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Rudy Giuliani reveals the latest hoax at Four Seasons Total Landscaping, Philadelphia.

facts everyone, especially veterans, should know

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German soldiers of the 11th Reserve Hussar Regiment fighting from a trench, on the Western Front, 1916. Photo by Oscar Tellgmann. Public domain.
  1. What is Veterans Day?

Veterans Day is the day on which we honor and remember veterans of the US Armed Forces. Veterans Day is always on November 11, but if the day falls on a Sunday then November 12 is a federal holiday.

2. What is the history of Veterans Day?

The film Out of Africa, which is set against a fairly accurate historical backdrop, features a scene between Denys George Finch Hatton and Berkeley Cole at the outbreak of World War I. Finch Hatton (Robert Redford) and Cole (Michael Kitchen) discuss employing as scouts the Somalis with whom Berkeley works. …

how saving face complicates East Asian negotiation

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Seoul. Photo by Jana Sabeth on Unsplash.

I heard a story, probably apocryphal, when I was in South Korea: Mr Kim, a mid-level functionary with the urban planning division of the South Korean government, was visited by his counterpart, Mr Lee, from the North Korean government.

The South Korean drove the North Korean through the city center of Seoul and around its environs. Although Mr Kim explained key design points at several important parts of the city, which he found interesting and felt would also interest anyone in his profession, Mr Lee remained sulkily quiet.

Finally, well into the second hour of their drive through Seoul, Mr Lee spoke up: "I know that you arranged to have every car in the country here in Seoul to impress me." …

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Outside The Beat Hotel, Paris: Peter Golding, Madame Rachou (Proprietor) and Robin Page, Peter’s busking partner. Photo by Peter Golding. CC By 3.0.

the synergy of creative gatherings

Ernest Hemingway, a great admirer of Winesburg, Ohio, the masterful collection of interconnected short stories by Sherwood Anderson, managed to meet the prominent writer when they were both in Chicago in 1921. Anderson took Hemingway under his wing and encouraged him to go to Paris. He provided advice; attended Hemingway’s wedding to Hadley in September; and wrote letters of introduction to Gertrude Stein, James Joyce, Ezra Pound, and Sylvia Beach. By December Ernest and Hadley were in Paris.

Anderson chose the city and people for Hemingway well. A large scene of American expat writers and painters had established itself in Paris. Gertrude Stein regularly held salons in the apartment she shared with Alice B Toklas at 27 rue de Fleurus. Ezra Pound was already an established writer who also served as a facilitator for young artists. Sylvia Beach published books — she was the first to publish James Joyce’s hulking Ulysses in 1922 before anyone else was sure what to make of it — and she also ran a bookstore, Shakespeare & Co., at 12 rue de l’Odéon in the 6th arrondissement in 1922. The shop lent and sold books and provided a gathering place for Hemingway, Pound, Joyce, Djuna Barnes, Ford Madox Ford, and several others. …

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Posing at Glacier Point Yosemite 2013. Tuxyso / Wikimedia Commons. CC BY-SA 3.0.

the one best reason for minimalism

Guy with the trail name or pen name Nimblewill Nomad, real name Meredith J Eberhart, was a doctor, husband, father, but one day he finished with all that, gave all his money to his wife & sons, & went walking. He’s like a real-life Forrest Gump in the running chapter, because he just started walking, & he’s criss-crossed America in several directions. He’s walked the Pacific Crest Trail, the Appalachian Trail, the Continental Divide Trail—the three collectively known as the Triple Crown — and all eleven National Scenic Trails. In the chapter about him in a book I just read, he started in New Mexico & walked all the way to the Florida Keys. …

letter to a friend

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Photo by Skistar, Wikimedia Commons. CC by 3.0.

Rather than recast these rough ideas into a formal article focused on tropes and trains, I’m leaving this letter to a friend, who is conducting an online book club, in its original form, babbling, informal, and intimate. I let the reader fall into the water, splash in medias res, but trust it will be easy to see the upward drift of the bubbles.

Hi. Re Studio Ghibli-esque graphic novels, I realize you’re quite knowledgeable about graphic novels, & you likely have a direction in mind for your new group, so don’t let my limited field of vision warp your plans. …

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Woodward consigns 45 to darkness in iambic pentameter

Robert Whittington’s timeless appellation

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Congeressman John Lewis, a major figure in the Civil Rights movement and a ceaseless fighter for justice, died Friday, July 17.

Two simple rules on when to lie and when to tell the truth.

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Photo by Chris Leipelt on Unsplash.

Sometimes you have to share news with people close to you. Sometimes it’s best to tell the truth. Sometimes it’s best to lie. Honesty is not always the best policy.

Whoever said, “Never tell a lie,” was a callous bastard. But when should you tell the truth and when should you lie? How do you decide whether the truth or a lie is better? Two simple rules can help.

The Pilot’s Rule applies when the person’s well-being or survival depends upon knowing the most accurate information possible. This rule applies to people who need to use your information as part of the factual model of their situation. The pilot’s rule applies when the hearer needs a rational response. …

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BudDHA

The subversive message of Austin’s visual atrocities.

Urban hiking in America with its obsessive car culture shocks even the woke walker. I am on the path beside the ugliest street in the universe. Sometimes there’s sidewalk, and sometimes it’s a narrow earthen path pounded down by the passage of feet. As a rule I walk on the left side of the road so I might see that final car that comes for me, and this heightens the sense of swimming against the tide in shark-infested water. A family who have thrown off the humiliation of generations by buying a Cadillac mock my poverty as they drive by me, and I suspect they can’t conceive of walking by choice — after all, in a car culture, all but the most abjectly poor can get some kind of car. In the din and assault of onward moving cars, I come to a utility pole supporting something high above my pedestrian realm — high-tension power lines, probably — and on this pole is scrawled in chalk, “BudDha.” …

About

Mason West

writer / poet / explorer

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