Comments by witwaltman

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Posted on March 29 at 2:09 p.m.

"there is no single government agency responsible for monitoring nuclear fallout in the ocean." Can you believe that Wood Hole's Ken Buesseler has to be internet crowd-funded, like a start-up indie artist? How's this for fallout: all responsibility FALLS OUTside of jurisdiction of the EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adm,. and the International Atomic Energy Agency?!

Oh, my friends, love the wisdom and providence of the Market, love the erosion of res-publica.

On The Fukushima Fallout

Posted on February 27 at 11:46 a.m.

Congratulations, Elizabeth! And thank you for this funny, keen, self-aware piece. You won't control the party, but you can LET GO when the time comes. And that might be the magic mantra where the enormity of marriage and the symbolism of ceremony come together.

On My Kind of Bridezilla

Posted on February 26 at 4:18 p.m.

Wow. This is the other Starshine, the ballast to the ship, normally submerged and invisible. As it should be. You simply can't dish this stuff up weekly, just as a ship don't float with the hull in the air for long. Thanks for the heart-food.

On How My Grandma Looks

Posted on December 22 at 11:22 p.m.

Really funny, Starshine. Great tribute to Barry, and his influence on you. I've enjoyed his appearances on "A Prairie Home Companion".

On Starshine Talks to Her Idol

Posted on August 2 at 3:19 p.m.

Absolutely hysterical, Ms. Barnwell! Thanks not only for being a Fiesta Supermom, but also for giving the city such a funny, well-written piece. Bravo!

On Fiestamama Marathon

Posted on June 27 at 10:33 a.m.

The French poet Lamartine wrote, "The ideal is only truth at a distance." Which I read as 'the ideal remains true only as it remains out of reach.' Thanks for a hip, humorous restatement of that principle, Starshine.

On Cool or Not Cool?

Posted on May 3 at 10:38 a.m.

I'll add one more thing. A lot of young women are facing the fall-out of this. As the parent of one who may be considering marriage sometime in the next few years, it is depressing to think of this becoming her problem.

On Indecent Exposure

Posted on May 3 at 7:19 a.m.

On a more serious note, there seems to be considerable evidence of widespread porn-induced erectile dysfunction. Lots of men, even in their 20s, are having difficulty having intercourse with real women. While many of them won't talk about this -- many respond anonymously to surveys and blogs, finding some consolation they are not alone.

This is a downside of neuroplasticity. The brain changes by its conditioning. If we men get-off on "paper dolls", we may lose (fortunately reversible in many cases) our capacity to respond to flesh-and-blood women.

A slightly broader, but related, issue has to do with relationships, not merely sexual function. This is the 'air-brush' syndrome. A man becomes so used to magazine beauty that his 'standards' become too high. Every real available woman he knows is too fat or too ugly. He won't consent to any committed relationship.


On Indecent Exposure

Posted on March 19 at 12:55 a.m.

Dear Nuria,
Thanks for the narrative. I like your crossing of contemporary modes with ancient wisdom. Oh, I think your 'apigraha' should actually be 'aparigraha'.
It comes from the word "parigraha", which means reaching out for something and claiming it for oneself -- the 'a-' is the negation. (And, no, I'm not going to buy that you dropped the 'ar' because you weren't attached to right spelling!)

On My iPhone, Myself

Posted on May 31 at 12:32 a.m.

I’ve had, for some years, a private theory about the deeper psychology of the word. It seems to me to be rooted in the many ambivalences of penetration. Penises penetrate; but so do swords and bullets. Sexual love is the epitome of everything open, trusting, unveiled and vulnerable. Therefore, it is also the most painful arena for violation and betrayal. There is something rapacious in the f-word. We are accustomed now to speak about the “f-bomb”. Well, bombs are all about violent penetration, aren’t they? Missiles and bullets are phallic shaped, designed as they are for aerodynamics (as Nature designed the shape of the male organ for dynamic movement). The voltage of the word comes from the great contrast between love and violence. The word has a violent effect on listeners, which is why it is a “bomb”. Who cannot remember being shocked by someone’s use of the word (as I was, in my early teens, by my father)? The use of the word is a kind of confession to harboring a will to violence, sort of like the archaic British curse “blast them”. But that expression does not go far enough. It is the will to blast them where they are most vulnerable, to violate and desecrate what is most dear and tender to them. The f-bomb is always dropped in antagonistic verbal exchanges “when the gloves come off”. It is a kind of verbal rape, and it carries the idea of the will to rape. Speech itself is an act of intercourse, the open ear and the sperm-like “word” being metaphors as old as Stoicism and the Bible. The f-word is an extreme word that carries an extreme idea. It promises to damage, and indeed DOES damage, a respectful view of the act of love. The act of love, of course, is the origin of family life, and the beginning of all (non-test tube) human bodies. So, to curse the act of love is to curse one’s beginnings. To be flagrant and cavalier in advertising one’s cynicism about the act of love is to confess (however unconsciously) a sense of one’s own psychological, if not spiritual, illegitimacy.

"If anything is sacred, the human body is sacred." –Walt Whitman (b. May 31, 1819)

On Documentary Digs Into the F-Bomb

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