Showing posts from January, 2023

Three Magic Powers of Readers

I can talk to ghosts. I also have a time machine which enables me to travel into the distant future. How far it goes, even I don’t know. I’m also telepathic. I can project carefully shaped thoughts from my own mind into yours.   Am I the chosen one in an epic young adult fantasy novel?   As much as I enjoy reading, and writing such fantasies, the answer is no. The truth is that you have these magical powers as well. Any literate person does. Reading enables us to converse with the ghosts of men and women who died centuries, even millennia, ago. Rating enables us to share our thoughts by bouncing them off a paper or screen, sending them mind to mind. We can even send out thoughts across spacetime, to share with people on the other side of the world or even with generations who will not be born for many centuries, or millennia to come.   Writing is, of course, just one form of media, and new forms of media are being invented all the time. In the future, realistic holograms, looking very

Oma Child - Thoughts on Toothism and Racism

Are some children born cursed? A scene from Oma Child . Here in the United States, it’s Martin Luther King’s birthday, so I thought I’d ruminate on racism and other forms of collective insanity.   I recently watched an excellent documentary called Oma Child: The River and the Bush . You can find it here:      In a certain society in Ethiopia, the belief existed (and for some people still exists) that certain human beings are “Mingi.”    Cursed.   Their mere existence threatens to bring drought and destruction upon their entire family and tribe.   One of the ways that you can tell if a child is Mingi is whether their first tooth starts on One side of the mouth or the Other. (I can’t remember and don’t care which side was which).   Because no family wants to be cursed, parents or grandparents kill Mingi children as soon as their “evil” manifests. Because no village wants to be cursed, if the parents themselves refuse to murder the toddler, other villagers will