About a week ago, in literally the blink of an eye, I went from giving Kiki a treat to lying face-down on the tile floor of the kitchen. It was, thankfully, my own damn fault, and not a systemic collapse. I often dispense treats by holding them between my lips and bending over, holding onto …

When we sift through the wreckage of the past year, much of the debris we uncover is rooted in fear that’s quite reasonable, a natural response to the pandemic double-edged sword offered by the limitations it proscribes: Remain sequestered only to find your risk-free isolation eventually bec…

Proposition 2, “We Are All Vermonters,” certainly spoke to me as someone new to this amazing state. In 2013 I left a long-term pastorate in Ohio to serve as interim pastor in an Upper Valley congregation. I soon fell in love with Vermont and became determined to find a place here of my own. …

For the first time in a long time, I’m feeling optimistic. The American Rescue Plan Act (ARP), passed by Congress and signed on March 11 by President Biden, brings much needed support to families hit hard economically by the pandemic. When it comes to direct hunger relief, the ARP boosts 3Sq…

Full disclosure — As I was tinkering with this piece, I believed the “Easter Weasel” existed only in my head, titled because the beast showed up at the beginning of Holy Week, another Catholic fossil buried in my subconscious. I was unaware two lawyers — one sent an elderly woman to jail for…

The horrible murders at three massage parlors in Atlanta, we now know, had a great deal to do with religion. The shooter’s motivation appears to be first and foremost driven by a twisted religious construct, secondly by a hatred of women and third by an anti-Asian bias. I know I may take som…

While mass shootings attract our attention and our horror (and rightfully so), we tend to overlook the fact gun violence is a ubiquitous, everyday problem in the United States. While many of us experienced mass shooting amnesia – due to fewer mass shootings in the news during the pandemic – …

A local zoning administrator once told me — when I served as chairman of the Brandon Planning Commission — that Vermont was the “Wild West” when it came to rules and regs. He’s not wrong. I’ve witnessed this in the lax rules regarding toxic pesticide spraying and animal abuse, and it is appa…

One of the most dangerous and communicable variants of the previous viral administration, enabled by cowardly congressional Republican parasites, was the shameless bigotry and domestic terrorism spawned by irresponsible rhetoric. The “Good People” praise of racists and neo-Nazis in Charlotte…

Most of us are thinking ahead to gardens, lawns, and spring and summer projects. It’s like that every winter, but this winter felt more acute with the pandemic outside the door, adding to the chill in the air.

Now that Andrew Cuomo has joined the hierarchy of American icons such as Kermit the Frog, Mr. Potato Head and Ted Cruz, invoking “Cancel Culture” as the rationale behind the push for his resignation, perhaps the phrase should be ushered into obscurity along with New York’s rapacious governor…

As we enter the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vermonters have reason to be proud of their commitment and sacrifices in mitigating the virus, keeping our infection rate one of the lowest in the world. The low community spread of the virus, combined with the extraordinary efforts and f…

In my decades-long war with anyone trying to sell me anything, I’ve always cut Steve Jobs some slack, awed by his amazing ability to create devices a technical neophyte such as myself couldn’t remotely understand — what they did or how they might benefit me were always a little mysterious — …

Vermont’s Amtrak trains have now been gone for almost a year. When they do return, we will be virtually initiating new services. This can’t wait any longer. For many months, I’ve supported (albeit reluctantly) their suspension, because of the tragic second wave of the pandemic. But with vacc…

Our Vermont legislators recently commissioned a state-of-the-art study to investigate how best to apportion funds to schools equitably. Unfortunately for the students of Vermont, it detailed serious inequities in school funding. What this study unveiled was an outdated distribution of funds …

Our most successful recycling program — known as the bottle bill — is long overdue for an upgrade. For years, we’ve mostly relied on single-stream recycling programs that allow people to toss all of their recyclables into one bin. Although this seems like a convenient solution, the real stor…

Climate change threatens to destroy everything you care about. It is the one of the biggest threats to prosperity and security we have ever faced. If we lose the fight against climate change, every other cause becomes lost. The good news is that addressing climate change will strengthen Verm…

Five Questions With

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Just over three months ago we started “Five Questions With ...” to put a human face to this pandemic. Today marks the final installment in this stage of the project, but it will continue with a new set of questions more focused on Vermont’s recovery. Here, Paul Costello, of Montpelier, offer…

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Marlee Brunton, of Middlesex, talks about the pandemic and its effects on her family.

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Marlee Brunton, of Middlesex, talks about the pandemic and its effects on her family.

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Alayna Martel, of Barre Town, is a registered nurse at UVM Medical Center. She talks about how, as a frontline workers, her life has been affected by the pandemic.

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Gayle Townsend-Lang, of Rutland, works full time wearing many hats for the Rutland City Public Schools as “Miss Gayle.” Here she talks about how she has been affected by the pandemic.

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Yankee Notebook columnist Willem Lange, of East Montpelier, talks about how he has been affected by self-isolation and the pandemic.

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CPA Thomas Lauzon, of Barre, discusses how his life has been affected by the pandemic and self-isolation. Earlier this spring Lauzon was named to the governor’s Economic Mitigation & Recovery Task Force.

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Chrispin White, of Rutland, discusses how he has been adapting to self-isolation and how the pandemic has been affecting him.

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Christina Sweet, of Rutland, discusses how she and her family have been affected by the pandemic and self-isolation over these months.

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Educator and Vermont Mountaineers General Manager Brian Gallagher, of East Montpelier, discusses how the pandemic has affected his life. Earlier this spring, the Mountaineers’ organizers announced they would cancel the 2020 season.

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Cat Heatley, of Rutland, talks about how her life has been affected by the pandemic in recent weeks.

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Cat Heatley, of Rutland, talks about how her life has been affected by the pandemic in recent weeks.

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Salon owner and fitness instructor April Rogers Farnham, of Plainfield, talks about how she has been affected by self-isolation.

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Barre Partnership Executive Director Tracie Lewis talks about self-isolation and how the pandemic has been affecting her life.

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Montpelier writer Thomas Greene discusses how he has been affected by self-isolation and the pandemic.

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Drew Smith, of Rutland, talks about self-isolation and how the pandemic has affected his life.

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Jessica Van Orman talks about her experience in self-isolation and how the pandemic has affected her life.

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Artist Jen Rondinone, of Rutland, reflects on self-isolation and how the pandemic has affected her and her family.

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Mark Breen, the "Eye on the Sky" guy from the Fairbanks Museum in St. Johnsbury, shares his thoughts in self-isolation and how the pandemic has been affecting his life.

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Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe discusses how self-isolation and the pandemic have affected his life.

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Executive Director of the Paramount Bruce Bouchard, of Rutland, talks about how his life has been affected by the pandemic and its consequences.

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Carrie Allen, of Rutland, explains how she has been coping with self-isolation and what she hopes will come from it after the pandemic is over.

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Vermont cartoonist Tim Newcomb provides a bit of levity to his answers about self-isolation and how he is coping.

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Recovery Vermont’s Melissa Story, of Montpelier, shares her thoughts on self-isolation and how it has affected her.

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Major Jackson is a poet and professor at the University of Vermont. He lives in South Burlington.