Mar 20, 2011


I stood at Goodwill among the stacks of used books scanning each spine for something interesting when I happened upon a pink book stuck spine inward. I grabbed and turned it about before putting it back in the stacks and finding a little brown wrapped text book next to it.

The old brown wrapper is oily and smooth from being used and covers a beautiful red text book called "Mathematical Tables - From Handbook of Chemistry and Physics Seventh Edition" compiled by Charles D. Hodgman, M.S., Associate Professor of Physics at Case School of Applied Science from Chemical Rubber Publishing Co. 2310 Superior Ave. N.E., Cleveland, Ohio. 1941

It's a relic befitting of a shelf with a slide rule and a Kodak Duaflex IV twin lens camera also perched on it. It's a book I'll not take the time to read, understand or use, but a book I instantly fell in love with. On the inside cover Eugene Anthony Tiernan, who later co-authored "New Technology in Oilseed Proteins," carefully wrote the log shortcuts he wanted to easily access while he was in Iowa State College's Chem E. Class. It was a time when instead of buying a cell phone case, one bought a brown book cover to wrap a book in and had phone number like "2183-J" that an operator had to connect you to.

On the inside of the buttery little book are pages and pages filled with patterns of numbers in tables carefully typeset in something like a Bookman font. The pages are thin, smooth and abundant. The whole book lightweight and satisfyingly convenient in size. It made utterly no sense for me to buy it other than I wanted it. I paid $1.50 and with the original selling price at 55¢, if my math is right, I figured it to be a terrific investment already appreciating by almost 300%.

Mar 16, 2011

Hyper Kid

As parents I think we really need to stick together and build each other up. There's plenty of judgement and blame for parents to go around, but I can no longer stay silent watching folks put their six and seven year old kids in strollers at the zoo. I don't think it's wrong to make a little person walk at the zoo until they complain their legs hurt, that's when it's time to get lunch or go home. And I promise, after walking outdoors all day, they will go straight to sleep that evening.

Mar 4, 2011

Learning to Eat

I keep giving Jack pieces of banana and sometimes peas even a few corners of toast. The only thing he's managed to feed himself is two scraps of black construction paper and a kernel of dry dog food.

Mar 3, 2011

Irish Need Not Apply

How many people do you know that will proudly recite how many quarters, eighths and one sixteenths French, German, Irish, Cherokee, Jamaican, and Italian they are when asked? How many will proudly share with you a family recipe from the old country when asked? Or agree the Statue of Liberty is a powerful symbol of America? Are they the same people who would vote for the politicians in this video? Or chant USA in the face of a child who's skin is brown?

Mar 2, 2011