Essays

ESSAY- Sports rules: Why Vick should have beaten a woman
Published on Aug 30th, 2007
7 comments National Football League superstar Michael Vick is in trouble, serious trouble. Federal prosecutors charged the Atlanta Falcons' quarterback with animal abuse for his role as the alleged leader of a...
ESSAY- Station take: Valley Net radio station under death watch
Published on Aug 23rd, 2007
0 comments Interstate 81 snakes along the Valley side of the Blue Ridge, far from major population centers, yet choked with tractor-trailer traffic grinding against the frequent steep grades. The route cuts...
ESSAY- Police state: Local agents armed to the teeth
Published on Aug 16th, 2007
7 comments Two years ago, in an article entitled "It Can't Happen Here," Congressman Ron Paul cautioned, "We're not yet living in a total police state, but it's fast approaching." A lot can happen in two years...
ESSAY- Thanatourism: Can 'dark travel' offer illumination?
Published on Aug 9th, 2007
1 comments Not long ago, I went to Dubai, where mega project after mega project competes for the world's headlines. There I stood in the shadow of the Dubai Sunny Mountain Ski Dome– just a metal tube from...
ESSAY- Hammerin' Hank: Bonds can never match Aaron
Published on Jul 26th, 2007
0 comments "When I was in the ballpark, I felt like I was surrounded by angels and I had God's hand on my shoulder." –Hank Aaron When I was growing up in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s,...
ESSAY- Repeat offender: Barker would face stiffer penalty today
Published on Jul 19th, 2007
3 comments At the time of the landmark Polly Klaas murder case in California in 1993, I was practicing forensic clinical psychology in the San Francisco area. In that capacity I evaluated numerous child sex...
ESSAY- Gussie up the clam shell
Published on Jul 19th, 2007
3 comments Beautifying the Downtown Pavilion by using the canopy as a canvas for artistic displays [OnArchitecture, "Pavilion projections: An art work waiting to happen?" July 12] is very close to an idea I've...
ESSAY- Rapidan garden: Nature teaches as much as books
Published on Jul 12th, 2007
1 comments Once the academic year ends, I trade in my teaching clothes for shorts and t-shirt, and set aside my backpack 'til September. Neighbors and acquaintances greet me with the same line, "So, are you off...
ESSAY- In a flash: The day my toddler slipped under water
Published on Jul 5th, 2007
0 comments Her hair, that's what I noticed first: the long golden mane floating above her head like seaweed. In one of those enduring nanoseconds– a mental snapshot that lasts a lifetime– I...
ESSAY- Too much: Is it time to erase our Google caches?
Published on Jun 28th, 2007
0 comments On the Internet, somebody does know you're a dog. Google, to be exact. And it has the pictures to prove it. The ominously helpful high-tech giant has introduced a service called Street View in Las...
You played: Why can't your kids shoot 'em up?
Published on Jun 21st, 2007
0 comments I was playing a round of Gears of War, trying to redo a level on "insane" mode, and the walls were painted with guts. I slaughtered my way to the boss, revved up my chainsaw, and sliced into his...
ESSAY- Built to bust: How long's that iPod good for?
Published on Jun 14th, 2007
0 comments Good for you. The lesson of how VHS made Betamax obsolete in the '80s is still part of your folk memory, so you didn't buy a Blu-ray or HD DVD player last December. As a video refusenik, unsure which...
ESSAY- Baby, I'm amazed: Modern life's magical amenities
Published on Jun 7th, 2007
0 comments I missed the season finale of Grey’s Anatomy when it aired, even though I have Tivo. (Another show with an extended running time for its season finale had a higher priority.) I was bummed for...
ESSAY- 'Pepper' plus 40: When the Beatles were gods
Published on May 31st, 2007
3 comments ALBUM COVER "I declare that the Beatles are mutants, prototypes of evolutionary agents sent by God, endowed with a mysterious power to create a new human species." –Dr. Timothy Leary The...
ESSAY- Walls of silence: Memorializing the heroic fallen
Published on May 24th, 2007
0 comments They gaze at me from my newspaper, the young men and women fallen in Iraq and Afghanistan, 153 of them this month. Their eyes meet mine, smiling, proud, intent on bright futures now forever...
ESSAY- Scribo, ergo sum: Everybody's got something to say
Published on May 17th, 2007
0 comments Hummingbirds? Here? I'd never seen one. And then, on a Sunday afternoon, my husband came home with a hummingbird feeder. He filled it with sugar water dyed red, hung it up on the porch, and within...
Manners matter: Lessons from the 'school of ma'am'
Published on May 10th, 2007
0 comments Years ago, a new-to-Charlottesville co-worker asked me not to refer to her as "Ma'am." "It makes me feel old," said the twenty-something. At the time I didn't know how to respond to that near-...
Gundamentalists: Talk to the armed law students
Published on May 3rd, 2007
15 comments In the week following the Virginia Tech tragedy, I read articles in two daily newspapers and the Sunday New York Times about gun control in the United Kingdom and heard quotes from shooting victims...
ESSAY- Unrivalled: Why we're all Hokies now
Published on Apr 26th, 2007
0 comments Before an apparently isolated, mentally ill gunman slaughtered 32 students and professors on April 16, the big Hokie-'Hoo issue was barely worth crowing about. In late March, a fiberglass Tech...
ESSAY- Friend of Bill: Growing up in Blacksburg
Published on Apr 19th, 2007
0 comments Last time: Morva trial slated for SeptemberAccording to the Roanoke Times, a Montgomery County jury last month recommended that William Morva serve 38 years in jail for his role in the 2005...
ESSAY- Jeepers creepers: Where have all the peepers gone?
Published on Apr 12th, 2007
0 comments Living in my home above the Rivanna River in the Woolen Mills neighborhood, I awaken these spring mornings to the sound of Canada geese honking and beating their wings on the water. A Carolina wren...
ESSAY- Pants on fire: Can you tell when someone's lying?
Published on Apr 5th, 2007
4 comments Evolutionary psychologists suggest that human cooperation is the result of evolved brain mechanisms that enabled our ancestors to detect cheaters. Broadly speaking, cheaters are people who accept a...
ESSAY- Moniker madness: What's in a (middle) name?
Published on Mar 22nd, 2007
2 comments Just days after Barack Obama first mused about running for president a few months back, Republican strategist Ed Rogers winged the senator on Hardball. "Count me down as somebody who underestimates...
ESSAY- Echo's boom: From GW and TJ prez perfidy reigns
Published on Mar 15th, 2007
0 comments The naming of 17 presidents in the Atlantic Monthly's Top 100 Americans of all time may slow condemnation of George W. Bush's legacy. He's doing what virtually all of them have done. Atlantic names...
ESSAY- Sound check: Ian Stevenson and my grandson
Published on Mar 8th, 2007
0 comments Every afternoon, when classes were over for the day, the conductor would stride though my commuter train out of Boston, hollering, "Wedgemere! Winchester! Wilmington! North Billerica and Lowell!"...
ESSAY- Just playing (on!): Could a reality show pump local theater?
Published on Mar 1st, 2007
0 comments When it rains it pours,When it snows you sled,When nothing happens that's been predicted,You sit and scratch your head.-bh On February 1, my event for Play On, Charlottesville's newest community...
Trouble in Arcadia: Development, traffic threaten TJ's dream
Published on Feb 22nd, 2007
1 comments The Arcadian tradition so clearly represented in the architecture of UVA– and other designs by Thomas Jefferson– contains an inherent contradiction that's headed for a major controversy...
ESSAY- Anna Nicole: How TV has failed us
Published on Feb 15th, 2007
16 comments "She was entropy porn at its finest."—Cintra Wilson, Salon You would think that Mother Teresa had just died (again) the way the media– especially television– is covering every...
ESSAY- Q&A primer: Tips for guys facing tough questions
Published on Feb 8th, 2007
0 comments My husband and I are taking a walk when we pass a rather large woman. She's bent over, revealing an even larger rear end. Without missing a beat, Bill turns to me and whispers, "...and no, your butt...
ESSAY- Pete Seeger's last war
Published on Feb 1st, 2007
0 comments Nearly three years ago, on the day Ronald Reagan died, an atypically modest tribute to the patriarch of the right appeared at the foot of a veteran's monument in Wappingers Falls, a quiet town in...