5 September 2016
Vol. VI, No. 289

September: Dear Year 2030

(Letters to The Grandchildren)

From Elizabeth Boleman-Herring: When I assigned our essayists this month’s topic, I wanted them all to project forward a bit and address those they will claim as or consider to be their grandchildren . . . in the year 2030, and beyond. By 2030, all of us at Weekly Hubris will be old, older, and oldest. Presumably, we all have something to say, even now, to the young of our species, the young of all species with whom we currently share the planet. This week, William A. Balk, Jr., Skip Eisiminger, Helen Noakes, Jerry Zimmerman, Petros Ladas, and I weigh in, writing . . . letters to our grandchildren.



Epicurus’ Porch

“Dancing Into the Apocalypse,” By William A. Balk, Jr.

ELKO South Carolina—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—REPENT, YE SINNERS, FOR THE END IS NIGH!” Well, I’m not one to refute the urgency of the sign’s warning, at least that part about “the end.” I’m not convinced by the biblical street prophet’s apocalyptic vision, but the scientists have now joined the theological eschatologists, and increasingly it appears there are only a few more decades left before cataclysmic forces bring about the next great extinction. Among the vast number of species whose end is nigh, they conclude, is our own. (Read more . . .)

Skip, Lena, Ingrid, Edgar, Spencer, and Sterling.

Skip, Lena, Ingrid, Edgar, Spencer, and Sterling.

Skip the B.S.

“Stardust Sprinklers & SOBs: Grandparents,” By Skip Eisiminger

CLEMSON South Carolina—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—An old story begins with the observation that grandchildren and grandparents are “natural allies with a common enemy.” I’ve never felt quite so common as when our son was 16 and struggling with girls, grades, sports, and me. That summer, my German in-laws came for a month-long visit and, by some stroke of good fortune, my father-in-law thought to bring his harmonica, though he had no advance notice that his grandson was trying to teach himself the blues harp. (Read more . . .)

Paleolithic cave paintings of spotted horses with hand prints.

Paleolithic cave paintings of spotted horses with hand prints.

Waking Point

“Tomorrow Belongs To You,” By Helen Noakes

SAN FRANCISCO California—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—You’re mine by virtue of love and perseverance, by the force of sheer determination. For your grandmother and I held onto our friendship through political upheavals which hurled our families to opposite ends of the world, through disastrous marriages, and further travels—these latter, intentional. You’re mine because I love your parents as though they were my own, because I saw them grow from sweet, delightful, mischievous babies into marvelous adults who give you and the world so much. (Read more . . .)

Waka Sensei.

Waka Sensei.

Squibs & Blurbs

“Next? Waka!” By Jerry Zimmerman

TEANECK New Jersey—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—The United States Aikido Federation’s annual Aikido Summer Camp, at the Seaview Hotel in the small town of Galloway NJ, offers a full week of training, with up to nine Aikido classes per day, all taking place in a large ballroom that has been converted into a temporary dojo. For me, and the over 400 other lovely maniacs from all over the globe who are my training partners, the camp represents an uber-immersion in our beloved martial art. We are all here to learn from a slew of world-famous teachers, to enjoy the company of old friends, and even to have some real vacation time to boot. (Read more . . .)

Petros Ladas, grandfather-to-be, and his faithful Zinnia.

Petros Ladas, grandfather-some-day-to-be, and his faithful Zinnia.

Eating Well Is The Best Revenge

“Letter To a Granddaughter, September 2030,” By Petros Ladas

SKYROS Greece—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—Dearest Victoria, as we wait for you to be born, I thought I might paint you a portrait of the world you are about to enter, where it has been and where you could take it. These words will probably not make much sense to you until you are about 15, which is also about as far back as I want to go to put things in context. (Read more . . .)

Human twins “in utero,” at c. two months.

Human twins “in utero,” at c. two months.

By Way of Being

“After One Was Three,” By Elizabeth Boleman-Herring

PETIT TRIANON Florida—(Weekly Hubris)—9/5/2016—My late, “adopted” grandmother, Cola de Joncheere , whom I met for the first time on Mykonos, in 1975, suffered a miscarriage, the last of many, on September 13, 1951, my birthday. In a real sense, that date was as significant to Cola as to me, and it bound us together via some sure, virtual umbilicus.  My own twins, seen once only on ultrasound in an Athens clinic, and miscarried in their second month, would be 29 now. (Read more . . .)

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