Posts in category "Current events and social commentary"

The IRS help need help

A check from the IRS for thousands of dollars arrived in the mail last week, and I wasn’t happy. I sighed and shook my head, knowing that I would not cash the check and would be on the phone with the IRS for too long. The check was for $4,524.71. Aside from an enclosure promoting the... Read more »

If you tune out Trump, make it temporary

I really didn’t want to keep writing about Donald Trump, but here I go again. After the election, I commented to a number of friends, “It’s going to be an uninformed four years for me. I can’t stand hearing his voice, seeing his face, or reading about him.” More than one person replied that she... Read more »

After the march

After the march
What an exhilarating day Saturday was. After 10½ weeks of postelection shock, sadness, and despair, the Women’s March on Chicago left me feeling hopeful again. Grant Park was so jammed my five friends and I, perched on Columbus Drive just north of Congress, never figured out where the speakers’ platform was. I couldn’t hear every... Read more »

Dear Donald

Dear Donald, My supporters on the left think I’ve been foolish to be gracious during the transition. They say it’s naive to give you the benefit of the doubt. Since the election I too have wondered whether I’m naive. Do you remember that after we met at the White House, I said: “However you campaigned, once... Read more »

Practicing talking to strangers

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about the difficulty of finding meaningful personal interaction every day — one of the three essentials, along with exercise and mental stimulation, that a speaker prescribed for a happy retirement. Not long after that I heard about a book, When Strangers Meet: How People You Don’t Know... Read more »

Sidewalks are for walking, skateboarders

It’s great that skateboarders got a splendid skateboard park in the far-south end of Grant Park and that it’s so well used. I wish they would walk their skateboards to the park, though. The park is only two blocks from my home, so skateboarders coming and going are a regular presence. They share the sidewalks... Read more »

Separation from the news — not a permanent breakup

A friend and I recently spent five days at my sister’s vacation home in Brown County, Indiana. From the time we left Chicago on Thursday morning until we turned on the presidential debate on Sunday night, I didn’t check TV, radio, phone, or print for news. So, I didn’t hear about the Trump video brouhaha... Read more »

If Tribune wants Trump defeated, why endorse Johnson?

When a friend asked Friday morning whether I was going to cancel my subscription in protest, I didn’t know what she was talking about. I hadn’t yet heard about the Chicago Tribune’s endorsement of Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson — the man who asked “What is Aleppo?” and couldn’t name a foreign leader he admired.... Read more »

Is Hamilton a must see? Is anything?

It’s not news that Hamilton is the hottest ticket in town. But is the musical a must see? Is anything a must see? Browse in a bookstore or on Amazon and you’ll see scores of books with titles like • 1,000 Places to See Before You Die •1,000 Places to See in the United States... Read more »

I’m not an old lady yet — am I?

When strangers give me a smile or a friendly greeting, I’m generally happy to return it. But I was taken aback by the greeting of a 40ish man on a downtown sidewalk: “Hey, old lady, how ya doin?” “Did you just call me old?” was my incredulous reply. And then he seemed taken aback. “You... Read more »