- The best thing I've listened to lately has been Tom Brosseau's North Dakota Impressions. One of those songs, Trip to Emerado, is just about as fine an example of story-telling in song as you are going to find. And it is the quintessential "song of place" as well. Brosseau seems like a cross between Woody Guthrie and Garrison Keillor.
- There are brown leaves in the yard. Plenty. I think I see the last few cherry tomatoes in the garden. We'll be pulling it up soon.
- I read an article this week about social scientist Robert Nisbet. The author summarizes Nisbet's thinking, with this gem coming in the middle:
He thought that boredom was civilization’s number-one self-poisoner. Wealth and leisure could undermine the collective good sense of the masses, he felt, stimulating euphoria at a cost. Efforts to offset boredom—through video games, television, sports, pornography, or drugs—could be fatal to community. Facebook’s artificial communities and the politics of Twitter, he might say, give the illusion of social cement while causing the real thing to crack. Much of what Nisbet foresaw decades ago has come to be. Americans surf big-screen HDTV channels, seeking relief and distraction. Hoping politics will make things right, the nation follows the plot like a serial—some on Fox, others on CNN—accepting politics as a televised reality show. Donald Trump is only Exhibit A.