Category Archives: Living My Life

Selling Providence

In these brief comments, I reflect on the way Providence (formally Providence Health and Services) markets itself.  At every Providence site I have seen—and I have seen many in the Portland area—these five framed posters are displayed.  It is a … Continue reading

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A very good kind of place

In Portland, Oregon, where I live, there is a section of North Portland called St. Johns.  St. Johns is a pleasant bike ride from my neighborhood and my brother, Mark, and I rode up there today with the idea of … Continue reading

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And thank you, Mr. Tweedly

My niece, Lisa Hess (thank you, Lisa) reignited our family’s love of Stan Freberg’s humor this week.  For her, the occasion was a meeting with women writers in which she was supposed to “share something that shaped my love of … Continue reading

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Signs of Scotland

You wouldn’t think it would be that hard.  You start in…oh…York, England and drive about 200 miles north and somewhere in there, before you get to Edinburgh, Scotland, you should see a sign that says “Welcome to Scotland” or some … Continue reading

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The Battle of Culloden, 1746 I had a chance to visit the battlefield this year. “Culloden”—just the name itself—has the kind of clout that an American might feel about “Gettysburg.” [1] It’s a big deal. This is the piece of … Continue reading

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Fan base

“There’s such a thing as loyalty,” snapped the angry Jane Studdock. There is, ma’am,” returned Andrew McPhee, “As you get older, you will learn that it is a virtue too important to be lavished on individual personalities.” [1] I am … Continue reading

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Prudence, resilience, and awfulizing

The idea behind pairing these ideas is that the amount of care we exercise in preventing bad outcomes can, under some circumstances, be translated into an unrealistic and ominous assessment of what those outcomes could be. I have had a … Continue reading

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