Does a Writer Need Hope?

We all have our hobbies. I can’t resist a good criminal trial. I’ve followed, for example, the Bernie Madoff case from the get-go. Now, nearly fifty years in the making, we’re up to sentencing of the convicted mastermind of the most sweeping Ponzi scheme in history, Judge Denny Chin of the U.S. District Court presiding.  […]

What a Writer can learn from Eliot Spitzer

1. I’ve been following Eliot Spitzer’s career since his New York State attorney general days, followed by his tenure as the 54th governor of New York, and then, straight through a noisy scandal, involving a woman, of course, which caused him to step down citing “private failings.” He dropped from the public eye for a […]

The Iconic Image

We don’t pick the images in our lives that stand out. These things just happen. Take pancakes, for example. Twice, the image of a pancake has come to stand for something much more. The first time was when a law partner called me into his office, closed the door. I was expecting a boatload of […]

A Small Shift Forward

There’s this diner I’ve been frequenting for years, a brisk, tidy little place on the west side of Manhattan, run by a Polish family. Not long ago, I stopped in for breakfast and found it as always: the same man who greeted, saw us to a table, the same waitresses, the bus boys. The menu […]

The Plentitude of Soul

I have a friend I hear from intermittently: a Spaniard, seventy-something, a former Jesuit priest living now in Chile. His priestly version of the world is far more orderly and peaceful than my own and comes across in broken-English. His emails generally cheer and entertain, but a recent message confused me: If I were to […]

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