Category Archives: Norman Rockwell


Our church’s Lenten Bible study this year was about the Apostles’ Creed. It was a yeasty conversation over topics such as the representation of God as Father. One part reads “I believe in the…forgiveness of sins”. By that, one might assume God forgiving sins, but I think it also has as much to do with us forgiving the sins/debts/trespasses (to site another well-known Christian prayer) of each other.

Today being Good Friday, I’m also reminded of Ruby Bridges, a six-year old black girl who desegregated the schools in New Orleans in November 1960, who you will recognize from a famous painting by Norman Rockwell. To survive the attacks she received daily as she walked to school, and where only one of her white teachers would teach her, she said a prayer which her mother had taught her. Robert Coles, then the child psychiatrist who volunteered to work with Ruby and her family, asked her one day what she was mumbling as she walked through that crowd. She famously told him she was saying this prayer, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” This of course echoes one of the seven last words of Jesus on the cross.

Thus, it is in that spirit that I have decided that I need to forgive someone. It has to be someone for whom I have had a great deal of enmity in the past, lest it not be meaningful. So, I’ve decided to forgive George W. Bush.

I forgive George W. Bush for:
*gutting environmental initiatives
*instituting a wide variety of surveillance programs
*signing the USA (so-called)PATRIOT Act (H.R. 3162)
*the unjustified invasion of Iraq in 2003
*the poor handling of the Hurricane Katrina crisis
*the lack of fiscal regulations that has led to the current recession
*and all the rest of it

Understand, I haven’t forgotten. But I’m doing this for me, not for him. I need to let go of my anger.

Maybe someday I’ll even forgive his vice-president – or maybe not. Certainly, I’m not there yet.


Looking forward to

So what am I most anticipating in the new year?
For the first time in decades, THREE comic-related items:
The Steve Ditko book.
The Jack Kirby book
The Fred Hembeck book. BTW, happy five years of blogging, Fred!

More movies; likely next chance, MLK Day. Likely film: Juno.
Pioneers of Television which starts TONIGHT on PBS with sitcoms (I Love Lucy; Joyce Randolph on The Honeymooners; Marlo Thomas about her father Danny’s Make Room for Daddy’ the man himself on The Andy Griffith Show; and DVD and MTM on The Dick Van Dyke Show.
Football. Seriously, taping it then watching it later is SO much more efficient. Definitely some of the NFL games. Probably a bowl game or two.
The Golden Globes, just to see who actually shows up and say they support the Writers’ Strike, even as they’ll be others who’ll boycott the show altogether for the same reason.

The new music I got in the last month, including the John Lennon Anthology. There’s more, but I’ll save it for my Top 10 album list.

Williamsburg, VA with the family. My in-laws have as timeshare.
Visiting the BNorman Rockwell Museum, not all that far from here in Stockbridge, MA. My wife wants to see the Rockwell stuff. I really want to see LitGraphic: The World of the Graphic Novel (through May 26, 2008), featuring Jessica Abel, Sue Coe, R. Crumb, Howard Cruse, Steve Ditko, Will Eisner, Brian Fies, Gerhard, Milt Gross, Marc Hempel, Niko Henrichon, Mark Kalesniko, Peter Kuper, Harvey Kurtzman, Matt Madden, Frans Masereel, Frank Miller, Terry Moore, Dave Sim, Art Spiegelman, Lynd Ward, Lauren Weinstein, Mark Wheatley, Barron Storey and others.
Seeing my friends Gerelt-Od and Soyol who used to live in Albany then returned home to Mongolia, but who’ve been in NYC the past year; I haven’t seen them in nearly a decade.
Seeing my friend Deborah, who I met in 1977 in NYC, who moved to Japan and then France, and who’ll be visiting the Western Hemisphere at some point this year. I haven’t seen her in over a quarter century.

Worrying less
Sleeping more
Drinking more water

That’s as close to New Year’s resolutions as I go.