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Waffle House


Or: Lessons Learned in a Waffle House at Shift Change First, let’s address the herd of elephants in the room. It’s been more than a year and a half since I updated Zeitgeist. I’ve also been woefully neglectful of Finding Machu Picchu, as well. But there are reasons, both good and bad, for having been so neglectful.…
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Acquisitions I: Souvenirs from a life with art

My first encounter with art happened on a staircase landing. Sometime in the late Spring of 2002, I an invitation to a gallery opening from Carol Parsons. I had done an article on her home, Layton’s Castle, and during the attached photo shoot, we shared cocktails in her library. We spent the better part of…
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Welcome to the Second Republic

Or: Lessons Learned from Ancient Rome In 27 BCE, the naval and land forces of Roman consul Octavian clashed with those loyal to Mark Antony and his Egyptian ally, Cleopatra. They met in the waters and on the lands around the Greek city of Actium, and the results were decisive, bringing an end to a…
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The Case for 2020: Year In Review

Alyssa and I were nestled tightly together on the sofa, watching Bridgerton and waiting patiently. At 11:50 p.m., I removed a bottle of Korbel from the refrigerator and popped the cork. At 11:55, I poured two glasses and sat them on the table. All the while, Miss Bridgerton and the Duke danced in the background. When…
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Care in the Time of Covid

With apologies to Señor Garcia Marquez   Every year since I moved to Tennessee, sometime between Halloween and Thanksgiving, I’ve undertaken what has become an annual rite, a pilgrimage to the local doc-in-a-box for a steroid shot, a Z-pak, and a course of prednisone. This ritual comes courtesy of genes that despise ragweed, genes that rebel…
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Sinatra and Hepburn

The Jet Set

Or: How Little Mama Inspired Visions of a Glittering Future When I was about 12, my grandmother and I were sitting in the sunroom playing Gin and chatting. Memories of the subject of our conversation — the what or, more likely, the who — is a long-dead casualty to time. What I do remember, though, is…
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Cooking the sausage

Creatures of Habit

Or: How backing into my parking space, making my bed every morning, and a Sunday frittata saved my life. Writing is a strange vocation to pick up. You take words — the things you and I use in conversation every day, whether we’re cajoling our kids (I’m looking at you, oh precious daughter o’ mine)…
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Death and the Maiden

I don’t remember when I first discovered Schubert’s String Quartet No. 14.”Death and the Maiden” was Schubert’s testament to the process of dying. He had fallen ill, apparently, and he wrote #14. If you’ve never heard it, you can listen to it here. It’s a remarkable piece of music, if only because the tumultuous Allegro…
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Five Goals

Or: A workaholic’s guide to avoiding going to meetings   For Dee Wallace* I have a working theory: Workaholics Anonymous doesn’t exist because you could never get a workaholic to go to a meeting that wasn’t attached to a budget line or a task in their project management suite. (I use basecamp at my day…
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Capturing the Mood of a Moody People

Or: After 10 years, “Untitled” has a name   I don’t remember how long it was after 9/11 that I first I saw Richard Drew’s “Falling Man,” the stark, frightening image of a single individual plummeting down the face of the World Trade Center. What I do remember is how remarkably this one image captured…
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