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the poetics of hockey

The poetics of hockey has suffered a terrible blow. Doc Emrick retired at the end of last season after forty-seven years as the most expressive and eloquent of sports announcers. He called an NHL broadcast on TV as though he were still on radio, delivering a nonstop monologue of every pass, every shot, and every …

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a note on mike pence

A NYT headline online today announced “Pence Reached His Limit with Trump. It Wasn’t Pretty.” Reached his limit is an interesting phrase. Pence, we will no doubt be led to believe, was in there resisting all along, like the once-anonymous, so-called senior official who assured Times readers in 2018 of the resistance to Trump: “many …

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doctoring the record

The outcry over the recent WSJ op-ed on Jill Biden’s use of the honorific “Dr.” is laughably out of all proportion to the offense. The author took the no doubt painful occasion of having to recognize that Joe Biden has actually been elected president of the United States to unwind one of his typical witty …

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election eve

Are we in our Weimar moment? is not an unreasonable question. But the apparent parallels can disguise the deeper difference. Unlike the Weimar Republic, whose unraveling opened the way to Hitler’s rise to power, we are not attempting to found and stabilize a democracy where one has never existed. Germany in the 1920s needed to establish a democracy …

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joe & bernie

The sad absurdity of the Sanders left: Holding what the campaign billed “a racial and economic justice town hall” in Flint, Michigan, to rejuvenate his candidacy among African-Americans, Sanders set aside the speech he had written. Although he wants to be president of the United States, he apparently didn’t want to presume he could speak …

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tiller…tiller

Heidegger’s fourfold ignores the sea as part of the earth, looking exclusively at the agrarian world and preindustrial farming to flesh out his symbolizations of earth. But seafaring, too, has preindustrial origins. There are uncanny analogies between farming and sailing, as though these opposite vocations, along with their respective implements and activities, are transformations of …

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lost in-laws

I have had three long-term relationships with women I deeply loved. They all ended in divorce, two de jure and one de facto. One involved children and two the lack of children. Infidelity played a role each time, two times on my part and once on my partner’s, a role far more oblique than it …

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afterlife

How do I know there is no afterlife? Because the inmates of paradise do not read. The promise of afterlife is the promise of transcending the knowledge of good and evil and of death that Adam and Eve brought into the world thanks to their disobedience of God in Eden. It is the promise of …

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papal equinox

Pope Francis visited Philadelphia, the District of Columbia, and New York City in 2015, September 22-27. Speaking to the General Assembly during the UN’s annual gathering of heads of state, he sounded three themes: poverty, climate, and migration. The coincidence of the equinox gave those themes the aura of a planetary-solar convergence which I’ve recalled …

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