Covid 19

Send in the Locusts

Allie Brosh

At our outdoor distanced dinner this week here at Maison Marianne, we laughed about a post on social media that said “I think my bingo card for 2020 is full.” And it’s only August.

Remember when the corrupt Senate impeachment process was the worst news? That was a million years ago in February. Since then, a global pandemic, economy tanking, demonstrations and rioting.

As if all of that wasn’t enough, this week in California: 560 raging fires and the worst air quality in the world after two days of rare lightening storms.

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California Poster Child

Hannah Wichrowski, 2017

Posters are everybody’s art. They gained popularity in the mid-19th century and took off by the end of the 19th century. They announce events, advertise products, or provide information about matters of public interest. The most familiar are those that were designed to advertise absinthe or draw you into a cafe or encourage you to support the war effort.

Some go a little further to tell important stories, envision the future, or present exceptional artistry. Some of the best examples I found all happen to be a part of California history. Except one.

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Stop. Breathe. Play Through.

The City of Oakland owns 290 acres that are used as parking lots, which the City designates as “open space.”

In spite of my best efforts, I still think like an economist. Don’t ask me whether that thing is too expensive. Ask me whether it’s worth the price, or whether spending a dollar on that thing is better than spending it on that other thing. During this *unusual* time, the spenders among us are probably thinking a little more like this. Maybe we don’t need 12 pairs of jeans and 30 pairs of shoes. Maybe we don’t need to spend $160 on hair color every month. Maybe we should use the money to plant a garden or support the local food bank. Maybe we should put it away in case one of us gets laid off….

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Rowing the Boat Ashore, For Now

After five years of travel, I am not on an extended vacation. The road is my home. It is like religion to me because it helps me fill in some of the gaping holes in what I know and believe. It feeds my spirit and challenges me. But now, I realize I may not be able to travel for what could feel like a long time. Although I don’t know how, my life is going to change.

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