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4 July 2016
Vol. VI, No. 287

July: Home

From Elizabeth Boleman-Herring: Over the course of this year, Weekly Hubris‘s contributors are posting essays on a number of set themes. Their second “assignment” is “Home.” Stealing home, homecoming, home away from home, homing pigeons, home boys, home (where the heart is), home cooking, the home stretch, the old home-place, down home, home body: there are so many homely idioms, in every language, and so many approaches to thinking about, and writing about, the concept of home, that I knew the topic would provoke a plethora of responses: Anita Sullivan, Sanford Rose, Helen Noakes, Jerry Zimmerman, Skip Eisiminger, and Diana Farr Louis did not disappoint me. (Weekly Hubris also this week re-posts a video-offering by Tim Bayer, and an excerpt from my memoir, Greek Unorthodox: Bande à Part.)

The train is now an hour and a half late.

The train is now an hour and a half late.

On The Other Hand

“April Fool’s Day at the Amtrak Station,” By Anita Sullivan

EUGENE Oregon—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—I am lightheaded with fever. This means that when things start going wrong, I don’t even notice. I lug my overstuffed suitcase-without-wheels through all the temporary construction tunnels at the Atlanta airport, down to the ground level; I go outside into the frigid April breeze and stand for half an hour with all the other puzzled and shivering people in the carousel of shuttle vans, and I don’t feel even a blip of irritation. Why didn’t they tell me I would need a sweater in Atlanta? Why are there too many people to fit into each van, and I’m always at the end of the line? It’s 1996, but the Olympics don’t even start for another three months. (Read more . . .)

Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin, Tehran, 1943.

Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin, Tehran, 1943.

Dolors & Sense

“The Russians Came, The Russians Came!” By Sanford Rose

KISSIMMEE Florida—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—Now is the patriotic time of year—Memorial Day, followed hard by the D-Day celebration, and then The Fourth of July. We are right to memorialize the services of our soldiers. But we should also memorialize the services of those of another nation, without whose sacrifice we might not now be an independent country. At this time of year, I routinely pose two questions to those in my geriatric set. “Who won World War Two?” (Read more . . .)

“Γαλανόλευκη,” or “Blue-White,” flying over the Aegean.

The “Γαλανόλευκη,” or “Blue-White,” flying over the Aegean.

Waking Point

“Journey to Myself,” By Helen Noakes

SAN FRANCISCO California—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—Gazing at the foamy white wake of the Samothrace, the briny scent of sea stinging my nostrils, the bright sun warming my shoulders, wind ruffling my hair, I felt a deep love for this country. It was a strangely familiar feeling, unwavering and fierce. On the flagpole extended over the water, the Greek flag snapped and waved, and I instantly felt a welling of pride. The Greek national anthem surged into my memory, rendered in the booming choral tones of a scratchy recording my grandfather, Achilleas, played every March 25th, Greek Independence Day. (Read more . . .)

That old “home court advantage.”

That old “home court advantage.”

Squibs & Blurbs

“The Home Court Advantage (Basketball, Family & Aikido)” By Jerry Zimmerman

TEANECK New Jersey—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—I’m at home. I’ve just finished watching the end of a harrowing, thrilling, surprising and, ultimately, disappointing major sports event—the NBA Basketball Championship Series. It contained some of the best basketball I’ve ever seen, and some of the worst (the disappointment comes from being a Warrior fan). But this isn’t about basketball. It’s about the mystery of the “Home Court Advantage.” (Read more . . .)

“Tereska,” by David Seymour.

“Tereska,” by David Seymour.

Skip the B.S.

“The Farther You Go, the Better It Looks: Home” By Skip Eisiminger

CLEMSON South Carolina—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—Some might say, “A home divided cannot stand,” but few would say, “There’s no place like a house.” Indeed, one Nevada madam flatly stated, “My house is not a home.” No argument there. As a young man, the father of the novelist Ron Rash casually demonstrated the difference between house and home. Walking to his mill-village residence after he’d picked up the key, Mr. Rash realized that every house in the company-owned compound was identical, so when he reached “home,” he tossed an old boot onto the roof to identify it. I did something similar to the Model “A” Ford I once owned by painting it white. Wisdom begins with a roof, according to a West African proverb, but once the roof is up, the owner often wants to modify and decorate the floors and walls below. (Read more . . .)

“Joy of the People,” at home with himself and the world.

“Joy of the People,” at home with himself and the world.

Eating Well Is The Best Revenge

“Homing In On Home,” By Diana Farr Louis

ANDROS & ATHENS Greece—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—I’ve been pondering the question of home ever since our fearsome and formidable editor dictated the theme a few weeks ago. I’ve had so many in my life—though I’m not a diplomat’s or army officer’s brat—in at least four countries. Is home that feeling you get when you open the door and see your familiar belongings and furniture? The smell of fresh wood that greets me here in our small place on Andros, which has remained the same since we built it almost 30 years ago, even though it contains very little wood? Or is it the sight of our olive trees as we open the gate, which have grown so thick they almost conceal our white walls? (Read more . . .)

Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot.

Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot.

Won Over By Reality

“The Only Home We’ve Ever Known,” By Tim Bayer

BRIGHTON New York—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—As the resident technology and science geek here at Weekly Hubris, I have assumed a cosmic perspective on July’s topic: Home. Perhaps no one has so powerfully and succinctly described our minuscule place in the universe as Carl Sagan, when he described Earth as “a pale blue dot.” First, in case you missed my last post, here’s a link back to Robotic Humor: Impressive & Funny. (Read more . . .)

Comfort clutched to the anxious heart.

Comfort clutched to the anxious heart.

By Way of Being

“Transitional Object,” By Elizabeth Boleman-Herring.

PETIT TRIANON Florida—(Weekly Hubris)—7/4/2016—For me, moving is the moral equi­valent of, say, the Plague of Frogs. It is an abomination of the first order. It is not fun city. As soon as people start tilting fridges and wrapping glasses in old Herald Tribs, I get a sick headache and take to my bed with mois­tened chamomile tea bags over my eyes. As I was lying there this morning, after yet another late night at the new place with latex paint, mothballs, and logistical nightmares (“Why doesn’t the mini-darkroom fit behind the bedroom door? We measured it, didn’t we?”) interspersed with Cypriot souvlakia and the inevitable Nescafé frappé, I reflected upon just how many times I have moved. (Read more . . .)

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