Living with Intention in 2021

Over the course of ten months, from March to December 2020, I walked almost 152 miles listening to podcasts, audio dramas, and 15 books about a female detective named Maisie Dobbs. This series, about a former nurse turned psychologist and investigator who solves crime, is set against the backdrop of post-War (and eventually the start of World War II) England. Through her cases, we learn about repercussions from World War I, the 1918 flu epidemic, social unrest, anti-refugee sentiment, and as Dobbs becomes more involved with British Secret Service, the growing threat of the Nazi regime.

View of woods in Virginia.
A view from a hidden wood near my home. For so many nature brought a level of peace in the madness.

As I walked at sunrise, sunset, lunchtime breaks, and post work wind-downs I couldn’t help feel, as time slowly slipped by, the looming disaster to come. I knew it wasn’t only of the fictional (yet historical) world created by Jacqueline Winspear, but also the constant hum of chaos that was 2020.

There are no real positive things to say about this past year. In a lot of ways our fault lines and the cracks in our civic society have been laid bare for all to see. There was so much death and pain, that I often struggled to find a silver lining.

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Art Meets Art: Marking the Infinite

Marking the Infinite
June 7, 2018
The Phillips Collection

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Zoomed in image of Regina Pilawuk Wilson’s Sun Mat (2015). Taken June 2018 by Priya Chhaya

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Art Meets Art: No Spectators

No Spectators
August 8, 2018
Renwick Gallery

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View of one of the installations at No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man at the Renwick Gallery.

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Art Meets Art: Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me

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At the entrance to Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts is a blackboard that allows visitors to write down their innermost thoughts about the upcoming performance. Here was mine.

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Creative Collaboration: We are all the same

This morning I introduced one of my nieces, a ten year old, to the horrors of the Holocaust for the first time.  During a planned trip to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum we walked through Daniel’s Story – the exhibit directed toward children – and the Hall of Remembrance. When she didn’t feel comfortable going through the permanent exhibition with her parents, the two of us wandered around the National Mall talking about what she learned.

It was an important conversation for me and for her, and while I tread carefully on what details to share much of our talk centered around how Hitler intentionally separated people based on religion and other characteristics he felt were deviant (making a side connection to Harry Potter and Voldemort’s obsession with purebloods). Our conclusion was how ridiculous that assumption is because we are all, in the end, human beings.

This month’s Creative Collaboration looks at an image from S.Fell. Taken at the Baltimore Light City exhibition the image reflects the conversation from this morning. We are in the end all the same.

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Three Days, Six Movies, and Stories to Come

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I can’t even.
Three days.
After a month of TV spots, interviews devoid of details but
full of excitement

It’s almost here.

I am self-aware that I am a willing consumer
For what is, on a very granular level,

Just a movie.

But we all know there is something more.
Something deeper.
Something beyond. Something Magic. Myth-Creation.

In a three day (over two months) spin
We’ve watched Four, Five, One, Two, Three, Six
And watched the narrative unfold.

A reminder:

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