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Caught in a Web

A World Where Life is Always Elsewhere

Fred Wistow

By Fred Wistow - Every day, every moment, we must wade through the flood of incoming alerts and emails urgently demanding our time and attention, all the while knowing that there’s an infinite ocean of stuff online that waits for us at all hours to stick our toe in so that it may then slowly begin to swallow us up . . . until we drown.

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Confronting Our Reluctance to Have an Honest Conversation About Race

A White New Yorker Shares Some Personal Reflections on American Race Relations

Fred Wistow

Whenever a public outcry or riot’s been triggered by yet another racially motivated assault on a black man or woman, politicians inevitably utter (and commentators then endlessly and faux-earnestly repeat), “We need to have a national conversation about race.” Even if I had the chance, I doubt I’d even try to engage in a cross-racial conversation about race. I’d be too afraid that I’d trip over my own words and say something provocative, offensive, stupid. And as far as I know, the people I know---white people---are in the same strange and astonishing boat.

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Black Unlike Me

Some Uncomfortable Reflections on Growing Up White

Fred Wistow

rtwrtwertAt a time when many are calling for a renewed national conversation about race, an aging, liberal, white New Yorker---who admits he’s never been a party to any such conversation, not with a black person anyway---shares some highly uncomfortable, extremely personal reflections.

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Finding Comfort in the Financial Crisis

Coping with the Switch from Poverty to Wealth and Back

Fred Wistow

In late 2008, a breathtaking realignment of our wealth occurred, and with it, our consciousness. This magical fairy tale that had somehow become reality started fading back into make believe. Just when we thought we were going to live happily ever after with no twists or turns in the golden road that lay before us, the carriage turned into a pumpkin. Yet, even as we fear the future and regret our stupidity and pine for our losses, can't we also simultaneously detect a strange and perverse comfort in the notion that maybe this wrenching course correction we're experiencing is sending us back to a place we're more at ease in?

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Exploring the Consciousness of Our Daily Habits

Falling Under the Trance of Routine

Fred Wistow

If a habit is a way of acting that, unconsciously and often compulsively, becomes fixed through repetition, then a mode of behavior that’s followed regularly and usually through choice might be termed a "practice."

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