America has only three cities: New York, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Everywhere else is Cleveland. – Tennessee Williams   I spent a few days in Cleveland in June. It really liked it, and into the bargain found the ten-hour drive each way positively restorative. That’s lockdown for you. To my additional surprise, I found […]

Lost and Found

When I first started teaching, I received the gift of a plant for my classroom. It joined me from school to school, from Washington State to New York State to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Then, when my dad went into an old folks home, I moved it to his room, where, after a few months, […]

Winter Campaign

The state of affairs having displeased me, I drove up to New Hampshire on Sundays to volunteer for one of the candidates. This was my most substantive engagement with a presidential campaign since reading What It Takes. On my first afternoon, I walked in and introduced myself to another volunteer. Amiable guy, and we talked […]

Western Civilization

  Masha Gessen: We moved to Boston, not the smiliest city in this country. Tyler Cowen: Quite the contrary.   Summer brought me to Michigan, Illinois, Colorado, and Washington state, and I was once again reminded how much more pleasant people are when they’re not in the Northeast. I was chatting [see? Even he’s nicer […]


  There’s also a much-loved tradition of using our landing lights to greet fellow pilots in the world’s most remote skies, where we might cruise for hours without seeing another aircraft. Then, perhaps from 40 miles away or more, we spot the strobe lights of an aircraft approaching at a different altitude. I reach up […]


  The first business day after the old man’s death saw me spending a lot of time on the phone. I kind of hate talking on the phone to begin with, so to clear my head I took Roosevelt out for a walk. While in the park he started furiously pawing at something in the […]

Gone till September

  I see you cryin’ but, Gentle Reader, I can’t stay. I’m going to write some other stuff for a while. In the meantime: 1) What has four letters and fills your mailbox? That’s right, m-a-i-l! Oh. You were thinking something else? In that case, William Schaff can fix that. I can’t tell you how […]