Seven men and six women, a full baker’s dozen, blew by me atop the meringue-like crust as if I was standing still. Most were in full lycra suits. Muscular buttocks all, 26 in total, striding and gliding as poetry in motion—bodies and brains perfectly aligned in a complex task— the very picture of focus, while … More Delighting in the slipstream of others
I’m irrationally exuberant about my new podcast, Never Picked. Won’t you give it a try? A persistent theme, to loosely quote Chesterton, is, “Anything worth doing, is worth doing poorly at first.” That philosophy is demonstrated lock, stock, and barrel, over here, but it is honestly one of the things I desperately wish to inspire … More The Naked Podcaster
When the problem is larger than you are—your experience, skillset, wisdom, or imagination—the best course of action is to do nothing. Simply wait. My seven-year journey has demonstrated this again and again. Unlike Frodo’s course, our family’s quest has carried us away from the fires of Mordor, and all that corporate disfigurement, toward a sustainable … More Arriving at a solution vs imposing one
The best part of our family having carved out a niche through farming, writing, and the creation of fine art, by far, is having a seat at the community’s dinner table, which enables us to join the larger conversation. This brings immense joy, particularly when our contribution is the least important part, but somehow remains … More Finding a seat at the table
For the first time in a quarter century, I brought the perfect book back to this secret cabin on the Pigeon River. The choice of reads, being such a weighty decision, always stymies me. The journey back to this cabin demands serious effort and unwavering commitment, requiring 4-8 hours journey through 4-5 feet of snow, … More Our 2,000 year old Little Library, a great read, and an epic adventure.
I wrote the short piece below for the paper. I had hoped to encourage people, but was surprised at how controversial it became (judging by the comments on a local website). The experience caused me to see why the vast majority of individuals keep to themselves. Once again, Gandalf’s comments seem appropriate: Saruman believes it … More What this country needs most is you
The city needs surrounding rural areas just as a rubber tire requires a metal rim. Neither will truly thrive without the other. Living in the city, as I do, my wellbeing requires a regular inoculation of the country. And by country, I don’t just mean the land, although it certainly includes that. The people who … More Making America Great Again
This week I found myself, somewhat reluctantly, attending a theatre production that included an Eddy Gilmore character. I expected to gain nothing from the experience. Blessed beyond belief by an atmosphere of utter richness, I left with more wealth than could be carried by pockets, wheelbarrows, or even an armored truck could be expected to … More Entering the story, painting the dump gray, and the last chicken
Pure, unvarnished joy. Rosy red cheeks. Pearly white teeth. This photo, snapped from a neighbor’s iPhone, captures the evening and spirit of Cornucopia better than any I’ve seen. Hosting the event was like running with wild horses. Pictured above is Duluth’s Mayor, Don Ness, now in his final month of service. The lovely woman at his … More Reflections on a remarkable evening. Also, I have another book in the cooker!
My wife, Shawna Gilmore, just painted the back of Charlie Parr’s guitar. It’s the one you see here, which he has been touring the country with all summer and fall. I think she did a darn fine job. Here’s the finished product: Charlie’s instruments are essentially irreplaceable, so it’s amazing that he trusted her with … More Painting Charlie Parr’s Guitar, and Who the heck is Dave Hundrieser?