News

The Changes Come So Fast

My wife, Mary Esther, and I celebrated our wedding anniversary on June 22.  We were married in 2002 and the time has just whipped by.  So many different things have happened; it’s all good but sometimes there are hard surprises.   Mary Esther has scoliosis, stenosis and various other things wrong with her spine.  She had

Senior Living in the Days of the Plague

The COVID-19 pandemic has me rethinking assisted housing for seniors. I’m watching the death toll among nursing homes and veteran facilities skyrocket. They are like petri dishes enabling the virus to leap from one human being to the next. I’m 74-years-old and my wife is 72. I’m grateful that we haven’t made the transition to

Refugees sleeping rough on outskirts of EU

Usually, seeing homeless people is no reason for joy. But in Budapest it is – last year, head of state Viktor Orbán and his right-wing national government passed a law criminalising homeless people for sleeping rough. They are given three warnings and then imprisoned. Thankfully, the law is not enforced everywhere. The criminalisation of homeless

The Changes Come So Fast

My wife, Mary Esther, and I celebrated our wedding anniversary on June 22.  We were married in 2002 and the time has just whipped by.  So many different things have happened; it’s all good but sometimes there are hard surprises.   Mary Esther has scoliosis, stenosis and various other things wrong with her spine.  She had

Boston to make case for new Long Island bridge to Quincy

The City of Boston is hoping to convey that rebuilding a bridge to Long Island is the best option for accessing and reopening a recovery campus for addicts during a meeting on Tuesday, May 7,  in Quincy. The public meeting, being held at the Kennedy Center facility for the Quincy Council on Aging at 7

Arts & Culture

Stolen Lives

“For George Floyd: The Whole World was Watching”* Shawn Mottram, killed dead on October 12, 1998 by what Trooper Joseph Stone said was an accidental shot when he slipped while climbing a chain link fence with gun in hand. A kill shot. Stone shoots so well by accident that he can split a bullet in

Stolen Lives

“For George Floyd: The Whole World was Watching”* Shawn Mottram, killed dead on October 12, 1998 by what Trooper Joseph Stone said was an accidental shot when he slipped while climbing a chain link fence with gun in hand. A kill shot. Stone shoots so well by accident that he can split a bullet in

Champion of the Underdog: An Interview With Dolly Parton

“As a writer, I have to leave my heart open,” Dolly Parton begins. “That’s why I have always said I never could harden my heart, even against hurt or anything. Because as a writer, if you harden your heart, you’re not going to feel all that emotion you need to feel, and you won’t be

‘Friends’ Star Inspired to Action by Friend’s Homelessness

David Schwimmer, former star of “Friends,” turned his artistic talent to telling stories that highlight the struggle of homeless people after discovering that his friend had been living on Skid Row, hiding his homelessness even from those who knew him best. Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons “I had a friend who was homeless for two

Movie Review: The Rhythm Section

I apologize if this review screams at you to not see this movie, but my job here is to tell you whether or not a movie is worth seeing, and that means not every review will radiate positivity.So, here we go.Reed Morano (The Handmaid’s Tale) directs The Rhythm Section with Blake Lively, starring as Stephanie

Columns

The Changes Come So Fast

My wife, Mary Esther, and I celebrated our wedding anniversary on June 22.  We were married in 2002 and the time has just whipped by.  So many different things have happened; it’s all good but sometimes there are hard surprises.   Mary Esther has scoliosis, stenosis and various other things wrong with her spine.  She had

Bizarre Boston: Raising Hell at Harvard

When I think about college students raising hell, I picture kegs of beer, red plastic Solo cups and loud music. Oh, and maybe a beer funnel or two. In my mind, the phrase “raising hell” is just a metaphor for having a wild time. However, maybe it’s not always just a metaphor. For some Harvard

Uncertainties and Impermanence

My wonderful wife, Mary Esther, and I just returned from a visit with the surgeon who will be operating on her back. It’s much more involved than we thought it would be, and we are meditating every day just to help us cope. We’re trying to keep it in the day, but we can’t help

LAST WORD: Christina Sukghian Houle

About a month ago, an artist called Christina Sukhgian Houle dropped into the Spare Change News’ headquarters to meet with some of the vendors. Christina has joined forces with the newspaper’s co-founder, James Shearer, with the goal of making a documentary on homelessness in the Boston area. Christina is a relatively recent transplant to Greater

The Changes Come So Fast

My wife, Mary Esther, and I celebrated our wedding anniversary on June 22.  We were married in 2002 and the time has just whipped by.  So many different things have happened; it’s all good but sometimes there are hard surprises.   Mary Esther has scoliosis, stenosis and various other things wrong with her spine.  She had

‘I Always Came Back’: A Story of Survival

“Hey, baby!” Linda Burston, with an illuminating smile and wide eyes, greets every woman who comes through the doors of Women’s Lunch Place. They always know when Linda is in the room; even among the clink clank of dishes being piled high, the scraping of metal fork against ceramic plate, the hum of conversation among dozens of

The Avoidable Crisis

Stanley Forman: 40 Years After the Soiling of Old Glory

The photo was chilling. Before a crowd of onlookers, a white man appears to be attempting to stab a black man with the tip of a flagpole. “It really showed racism,” said photographer Stanley Forman 40 years after he took the Pulitzer Prize-winning snapshot of an anti-busing protest that had turned violent. “It was whites

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