Commentaries & Essays

Open Mic: Paddling in the Persian Gulf

Nov 23, 2016

We find ourselves in fearful times. Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Maybe not.

It’s true that some fears are irrational and should be dismissed as such; however, other fears are not.  On occasion, it’s prudent to be fearful. And, often when you are afraid, the best course of action may not be clear.

An Ode to One of Virginia's Last Video Stores

Sep 6, 2016
Pete / Creative Commons

This year, the world marked the end of an era, as the last video cassette recorder rolled off the assembly line in Japan.  Here in Virginia, locals marked another sign of the time as video stores closed their doors for good – among them Maupin’s in Crozet.  

Open Mic: My Life in Cars

Aug 18, 2016

    

My father gave me my first car, a 1965 Ford Fairlane. Although I had my driver’s license, I didn’t know out how to back up, park, or merge. To be honest, I couldn’t even start the car.  I’d always flood the engine.

How did I get a license? The day of the exam, I aced the written section, but failed the road part. I couldn’t parallel park; nor could I negotiate a K-turn. For some reason, the examiner said, “Oh hell,” and passed me anyway.

Open Mic: The Graduate

May 24, 2016
Holly Marcus, Special to the Staunton News Leader

It’s graduation season, and millions of young people are collecting diplomas – but they’re not alone.  More and more older Americans are wrapping up a college degree – among them Charlottesville – area author Faith Andrews Bedford.

A Year with Chickens: Wisdom from the Flock

Apr 28, 2016

It’s been about a year now since a quick stop at the hardware store to pick up some duct tape and grass seed turned us into part-time poultry farmers.

Not that I blame my husband. Those little balls-of-fluff are enough to melt any man into a can’t-say-no-kind-of puddle. 

But I had no idea what I was in for when I let my overjoyed children carry three peeping to-go boxes inside my kitchen.

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