Valentine’s Day and Flowers by Ioana Popescu

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I grew up in Romania, I was 26 when I left for grad school in Cincinnati, Ohio. At the time we did not celebrate Valentine’s Day in Romania, we did not know about it, no Internet and not too much cultural exchange was crossing the communist borders… now it is absorbed and embraced, as well as Halloween, and some would even like to adopt Thanksgiving – who does not want to be giving thanks? And…

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A Second Look at Wicked

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  If you haven’t seen the musical Wicked yet, you probably should. I have seen it twice now and each time was well worth the ticket price and a vastly different experience. It’s a classic and it never gets old. Don’t worry, there aren’t any big spoilers in this post. For those unfortunate enough to have not experienced it yet, Wicked tells the back story to the Wizard of Oz; how the Wicked Witch of…

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Never Mind! The Humanistic Art of Changing Your Mind

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My illicit intellectual love affair with epistemology began not with Plato, Hume, Berkeley or Wittgenstein.   My teenage romance blossomed while watching Saturday Night Live, where a dalliance with a slightly frumpy bespectacled woman named Ms. Emily Litella changed me forever. Those of a certain age will recall fondly (and those of lesser age with access to YouTube can discover) her glorious penchant for malapropism.   As portrayed by Gilda Radner, Ms. Litella would opine at great…

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A Changing Dream

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For practically all of my childhood, I was sure I was going to be a veterinarian. By the time I was ten years old, I had read every one of James Herriot’s books cover to cover, I had memorized the “Dog” section of the Encyclopedia Britannica, and I had started an enviable collection of Breyer model horses. In the following summers I used to go to my violin lessons on Saturday mornings and then rush…

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