Posted in Books
06/7 2014

The Stories of Breece D’J Pancake

IMAG1383Back in 2005 or 2006 my friend Bob Atkinson said I needed to check out Breece D’J Pancake’s “Trilobites and Other Stories.”   I knew from the first story that this was my kind of writer.  Bare knuckle boxing, blood on the pillow, cold mornings andREAD MORE

Posted in Uncategorized
05/10 2014

Starting over (again)



I’m back in Chicago, and I’m trying to write again.  I have no idea what problem killed the last blog but I’m tired of trying to resurrect it.  I’m moving on.  There is a pile of books on the table and some dirty dishes inREAD MORE

Posted in Books, China, Travels, Writing
05/29 2013

some notes from the Shanghai – Beijing express train

Tuesday.  I’m on the Shanghai – Beijing express train and I’ve just decided to listen to music and write because my initial plan to stare out the windows and zone out for 5 hours has been disrupted my growing agitation with the combination of snorersREAD MORE

03/11 2013

On The Road Again

Good evening.  It’s you, me, the Amtrak regional headed south from Providence, Rhode Island to Newark, New Jersey and I’m listening to Willie Nelson’s version of “City of New Orleans” and though it’s evening here repeat Willie’s sentiment and say to you all, Good Morning,READ MORE

01/31 2013

Letter From China (one of many to come)

In a hotel in Shenzhen I’m excited to have access to CNN from Hong Kong that is just a 45 minute ferry ride away.  Not that I’ve been there, but I’ll take the news.  It seems Hillary Clinton is stepping down and John Kerry movingREAD MORE

10/13 2012

The Journey

It begins with a phone ring – I hear it – my ringtone is the theme of the Andy Griffith Show and suddenly the whistle breaks out over the sound of the vacuum.  The taxi is here – outside.  I’d wanted to finish vacuuming beforeREAD MORE

09/29 2012

What it’s like here – on the way out

I’ve got a week and a half left in Arlington.  When you’re moving from an area, the last weeks are when you rush, when you’re anxious about leaving, anxious about arriving in the next home, sorry to say goodbye, hoping you will find people toREAD MORE

09/22 2012

The Inheritance of Loss – Kiran Desai

If ever a book was to be described as “stunning” then Kiran Desai’s The Inheritance of Loss would be what I would think of.  It is one of the most visually rich stories I’ve read in a long time and enjoyed the vividness of the interlacingREAD MORE

08/10 2012

Summer in Arlington, VA (what it’s like here)

This is place with hills (says the former Chicagoan).  I live here in a rented room with friends and cats.  This is a place with a pool on the roof and a sharp sun that we love every weekend.  From the roofdeck you can seeREAD MORE

08/4 2012

Vernon God Little – DBC Pierre

Before I get into the details of this book there are two things I want to mention.  One is that DBC Pierre is a pen name.  Using a pen name, I suppose, is like using a stage name – an attempt to jazz up yourREAD MORE