Yes Chicago, There Really Is a Santa Claus

Yes Chicago, There Really Is a Santa Claus
Yes, Chicago, There Really Is a Santa Claus  I’m thinking today of a wonderful movie called The Polar Express. That may seem odd, given that it’s 90 degrees outside, and so hot the dogs are sticking to the sidewalk. But bear with me—you’ll see why. The Polar Express and a Christmas Miracle This classic film... Read more »

Here's to the Winners

Here's to the Winners
Here’s To the Winners Here’s to the winners, lift up the glasses, Here’s to the glory still to be. Here’s to the battle, whatever it’s for To ask the best of ourselves, then give much more.  Joseph Raposo How many of you have children, grandchildren, students, friends who engage in competitive activities? How many of... Read more »

Robin Williams: He Could Make Everyone Laugh, But Not Himself

Robin Williams: He Could Make Everyone Laugh, But Not Himself
A Day In the Life Another day. The radio alarm went off at eight o’clock. A familiar voice told me what had happened while I was sleeping: the FBI was going to probe the police shooting of a teen in a St. Louis suburb. The U.S. was going to send weapons to Kurdish fighters in... Read more »
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Cairo, Illinois: Once a Camelot

Cairo, Illinois: Once a Camelot
Cairo, Illinois: Once a Camelot             Each evening from December to December             Before you drift to sleep upon your cot,             Think back on all the tales that you remember,             Of Camelot.             Ask every person if he’s heard the story,             And tell it strong and clear... Read more »

Here's To the Lady Who Lunched: Or My Six Degrees of Separation from Elaine Stritch

Here's To the Lady Who Lunched: Or My Six Degrees of Separation from Elaine Stritch
Here’s to the Lady Who Lunched: or My Six Degrees of Separation from Elaine Stritch Elaine Stritch died last week. The announcement of her death made me very sad. Let me state at the outset, I have only the remotest connection with Elaine Stritch—rather like my six degrees of separation connection from Kevin Bacon, which... Read more »

Stitch and Bitch: Or How to Go Crazy Knitting a Piece of Art

Stitch and Bitch: Or How to Go Crazy Knitting a Piece of Art
Stitch and Bitch: Or How to Go Crazy Knitting a piece of Art You have to possess a certain amount of lunacy and patience to undertake a project like the one on which I am now working. I am well endowed with the first quality. The second—not so much. But I figured, after all of... Read more »
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Cairo Illinois: Trouble Right Here in River City

Cairo Illinois: Trouble Right Here in River City
Cairo, Illinois: Trouble Right Here in River City    There has always been a certain glamour attached to river towns. Stories have been written about them (“Huckleberry Finn”), movies have been made about them (“Show Boat”), and songs are sung about them (“Waitin’ for the Robert E. Lee”). Photographs show happy crowds gathered on the... Read more »

Farewell Chanel: How I Tossed the Gloss and Became a Happier Person

   Confessions of a Cosmetic junkie (Spoiler Alert: This is a decidedly un-Shirley bit of trivia while I am working on my next Cairo piece)     For all of my adult life, I have been addicted to the beauty pages of fashion magazines. I couldn’t wait for beauty editors to tell me what new... Read more »

Cairo, Illinois: The Way, Way Back

Cairo, Illinois: The Way, Way Back
  The Way, Way Back to Cairo, Illinois Goin’ back to Cairo, goodbye and a goodbye. Goin’ back to Cairo, goodbye Liza Jane.     Way back when, at the Southern end of Illinois, where the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers come together to wend their wedded way down to New Orleans and the Gulf of... Read more »
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Cairo, Illinois: The Short Happy Life and Lingering Death of a Small Town

Cairo, Illinois: The Short Happy Life and Lingering Death of a Small Town
Part I: Going Back to Cairo, Illinois In at the birth, in at the death, my friend. I was not in at the birth of Cairo, Illinois. That happened long before my time. Nor was I in at the death. That occurred after I left. But I was there for much of what happened in... Read more »