Sunday, November 16, 2008

A Few Entries Appropriate To My Attention Span At The Moment

So I'm thinking...
  • that I hope the person who bet me $20 that the northeastern US would never see $2 gas again will do the honorable thing and come forward... I've forgotten who I made the wager with.
  • that you should get two parenting points when you spend two weeks deeply afraid of something and your kids don't acquire that fear. Two more when you realize they've picked something up after all and have inherited your bravado glands.
  • that Saint Ignatius was right: to teach people, you need to "(go) in at their door and come out at (your/His) own".
  • that the more I consider the evolution of technology and the evolution of arts, the more poets look like buggy drivers. More on this in December.
  • that covering economics, parenting, catechetics (teaching), and poetry in one post means I'm probably better off doing something else....

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

And What Might It Mean?

No matter what your opinion or preference was before 11PM last night, there's no question we are in a different era in American history and politics today than were a week ago. The conventional wisdom would suggest that a Democrat in the White House is good for the arts. Here are the some of the specifics on the subject from Obama's platform:
  • Reinvest in Arts Education: To remain competitive in the global economy, America needs to reinvigorate the kind of creativity and innovation that has made this country great. To do so, we must nourish our children’s creative skills. In addition to giving our children the science and math skills they need to compete in the new global context, we should also encourage the ability to think creatively that comes from a meaningful arts education.
  • Publicly Champion the Importance of Arts Education: As president, Barack Obama will use the bully pulpit and the example he will set in the White House to promote the importance of arts and arts education in America. Not only is arts education indispensable for success in a rapidly changing, high skill, information economy, but studies show that arts education raises test scores in other subject areas as well.

Health care and cultural exchange are also key parts of Obama on the arts.

Obviously, this isn't a first-100-days priority, but it will be interesting to see if these statements play out in policy.

Of course, knowing our President-Elect has a poetry publishing credit to his name can only be encouraging, no?

Monday, November 03, 2008

... and we're back.

Been three weeks (that's 21 in blog-years). Let's see what's been going on.
  • Larry Lawrence was good enough to pinch-hit for us in the DeBaun Spoken Word series this month when Penny Harter was unfortunately unable to attend. Larry wrote a little about his experience at Symposia Bookstore. We had one of those small groups - the kind where the reading turns more into a conversation. Thanks to Larry for the late fill-in, and good thoughts for Penny, who I hope we'll be able to reschedule in 2009.
  • The Presidential election build-up has become unbearable, with local elections getting even worse than the top of the tickets. Saturday Night Live has had by far the most even-handed coverage of any broadcast outlet ("Palin"/"Biden" was brilliant). Aside from one good summary in my local paper, I haven't seen an issues-based article or sound-byte since Columbus Day.
  • Speaking of paper, the Christian Science Monitor is giving it up, going online-only in 2009. Seems late; most of the folks I know who occasion that periodical already do so online. But good luck to the venerable newspaper in its new incarnation. I'm partial to that paper because my first cash sale was to CSM.
  • The Phillies won the World Series. The Mets watched the Series on TV. One of these things is news. The Jets lost to the worst team in football and beat the best in their division. Ditto.

Coming up: Matthew Thorburn in Hoboken, Holiday writing, side dishes for Thanksgiving...