Category Society

Sad Commentary

  I’ll admit I laughed when I first saw this. Then immediately felt embarrassed for having done so. It is a sad indictment of the state of politics in America that such a concept could be taken seriously, but political divisions seem to have deepened in recent years. Demonizing your opponents appears to be the […]

Sounds of Summer

We seem to have a bit of a musical theme here recently. That’s because Sulzburg has had a couple of concerts in the market square this past week. I must confess I didn’t take an pictures in the hour I spent watching the local “hand harmonica” (accordion) club. After all, if you have seen (and […]

Blowing Their Own Horns II

Some thoughts from the alpenhorn student concert in Sulzburg’s market square. I must confess I had never thought about this instrument before, just accepted that it was a Swiss thing. I figured it to be localized because how do you transport something that big? Now I realize that the horns unscrew into three parts (or […]

Blowing Their Own Horns

  If I correctly understood the notice in the municipal newsletter, these alpenhorn players were attending a training course in nearby Staufen, and were prevailed upon to¬† give a concert in the Sulzburg market square on Thursday morning. You could hear them from our apartment. The alpenhorn is not an instrument that I am that […]

Rolling The Dice

Political junkies in Canada are watching an unusual story unfolding in Parliament today. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is to appear before a parliamentary committee to answer questions about his latest ethics scandal. The general rule of thumb is that Prime Ministers don’t appear before committees, especially not ones investigating them. That Trudeau is ignoring this […]

To Mask Or Not To Mask?

    Free masks are no longer available to Ottawa transit users. In theory passengers have had time to pick up a mask, which is required of those using the system. I have from time to time commented on cultural differences between Canada and Germany. This year the idea of face masks is a prominent […]

The Plane Not Taken

I never thought it would last this long. Did you? Is there anyone at this point whose life hasn’t been disrupted by COVID-19? When will it end? I’m supposed to be on a plane today, going back to Canada for vacation. Instead I’m hoping for a Christmas flight – if any airlines are flying then. […]

What Is Valid Protest?

Black Lives Matter was in the news again on the weekend. Three protesters were arrested in Toronto for vandalizing statues. Their lawyer was outraged, saying Canadians are tired of this ongoing battle. She’s probably right – but the majority are probably more tired of the protesters. There seems little doubt as to guilt. The organization […]

An Eerie Prophecy

It can be a little freaky when life imitates art. It isn’t supposed to be that way. Everything you need to know about COVID-19 can be found in the 2011 film¬†Contagion. Somehow I missed it nine years ago, despite an all-star ensemble cast. I guess I’m just not much of a moviegoer. Contagion tells the […]

Price Gouging?

About a year ago I re-posted this piece from 2015, mostly so that my mother could read it – she didn’t get online until she turned 88 in 2017. I’m repeating it today because my sister sent me a late-night text. It was a real estate picture of the house and the question, “isn’t this […]