Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Short Takes

Twelve missing in floods in Texas.

Kurdish leader blames Iraqi forces for losses to ISIS.

Tornado kills 13 in Mexico border city.

Bug out: Ladybugs released as high school prank.

R.I.P. John F. Nash, mathematician profiled in A Beautiful Mind; Anne Meara, comedian and actress.

The Tigers lost split the series with the Astros and lost Monday to Oakland.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Short Takes

ISIS captures Ramadi as Iraqi forces bug out.

Amtrak to resume service from Philadelphia to New York.

American envoy holds talks with Russia on peace deal with Ukraine.

Marine helicopter goes down in Hawaii; 12 injured.

R.I.P. Former Miami Dolphin Garo Yepremian.

The Tigers lost 2-1 to the Cardinals.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Short Takes

The engineer is now the focus of the inquiry into the train wreck in Philadelphia.

Fast Track back on track: Senate Democrats reverse course and hand President Obama a victory.

Man arrested for trying to fly drone over White House fence.

Proofread: Clinton-bashing book gets some error corrections.

R.I.P. B.B. King, 89, blues guitarist and legend.

The Tigers wallop the Twins 13-1 thanks to two homers by Miggy.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Elizabeth Wilson — 1921-2015

Elizabeth Wilson, a fine actor and good friend from many years at the Inge Festival, made her final exit yesterday. From Picnic on Broadway to films such as The Graduate and 9 to 5 to many, many roles on TV, she was a shining star. In her last role on film, they had to age her up to play Sarah Delano Roosevelt, FDR’s mother, in Hyde Park on Hudson.

Thank you, Lizzie, for your loving friendship.

PMW with Elizabeth Wilson 05-03-13

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Short Takes

Lots of tornadoes hit the Midwest and Plains states.

Netanyahu works out a deal to form a government for Israel.

Chicago will pay reparations to victims of police torture.

The New England Patriots did deflate their balls.

R.I.P. Former House Speaker Jim Wright, 92.

The Tigers dropped another to the White Sox 7-6.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Monday, April 27, 2015

Short Takes

Aftershocks hit Nepal after Saturday’s earthquake; death count at over 3,200.

Israel says it launched airstrike along Syrian border.

Two dead, five missing after storm hits Alabama regatta.

Hawaii passes bill to raise smoking age to 21.

R.I.P. William Price Fox, author of Southern novels.

The Tigers wrapped up a series against Cleveland, winning 8-4.

Friday, April 10, 2015

A Little Night Music

This song was featured prominently in the 1974 film version of The Great Gatsby.  It also comes to mind with the news of the passing of a good friend from my days in the Drama Department of the University of Miami.  I was in a show with her when she met Jerry, the love of her life, and they were together for the rest of her life.  I hold her, Jerry, and their whole family in the Light.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Short Takes

South Carolina police officer charged with murder in shooting death.

Rahm Emanuel wins 2nd term in Chicago mayoral race.

Kansas basically outlaws abortion.

Russia hacked the White House computer system.

Secretary of State Kerry will meet his Cuban counterpart at Latin American summit.

R.I.P. Stan Freberg, 88, one of the funniest men in the world.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Short Takes

Iran nuclear talks extended.

California imposes strict water use restrictions.

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) indicted on corruption charges.

Atlanta educators found guilty in test cheating scandal.

McDonald’s raising pay for employees at corporate-owned restaurants.

R.I.P. Cynthia Lennon, first wife of John Lennon.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Words Matter

Read the eulogy former Senator — and still an Episcopal priest — John Danforth gave at the funeral of his friend Tom Schweich.  Mr. Schweich was running in the Missouri Republican primary for governor.  He committed suicide last week after a whisper campaign was mounted by his political opponents.

We often hear that words can’t hurt you. But that’s simply not true. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said just the opposite. Words for Jesus could be the moral equivalent of murder. He said if we insult a brother or sister we will be liable. He said if we call someone a fool we will be liable to hell. Well how about anti-Semitic whispers? And how about a radio ad that calls someone a “little bug,” and that is run anonymously over and over again?

Words do hurt. Words can kill.

There is also the Quaker principle of “Speak only if you will improve the silence.”

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Short Takes

Iraq launched an offensive against ISIS in Tikrit.

President Obama says disagreement with Israel is not “permanent.”

Venezuela tells U.S. to reduce embassy staff.

An officer-involved shooting in Los Angeles caught on tape.

Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D) plans to retire.

More winter storms on the way.

R.I.P. Minnie Minoso, 91, first black Latino major league ball player.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Friday, February 27, 2015

Leonard Nimoy — 1931-2015

From the New York Times:

Leonard Nimoy, the sonorous, gaunt-faced actor who won a worshipful global following as Mr. Spock, the resolutely logical human-alien first officer of the Starship Enterprise in the television and movie juggernaut “Star Trek,” died on Friday morning at his home in the Bel Air section of Los Angeles. He was 83.

His wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, confirmed his death, saying the cause was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Mr. Nimoy announced that he had the disease last year, attributing it to years of smoking, a habit he had given up three decades earlier. He had been hospitalized earlier in the week.

His artistic pursuits — poetry, photography and music in addition to acting — ranged far beyond the United Federation of Planets, but it was as Mr. Spock that Mr. Nimoy became a folk hero, bringing to life one of the most indelible characters of the last half century: a cerebral, unflappable, pointy-eared Vulcan with a signature salute and blessing: “Live long and prosper” (from the Vulcan “Dif-tor heh smusma”).

I met Mr. Nimoy in 1974 when he was a guest at a cocktail party at the summer cottage of the producer the Cherry County Playhouse of Traverse City, Michigan, where he was appearing in a summer stock production of 6 RMS RIV VU.  It was a very brief conversation and I avoided any talk about Star Trek, which at the time I understood he didn’t like to talk about.  So we talked about sailboats.

“Live long and prosper,” indeed.  He did both.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Friday, February 13, 2015

Short Takes

Cease-fire in Ukraine will take effect on Sunday.

Mr. Secretary — The Senate confirmed Ashton Carter as the new Secretary of Defense.

Federal judge orders all Alabama county officials to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

F.B.I. Director James Comey addressed the issue of police and African-Americans.

President Obama signed the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for Veterans Act.

R.I.P. David Carr, media critic at the New York Times.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Short Takes

President Obama asked Congress for an AUMF against ISIS.

The U.S. and Britain abruptly closed their embassies in Yemen.

GOP Senator says it’s time to give up the fight on immigration.

Diplomats are trying to work out a peace agreement for Ukraine.

North Carolina man held in killing of three Muslim students.

CBS News correspondent Bob Simon, 73, killed in a car accident in New York City.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Short Takes

Afghan soldier kills three American contractors.

Egypt — Militants attack in Sinai.

Three dead in gas explosion in Mexico City maternity hospital.

Senate passes Keystone XL pipeline bill.

Measles outbreak has Arizona tracking up to 1,000 people exposed.

R.I.P. Poet Rod McKuen, whose words narrated a million teenage crushes.

The next president will get a new plane.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Mario Cuomo — 1932-2015

From the New York Times:

Mario M. Cuomo, the three-term governor of New York who commanded the attention of the country with a compelling public presence, a forceful defense of liberalism and his exhaustive ruminations about whether to run for president, died on Thursday at his home in Manhattan. He was 82.

His family confirmed the death, which occurred only hours after Mr. Cuomo’s son Andrew M. Cuomo was inaugurated in Manhattan for a second term as governor.

Mario Cuomo led New York during a turbulent time, 1983 through 1994. His ambitions for an activist government were thwarted by recession. He found himself struggling with the State Legislature not over what the government should do but over what programs should be cut, and what taxes should be raised, simply to balance the budget.

Listen to what he said over thirty years ago.  It is still true today.