Village Voices

The spiritualism path

The spiritualism path

Alternative spirituality still seems to be a way for the upper classes to feel purified, cleansed of complicity in the disgrace of runaway capitalism and wealth. Throw in a dash of specious we-all-make-our-own-realities self-deterministic philosophy and you see how it is possible to feel very good, very healthy, about one’s bank account.

Fathers and sons

Fathers and sons

We picked the free school our son attends for its ability to assuage his tics, build his socializing skills, get him street-savvy in an urban environment, and yet offer a wilderness element and farming acumen. He’s made friends for lifetime, wows older people with his conversational skills and ability to confidently look a grown-up in the eye while talking on most subjects, even when he admits knowing nothing.

Born for quarantine

Born for quarantine

On the occasions he could be convinced or coerced to drive to New York City at all, my father hugged a one-road route that I now recognize as fabulously misguided and fear-based. As a result, I grew up believing that it took two to two-and-a-half stress-saturated hours to get from New Paltz to Manhattan neighborhoods that I can now make in a buck 20 in light traffic.

Listen for Mr. Ding-a-Ling

Listen for Mr. Ding-a-Ling

One time we unspooled a thousand feet of extension cord and dragged a piano up onto a small mountain in the Catskills, where The Wind was shown among aeolian harps; star Lillian Gish sent a message to be read to those who assembled. When we showed Huckleberry Finn, half the kids, all boys, knew Mickey Rooney’s lines by heart.

Time for a scrubdown

Time for a scrubdown

When I was young, I spent three years dating a guy who wasn’t very nice. But his father was a lovely, kind man. Each week, his dad scrubbed the kitchen floor of their home with Murphy’s Oil Soap. He did it because he liked to do it. Every Sunday, we’d go there for dinner and underneath the cooking smells was the lingering smell of that floor soap.

A chat with John Lefsky

A chat with John Lefsky

About month ago, long-time New Paltz resident and Hudson Valley music scenester John Lefsky announced online that he would be closing Jack’s Rhythms, the cool, small record on Main Street that had been in continuous operation since 1990. For a bit, John could not be reached for comment. Then, John could be reached for comment. He has done a lot for local music, even more for local taste, where in his non-contentious way he has expanded the comfort zones of his customers, including me.

Edward

Edward

Edward towers just behind the house, far too close for practicality. His size, and his proximity, seemed like a dangerous combination, but we hoped he’d be there for a long time to come. We couldn’t imagine taking him down.