American democracy was already on the ropes, but now, with the passing of Justice Bader-Ginsberg, we have the added concern that the Supreme Court may no longer serve as a brake on authoritarianism. It’s a sad state of affairs. So, let’s have a good cry, and then let’s get back in the ring and fight for democracy. Here’s another addition to the St. James Infirmary … Continue reading Sad Days
Languages and cultures are always changing. People all over the world like to talk in the latest slang. Over time, dialects, argot, and new languages come into being. It’s a natural thing. Within occupational and social groups new lingo just seems to pop up. New words find their way into common usage. I think that’s cool. Cultural evolution. I can handle that. But what confuses … Continue reading Neologisms and Some Unmixed Messaging
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been crazy about Ray Charles. Ray Charles was one of the greats. I was lucky enough to see him perform three times over the years. Each time he played disappointingly short sets. But each moment was special. If I had to vote for the best pop/jazz singer of the past generation it would be for the late, great … Continue reading You Don’t Know Me
Welcome to September again. Labor Day weekend coming up. It’s been one astoundingly difficult year, and one hot summer here in Califonia. Three years ago, back in the 2017 September’s Tri-Centennial magazine, I wrote: “we’re having a heck of a heat spell and fire season here in California. Of course, there are always seasonal fluctuations in the weather, but four consecutive record-high temperature years is … Continue reading The Annual Bumbastories Tri-Centennial September Magazine
George Packard, combined his already-questionnable, journalistic zeal with his definitely dubious physical fitness regime and rode his bicycle to the beach. By now, George Packard was well aware that it was highly unlikely for him to chance upon any Breaking News stories while at the beach. However, the way George saw it, during a pandemic, if you needed to be to be looking for a … Continue reading George Packard’s Latest Scoop
An apt title nowadays. I read it maybe forty years ago, but hadn’t liked it nearly as well as I liked his other works: The Stranger, The Happy Death, the Exile and Kingdom stories, and the First Man – which are are all just magnificent. As you might imagine in these covid days, the title The Plague came to mind. So, I ordered it through … Continue reading The Plague by Albert Camus
WARNING: We at Bumbastories are well aware that these little talks about science are not for the weak of heart. The following is presented as a public service in the conviction that society (that’s all of us) would be a whole lot better off if people (that’s us, again) had a fuller understanding of science and math. For example, they would be better able to … Continue reading Geology… or Hey, Those Tectonic Plates Are Moving!
I wrote this one a long time ago, but I still like to play it. The title is Trust Me, or She Looks and Tells Me, because that’s the first line. But recently I refer to it in my mind as Rockland County, because that’s where the little story takes place. To borrow a bit of Bill Monroe’s terminology, it’s a “true life” song – … Continue reading Trust Me: A Rockland County Song
Happy August. Happy eighth month of the year! The month August got its name from the Roman emperor Augustus, who named the month after himself in order to celebrate, er, himself. August means admirable, and reverential, and implies all things good, which is why Augustus, nee Octavius (which already meant the eight man), re-named himself Augustus in the first place. Ol’ Augustus thought Augustus sounded … Continue reading The Bumbastories’ Semi-Annual August Magazine
Sabotage is a word derived from the old French word for wooden shoes: sabot. Two centuries ago, Luddite workers, feeling exploited by the new assembly lines, tossed their shoes, their wooden sabots, into the machines in order mto to halt production. Since those times, the term has come to refer to acts that “deliberately destroy, damage, or obstruct (something), especially for political or military … Continue reading ?Sabotage or “Politization”?