Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Thursday, November 13, 2003

Love - Toni Morrison Style

Books Nancy Sundstrom A new release by Toni Morrison is usually hailed as nothing less than an event, which is why this eighth release in her impressive oeuvre has been eagerly awaited.
Thursday, November 6, 2003

Hearts and Smarts -- Tales of Two Remarkable Women

Books Nancy Sundstrom At first blush, Mariane Pearl and Elizabeth Smart may not seem to have much in common, but they actually do, including the fact that they are the subjects of eagerly awaited and hot-off-the-presses books.
Thursday, October 30, 2003

Howling Good Reads for Halloween

Books Nancy Sundstrom It’s Halloween week and movie-goers have been flocking to the likes of the remake of the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “Kill Bill,” but readers, especially fans of the horror genre, have plenty of new options, as well.
Thursday, October 23, 2003

‘My Cold War‘ is a Visit to a Personal Battlefront

Books Nancy Sundstrom John Piazza‘s non-fiction writing (“Blues and Trouble“) has made unabashed fans out of the likes of Bob Dylan, so his debut novel of fiction has been eagerly awaited for some time now. It has finally arrived in the form of “My Cold War,“ a fine first effort that parallels the socio and cultural backdrop of the Cold War years with a coming of age and beyond story of battles fought on the inner fronts of the heart and home.
Thursday, October 16, 2003

The Ravage of Nature Makes for a Riveting Read

Books Nancy Sundstrom If you have not witnessed one in person or seen images that capture the power, fury and devastation of a natural disaster, it might be hard to imagine that words could be the most effective means to do so.
Thursday, October 9, 2003

Thrillin‘ Trillin: A Writer‘s Writer Comes to Town

Books Nancy Sundstrom Among even the most highly regarded of his peers, it’s known that Calvin Trillin is the kind of writer other writers aspire to be. He also happens to be equally adept as an actor, critic and raconteur in general, all of which makes him constantly in demand for everything from appearances on David Letterman’s show to speaking gigs such as the one he’ll be doing in Traverse City this weekend.
Thursday, October 2, 2003

Radicals Revisited

Books Nancy Sundstrom In recent years, she’s become a Trivial Pursuit question and fodder for the “I Love the ‘70s“ program on VH1, along with making guest appearances on talk shows and films by John Waters, and speaking out on the recent, highly publicized abduction and rescue of Elizabeth Smart.
Thursday, September 25, 2003

The Buzz About ‘The Secret Life of Bees‘

Books Nancy Sundstrom Sue Monk Kidd‘s “The Secret Life of Bees“ is one of many that has been on my reading stand for awhile, and now that I’ve finished it, I’m kicking myself for not having gotten to it sooner.
Thursday, September 18, 2003

Writers, Wars, Wit and Words

Books Nancy Sundstrom Is all fair in love and publishing?
Few would probably know better than veteran authors Garrison Keillor and Martha Grimes, who use the industry that has served them so well as the backdrops for their latest works of fiction. “Love Me“ is the latest from storyteller extraordinaire Keillor, who has penned nearly a dozen books, along with being a radio host and regular contributor to Time magazine and the online Salon.com. “Foul Matters“ is a change of pace for Grimes, a top-selling mystery writer who has cranked out 18 acclaimed novels featuring Scotland Yard detective Richard Jury.
Thursday, September 11, 2003

Two Years Later: 900 Interviews Round out a Look Back at 9/11

Books Nancy Sundstrom Two years ago, the unthinkable happened, and our world, as we knew it, has never been the same.
The “unthinkable,“ of course, is the devastation that took place on September 11, 2001. Much has actually been written and documented about that day’s horrific events and its aftermath, and the latest comes on the two-year anniversary in the form of “Middletown, America: One Town’s Passage from Grief to Recovery“ by Gail Sheehy.
Thursday, August 28, 2003

Ball of Fire Glows with Warmth

Books Nancy Sundstrom It’s this simple: if you love Lucy, then you will love Stefan Kanfer’s “Ball of Fire: The Tumultuous Life and Comic Art of Lucille Ball.“
Kanfer is a respected author well-suited for the task of dissecting the life of the complex, multi-faceted, sublimely gifted Ball to life. A writer and editor at Time for more than 20 years, he has written eloquently on the subject on comedy and some of its most noted practitioners before, especially in the books “Groucho: The Life and Times of Julius Henry Marx“ and “The Essential Groucho: Writings by, for, and about Groucho Marx.“
Thursday, August 21, 2003

The Secret (and Sometimes Sleazy) Lives of Schoolgirls

Books Nancy Sundstrom English writer Rosemary Kingsland and former porn star Traci Lords couldn’t be more dissimilar. Ironically, though, what they have in common is greater, especially that both proved to become objects of male fantasy, something they document with eloquence and effectiveness in memoirs about their lives.
Thursday, August 14, 2003

Sex, Drugs & Cocoa Puffs

Books Nancy Sundstrom Chuck Klosterman is a pop culture junkie, which is a darn good thing for the rest of us pop culture junkies. Even horror-meister Stephen King, no slouch himself when it comes to the genre, has lauded Klosterman by saying, “Writing about American pop culture doesn‘t get any better than this, or any funnier, or any more readable.“
Thursday, July 31, 2003

The Late, Great Kate

Books Nancy Sundstrom Very few people in the literary world knew that an extraordinary sort of memoir had been in the works since 1983 about Katherine Hepburn by the fine biographer A. Scott Berg, the writer who had previously tackled Max Perkins, Samuel Goldwyn and Charles Lindbergh as subjects, and with resounding success.
Thursday, July 24, 2003

A Story of Violent Faith: Jon Krakauer Probes America‘s Version of the Taliban

Books Nancy Sundstrom Jon Krakauer is the respected author of such outdoor-based books as “Eiger Dreams,“ “Into the Wild,“ and “Into Thin Air,“ insightful stories about people who lives are pushed to the fringe of extremes. In his latest book, he moves into new literary territory in the extremes of religious belief primarily within American borders and based on the Mormon faith. The result has made for fascinating storytelling and more than a bit of controversy.