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The Sun Interview

Road To Ruin

An Interview With Jan Lundberg

Time and again, roads trash the Garden of Eden. They cut through communities. Kids can’t play on them; the elderly can’t cross them; trees are taken out; property is seized by eminent domain — and by the full force of the state when people resist.

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Slave Chair

As a child, I did not think it out of the ordinary that our family had a slave chair in the living room. It seemed every house in Georgia had some sort of antique or what-have-you from before the Civil War. Sagging cane seat, pine wood, ladder back, broomstick arms — the chair was a relic from the slave quarters of a bygone plantation. I never asked how it had come to be in my grandmother’s living room. I was, I think, afraid to hear the answer. 


Dispatches From The Nader Campaign

Nobody wants Al Gore to be president. Democrats will vote for Al Gore for only one reason: they hate George Bush. They hate Bush so much they would vote for anyone else — even someone with a record of voting pro-life; even someone who’s in favor of more military spending and against universal healthcare; even someone who supports capital punishment and other forms of institutionalized racism. By accepting all of this, the Democrats have sold their ideals down the river. Their candidates are obvious crooks. At least the Republicans mean it when they say something stupid. The Democrats just say stupid things because they think that’s what the voters want to hear.

Halfway Home

I’m at the halfway point: 1,042 miles from northern Idaho and the life I have lived there for the past seventeen years. I’m on my way back to my native Illinois to begin the second half of my life. At this moment, my wife is getting settled into our new home, with our mismatched furniture and 126 boxes of stuff. We are returning to the Midwest to care for ill and aging parents, to create fresh memories with them, and to repay the unspoken debts we as children owe. With only the memory of what I am leaving, and little knowledge of what’s ahead, I’m running on faith.


Joyful Noise

As a child, you followed the rules — that was your job. It was wrong to hit your little sister, to giggle or tickle or otherwise revel in pleasure, to take — or even want — the biggest piece. It was right to let your friends go first, to think of other people before yourself, to sit up straight and use the proper fork. It was downright dangerous to disagree.


At the beginning of winter, not long after Gary’s fifteenth birthday, his father, William, fell from a ski lift. William had been drinking from mini bottles of Scotch and smoking dope at the time. He had never been a big drinker or smoker.

Readers Write

Staying Awake

Every morning except Tuesdays, I have to open the diner. I roll out of bed before dawn and jump into the shower. On the way to work, I often have to turn on my headlights to see the road. When I get there, I unlock the door, turn on the grills, fill bowls with sugar packets and coffee creamers, make two pots of coffee, and wait for the cook and the other waitress to come in. I’ve worked here for five years, ever since I graduated from college.

Personal Stories By Our Readers ▸
Sy Safransky's Notebook

February 2001

What do I think I’ll accomplish by getting up early? If I keep writing in my notebook every day, then one day I’ll be an old man with a roomful of notebooks. That’s good, as long as I don’t imagine death will be impressed. If I meditate every day, if that’s the way I want to greet the mystery legs crossed, spine straight then that’s the way the mystery will find me. No problem. Still, the mystery. Whether I hammer the nails crooked or straight, this house of self will stand here only as long as it stands here, not a day longer, not one breath longer.

Musings From Our Founder ▸


Natives who beat drums to drive off evil spirits are objects of scorn to smart Americans who blow horns to break up traffic jams.

Mary Ellen Kelly

More Quotations ▸
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