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I worked outdoors in Wisconsin one summer, maintaining filtration pipes that were laid out over an 80-acre pasture. My only companion during work hours was a house cat I named Fred who had recently been abandoned to the fields. My circumstances were such that I could not take him in, and bec…

While the Democrat’s “Stop Herschel Walker” campaign is reminiscent of defensive coordinators’ obsession when he was an All-American running back in college and later an NFL star, it’s lost some of its urgency since the GOP “Red Tsunami” failed to materialize, rendering Georgia’s Dec. 6 runo…

In the early 1990s, I joined the Vermont Republican Party. I did so because the VTGOP recognized five core principles: a free market economy; a local and efficient government that kept taxes within reason; an educational system that enabled our graduates to compete in a global marketplace; i…

It was Nov. 8, Election Day in America, as I began to write this commentary before joining friends to watch early results of our crucial midterm election, and it is not hyperbole to say we were beyond tense. We were terrified. We knew what could be coming at us if the wrong side prevailed, t…

Sen. Patrick Leahy, with his decades of service to Vermont, has assisted so many Vermonters and their communities that his contributions could be documented in a multi-volume book. Perhaps, less well-known is his work for disadvantaged citizens outside Vermont. One notable example is his lea…

With no discernible wind, the sun penetrates my jacket enough to warm me despite its being barely above the tree-line, lengthening shadows, instigating thoughts of winter on a chilly afternoon earlier in the week. Even as I try to absorb as much of the waning brilliance as I can, layers of d…

The title of this column is also the title of a 400-plus-page book that mysteriously appeared in my mailbox about 10 days ago. It was addressed to “current resident,” followed by my street address — which means it was a bulk mailing, a mass mailing. The book’s cover shows the U.S. Capitol bu…

In 1995, when activist, advocate and former congresswoman Bella Abzug uttered these words at the Fourth World Conference of Women in Beijing, thousands of women there and everywhere felt the force of her words: “Women will change the nature of power, power will not change the nature of women…

The outside temperature at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday is 20°, a full 45° lower than Monday morning, freezing everything in sight, perhaps marking the transition toward meteorological winter, which begins Dec. 1, three weeks before the solstice, marking the three calendar months with the lowest aver…

Elections can cloud issues by presenting them in sound bites that have little relevance to bigger agendas. The debate over abortion in the United States has taken that route. A revolution like the current one in Iran about the wearing of headdresses can have a similar effect. Narrow viewing …

French speakers have a well-known expression, “Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose,” which is usually translated as “The more things change, the more they remain the same.” I think this applies perfectly to the resurgence of a new form of Gnosticism that’s running amok in our country to…

The end of October has always seemed to me the end of everything before that and the start of our annual winter’s sleep. During my contracting days, it was time to start covering piles of lumber with tarps or risk having to pry them apart in the morning. The cloudiest month of the year is up…

A humble Turkish fishing village turned destination beach town, Bodrum has left the humility behind, becoming a port of call for billionaires. Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Roman Abramovich have been sighted stocking up on provisions before hightailing toward the Caribbean. It’s October, after …

Halloween may be great fun for those of us who like to dress up and party, but most pets do not share that enthusiasm. The doorbell is ringing often, there are loud children, an abundance of off-limits (to the pet), tasty candy and scary looking costumes — all of which can present problems f…

This month as we go to the polls to vote for people to represent us at all levels of governance, it is deeply important to remember these midterm elections are monumentally significant in an unprecedented way, with the possible exception of the Nazi scare in the 1930s and ’40s. Results of al…

It was 103° when we gathered under a shade tent in California to honor a mutual friend over Labor Day weekend. We’d been a tight group connected to the woman we’d come to see for almost 30 years and joyful hugs were shared as we greeted each other. The most remarkable thing about those hugs …

This week, the federal Clean Water Act turns 50. As we continue working to address water pollution in Vermont and across the country, this is an important moment to take stock of both the progress we have made and to identify what more we need to do to ensure everyone has access to clean, sa…

In July, an independent press in Eugene, Oregon, published an important book by Eric Todd titled “The Fullness of Love: From Mere Churchianity to an Awakened Life” (Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2022). I recommend this book; it is highly readable, entertaining, as well as well-researched, tho…

The peculiar defense espoused by disgraced former House speaker Newt Gingrich for fellow adulterer and Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker — essentially that Walker has taken too many shots to the head — sounded more like an indictment than a ringing endorsement and then got even more b…

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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WDEV radio talk show host Dave Gram, of Montpelier, talks about the pandemic and how it has been affecting him and his life.

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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.