On Concluding Two Months’ Travels

When I lived in Montreal I would, after a long morning of writing, rise reluctantly from my desk, forced to leave the house on minor errands–the post office, the corner store–and on leaving, find myself in the midst of lives, ……
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Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s Paintings

Last week, I saw Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s solo show at The New Museum, in New York. Yiadom-Boakye is a youngish portraitist, much-talked about. Some of the chatter is generated by greatly exaggerated reports of the death of portraiture, or figurative painting more broadly; some because ……
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Revelations

Yesterday morning, I opened the door to let the dog in after a long night of hard rains. The air was hot, muggy, already at 7. The contrast felt apocalyptic, but everything does these days: it’s just my usual adjective. How ……
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Seeing the spiders: S-Town and Atwood

I finished listening through S-Town yesterday, and want very badly to discuss it with someone. But since my husband couldn’t get past the tragic death in the second episode, which had him crying while pushing a shopping cart around Whole Foods, I ……
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Dedicating my No-Trump Vote: For My Mother

Last month, the inimitable Julianna Baggott got in touch with this message: “I’ve been trying to figure out a way to create something that pushes people to think about their No-Trump Vote with real purpose. I was feeling like my ……
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What ‘they’ mean by ‘birth certificate’

There’s a lot of page space right now devoted to Donald Trump’s false claims in the history of the ‘birther controversy’—Trump has said numerous times that Hillary Clinton’s campaign started the rumour that Barack Obama wasn’t born in the US, ……
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Sri Lanka Reading Roundup

It was in many ways strange to go to Sri Lanka six years after the brutal conclusion to its 26-year civil war. I went with a small freight of questions and expectations, culled from a  lifetime of observing the place ……
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How Writing Saved My Life

I saw the movie Inside Out with my kids months ago and meant to write something about how hard and great it was to see such an accurate depiction of depression, made so lucid and visual. Many people think that to ……
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Why ask me Why?

I’ve just returned from three lovely events in the Toronto area, including visits with large undergrad classes at York and McMaster who have honored me by reading my book—closely. One of the most charming aspects of these visits was how ……
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