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Poverty, Dignity and Happiness

January 2, 2014


On New Year’s Eve my teenage daughter wrote me a card which said, among other things: “Thank you for being my dive partner! I love our crazy adventures, in or out of the sea. You’re my adventurer! I know we have our silly squabbles, but I love you to the moon and back and we […]

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In Praise of Depression

April 25, 2013


I have never understood the American obsession with happiness. It is not happiness that etches us with character but sadness. John Keats (1795-1821), the English poet, understood this. In 1819, suffering from depression, he wrote a poem in praise of it, which he called an Ode on Melancholy. No, no, go not to Lethe, neither twist […]

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We Have To Cultivate Our Garden

September 28, 2012


I am told that successful blogs have to have strong graphics for the same reason that people need to shout in a crowded room to make themselves heard. The idea that the size of the audience can affect the message is an interesting one. Think about the mainstream press. The larger the circulation of a publication the more likely it is that the […]

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There Are More Important Things In Life Than Happiness

September 8, 2012


My teenage daughter wants to have fun all the time. I hear the word “fun” everywhere. It seems everyone wants to have fun. This has always seemed a little strange to me but maybe that’s because I was brought up in England where, compared to California, not much emphasis was placed on the importance of fun. […]

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