Be Persistent

I spent two of the past four weeks engaged in an orgy of destruction. No, not protesting that Black lives matter. The fight I was in regarded the other BLM: Backyard Life Matters. Because the man we bought this house from is allergic to grass, half of the backyard–the half surrounding the pool–resembled, say, Guadalcanal. […]

The Kids Are Alright

When the current protesters–most of them no more than kids–first took to the streets many of you cried foul. They blocked traffic, you said. In fact, three of you in a blue Jeep (license plate number 8JUK695) took it upon yourselves to ram two of them. This column was initially going to address District Attorney […]

Name that Martyr

One particularly irksome dynamic regarding the BLM movement is that its martyrs are chosen for it. By this I mean the semi-random institutional murders we’ve witnessed lo these 400 years. It’s a galling twist piled atop everything else that these oppressors, by their very semi-random aggression, all but name the martyrs. Totally without care, these […]

What seven-year Itch?

Today marks seven years to the day that the Valley Voice, under my wife and myself and with some very talented writers, first emerged in print. And what was the featured story above the fold on that front page seven years ago? An interview with Devin Nunes, in which he welcomed the paper back. Folks, […]

Dear Protesters

To begin with, let’s differentiate protestors from those who would loot and destroy property. The latter are criminals. Protesting is not a crime. At worst, protestors may be guilty of breaking traffic regulations by being in the street. They’re getting a raw deal these days from people who view protesters as nothing more than a […]

The Blue Meanies

The plate number is 8JUK695. And there is no excuse for what the driver of this jeep perpetrated on the streets of Visalia on May 30 during a protest against the death of George Floyd, a Minneapolis resident, at the hands of his own police department on the 25th. Proudly flying our nation’s flag along […]

A Lifetime Defending the Dolphins

Our youngest, the Kid, turns 21 next month. Yes, it’s a milestone–perhaps more than ever, now, during this pandemic–and it turns out I have the perfect gift for her. Even when university was not suspended–spring break became shelter-at-home–the Kid lacked a clear direction. Didn’t quite yet know what she wanted for herself later in life. […]

The Perfect Murder

This entire scenario reminds me of 1997, when the Chief and I, returning from Auckland to Cabo San Lucas, experienced two Easter Sundays over the course of one calendar day. OK–so it involved transiting the International Date Line; still, it was a little unsettling, if not exhausting. I might not know what day it is […]

Here There Be Monsters

Here we still are, sailing into the unknown, all hands on deck and expecting virtually anything in the absence of reliable charts. While I will admit we may have gone overboard with some public restrictions–especially those outdoor activities during which a safe distance can be maintained–the time has not yet come to open entirely. It’s […]

Be An Asset

During times such as these you realize which people you’d want in the proverbial foxhole with you. They make themselves plain by their behavior, by how they confront crisis, and it’s easy to recognize one as an asset and another as a liability. But, during times such as these, we–each of us–have to be an […]