Friday fish stories

I don’t know how Catholics became known for eating fish on Fridays, but I have heard this all my life. My wife’s family is Catholic, but even they don’t know. *

Maybe it is due to an abundance of fish in predominant Catholic towns along the coasts of Ireland, Spain, Italy or America. Or maybe it is an economical meal for a big family. (Note the rhythm method is not the best of birth control methods).

I do know my grandfather was the chief cooker of fish when we visited. This is primarily due to his being a highly prolific fisherman. Before he passed, my father, brother, uncle and I would go fishing with him.

He was a quiet and patient man which are ideal attributes for good fishing. While my brother and I would celebrate our catches, Granddaddy would quietly reel them in, re-bait the hooks and recast the lines. I have seen him regularly catch over 50 fish at a time.

We mainly used crickets as bait. That only presented a problem once as I knocked over the cricket basket in his house. My grandmother said she heard crickets for weeks. Truly, my bad.

I do know fishing was Granddaddy’s passion. He showed me not only how to fish, but how to clean them. I have a picture of me around ten holding a line of twenty-six fish before I cleaned them. Of course, I remember the tally. That was a great day.

Friday fish stories. And, they were actually true and memorable. 

* My wife read it is due to the avoidance of eating warm blooded animals on Friday to honor Jesus by fasting, which may or may not be true.

More movies to take a peek at

Here are a few more movies that I have enjoyed watching to varying degrees. Most of these were found on the free-service Tubi, but a few came from HBO and Showtime.

“Once upon a river” starring Kenadi DelaCerna, John Ashton, Tataka Means, Ajuawak Kapashasit, Coburn Gross, Lindsey Pulsipher and Kenn Head is about a half Native American teen whose father is killed. She travels up river to find her mother who left several years before. She befriends an elderly man who gives her shelter on her journey. The movie is compelling in the uphill struggle for this disenfranchised young woman as she seeks help.

“Nothing special” starring Julia Garcia Combs, Karen Black, Barbara Bain and David Hardie is about a woman (Garcia Combs) who is having difficulty taking care of her bipolar mother (Black) while trying to serve a demanding, but supportive boss (Bains) and find time for some kind of love life. The three lead women are each excellent in their roles. You feel for this young woman as she comes close to her wits end.

“Small town crimes” underlines what an imperfect hero looks like. John Hawkes is excellent as a suspended, alcohol and drug addicted cop trying to solve a murder case as an unregistered private investigator. Anthony Anderson and Octavia Spencer are his only support, with Spencer playing his foster sister. Michael Voltan, Clifton Collins, and Robert Frasler play key roles.

“Peaks and valleys” starring Kitty Mahoney, Kevin T. Bennett and Ted Carney is also excellent as it shows Bennett taking care of a woman in a mountain cabin after he witnesses her body being cast out of a small plane into a lake. This cantankerous man nurses her back to health and teaches her how to hunt and fish. She will return the favor as his own issues become apparent. Given the verbal volleying back and forth, the movie remains interesting.

“Road to Perth” starring Tommy O’Brien, Hannah Lehman, Ellen Grimshaw and Kat Kaevich is an Australian movie about an American who travels alone after his girlfriend declines his marriage proposal. He is intent on taking pictures and interviewing Australians along his journey. He befriends and gives a ride from Adelaide to Perth to a woman who is the sister of an internet friend as she scatters her Dad’s ashes in places he held dear. Along the way, he speaks by phone with his own sister who offers milepost check-ins as the travelers become mutually infatuated.

“The Honeymooners” (not that one) starring Jonathan Byrne, Alex Reid, Justine Mitchell and Conner Mullen is an Irish film about a man who gets stood up at his wedding (at least she tells him) and after drinking too much of his wedding champagne pays a waitress who just got fired (and whose married boyfriend can’t be with her) to drive him to a cottage on the coast. They butt heads often and the say hurtful things,but do have enough fun and good conversation as their hard feelings soften. Like the “Road to Perth,” the movies are more about the journey and travails, where two people in angst can lift each other up.

“Wanderland” starring Tate Ellington, Tara Summers, Victoria Clark, Harris Yulin and a host of others is about a relatively rational man who accepts an invitation to house sit over a weekend in a Long Island coastal village. He befriends a charming woman on the beach and she invites him to a party later, which he surprisingly declines, but we learn later he too often says no. So, he goes from party to party meeting a wide assortment of characters as he tries to track down this woman . The name of the movie connotes wandering, but the similarities to a male Alice in Wonderland are not unfounded. His journey and the bohemian characters make you want to watch.

“Jackie and Ryan” starring Katherine Heigl, Ben Barnes and Emily Alyn Lind is about a hobo traveling musician trying to put a band back together. He winds up in a beautiful mountain town and befriends a woman who has had success as a musician, but has moved back home with her daughter to live with her mother as she is finalizing her divorce. The movie is a little trite, but the music is good and we learn Heigl can sing, especially with a lovely duet with her daughter played by Lind. Barnes also sings a poignant song that he is encouraged to finish by Heigl.

“Bonneville” starring Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates, Joan Allen, Christine Baranski and Tom Skerrit offers an interesting road trip plot as Lange takes her husband’s ashes to a funeral arranged by her step-daughter. “Surviving love” stars actual life married couple Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen as they get stranded in the Maine mountains and is worth the watch. “Christmas Eve” with Loretta Young, Arthur Hill and Trevor Howard offers a cheesy, but feel good movie about a dying woman wanting to see her grandchildren who escaped from her controlling son’s grip. Finally, we just watched “Being Rose” with Cybil Shepherd and James Brolin who play late in life lovers as Shepherd is dying.

Each of these movies is worth the watch and I don’t think any have things that are too risque for younger eyes, even the two jilted lover stories, although the adult themes and language on some may need to be factored in. The ones in the final paragraph are neat as they give a glimpse of actors who are later in their careers. Let me know if you have seen any of these.

A documentary on George Carlin reveals much

“I am optimistic, but I would not take any comfort from that.” George Carlin

The above is one of the many quotes from the talented and funny satirical comedian, George Carlin which is highlighted in a HBO two-part documentary. On top of learning about Carlin’s rise to fame, as well as his fall and rise again, we see a glimpse of American culture from the 1960’s forward.

Like most good documentaries, it presents the good, bad and the ugly side of fame and how it impacted both Carlin and his first wife, Brenda, whom he was married for 36 years. Brenda, was his biggest fan and supported and help manage his efforts to go out on his own on two separate occasions, first after having success with Jack Burns in a comedy duo and, second, when he took off the suit and started being who he really was on stage, the bearded, witty and satirical comedian we remember most.

Along the way, both had drinking and drug problems. Ironically, Brenda’s exposure came when he became successful and professional managers and PR people took on her role. Their daughter Kelly noted that this put her mother to the side and she had a lot of trouble with that. They both would recover and have a loving thirty-six year marriage before Brenda passed away. Carlin would later remarry and stay married for the rest of his life.

For those who don’t know Carlin, here is a brief summary from Hollywood Life:

George Carlin is one of the most beloved comedians of all time. After beginning his career in the 1960s, George rose to fame for his often controversial subject matter and use of explicit language, best exemplified in his routine “The Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television” in 1972. He continued being a popular performer, going through many distinct shifts in style throughout the 80s and 90s, releasing a number of standup specials. His final special It’s Bad For Ya was released months before his death at 71 in June 2008. Other than his standup, George dabbled in comedic acting, appearing in films such as Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure and playing Mr. Conductor on the children’s program Shining Time Station.”

Carlin loved to play with the words and their different meanings under different contexts. One of his more memorable and safer topics is the one on oxymorons. One I vividly recall is “jumbo shrimp.” After metering is voice and eyes as he recounted this, he would say “are they little jumbos, or huge shrimp?” Yet, his most famous diatribe is the one mentioned above called “The Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television.”

Comedians like Stephen Colbert, Patton Oswalt, Jon Stewart, Steven Wright, et al could easily recite the seven words in order from this routine. They also discussed how provocative Carlin was in his heyday and became again later in his career. There was a time where he got pushed aside and was actually mocked by some newer comedians for his less evocative wordplay. Yet, he would only come back strong being the irreverent Carlin we knew and laughed with.

This special is worth the watch. I actually watched them out of order, but that is more than OK. It was actually fun to see him get started after seeing the later stages of his career first. It is also telling to see the many comedians pay homage to him for influencing their careers.

Comedians and Congress

The very astute and funny comedian Sarah Silverman said yesterday on a segment of The View, “Why is it we hold our comedians to a higher standard than our Congressional representatives?” She was responding to the trend for comedians to come under physical attack on stage and verbal abuse online. I want you to re-read the emboldened sentence of hers and let it sink in. Why, indeed?

If that is not enough to stew on, I want you to think of recent and not so recent comments by several members of Congress with names like Taylor-Greene, Cawthorn, Jordan, Gosar, Breitbart, Gohmer, Brooks, Gaetz et al. If that were not enough, fold in comments from folks like Senators Cruz, Paul. etc. Then we have the former president’s comments which take it to an even lower level.

These comedians make their living making fun of uncomfortable topics. Do they cross the line on occasion? Absolutely. Yet, we seem to vilify them more than we do for people who are supposed to represent our better angels as elected officials. I can disagree with a policy position of an elected official and that is OK. Yet, I want them to be respectful of the office they hold.

I disagree with Democrats and Republicans on various issues. I think some Democrats tend to forget we need to pay for things, e.g. But, the names I mention above are all Republican for a reason. They have a strident manner in dealing with opposing arguments. Name calling is not an argument. Parroting conspiracy theories is not an argument. Saying truly inane things does not make you more credible.

It is not ironic that the most touted leader in the world is a former comedian. President Zelenskyy of Ukraine has stood up against the invasion of Russian troops and rallied his country against the onslaught. To be frank, Vladimir Putin did not count on that stance thinking he could steam roll Ukraine in three days. He could not have been more wrong.

When I watch shows that are news centered comedy discussions, the more astute guests tend to be comedians. To be able to make fun of something, you tend to have to know what it is and why it could be funny. In this same vein, one of the best news shows on TV is actually a comedy show – John Oliver’s “Last Week Tonight.” Invariably, his writers will have an in-depth discussion on issues that do not get air time elsewhere such as predatory tele-evangelists, predatory lending, predatory court fees, et al. Other new sources have actually complimented their efforts.

Since comedians seem to be more knowledgeable, maybe we should do like sports teams do. When an elected official is obviously not up to the challenge, like in a sporting event, let’s just replace him or her with a comedian. In my view, we will be far better off.

A New Palindrome

Many moons ago, I had a colleague named Ada, who I called my favorite “palindrome.” Ada was a delight to work with and knew precisely what it meant, so she gave me a novel to read called “Palindrome” that she thought I might like. For those who may not know, a palindrome is a word that has the same spelling backwards and forwards.*

The most famous English palindrome is “Madam I’m Adam” which can be read forward or backwards sans the punctuation. Yet, many names are good palindromes. Ada, Anna, Elle, Eve, Hannah, Sis, e.g. fit the bill. And, Mom and Dad are the most popular palindromes. The most recent numerical palindrome is the year 2002, but we had one eleven years before in 1991. Before then, we would need to go back to 1881.

Yet, palindromes can also refer to identical twins. They are as close to mirror images as we can get in nature. Not to spoil the novel by this name, but identical twins factor into the storyline. 

I bring this up as my wife and I have a new favorite palindrome. Ada will have to step aside as the old favorite, as we have a new niece named Hannah. Hannah is a great name to begin with, but the fact it is a palindrome makes it even more worthwhile. Welcome to the world Hannah. I know your parents are glad you were not identical twins

*palindromic number (also known as a numeral palindrome or a numeric palindrome) is a number (such as 16461) that remains the same when its digits are reversed. In other words, it has reflectional symmetry across a vertical axis. The term palindromic is derived from palindrome, which refers to a word (such as rotor or racecar) whose spelling is unchanged when its letters are reversed. The first 30 palindromic numbers (in decimal) are:0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 22, 33, 44, 55, 66, 77, 88, 99, 101, 111, 121, 131, 141, 151, 161, 171, 181, 191, 202, … (sequence A002113 in the OEIS).

Happy birthday to my hard headed woman (I am truly blessed)

This post was written about eight years ago and reposted a year ago. I thought of it to honor my wife’s birthday, as this and two other songs are good introductions into her character.

One of my favorite Cat Stevens (Yusuf) songs is “I’m Looking for a Hard Headed Woman.” I tease my wife (and she returns the favor) about being hard headed. But, if you look at the lyrics of this song, you will note that Stevens is singing about looking for someone who is real and not contrived. He wants someone who is hard headed about being true to herself and seeking the same in her partner.

I’m looking for a hard headed woman,
One who will take me for myself,
And if I find my hard headed woman,
I won’t need nobody else, no, no, no.

I’m looking for a hard headed woman,
One who will make me do my best,
And if I find my hard headed woman
I know the rest of my life will be blessed — yes, yes, yes.

I know a lot of fancy dancers,
People who can glide you on a floor,
They move so smooth but have no answers.
When you ask “Why’d you come here for?”
“I don’t know” “Why?”

I know many fine feathered friends
But their friendliness depends on how you do.
They know many sure fired ways
To find out the one who pays
And how you do.

I’m looking for a hard headed woman,
One who will make me feel so good,
And if I find my hard headed woman,
I know my life will be as it should — yes, yes, yes.

I’m looking for a hard headed woman,
One who will make me do my best,
And if I find my hard headed woman…

Two lines jump out at me in the song, one in the beginning and one in the end. First, he says “one who will take me for myself.” He does not want someone trying to make him into something he is not. Yet, in the final stanza, he sings “one who will make me do my best.”  He wants a partner that will help bring out the best in him. He wants his lover to believe in him and help him do the best he can. To me, that is what having the right life partner is all about.

I have used two other songs to describe my wife of now about thirty-seven years. In Loggins and Messina’s “Danny’s Song,” also made famous by Anne Murray, they sing in the last stanza “Love a girl who holds the world in a paper cup, drink it up, love her and she’ll bring you luck. And, if you find she helps your mind, you better take her home, don’t you live alone, try to earn what lover’s own.” Holding the world in a paper cup is a terrific metaphor for someone who is genuine, such as my wife.

The other is from Gordon Lightfoot, “Rainy Day People.” He sings “Rainy day people, always seem to know when it’s time to call. Rainy day people don’t talk, they just listen until they’ve heard it all.” My wife is the best of listeners. In fact, she would rather hear you talk about yourself, than the other way around. And, it is raining right now and she is out helping a friend, which is not unusual.

Like Stevens sings about, once he finds the hard headed woman, his life will be blessed. My wife is one who holds the world in a paper cup and knows when it is time to call. Thank goodness she is also hard headed, as well. For I am blessed…and equally hard headed. Happy birthday.

And, more movies still

Here are a list and brief summary of a few more movies that caught my eye the past few weeks. A few have big stars in them, but others the cast is rather unknown. Note, we have turned off a few movies on occasion, but we usually give them a chance and are pleasantly surprised. With William Hurt just passing away, the first one is worth the watch.

“The Yellow Handkerchief starring William Hurt, Kristen Stewart, Eddie Redmayne and Maria Bello is a fascinating movie that unfolds through flashbacks as he released convict (Hurt) is offered a ride and travels to see his wife (Bello) who he has not seen in six years. Redmayne and Stewart have their own issues, so they offer a balance to the story and sympathetic ears and support. Hurt and Bello are good together in their tempestuous relationship.

“Before and After” starring Meryl Streep, Liam Neeson, Edward Furlong, Julie Weldon and Alfred Molina is about the parents of a young teen who is accused of murder of a young woman. The film focuses on the family disagreements in how to defend their son, who may be found guilty. This movie received lesser ratings than it deserved, I think because the expectations for the two stars was higher than normal given the only movie they were in. We did find it enjoyable, though.

“Tumbledown” starring Jason Sudeikis and Rebecca Hall was an unexpectedly good movie. Hall lives in a cabin in the mountains near where she grew up still mourning the loss of her folk singing husband who has a cult-like following. Sudeikis is a professor and huge fan of her husband’s work who wishes to write a non-fiction inspired novel about the deceased singer. Hall will have nothing to do with that, but eventually she sanctions a biography which she will co-write with Sudeikis. The movie is more about discovery and renewal between the two characters and the past.

“The Wake of Light” starring Rome Brooks and Matt Bush is a slow moving, but charming movie about taking a risk. Mary (Brooks), a quiet, reserved woman is grappling between the responsibility in caring for her stroke impacted father and her developing feelings for Cole (Bush), a talkative young man passing through town who falls for her and asks her to join him on his journey. We learn both need to take a risk as the movie unfolds. William Lige Morton plays the father who becomes more endearing as the movie goes on.

“The East” is one of those movies with only a few recognizable actors and a terrific plot. It stars Brit Marling, Andrew Skarsgard, Elliott Page and Patricia Clarkson as a private-firm plants a spy in an eco-terrorist group called The East. The group tends to use the heretofore denied poisonous product of companies to make a statement to embarrass the company and publicize the company’s deception. This is one of the best movies I have seen of late.

“Lawless” starring Tom Hardy, Jessica Chastain, Shia Labeouf, Guy Pearce, Mia Wasikowska, Gary Oldman and Jason Clarke is a true story about four brothers who ran a moonshine business in Virginia during the prohibition with a wink and a nod from the local law enforcement. That is until a new group of law enforcement came in and wanted a larger cut. Anything Hardy is in will be worth the watch, but he is not alone in this well done, but a tad violent movie.

“The House on Carroll Street is an interesting movie starring Kelly McGllis, Jeff Daniels, Mandy Patinkin, Jessica Tandy and Kenneth Welsh. Based in the 1950s, a blacklisted news photographer (McGillis) stumbles onto a Senator helping former Nazis relocate to America. Daniels plays a sympathetic FBI agent with Patinkin playing the Senator. And, it was a treat to see Tandy in a movie before she passed away a few years later.

“100 Streets” starring Idris Elba, Gemma Arterton, Charlie Creed Miles, Franz Drameh, Kiersten Wareing and Ken Stott about three stories in London which are within a small radius ranging from the marital and personal troubles of a retired rugby star (Elba), a couple trying to adopt a child, but a terrible accident gets in the way (Creed Miles and Wareing) and a young man trying to change his life of crime to pursue his passion for the theater and the man who helps him (Drameh and Stott). Arterton plays Elba’s wife and people may know her from the movie “Summerland.”

A few other movies worth a look include “Hideous Kinky” which is nothing like the name which comes from Kate Winslet’s daughters’ imagination as she takes them to Morocco, “The Wilde Wedding” which is an over-the-top romantic comedy with an amazing cast of Glenn Close, John Malkovich, Minnie Driver, Patrick Stewart, Noah Davenport and a host of others in the Wilde family wedding (her fourth), and “Before we go” with Chris Evans and Alice Eve as she is stuck overnight in New York city needing to get home to Connecticut after her purse was stolen and Evans tries to help her with his limited funds.

Happy watching. Have you seen any others you would recommend.

Wednesday wanderings – lawns, pollen, owls and Les Miz

These old bones need to finish mowing the grass before heading out on my walk about. Many moons ago, I bought a battery powered lawn mower, where I charge the battery before I mow. Either the grass is getting taller or the battery is getting older (this is electric mower #2) as the battery died before I finished. It is not unlike its owner who tires more easily.

So, today I will tidy up the remainder (usually I get about 75 minutes of mowing per charge). Mowing with an electric mower is healthier for me and better for the environment. I don’t have to breathe in the gas fumes, nor does it drown out my hearing. All of my power tools are battery operated now, as a result.

Speaking of being outside, this is supposed to be a more severe pollen season. My hometown is a city of trees, so we rank in the top ten in pollen in the US. Yippee. It used to not bother me as much, but with the creeping northward heat due to climate change, the warmer seasons are longer, and pollen is more severe. Hence, my daily routine includes a Cetrizine pill (generic Zirtec) and squirt of the generic Flonase up each nostril (I highly recommend).

Pollen brings other challenges as well. Over twenty years ago, we built a pool. It was a great decision, as it is good for relaxation and exercise, and we got to meet our kids’ friends. Yet, EVERYTHING gets into the pool, pollen included. So, cleaning the skimmer baskets is an event during the spring, with that stuff coated on the liner I put on the baskets.

Plus, when the pollen is in there, I cannot see if we have any guests in the pool such as brown snake (not poisonous), frog or deceased vole. There is nothing like pulling out a skimmer basket with a small snake in it to get the heart pumping. Fortunately, copper heads do not care for the water as much.

I think the voles are trying to run away from the hawks and owls we get on occasion. Right now, we have three owls in the neighborhood trees, two together and one separate. It must be a love triangle, with a younger male pining for the committed female. Off the subject, but when we went to see Les Miserables for the first time, a good buddy had read up on the wonderful and multi-part story from the playbill and told us all, “Basically, it is a love triangle.” We still laugh about that today.

So, let’s head out for a walk about after the lawn is taking care of. I will look for the odd-man out owl and see if we can find him a new love interest. As his mother tried to tell him, “there are many owls in the trees.” Maybe he can find him one named Cosette or Eponine.

The emu and the gold mine

When my in-laws were alive, their family property included an old dried-up gold mine that never did amount to much. From what I gather, it was an expensive hobby for my mother-in-law’s father. One day, I was out walking their trails and came upon the large opening to the mine, which in essence is now a large pit about twenty meters in diameter and that much in depth.

As I looked at the bottom of the pit, I saw the skeleton of a very large bird. It looked like an ostrich, which would be very uncommon for this neck of the woods. When I got back to the house, I had to inquire.

My father-in-law laughed and said that was an emu skeleton, which would also be rare. It turns out, one of his neighbors was raising emus and one had passed on. So, he asked my father-in-law if he could toss it into the pit. Although it sounds like a person who just did not want to dig a hole, my father-in-law appeased him and said it was OK.

Currently, there are series of themed TV commercials for Liberty Mutual (who some call Limu or Lee-Moo) insurance, where the mascot is Limu the Emu. Note: some ad agency is making money off this idea. I guess they are combatting the Geiko Gekko (who is a CGI mascot), with an Australian man mimicking a Cockney accent – go figure.

Yet, as I watch these commercials, my mind drift backs to looking down into that pit and seeing the now known emu skeleton. Since I was alone on the trails, it was actually an out of body experience. As I was thinking WTF, I felt like someone was watching me see this skeleton in a Rod Serling sort of way. A spaceship had crashed, created this crater and its bird like pilot died as he crawled out.

Then, reality set in and the acknowledgment it was some kind of large bird came to light. The story of the throwing an emu carcass into the hole did not cross my mind, My saner version of the ET story is a large bird was running and did not know the hole was there and fell in. I like that story better than it just being used as a lazy person’s burial ground. It makes me feel the emu died what he liked doing best – running.

So, while Limu the Emu (and his buddy Doug) are peddling insurance, I am thinking of my ET-like emu skeleton. Since there was no cell service this deep in the woods, I could not “phone home” for this ET. It was truly a very weird day. Almost Twilight Zone-like. Cue Mr. Serling and the eerie music.

May I ask you a question?

Opinion hosts, politicians and people in general get in a habit of sharing phrases, labels or names meant to be shortcuts to get people to believe the speaker or writer’s point and dismiss another person’s. Far more often than not, these terms are denigrating in nature and are a form of lazy argument.

The name callers and labelers are actually hoping no one will ask them what this label means in this context. Because, they do not really know the answer. As an easy example, have you ever used a common acronym like NASA, HMO, PPO, ERISA, NATO, etc. and then someone asks you what the acronym stands for? And, you don’t know the answer. The same holds true when people use terms meant to be derogatory short cuts.

So, how do we remedy this? Listen and read, first. Converse in person or in writing. Then ask questions. What does that mean? Do you really believe that this is akin to (evil word)? And, listen to the answer. Then follow-up with another question, but do it in a manner to understand.

If you listen to people first, it gives you more license to follow-up. Yet, I would encourage people to do so in a manner that you want in return. In other words, treat others like you want to be treated.

I often use as an example Daryl Davis, an African-American man who has successfully talked over 200 KKK members into quitting and giving him their robes. He says he starts with conversation, often because he is a musician, and then asks them questions that make them think. Think about that. A Black man convincing a White supremacist to change his or her mind by talking with him or her.

If Davis can have those kinds of conversations, so can we. After listening to someone, I have been able to ask something like “Do you really believe that or are you just saying that cause it sounds good?” “Do you really believe asking someone to (insert issue) is akin to Nazism, Apartheid, Slavery, or Genocide?”

I don’t know about you, but those four things are heinous things that happened in our global history, so if something is going to be legitimately compared to them, it better be a heinous action. A mask mandate to protect people is not Nazism. Nazism led to the murder of over 6 million Jews, while a mask mandate is trying to protect the world from COVID deaths that now total 6 million. The contradiction is staggering.

Converse. Listen. Ask. Follow-up. Be nice. Treat others like you want to be treated. To be frank, if I had an opinion that was inane because I believed a source who disinformed or misinformed me with intent, I would want that inane opinion to be questioned. Diplomatic push back. Civil discourse. Those are the keys.