James's blog

An important new book by Gene Nichol

I didn’t want to read Gene Nichol’s newest book, Indecent Assembly. I didn’t want to confront the truth about North Carolina’s hard lurch toward right-wing extremism. But I had to read it, and so should you. We’re all living in Republican hell; we should know how we got here.

Day 27

Whether you're Christian or not, Easter Sunday arrives each year with the trappings of death. Though I've long since left the church, this holy day still resonates with me. Especially this year, when a microscopic life form, a new coronavirus, is ravaging the human population. Death is all around us.

Day 27

Lots of politicians are out appealing to their religious followers this weekend. Thom Tillis and Dan Forest both have been especially pandering on social media, celebrating the idea that Jesus was dead and buried for three days before he came back to life. Some see the story as metaphorical, but true believers take it on face value. Regardless of what you think about resurrection, there's a related story that must be remembered:

Day 26

One thing we've learned from the coronavirus is this: many of our assumptions about how life should work are not valid. We used to think everyone needed to go somewhere to be productive. But we're learning that many jobs can be done effectively from home. I've been telecommuting for 10 years. Now millions more are doing the same. One of my friends is a fraud analyst for a bank. Although it took her employer much too long to authorize teleworking, they finally made the call. Everything in her department that needs to get done is getting done.

Day 24

I realized this morning that isolation doesn't bother me. I finally understand what it might be like to live with me. It's a good thing Jane has a duck to keep her company.

Day 23

I come by my anxiety honestly. My mother suffered at least one nervous breakdown – I was ten – and 50 years later my father killed himself with a handgun. Between those events, I rode the anxiety roller coaster, holding on for dear life.


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