Spose, Snowe, Steed, Strim and other stumpers

This week, I’ve resolved to clean out the mental junk drawer and examine the curiosities within, the odd questions that have haunted me off and on over the past few weeks. Starting with… 1. The whole Susan Collins/Spose/Alex Steed/Michaud-campaign-documentary thing. This is a real stumper. On one hand, I find it hard to believe that […]

Who would Jesus vote for?

This year’s voters’ guide in The Bollard asks the question, “Who would Jesus vote for?” It’s not as hard to answer as it seems. When one limits the questions to issues that were relevant in Jesus’ time and sticks to the accounts of his life in the Gospels, the answers are pretty clear. We covered […]

Portland’s superintendent smackdown

Portland Superintendent Emmanuel “Manny” Caulk got what can only and justly be described as a “smackdown” last week for trying to start an online-education program, run by a private corporation and paid for with public money, without the approval of the public. I don’t know what’s more disturbing: Caulk’s botched attempt to bypass the school […]

Life is better in the slow lane

The start of another school year seems an opportune time to introduce an idea I’ve been kicking around for awhile now. It’s more than an idea, really. It’s a way of life. With a little luck, it may even become a movement — a very slow movement. I call it “slow motoring.” The concept is […]

Cheryl Leeman for mayor?

I suspect we haven’t seen the last of Cheryl Leeman, the Portland city councilor who’s ending her three-decade run this year. She’ll be serving until her successor is sworn in a couple weeks after Election Day, but one refers to Leeman as a “lame duck” at their peril — she’s as fired up about what’s […]

Mark Rees: The accidental tourist

So long, Mark Rees. We hardly knew ya.And that was a big part of the problem.The announcement this week that Portland City Manager Mark Rees is resigning after three years as the boss of Maine’s largest city, and nearly a year before his current one-year contract is set to expire, has Portlanders all asking the […]

The unseen and unheard among us

It was during a dreary stretch of winter in late January of this year that I got an unusual inquiry regarding freelance work. The freelancer herself didn’t contact me. Rather, the query came from an employment specialist in Scarborough on behalf of a “talented creative writer who is also working on a novel.” I provided […]

Signs of the times in Portland, Maine

In Gaza, hundreds of women, children and other innocent civilians were being blown to pieces by an Israeli military armed and funded by our tax dollars. World leader like United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon were denouncing Israel’s indiscriminate bombing of homes, schools and hospitals as a “moral outrage” and a “criminal act,” while witnesses […]