The Road to Paradise

Adopt A Village In Laos

It was so sad to see everyone leave a couple at a time but I suppose the highlight was when Dawn (my sister) and Beau managed to visit after o many years of hearing me talk about it.

While I was busily reporting to the donors, Siphan headed to a small village near the Plain of Jars, Ban Napia with or Italian friends to assist in the distribution of 62 water filters there.  As I understand, it went without incident although there was some heavy drinking afterwards with the villagers there.

Ban Napia water filters donated by the sponsors of Ink For Charity. Ban Napia water filters donated by the sponsors of Ink For Charity.

So next up was to make another attempt at Thong Thuen.  The water filters were supposed to be there already but the rains had prevented the deliveries so they were stored at his mom’s house.  While our guests were here, Siphan had rushed down to Phonsavanh (Nambak…

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Coming of Age in Mississippi, written in 1968, still has a relevant message today:  Don’t forget the past. It is the “autobiography of growing up poor and black in the rural South.” The author, Anne Moody grew up in Mississippi during the forties, fifties and early sixties.  The book ends around 1963 or so, after the Kennedy assassination.  The book is divided into sections: Part I Childhood, Part II High School, Part III College, Part IV The Movement (which is, of course the Civil Rights Movement).  I would be “hard put” to pick the part I liked best, if “like” is even the appropriate word.  It is an unforgettable personal story and a coming of age story, taking Ms. Moody  from a young girl to a responsible, aware adult.

I enjoy reading about people who overcame great obstacles, and this is definitely such a story.  From an innocent, accepting child…

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…let there ALWAYS be libraries…

Seumas Gallacher



…by any stretch of the measurement of age, this ol’ Scots Jurassic scribbler is no longer a youth… I adulted around a-hem years ago… and having become in recent years an Author, I have more than a passing interest in the comparatively new debate as to whether books are better in print or on an eReader such as Auntie Amazon’s Kindlekindleand despite being part of the, (a-hem again), ‘older’generation, I have no negativity toward the modern downloaded reader versions of books… don’t mistake me – I still enjoy immensely the feel of a paper book in my hands, and even, yes, the smell of the paper and the gum paste thats binds the spine (emb’dy else remember ‘sniffing’ a new book?)… but times move on – the electronic age has become an imbedded part of our lives whether we embrace it or not –…

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Monday (Afternoon) Musings


Here I sit, running late once again, but with a good excuse.  I just finished the classic, Coming of Age in Mississippi by Anne Moody, and I am filled with things I would like to say to the young protagonist of this memoir.  Because of this feeling of a need/desire to communicate with a character in something I’ve read, I would like to provide the venue for you to do the same.

Post here by typing in the reply box a letter, e-mail, or simply address the protagonist of the book you are currently reading.  I am going to set a deadline of January 20th for posting your communication here. If you cannot maneuver the necessities for posting yourself, click on “contact me” and type in your letter/note there, which I will copy and attach to this post.

I am looking forward to you thinking about what you would say…

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Argentine newspaper president Javier Borelli brings fight for freedom of speech to SOJC

Christian Hartwell

Freedom of speech is occupying the minds of many at this moment in history. At the national level, President-Elect Donald Trump has tweeted that burning the American flag should be faced with “perhaps loss of citizenship or a year in jail” and that he’s going to “open up libel laws” to go after news organizations that print unflattering stories about him — both clear contradictions to the protections offered by the First Amendment. Closer to home, we’ve run into questions about freedom of speech on the University of Oregon campus with the recent controversy sparked by a law professor who wore blackface as part of a Halloween costume.

At the UO School of Journalism and Communication, freedom of expression and the press is a topic that always holds great interest for students and faculty. In November,  we had the chance to meet someone who had dealt with attacks on freedom…

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