The Only Thing....

If Donald Trump didn’t exist, there’s a substantial proportion of the voting population who would have to invent him. That’s one sobering conclusion to be drawn from RageFest 2016, AKA  this year’s election campaign. As “The Donald” said, there’s a lot of anger out there, and while Trump may be the lightening-rod  (with Bernie Sanders... Read more »

What's Love Got to Do With It?

What's Love Got to Do With It?
There’s a strong connection between love and health, and we don’t talk about it very much. It’s not made in the doctor’s office, where patients compete with computers for their doctors attention while going through a list of obigatory questions like “do you smoke” or “do you wear a seatbelt?” When’s the last time a... Read more »

The Moment

A few days ago as I was walking down the street, I came upon  a man in a wheelchair with an outstretched arm and a cup in his hand. My fingers searched my pocket, fingering some coins. But before I knew it I was past him, with my own hand squeezing the coins  I had... Read more »
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My Narrative Art: Mr. Lucas, Are You There?

My Narrative Art: Mr. Lucas, Are You There?
If the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art plants itself on Chicago soil- and it looks like it’s not so big an if- I would like to make a pitch for a space in the museum devoted to Psychoanalysis. I know,  Mr. Lucas is really concerned with the history of VISUAL storytelling, and what’s so visual... Read more »

The Couch Abides

The Couch Abides
The New York Times is running a series on psychotherapy which they call “The Couch.”  How could I not contribute?  So  I wrote a piece and gave them the opportunity to put me on their op-ed page, and waited to hear back. Then I sent it again, and waited some more. Enough! Here it is:... Read more »

Those Healing Arts

Those Healing Arts
“Why are you here?” “I’m here to heal. How about you? ” That’s the final exchange in Shattered Globe Theater’s production of “Mill Fire,” the tragic story of a 25 year old woman’s journey from newlywed to newly bereaved by way of a fire in an Alabama steel mill. The Q and A above takes... Read more »
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Our Theater's Good

Our Theater's Good
Sure we’ve got lousy weather here in Chicago. But at least we’ve got great theater, and the theater can set you free. That’s the premise of  Timberlake Wertenbaker’s  1990 play “Our Country’s Good,” performed by the Shattered Globe Theater Company at Theater Wit on Belmont, and I must say I’m inclined to agree. I saw... Read more »

Inside "Inside Llewyn Davis": What's In a Name?

Inside "Inside Llewyn Davis": What's In a Name?
    Some say that the mark of a good film is the way it stays with you afterwards. By that standard the Coen Brothers’ “Inside Llewyn Davis” is a very good film indeed. It certainly got inside of me. For those of you who don’t know, “Llewyn Davis” is the name bestowed by the... Read more »

Season's Greetings

Season's Greetings
In 1943 a man named Philip Van Doren Stern sent out an unusual Christmas card. It included a short story about a man named George who suffers one defeat too many and plans to end it all by jumping off a bridge. At the last minute he’s interrupted by a mysterious stranger who shows him... Read more »
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Anxious People With Guns Revisited

My last entry on guns and anxiety drew more responses than all of my previous columns put together. I would like to respond en masse to some of the spirited critiques that came my way. I am not opposed to guns or gun ownership. But I am opposed to the unlimited availability of certain kinds... Read more »