Bear season, Colorado and royal castle-style


I’m not in Colorado, but my sources there are keeping me abreast of one of my favorite things about summer there: close encounters with bears and cougars in the WUI (the Wildlife Urban Interface).  Today’s news does not disappoint!  A 19-year old camper in Ward was attacked by a bear.  The Denver Post headline explains that the  “youth camp staffer says he woke up with his head in the bear’s jaws.”  Yikes!

The earlier print edition of the headline describes the experience even more dramatically, in my view: Continue reading

Life in these United States: shotgun wedding edition.

Seen in Slate‘s “Dear Prudence” column this week:

Q. Guns at a wedding: We hope my brother-in-law will attend our daughter’s wedding, but we fear that he will bring his handgun. He recently commented on social media that he will “never go anywhere without my gun on my person.” The invitations were sent before this comment was made. He has said that he plans to attend the wedding. (The wedding will be out of town, both for us and for my BIL, and is being held at a city park.) Should my husband speak to him? Should we write him a letter expressing our hope that he is present, but that his gun is not welcome? His sister has offered to talk with him as she, too, does not want him to bring a gun. She visited him recently and observed that even when attending his small, rural church he carries his gun at his waist in an unsecured holster. He’s just one of those people who doesn’t want anyone touching his guns. We really don’t want the presence of a gun to spoil our daughter’s wedding!

Who is this nutty uncle?  (Could he possibly be the infamous “Florida Man?”)  PRO TIP:  If you don’t want “anyone touching [your] guns,” keeping them unloaded and locked in a safe is the best way to keep them out of other people’s reach.  Walking around with a sidearm only puts your weapon within reach of other people.

What do you think Prudence will say to these haters of the Second Amendment?  Go back to Mexico Afghanistan Iraq Egypt Saudi Arabia Iran if you don’t like our freedoms!  How dare you try to impose your weak, liberal values on me?  I refuse to be a victim!  This wedding protected by Smith & Wesson! Continue reading

Payback time.

Esther Boardman by Ralph Earl, 1789, Metropolitan Museum of Art, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

My promotion to Professor isn’t official yet, but I’ve already received an invitation to review someone else’s materials for promotion to Professor.

Given all of the extremely nice things I’ve heard that my outside reviewers said about my latest book and career overall, I suppose it’s time to pay it forward.  I thought I’d get at least a year’s grace! I thought I’d have to have changed my faculty profile page, but maybe good news travels nearly as fast as bad news.

(I’m pretty sure that it was one of my referees who sent in my name as a potential reviewer.)

Continue reading

“Yes, morale has never been higher since we eliminated hope!” Hello, and keep away from President Lemongrab.

Who ever could have predicted that a President who campaigned against his own party’s leadership as well as the Democrats and with an approval rating circling the drain at 35-40% would have a hard time assembling a governing majority in congress? Who, indeed?  I just can’t figure out why Dear Leader’s catastrophic success of a presidency isn’t working out the way he promised his voters it would. Continue reading

I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again, but–

The most dangerous person in academia is the stalled associate professor.  I’ve heard far too many stories lately of people with Ph.Ds of 40+ years vintage who are still at the associate rank terrorizing the assistant proffies and even new associates.  And I write this as someone who’s been a little stalled out lately, but who expects the new book to give her a little traction to get out of the stall imminently.


Hugs & kisses–

#AHA17 update: too cold & snowy for cattle parade, but not for us

aha17_programFriends, I was sorry to read this morning that the National Western Stock Show has cancelled its longhorn parade in Denver tomorrow because of the cold and snow forecast for tomorrow:  a high of 12 degrees F., with up to 10 inches of snow set to fall in the next 27 hours or so.  Don’t worry about planes landing in Denver tomorrow–most of the snow will be overnight and done with by 11 a.m. Thursday, before most historians muster for the American Historical Association’s annual meeting. Continue reading