Elmore Leonard and Sam Sifton

April 28, 2020

Elmore Leonard and Sam Sifton

elmore leonard

Mark Rubin

Elmore Leonard was a great writer, with an extraordinary way with dialogue. Sam Sifton writes pretty well, too. Presently, he’s the Food Editor for the New York Times, where he has worked for almost 20 years. (Mr. Sifton’s grandfather was Reinhold Neibuhr, who wrote the Serenity Prayer. It comes to mind often, but only after I have failed to appreciate the difference between what I can and cannot change.)

Every week Mr. Sifton sends What to Cook … emails. They bring me great pleasure, always, but I really enjoyed Cook Anyway, which I received on April 27. Mr. Sifton starts out thusly:

Good morning. One of the greatest first lines of a novel,

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More Thoughts from the Self-Isolation Front

April 21, 2020

More Thoughts from the Self-Isolation Front

self-isolation

Mark Rubin

I’m here! Apologies – as always – for not blogging often enough.

Candidly, spare time involves more activities than “stuck” might suggest, and I’m spending writing time working on my personal memoir. I expect to be around for a long time, but I’d be a G.D. Fool if I didn’t note my age (62), my four pneumonias, and the absence of a solid, functioning health care system. Those who deliver health services deserve every bit of love we can offer them, but if we don’t take away from this crisis a recognition that we don’t have a functioning public health system, We. Are. Blind.

The memoir enlivens my time. I’m blessed, and

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Numbers Illiteracy

April 6, 2020

Numbers Illiteracy

numbers illiteracy

Mark Rubin

John Allen Paulos teaches math at Temple University. He writes books, too. Good books. Books for lay people about math. One of which he titled Innumeracy … which is why this post got titled Numbers Illiteracy, as opposed to … Innumeracy.

Stupid numbers drive me nutso. They abound now, in an era when stupid, vapid creatures rule.

I hear lots of people talking about how the United States has the largest number of COVID-19 cases in the world. These comments come, mostly, from those whose fury focuses first on our Fearless Leader.

Well, duh! More people live in the United States than in any other country, save China and India. Among large nations we have, by

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Notes From the Isolation Ward aka Home

April 4, 2020

Notes From the Isolation Ward aka Home

isolation ward

Me, before COVID-19

Hey there! I hope you all are well and safe. Apologies for not posting for 2+ weeks.

Sheltering in Place

I am sheltering in place. Our terrific crew at the office got me set up completely at home. Everything works, and I want for nothing (on the work side of life.) Well, not exactly! My office phone sits on my desk at home courtesy of something called … VOIP! And it rings. Often! Even when I call the office from it. Such troubles!!!

Personally, sheltering in place works. I’m writing on Saturday. I bought produce at 7:15 a.m. at Cardenas, where they reserve the 7 a.m. hour for old people

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Rubin & Bernstein PLLC – An Update

March 18, 2020

Rubin & Bernstein PLLC – An Update

R&B update

Mark Rubin

I’m embarrassed! Rubin & Bernstein PLLC celebrates – can we celebrate anything, other than a youngster’s birthday, in these times? – our second anniversary on May 1, six weeks from now. Still, we don’t have a working website for the firm we treasure. So, here at my Leftie site aka the place where I provide The Word, I’m providing an update.

In theory, I sent myself home more than a week ago. I heard what seemed like a directive to be home if you’re 60+. I was an early adapter, but Life Happens and today, Wednesday, March 18, was really my first day away from the office. (A foolish grocery store

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Random Thoughts About the Corona Virus Crisis

March 16, 2020

Random Thoughts About the Corona Virus Crisis

corona virus crisis

Mark Rubin

It’s week — (who knows) in the annals of the Corona Virus Crisis. Some random thoughts are on offer here.

Bad Math

I love my Wingnut friends. They’re mostly in their 60s, 70s and 80s, but they still drink Kool-Aid every day. Flavor? Trump-Aid. Have you read or heard from one of them, comparing the 20K deaths per year from influenza with the double-digit deaths in the United States of America in the first few weeks of the pandemic? (Think: Week 5 v. Week 50. One might be bigger than the other, and it’s an irrefutable fact that death after Week 5 will be no less than death after Week

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COVID-19 and Me (Not Sick)

March 12, 2020

COVID-19 and Me (Not Sick)

covid-19

Mark Rubin

I’m not sick, as far as I know. But it’s not like I can go somewhere and get tested easily!

I can rant and rant and do it more and more about how our government disses public health, and about the schtunk with the title in the Big White House, but it gets me nowhere. I can, however, act, and I have.

On Monday I saw an article on the Internet – it’s gone missing – which quoted Nancy Messonnier, M.D., telling older people and people with serious health conditions they should stay home. Dr. Messonnier? She’s the Director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. Someone I think I

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Stupid R Us: COVID-19 Version

March 7, 2020

Stupid R Us: COVID-19 Version

coronavirus

Mark Rubin

Respectfully, we’re one stupid 320M people. Not all of us, for sure, but collectively? Duh.

Listen, the people who liked Trump liked his “tells it like it is” persona. But, when he said something offensive, his enablers told us “he doesn’t really mean it!” Huh?

We elected a no-nothing, self-absorbed idiot. Now, we get to watch him and his “only the best people” Administration bumble along as a real crisis faces us and the rest of the planet.

A real crisis? Uh, yes. OK, on one side we have people who bring up influenza deaths, auto accidents, guns deaths etc., reminding us that not so very many people have / will die from

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Super Tuesday

March 4, 2020

Super Tuesday

super tuesday

Joseph R. Biden Jr.

Super Tuesday! The day when Ds, in 2020, vote in lots of places, all at once.

I’m writing in real time, and it’s Biden Time. Remember, last Saturday (February 29) Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. won the South Carolina primary. The victory … in his third presidential run – he ran in 1988 and 2008 – was his first primary win, ever.

Will Rogers said, decades ago: I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat. I love Mr. Rogers’ willingness to acknowledge his party affiliation, even if he used his affiliation to poke at what has always been the group of people who won’t be told they

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San Francisco

February 23, 2020

San Francisco

SF Crosstown Trail Map

My San Francisco adventure was is marvelous! Before I share details, though, indulge me as I give thanks.

First, off to play for four days, what with a needy four-legger and a crazy busy law / fiduciary practice, happens only because LB minds the store, and Max. As I age, I recognize the need for breaks and nary a one gets a challenge from my best friend, girlfriend, and law and business partner. Thank you, sweetie pie.

Second, Leigh and I go nowhere if we didn’t have a great young attorney, Matthew Scarber, to step up. Thank you Matt and, too, the staff we love – Kathleen Dugan, Carla Flores, Katie Petrick, and Connor

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