Jul/Aug 2014

e c l e c t i c a   n o n f i c t i o n


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My Family on the Waters
I still remember standing with my father on deck in the spring evening, as we sailed down the peaceful Potomac and he pointed out George Washington's mansion up on its modest hill. Then we went to eat in the dining room. The tables were covered with white linen and our meal was served by a courtly black waiter who spoke kindly to me. Next morning Uncle Hughes and Aunt Petah met us at Old Point Comfort, and we took the ferry over Hampton Roads and drove to their bungalow and seven acres of woods, on a tidal creek in what was then open countryside between Norfolk and Virginia Beach. All memorable, but the voyage on the Old Bay Line was the best of it.
Peter Bridges


Trapped in Our Cells
What I have realized about this debate, though, is that we will never convince each other. If incontrovertible scientific evidence came out that using a cell phone on any sort of regular basis would take ten years off the user's life, every person who uses one would continue to do so. If similar evidence was published showing that using this technology strengthens relationships and adds to the quality of one's life or the length, I would continue not to own one. There is no way we will change.
Kevin Brown


Ein Blick Ins Chaos
In sum, our situation today is pervasively anti-intellectual, commercial, Left-utilitarian. When literature is made a mealy, homogeneous and ugly paste of 3rd to 5th rate work, then history and philosophy, needed as ancillaries, goes the same way, and so they have gone. It is one thing to blame the media, but TV and movies have become technically powerful, intellectually as low as one can go. But that is another story. It is all stumbling if not tumbling downhill, a decline to a level of sheer disinterest.
Jascha Kessler


The Antique Market
I never price anything. Instead, I read the customers. After I catch their interest, I hook them with numbers. Numbers come out in batches. Depending on who it is and how I feel, the numbers ring out low enough to get interest from them and often the others hovering nearby. The more they buy the more expensive it gets cause when I start low they convince themselves I am giving it away. I obviously don't know what it's worth and am underselling, desperate, young, pretty, and dumb.
Melissa Tombro


The Holt Letters: Correspondence Between a Father and His Son During the Civil War
I stood the march first rate I am well and tough and so is George R and all the Hartland boys I got your letter with the likeness in it and I call it a tip top picture if Mother gets one that looks as much like her as that does like you she will get a good likeness. George R wants his mother to send him a bunch of Envelopes do them up in a peace of paper and send them as you do a leter it wont cost more than 6 cts  
Oliver and Henry Holt


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