What's Tony Thinking

Is Halloween the New Big American Holiday?

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October 18, 2018 — I’ve been wondering — is Halloween becoming our new biggest holiday? Perhaps you too have noticed that the Halloween “season” seems to be getting underway earlier — like mid-September to judge from decorations and displays in stores. And it’s no longer just the one night. It’s Halloween parties, scavenger hunts, haunted houses, costume parades and... Read More

Political Correctness and A Message for the UCC

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October 13, 2018 — Last week the group “More in Common” put out a study of our divided society, “Hidden Tribes: A Study of America’s Polarized Landscape,”  It is worth paying attention to. Instead of falling into two camps of left and right, 2/3’s of Americans constitute “an exhausted majority,” who “share a sense of fatigue with our polarized... Read More

Overcoming Perfectionism

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October 10, 2018 — As mentioned here not long ago, I teach occasional writing workshops dubbed “Writing in the Wild” at Discovery Park. A half dozen of us cluster on a beach or in the forest. I serve up a prompt like, “Autumn,” and ask people to write away for a short time. Then people have a chance to... Read More

Troubling Words of Jesus

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October 8, 2018 — As I’ve been writing about the Kavanaugh drama and our fervent tribalism, some verses of Scripture have been niggling at me. Verses about only loving those who love us. They come from the Sermon on the Mount, the fifth chapter of the Gospel of Matthew, verses 43 – 48, where Jesus says to his disciples,... Read More

Mitch McConnell and the Real House of Cards

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October 5, 2018 — The Netflix series “House of Cards” (2013 – 2018) portrays a cynical Washington political couple, the Underwoods, who will stop at nothing in their pursuit of power. While I’m sure there are many real life candidates for House of Cards- like characters in D.C. (and elsewhere), Mitch McConnell, the Senate Majority Leader, certainly appears to... Read More

Judge Kavanaugh Credited for Reversing A.D.D.

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October 3, 2018 — For the first time since President Trump’s election national statistics for Attention Deficit Disorder have shown a decline. “It just goes to show,” said Surgeon General, a.k.a. “the nation’s doctor,” Jerome Adams, “that there is a silver lining to every cloud.” Since President Trump has been in office a generalized national condition of Attention Deficit... Read More

Wild Comfort

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October 1, 2018 — I am taking a break from the Kavanaugh controversy. The world will no doubt be relieved to know that I am content to let the FBI do its work without further commentary from me. Meanwhile, I had great session of my writing group, “Writing in the Wild,” on the North Beach of Discovery Park  on... Read More

In the Thrall of Tribalism

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September 28, 2018 — I watched a good deal of yesterday’s hearing and the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh. I found both compelling. Blasey Ford seemed to me wholly believable and completely without ulterior motive or motivation. Kavanaugh was painfully honest about the viciousness of the proceedings. Kavanaugh did seem to get a little intoxicated on... Read More

The Real Problem with Judge Kavanaugh

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September 26, 2018 — The nomination of Brett Kavanaugh continues on a downward spiral. One would be inclined to think it a matter of time until he withdraws, but for the lurking presence of Clarence Thomas. Thomas proves that you can have a lot of credible accusations of deplorable conduct against you and still end up on the Supreme... Read More

The Close and Holy Darkness

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September 23, 2018 — Many of you will recognize my title as coming from the closing words of poet Dylan Thomas’s A Child’s Christmas in Wales. Here’s the final paragraph of that wonderful narrative poem, a Christmastime favorite of mine: “Looking through my bedroom window, out into the moonlight and the unending smoke-colored snow, I could see the lights in... Read More