EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a continuing series of updated fairy tales, for the new millennium. Think of them as “living tales,” where we adjust the story – and the moral – to suit the times in which we live.
Once upon a time, there was a young man, who lived in a village. The lad came from a very traditional household – family values, church, traditions, belief in self-reliance, and all that jazz. But he grew up in an era where the old ways were looked upon first as “old fashioned,” and now “outdated,” “outmoded,” and flat-out “wrong.” Day after day, he was chided, criticized, and even mocked for his beliefs. The peer pressure was almost unimaginable. He couldn’t walk the streets of the village, go into an inn, or attend school without hearing his values torn down. He felt ostracized and unwelcome everywhere but his home. Continue reading Modern Fairy Tales: The Wolf Who Cried “Boy!”→
Words. We writers live by ’em. And sometimes (if you offend the wrong Muslim lunatic) die by them. But they are the essential part of how we do what we do. Words mean things. But not all words mean the same things to all people. And living in the Age of Political Correctness, not all wordsmiths are created equal, at least as far as permission to use certain words goes. Allow me to give you some examples… Continue reading What’s in a Word?→
I grew up in the South, in the 1960s. It was a time of racial unrest. I remember seeing posters around Shreveport, advertising a concert planned by James Brown – the hardest working man in show business. What a lot of people don’t know about Brown is that he also helped to defuse the ticking time bomb of racial unrest, rather than work to exploit racial tensions, as so many self-styled ‘leaders’ do today.
Fast-forward to 2015. Two incidents in the news make me think that racism is still a huge problem in the USA, but not for the reasons – and the people – that you’d think. I’m afraid that this time around, it’s not Conservatives that have a problem with race. It’s Liberals. And there’s a litmus test that determines just how “black” or how “brown” you are, and it’s got nothing to do with a color swatch book. Let me explain… Continue reading Ranking Race.→
When I was a kid, life was simple. There were boys. There were girls. Boys played “Army.” Girls played with dolls. Boys wore pants. Girls wore dresses. Life was good. I think I was 12 or so, before I heard the words “queer” and “gay” and learned that they meant “homosexual,” and was told what “homosexual” meant. I soon learned there was a whole panoply of people who had different ideas about sexuality. Boys who liked boys. Girls who liked girls. Boys who liked girls and boys, and vice-versa. Boys who liked to dress up like girls (and vice-versa). And then boys and girls who had their bodies altered to look like girls and boys, respectively. Confusing. I thought it was weird then. I’m not sure I think it’s any less weird now. Especially given that Bruce Jenner has “transitioned.” Continue reading Transitory State→
While it’s impossible to have a well-balanced perspective on anything when you’re sitting in the middle of it, it’s hard not to think that we are living in a “Golden Age” for Technology. Think about it. Within my lifetime, I’ve seen the following items appear and become ubiquitous – part of the fabric of our lives (in no particular order): Continue reading Tech-nopia.→
So I’ve finally run out of House of Cards (season 3) episodes. (Some shows I binge-watch. House of Cards, I savor like a fine wine.) And the ending was (as expected) another cliffhanger.
I’m going to be somewhat obtuse here, because I don’t want to spoil the show for those who are watching (or plan to) but haven’t gotten to the final episode of this season. However, I will tell you (which is no more or no less that you can get from the episode descriptions on Netflix) that the relationship between Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) and Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) is strained to the breaking point. What’s more interesting is why… Continue reading Underwood For President.→
When Meghan Trainor released “All About That Bass,” I saw the appeal. Catchy tune. Tight arrangement. Cute video. Appealing, “take me the way I am” message. I thought “Hey, cool…a positive message for girls/women that will counter the prevailing messaging in videos that women need to obsess about their weight/looks/sexuality to attract a man.” So I was curious to see what her follow-up video would be.
One of the many cool things about raising a teen is that you get a whole new perspective on entertainment. Take music, for instance. When I was a teen, I used to look at my dad (who hated Rock with a passion he usually reserved for socialists, communists, and people that requested “Tie a Yellow Ribbon” when he was playing a gig), and think “When and how did he decide that the only music he was interested in was OLD music?” Continue reading Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt will break cable. For good.→
Well, we (my 14-year-old daughter) and I just got back from Lake Charles, LA, where she competed in the Louisiana State Social Studies Fair. Well, “competed” isn’t exactly the right word. She entered. She did her best. She excelled. And she did not win. But for her to have “competed” would have required that they actually stage a competition, which, sadly, they did not. What they did do bears some explanation – and analysis. Continue reading Teen Teachable Moments in (Louisiana) History.→
So I’m innocently blogging along over on Facebook (http://facebook.com/captaindigital and http://facebook.com/captaindigitalspeaks) when I happen to post a funny story I heard from a fellow Conservative. Six or so friends of generally right-leaning viewpoints thought it was a howl. But one, ultra-left wing person of my acquaintance unloaded on me like a B-17 Flying Fortress over Dresden – with about as much tact. He resorted to the typical Liberal tactics (name-calling, Judas-goats, hyperbole, and other assorted nonsense) and ranted about how Conservatives are all wingnuts and idiots. (Somebody get this guy a mirror. Please.) But it occurred to me that there’s a fundamental inequality here – Conservatives can find the humor in a Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert (most of the time), even when they poke fun at Conservatives. But Liberals seem uniformly incapable of reciprocity. Why is that? Continue reading There’s humor in all things. (Unless you’re a Liberal.)→