The democratization of art is here!

White disposable mask, up against black chain-link fence
White disposable mask, up against black chain-link fence
Author photo

Although this past year has been truly awful in many ways, the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired some positive trends. One trend I began to notice almost right away were these delightful art installations randomly placed all over my city.

No longer is it necessary to travel to Paris, Florence, or Amsterdam to view and enjoy amazing art — it’s right in our backyards!

Forget about Blockchain — whatever that is — and behold! The democratization of art has already happened. Anyone has access to these installations, as long as you are willing to venture outside your home.

I’m surprised when people tell me they are

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The other night, I was sitting around an outdoor fire with a group of my best friends. This was the first time we had all been together (outside, at a distance) since this whole shit show began.

“One of the worst things is that I’ve been so bored!”

“I know! Me too!”

Huh? That surprised me. The two speakers are bright, creative women. One works full time and one is not currently working.

I wanted to say “I’m never bored!” but didn’t want to sound like I was bragging.

But it’s the truth. …


We Americans should hold our heads in shame

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When you hear the phrase “French woman,” what do you envision?

Most people conjure an image of a slim, beautifully dressed female, sitting at a cafe with a glass of wine, and perhaps a cigarette.

If you’ve never been to France and know nothing about the French, you picture her wearing a beret and eating a baguette.

Over the past few years, there have been many books and articles written about how French women can eat whatever they want and still look fabulous. I never read any of those books. The topic seemed trite and frivolous.

But, then I came…

Here are Ten Things You Should Know

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Please, let me get bit by a snake.

This is what I’m thinking as I walk the path between the meditation hall and the dorms, on the second day of a 10-day Vipassana meditation retreat.

If I get bit by a snake, then I will get to leave the retreat, without breaking my contract or upsetting the staff. It won’t be my fault.

Starving, sleep-deprived, wearing rain-soaked sweats, I was absolutely miserable.

As I walked up and down the path, I dreaded the next meditation session, in the damp, humid, hot hall that I had come to think of as…

Or at Least Has Gotten us Through the Pandemic so Far

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The other night, as we were playing cards, Spotify stopped working, and my husband and I lost our minds.

“I can’t search for ‘Don’t Change’! It says I don’t have it in my library!”

“What the hell? I can’t search either!”

We checked Twitter, and everyone else was losing it too.

For a terrifying five minutes, Spotify was taking a dump. We reacted as if the world were crumbling.

When it started working again, we realized how much of our happiness this platform is responsible for. …

A Text Just Isn’t the Same

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My husband of 28 years was leaving the house this morning.

“Bye hon. Good luck with the love letter you’re going to write me.”

I laughed and rolled my eyes. How cheesy. Nobody writes love letters, especially to someone they've been married to for almost 30 years and quarantined with for the last 11 months.

Charlie, my husband, has a stressful job as a business owner, and usually calls me once a day, just to hear my voice. The conversation is pretty much the same each time.

“Hi hon. Just checking in. How’s your day going?”

These daily calls used…

They are especially active at night

Photo by Alexandra Gorn on Unsplash

One night when I was about seven years old my mom was walking by my bedroom and heard me moving around.

“Why aren’t you asleep?”

“I’m afraid there’s a spider in my bed.”

“If you don’t go to sleep right now, I’m gonna go outside and get a whole bucket full of spiders and dump them in your bed.”

Yeah, not her most impressive parenting moment.

All of my life I’ve been terrified of spiders. My sister is the same way. My fear of spiders has kept me from camping, traveling to South America, and joining the Peace Corps. …

Yoga is more than postures

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Every time I attend a weekend yoga training, I brace myself for the breakdown. When I arrived in Iowa last weekend, I wondered what it would be this time. I knew that at some point I would be in tears. I just didn’t know when.

I’m working on my 500 hour advanced yoga certificate. When I first began yoga teacher training, I was like most people, who conceive of yoga as difficult physical postures. My biggest worry was that I was not as flexible as my younger classmates, and would be viewed as someone who is too old to be…

Help Us Help You

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In the Netflix series Atypical, Season 3, Episode 3 (titled “Cocaine Pills and Pony Meat”), Sam, who has autism, attends his first day of college. What happens in the first five minutes of the episode made me furious.

Sam — brilliantly played by Keir Gilchrist — arrives late to his ethics class. Professor Judd (Sara Gilbert), in the middle of her introductory speech, looks directly at Sam and tells the class “some people are not gonna make it.”

Sam then over-explains his tardiness and takes out his laptop.

Professor Judd: “Of course by being late, someone missed my announcement that…

Put them on and Prance Around the House

Photo by bardia Hashemirad on Unsplash

I'm sitting here waiting for my husband to get home. I'm wearing ripped jeans, a ridiculous black leotard with a latticework neckline, and a cherry red cropped sweater.

I painted my nails to match the sweater.

The leotard shows lots of cleavage, and is something I bought and I have never worn outside the house. If I were under 30 and going to the club, or perhaps a dominatrix, this would be the perfect top. Why I bought it I don't know.

But I decided that now is the perfect time to wear it. I feel like a 1950’s housewife…

Lisa Alexander

English professor, yoga teacher, failed Greek Orthodox. Searching for wisdom, clarity, and a fresh bag of circus peanuts.

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