“You’re not going?” I called after the dachshund, but he had turned his rear toward me and continued away to the spot where I had first seen him. There the tiny figure paused and pointed his long nose like a compass needle in my direction. “I’ve brought the lawsuit against you,” he said, “for your… Continue reading Beware of Man’s Best Friend
“This led to the Delta Works, a true wonder of the modern world. It included an immense double gate to stop storm surges from entering the mouth of the Hollandse Ijssel. I realized that by becoming an engineer I could contribute to these projects that might take decades to build. . . . My dream… Continue reading Can We Control the Forces of Nature?
“Soon after, a dawn began like no other I have ever seen. It lit the waves, clouds, and sky with a rosy light so saturated and intense that it seemed to me a birth canal through which creation itself was replenished.” – from A Floating Life by Tad Crawford (Chapter 32) As anyone familiar with Homer knows,… Continue reading Dawn of Creation
“In 1405 an armada of 317 enormous junks, some reported to be as large as 500 feet in length and 150 feet in width, began the first of seven epic voyages that would take place over the next three decades. Traveling as far as the coasts of India, Persia, Africa, andeven perhaps Australia, Cheng Ho’s… Continue reading Cheng Ho’s Sacrifice
“Ahead, near the Great Lawn, I could see bears converging from several directions. Far too many to count. On a bandstand raised near the leaping light of a bonfire, a band of a dozen bears played drums, fiddles, and flutes in a jig that reverberated through the park. Around the fire a hundred or more… Continue reading Bearfast
“Each night we drank sake together, hundreds of young men in uniform. We wrote poems about cherry blossoms and recited them. How brief is that beautiful moment of the blossoms—that is what all the poems said.” – from A Floating Life by Tad Crawford (Chapter 30) This photograph of cherry blossoms was taken at the Brooklyn Botanical… Continue reading An Ode to Cherry Blossoms
Can we change the past by understanding it differently? The Sense of an Ending is a nugget of a novel by Julian Barnes that won the 2011 Man Booker Prize. Only 163 pages, it is easily readable in a day, perhaps in a single sitting. The premise of the novel is about how we make stories… Continue reading Can We Change the Past? (Part one)
Numbers these days have added zeros in incomprehensible fashion. What used to be a million now seems to be a billion or sometimes even a trillion. In the face of this, what can one hundred possibly mean? If the one hundred is one hundred readers, it could mean a lot. Let me explain. I’ve written… Continue reading One Hundred Readers