Stephen Brassawe's Blog (70)

Behavioral Sink

The mini-park outside the Chicken House in the off season.

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I view the species Homo sapiens with a gimlet eye, as I think I have…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on March 13, 2017 at 4:00pm — 39 Comments

Weekend Potpourri

A section of graffiti on a wall in Mazatlán that appealed to me.

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Tying up some loose ends and loosening up some tied ends . . .…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on March 10, 2017 at 2:00pm — 21 Comments

The Last of the Great Roadhouses

“Roadhouse” is defined as “an inn or tavern usually outside city limits providing liquor and usually meals, dancing, and often gambling.” F.B. & Co. qualifies on all counts. It sits about eight miles downriver in the unincorporated village of Waubeek, population somewhere between 75 and 85 depending on who’s home. It is to be found on some maps and…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on March 8, 2017 at 3:00pm — 17 Comments

The Power of Prayer

Events in January 2016 just before the caucuses had brought me around to considering the hypocrisy of my own people regarding the federal Renewable Fuel Standard as well as the venerable federal subsidy of the corn crop and all the other government assistance that farmers receive. They can deduct…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on March 6, 2017 at 11:30am — 14 Comments

Part I: The Telephone Call

Sufficient time has passed. Sufficient smoke has cleared. Sufficient dust has settled.

The story can be told.

As it happened I took that fateful telephone call from Susan on an early November…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on March 4, 2017 at 10:30am — 22 Comments

Whether It Is True or Not

Time Passes; Love Endures

I enjoy looking at the original art that some of present company put up for viewing here. I do not think that I have been oppressive in putting up samples of the Resident Artist, Susan Creamer Joy’s work. In fact,…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 27, 2017 at 3:30pm — 30 Comments

I Give Up

I truly did have my heart set on composing a little cameo of my dear friend Trapper Jack, something with some charm about it, something that his children could read over, nod at, and smile on . . . if he had any children. My last…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 24, 2017 at 1:00pm — 21 Comments

I Believe . . . but I Could Be Wrong

Headquarters, Regional Bureau

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Since erroneous beliefs are often held just as strongly as true beliefs,…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 17, 2017 at 1:30pm — 47 Comments

Luck in a Fly-Over State

1 August 2014

As I have informed some of you previously, this is one of the bonfires that I regularly set in aid of navigation for jet airliner pilots 35,000 feet above me flying between Denver International Airport and O'Hare. I provide this…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 16, 2017 at 2:00pm — 13 Comments

I Had Nothing to Do With It

I wish to state again, once and for all, that I had no personal involvement whatsoever in organizing that bus convoy that ferried thousands of citizens of Massachusetts to New Hampshire to vote there for Mrs. Clinton . . . after they had already voted in Massachusetts of course. I can only…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 14, 2017 at 1:30pm — 11 Comments

Perilous Stunt II

The barn quilt, titled after its creation by some locals as “Bull Semen.”

Before moving on to the subjects…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 9, 2017 at 2:40pm — 13 Comments

Dennis McMurrin

Please forgive this exercise in sentimentality that may be of limited interest, but I find myself--quite unexpectedly--at an age when many of us tend to begin trafficking in sentimentality.

I have pieced together how I first met Dennis McMurrin insofar as I can. That dates back to the era in my…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on February 4, 2017 at 2:42pm — 17 Comments

The Chrissie Hynde Affair

Yesterday, I was down here in the old chicken house at sunrise with the dogs waiting patiently for me to get a fire started in the wood-burner to take the chill off. Per routine, NPR's Morning Edition was on the radio, murmuring in the background, quietly piping the chaos of the outside world into my own redoubt.

A quick…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on October 7, 2015 at 10:30am — 8 Comments

GoPro Video: My Perilous Stunt

I know now that Keiko Alvarez likes GoPro® action videos. But hell, we all like GoPro® action videos, do we not?

I like them so much that I recently purchased an official GoPro® camera myself so that I could make my own videos. My first endeavor in that regard resulted in a video that is a little over five minutes long,…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on October 4, 2015 at 2:00pm — 9 Comments

The Political Compass

An Iowa Stump

Here is what happened. My friend Scott, an old newspaper man who ever has his nose open for a money-making scheme, came to me with this idea. He was licking his chops with the idea of all the political money flooding into Iowa right now. He wanted his own cut. Suffice it to say that Scott has in the…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on October 3, 2015 at 2:00pm — 15 Comments

The Scan Man

I know that so many here have already done their own tributes.

The Resident Artist and I are sitting in the old chicken house with rain pouring down outside talking about Scanner. We each have our special attachment to him, she with his kindness to her in her time of troubles and I with his ability to see through my cynicism and confront me with my love of individuals in the midst of my detestation of humanity in general.

A rare man. She weeps. I comfort myself with the thought…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on September 18, 2015 at 6:00pm — 7 Comments

The Pope Will Know What to Do


Wretched Excess in Iowa

After the gamut of non-invasive tests including a CT scan as well as one embarrassingly invasive test, the staff at the V.A. Hospital in Iowa City has utterly failed to locate even one religious bone in my body. It all started when I admitted during my intake interview…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on September 5, 2015 at 9:02am — 7 Comments

Fight Fire With Fire

Fight Fire With Fire

Fight Fire With Fire

The Resident Artist has been cranking out paintings in anticipation of a couple of shows in September. I take a look at each one as they are added to the inventory. (Photographing them is trickier than one might think.) I am particularly fond…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on August 15, 2015 at 1:18pm — 10 Comments

The Politics of Resentment and the Iowa Caucuses

On 6 December 2011 Professor Stephen Bloom’s essay, famous hereabouts, was published in The Atlantic magazine. That essay consists of his reflections on…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on July 19, 2015 at 4:00am — 21 Comments

Another Plan Aborted

The chicken house banquet facilities.

For some time now I have had a subscription to the New York Times via my nook®. I enjoyed reading an adult paper in that fashion. My one little connection to…


Added by Stephen Brassawe on July 13, 2015 at 12:00pm — 16 Comments


If there is any justice...

Posted by Dicky Neely on May 24, 2018 at 7:33am 3 Comments

Mis-marked Spot

Posted by TG DE VORE on May 23, 2018 at 10:14am 2 Comments

Happy Birthday, Harvey Milk!

Posted by Safe Bet's Amy on May 22, 2018 at 12:00pm 6 Comments

Res Ipsa Loquitur

Posted by Ron Powell on May 22, 2018 at 1:30am 3 Comments

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