Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Annual ManualInternship

Bike World
Posted July 16, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Aging in wonder

THE STYLIST Leaning in over the chair, his right arm held up and out in classic ballroom dance form — elbow high, left hand centered, body balanced — he cuts hair. Elegant, poised, and the center of his world. No orchestra, just the sound of the scissors. Snip, snip, snip,

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Posted July 09, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Girl with a volleyball

The Girl holds herself with regal deportment. Shoulders down, back straight, head turned, ready to receive her fans. She comes home after being gone from Holland for too long. Japan, New York City, Atlanta, San Francisco and Italy. She was sorely missed. The crowds on this Friday in The Hague

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Posted July 02, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

A Dutch bar — in three games

The high gloss on the wood shines as the rag wipes the first spill of beer to the side. The movement of the rag continues over the wood, back and forth, polishing, as the young bartender patiently waits. He is almost indolent at this early stage of the evening. Why

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Posted June 25, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Summer solstice with a witch

The witch sits across from me at the table, smiling. No pointed hat. No flying broom. Not a single cackle is recorded during our long conversation. She is smart, open, answers each question carefully, and is aware of “being made a fool” by others. She does suggest that I don’t

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Posted June 18, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Spotlight on a young professional

Yes, dear reader, you have now turned to that part of the newspaper where we traditionally focus on some amazing young professional in the Des Moines area as an inspiration for those of us who might be slacking just a bit and need to shape up. These are always great

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Posted June 11, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Just a game

It’s just a game. Nothing more. Something to pass the time. Perhaps you can do it with your kids on long car trips. Or with your husband, when he looks across the table at you in that nice restaurant with his usual bored expression. Or maybe you know someone in

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Posted June 04, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

‘Am I in that grave?’ — part 2

Omaha Beach. Utah Beach. Sword Beach. Juno Beach. Gold Beach. Seventy years ago, on June 6, 1944, thousands upon thousands of American soldiers came to Europe for the first time, up these “beaches” into Normandy. And over the next few months, thousands followed behind them for the push into Germany.

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Posted May 28, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

Older men

Older men are a dying breed. Sad to say. They are a species unto themselves, and I worry about their extinction, which causes me to write on their behalf. I’d speak of older women, but I find myself frequently infatuated with older women. Not enough emotional distance to report accurately.

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Posted May 21, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

‘Our boys’ — Part 1

The old Dutch couple moved slowly along the narrow reflecting pool. Flowers and a vase were cradled in the woman’s arms. They stopped. The man took the vase from the woman and carefully, with obvious complaint by his joints, went to one knee next to the pool. He dragged the

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Posted May 14, 2014in Joe's Neighborhood

What should a woman not have to do?

Wading into the dark waters of women’s issues is not a good idea, especially for a male. I know this. Why not just stay up on the bank where there are no snakes, no quicksand, no danger? This seems a no-brainer. But, unfortunately, I also believe in the magic of

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