Okay, I do have to admit that there's an awful lot of Hebrew…not to mention fierce marketing of the one God idea…and it does go on for three hours. No interval. And to be completely irreverent, one could add no popcorn…but that would drive the point unpleasantly home about no food. In short, it’s Yom Kippur. Or was, the sun having set. And, what the hell, the Book of Life is sealed for another year. And I was there. People with observant Jewish backgrounds certainly are much more on top Read more [...]


What happens when one 'slows down'? Nothing bad, as far as I can see. Of course, it is entirely possible that I cannot see far enough. But what I can see, close up and near-term, is wildly beneficial. It is said that people slow down with age. What seems incontrovertible is that their physiologic aspects slow. Even without having recently tested them, my reactions have slowed. At least I assume that. But what about other stuff? Most mornings each week I rise from my bed and hurtle toward exercise. Read more [...]

The Master

Recently, my nights have been better. Sleep comes and stays. I wake up, but not for long. Rested, that's what I am. Although last night was a bit challenging. Vis-à-vis reality. Somewhere deep inside my body there was a sound. A staccato moan. Or a sort of cry. I timed my breathing to see if this sound varied. It didn't. What was the source? What horrible thing was going wrong? Something to do with swallowing? Apparently not breathing? Or the brain itself? I have learned that if there is Read more [...]

By the Bay

Rome wasn't built in a day. But on a day when nothing seems to have been built at all, the Roman comparison is not helpful. After all, who would want to build Rome these days? It really isn't a model for much of anything modern. Its charms and virtues are ancient. As opposed to San Francisco which is rapidly getting out of the charm business and chucking virtue into the bay. Which brings me to the one thing that was accomplished today. Perspective. When I think of the term 'adult education’ Read more [...]

Bearded New Year

Having never celebrated Rosh Hashanah as a child…is finally paying off. Which may just mean that life is paying off. Or I have turned a sort of optimistic corner. Or that I'm moving into a new stage of life and acceptance. I digress. And that's the other thing. Everything is a digression. It was about 25 years ago, in the depressing and challenging years after my divorce, that I turned up at a synagogue in Palo Alto. For what? My sister used to joke that this was my approach to getting laid. Read more [...]

On my Own

In the film 'Remains of the Day’ the aging father of the butler played by Anthony Hopkins is, as we say, beginning to lose it. The man is also in service, so the ‘it' that he loses is his servant's control. He trips and drops something. His nose runs. The man's professional days are numbered. And in an era when retirement plans weren't even a concept, his nonprofessional days do not exist. He has nothing. He is nothing. Most poignantly, we see him retrace a stumble. How did he trip? The man walks Read more [...]