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1 September 2014
Vol. IV, No. 217

From The Editor: This week, Weekly Hubriss 21st-century Epicurus, William A. Balk, Jr., writes about the sweltering late-summer heat of Midlands and Low Country South Carolina, his continuing efforts to find plant material that will sustain all four Southern seasons . . . and lilies, in all their profusion and unpredictable glory. Tim Bayer, in completely unrelated news, offers up footage (sure-footed footage) of a Russian motorcyclist lucky to be, still, among the living. So, Spider Lilies and Spiderman this Monday: happy reading!

Red Spider Lilies

Red Spider Lilies

Epicurus’ Porch

“A Hundred Degrees! Bloomin’ Hell!” By William A. Balk, Jr

BEAUFORT South Carolina—(Weekly Hubris)—9/1/2014—Yes, we still have all four seasons here in the South Carolina Low Country; sometimes we have all four in the span of a few weeks.

There are places in the world which experience the seasons as cold and not-so-cold, or as unstintingly hot all year. Not here, however. Our February 2014 winter produced two Arctic cold blasts within days of each other, felling great trees and snapping smaller ones in half beneath an inches-thick layer of ice. Days ago, as I write this, during August’s typical southern heat, almost a week of hundred-degree sunshine kept humans and pets indoors while garden plants coped as best they could. (Read more . . .)

Was that Spideman?

Was that Spiderman?

Won Over By Reality

“If Spiderman Rode a Motorcycle” By Tim Bayer

BRIGHTON New York—(Weekly Hubris)—9/1/2014—This video is astonishing: a motorcycle “accident” that should have resulted in death or severe injury winds up looking like a clip from a move featuring the Amazing Spiderman (in Russia) . . . and it appears no one was hurt. (Read more . . .)

Alexander, leading from amidst and among.

Alexander, leading from amidst and among.

Skip the B.S.

“Bow Waves & Propellers: Leadership” By Skip Eisiminger 

CLEMSON South Carolina—(Weekly Hubris)—8/25/2014—Examining a wartime photograph of Gen. Erwin Rommel with his shoulder to his staff-car fender helping his men extricate it from the mud, I thought . . . this is a picture that ought to be on every leader’s desk. I was reminded of the photograph when I heard Dr. Jim Barker, president of the school where I once taught, tell a group of faculty about his first night on the job. (Read more . . .)

We must continue reflecting on one of our greatest national tragedies, the squandering and debasement of young men of color.

We must continue reflecting on one of our greatest national tragedies, the squandering and debasement of young men of color.

Ruminant With A View

“Three Deaths in August: Michael Brown, Robin Williams & BKS Iyengar” By Elizabeth Boleman-Herring

BRIDGE & TUNNEL New Jersey—(Weekly Hubris)—8/25/2014—Each and every day on our planet, 154,957 of us, give or take, die (a number derived from data gleaned between 2012 and 2014 by the CIA, the World Bank, the UN World Population Study, and the US Census). On August 9, at the age of 18, one of us died of bullet wounds in Ferguson, Missouri. On August 11, a suicide at age 63, one of us died at his home in Paradise Cay, California. (Read more . . .)

Small buildings under a vast sky, adrift on a terrestrial sea.

Small buildings under a vast sky, adrift on a terrestrial sea.

Small Things Recollected

“Reason’s Ghosts: The Settling & Unsettling of The Plains” By William Ramp

LETHBRIDGE Alberta, Canada—(Weekly Hubris)—8/25/2014—Last month, I wrote about the thousands of years of cultural continuity which still bind past, present and future together for the first peoples of the North American plains, despite all the cultural and other damage visited on them over the past 200 years. This month, I will turn over that first thin shard of time during which Europeans pushed into the North American interior, looking at the light it casts, the figures it refracts, and the shadows it leaves.  (Read more . . .)

Tomatoes drying in the sun on our terrace. You might think of them as tomato-flavored chewing gum, but what a sun-burst of taste in winter.

Tomatoes drying in the sun on our terrace. You might think of them as tomato-flavored chewing gum, but what a sun-burst of taste in winter.

Eating Well Is The Best Revenge

“Give Us This Day Our Daily Tomato” By Diana Farr Louis

ANDROS Greece—(Weekly Hubris)—8/25/2014—I don’t think a day has gone by in the past three months that tomatoes haven’t been part of at least one meal if not two here. Lunch is invariably a tomato salad, with or without trimmings—onions, peppers, purslane, basil, capers, but not cukes, which stay neither crisp nor cool when mixed with the rest. Or so my husband, “Joy of the People,” maintains. And I oblige, unless the salad is liquid, as in gazpacho.   (Read more . . .)

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