide. It’s strange how much it affects me. Years back when I was on vacation and Stephen Jay Gould died, I called home crying. That guy MATTERED to me. He was one of my people, a smart man and a scientist. The world was a colder, dumber, less interesting place when he died.And now Robin Williams is gone.On Facebook, a lot of people are p … [Read more...]


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