The Virus is Racism

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. It started with country-blaming. China flu, Wuhan Flu, Kung Flu. Donald Trump could only think of blaming outsiders, to deflect attention from his own disinterest in controlling a pandemic. Yes, coronavirus was first identified in China. Yet we’ve learned the virus was already in the U.S. and Europe at that … Read more

The Royals, Revealed

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. It seems all about Harry and Meghan this week. But they’ve made me think about some less glamorous people, too. An Oprah Winfrey interview of Britain’s Duke and Duchess of Sussex aired three nights ago and opened a rare, uncensored view of personal relationships within Buckingham Palace. Among … Read more

Mithan Lam, A Powerful Advocate for India’s Women

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. True tales of women breaking barriers to forbidden places, and bettering the lives of others, are inspiring. Mithan Jamshed Lam is one of these legendary women. Recently I chatted about this illustrious lady (who passed away in 1981) with another woman who is doing important civil rights work … Read more

The Price of a Meal

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. Someone who’s part of my inner circle is working on a novel. He made a richly detailed first draft and is engaged in getting feedback from a few trusted friends. Two early readers of his book commented the story had too many references to food. One even suggested … Read more

The Angst of Small Dogs

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. Daisy, what do you think? Less than 40 miles from here, some big dogs moved into a big house. Two German Shepherds. The old one, at age 12, is a fellow named Champ, and the younger one, Major, is two. Major had been left by his previous owner … Read more

A Meditation on Boundaries

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. “Breaking Boundaries” is an expression that is usually meant to show freedom—crashing through a fence that prohibits expression. But there’s another side to boundaries. And that’s “Holding Boundaries.” The first boundary I recall is a low brick wall that marked the edge of the front garden of my … Read more

The Unraveling Myth of Johns Hopkins

This post originally appeared on Murder Is Everywhere. Have you heard? Another historic myth is being pulled apart like a sweater with moth holes. Johns Hopkins, the great Baltimore businessman and founder of a university and hospital, wasn’t quite the social reformer that history told us. Recently, Hopkins historians shared news that he was a slave owner, rather … Read more

Holiday Novels for 2020

I’ve made a short list of recommended gift fiction that include some great historical and international novels. Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia—In the 1950s, a Mexico City debutante travels visits a grand estate in the mountains and falls under a malevolent spell. Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi—a young Ghanaian-American woman searches for religious and medical … Read more