I’ve had a couple encounters in the past week with what friend and sometime contributor Jim Barns likes to call the small town department. When I first moved here for the job and wrote something that piqued his interest, Jim would write to me from the small town department and explain the connection between two […]
Josh Garrett-Davis, a young author and historian who read at The Bridge/ PAI last week, wrote a kind of personal eulogy for George McGovern that ran in the New York Times Monday and that could have been titled “Lefty’s Lament: The death of liberal populism.” Garrett-Davis grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to hippie […]
Life’s patterns seem almost geometrical at times. When I was a kid my family went, for special occasions, to a Japanese restaurant on a quiet stretch of Wisconsin Avenue in Washington, D.C., just blocks from the working entrance of the Japanese Embassy. The Mikado was a typical Japanese restaurant of its time, impossibly formal with […]
12/07/2013 9:00 pm BB Wolf The Hot Spot, Waynesboro VA
As a Cold War baby, though, I mistrust the notion of resistance in our well-lubricated world. Sooner or later, everyone wants a taste of the good life. I guess that’s the understated requiem for American counterculture composed by our Boomer forefathers and -mothers.
Before I fell in love with America, I fell in love with the rest of the world. I guess it had to do with growing up in Washington, D.C., a place full of people from everywhere else. I memorized the flags that hung outside the sandstone townhouses on Embassy Row. Hey mom, where’s Equatorial Guinea? […]
The Dragas-gate scandal and its tight-lipped aftermath shifted attention away from the fact that UVA President Teresa Sullivan was brought in as a fixer. A scholar with an impeccable resume and serious administrative chops armed with experience at two massive and successful state universities, Texas and Michigan, was tapped to lead a small, prestigious public […]
Last week, tragedy visited our office. Our friend and colleague, Beth Walton, was murdered, apparently by her son. It was like a lightning bolt ripped through the curtain that separates us, newsmakers, from the news. There is nothing to make sense of. Someone we knew and liked, in the prime of her life, is gone, […]
According to the Albemarle County Police Department, our co-worker and friend, Elizabeth Walton, was killed in an apparent murder-suicide around 11:45pm on Tuesday, August 28, at her home in the 3800 block of Stony Point Road. Also killed were her children: Noah Philip Romando, Lily Catherine Romando, and Andrew Ross Romando. According to the police, […]
The poison and the antidote were anciently understood to be of the same substance, so that the word pharmakon was used in Greek to name both toxin and treatment. The Asclepian medical symbol employs the image of the snake, a reminder of the principle underlying healing practices, which administer little deaths to preserve life. Inoculation […]
I grew up in the city and I love the country, a fact borne out by the fact that I have lived as an adult in New York, Boston, and Chicago, and also in Kyle, Rhinelander, and Sylva. It’s a quintessential American desire to marry Mayberry to the Metropolis, hence the suburb, and my experiences […]
I was always very nervous on the first day of school. I remember sitting on the front steps with my backpack, waiting for my carpool to pull up, and having butterflies in my stomach and a lump in my throat. I had the feeling that when I got to school, everything would be different, that […]
There’s a direct connection between the cover story I wrote last week about immigration policy’s affect on the local Latino community and Laura Ingles’ story this week, which looks at Habitat for Humanity’s plan to redevelop trailer parks. It’s no secret that Southwood Mobile Home Park is home to immigrant families and that many of […]
Last week in this column, I admitted to rarely taking a position on local news cuts or delving into national issues, because I’m interested in a more open conversation about the place we live than editorial argumentation generally yields. That said, when logic is exhausted, when self-interest is not a motivating factor for the majority, […]
I have been in Charlottesville at my editor’s desk for a year now. In this line of work—which is, in a way, about keeping time—it means that I have turned a shift. I’ve always thought of three month-, one year-, and three year-anniversaries as important moments in a job. When you start something new, it […]
“Despite its relative affluence, Charlottesville has an income gap problem,” writes our news editor, Graelyn Brashear, in this week’s story about the Green Dot Cooperative . Hmmm. Despite its relative affluence, America has an income gap problem. That has a nice ring to it. Despite my relative affluence, I have an income gap problem. Too […]
A few weeks back I marveled in this column at the clarity of John McPhee’s writing in Coming into the Country, which was written in 1971, the year my older sister was born. McPhee operates as a passive observer in his books, but is almost always intimately connected with his main characters and subject matter. […]
Last week, I joked in the introduction to our feature that I wasn’t 100 percent sure what power was.
There’s no sign of revolution in Charlottesville as I write this. It’s a rainy, off-season Monday morning. No tanks in the streets.
I’ve been on something of a John McPhee bender of late…
Particularly good(e) simile comparing Virgil Goode to a toenail fungus…
Everyone was talking news last week. First, we learned that Warren Buffett was coming to a store near us, and then the Oracle of Omaha delivered a prophecy (in a letter to his editors and publishers) to make a newsman glow.
My favorite section of the Rivanna Trail is a cul de sac. Bordered by razor wire on one side and a road on the other, it forms a looped pocket trail near the confluence of Meadow Creek and the Rivanna River.