The Middle Distance 12.21.12: Reweaving the Social Fabric

This week’s mini-blizzard provided respite I’d been hoping for — no appointments, too cold to even think of going outside voluntarily, and streets packed with snow. I stayed in with the dogs, reading and cleaning and baking a dense chocolate cake scented with cloves [...]

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The Middle Distance 12/14/12

Last night on a downtown street, someone busted out the front passenger window of my car to dig around inside it. Whoever it was — a passerby who, conveniently, had a brick or a big rock in his hand — found a wallet stuffed with essential identification, [...]

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The Middle Distance 12.7.12: The Image Becomes a Phantom

In her treatise on photography, Susan Sontag said, “Today everything exists to end in a photograph.” Witness any public event in the 21st century, crowd members’ arms extended outward with smartphones pointed in every direction and understand how prophetic that statement was way back in [...]

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The Middle Distance 11.30.12: Unknown Woman

She resides in a painting — a simple stretched canvas, unframed — emerging from a slate blue background, her hair and dress the same silver-gray. Her breasts sag low, as if from the natural weight of years.

She hung in a corner of the bedroom wherever I lived [...]

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The Middle Distance 11.16.12: The Scent of Smoke

It is nearly Thanksgiving and in the early mornings my turn-of-the-20th century neighborhood smells like wood smoke. Nights are cold, the neighbors cranking up their fireplaces and wood stoves. A deadly summer wildfire season has put the fear of God and flame in most [...]

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The Middle Distance 11.9.12: “Honey, It’s Jest Foo-ood”

In a parallel life, I think I might have been a cafeteria lady, baking industrial sized trays of yeast rolls every morning in a stainless steel kitchen, ladeling out clouds of mashed potatoes and smothering them with milk gravy.
Last Sunday I spent [...]

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn wonders where to best place her worry during the Frankenstorm.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn embraces the obsessive mathematics of aging.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn tugs at the long tail of gun violence and its current literature.

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In this week’s Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn ruminates on the struggle for faith.

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We recently uncovered some shocking information regarding Big Something intern and recent Colorado College graduate, Jake Brownell. It turns out that the young man we know as an earnest, polite and responsible member of the community spent his youth as a gangster rapper. Well, perhaps gangster is a little hyperbolic, but he did cut a [...]

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn gathers seeds from her garden and remembers the autumn of her twins’ birth.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn celebrates locavore and farmer Dan Hobbs on the occasion of his Palmer Land Trust Conservation Award.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn sees her late sister through the eyes of a ghost costume.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn walks back into her second grade classroom.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn unearths a moment in civil rights history that happened right under her nose.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn looks through the blurry lens of a toy camera into the past.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn stares into the eyes of a toothless flasher in a dirty raincoat.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn spreads her toes across years of shoeless memories.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn ties two summer films together with the unlikely string of far-fetched fantasy.

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(Cybil Shepherd, center, after winning the Miss Teenage Mephmis Pageant in 1966)

The Middle Distance 8.5.11: What Was I Thinking?

What was I thinking? I was 15 years old and had moved with my family from the small town of Jackson to the big city of Memphis. I didn’t know anyone, [...]

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn commemorates the 5th anniversary of her son’s death in the wake a summer of difficult news.

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In this week’s episode of The Middle Distance, Kathryn Eastburn’s 100th column for KRCC’s The Big Something, she looks at a new book that examines the long term physical and psychic costs of Rocky Flats.

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News

AP
September 1, 2014 | KUOW · Amazon has thousands of workers in Germany and many are unhappy that they’re classified as lower-paid logistics workers. The company says they’re well compensated for unskilled labor.
 

 Katherine Streeter for NPR
September 1, 2014 | NPR · When we talk, we focus on the “content” words — the ones that convey information. But the tiny words that tie our sentences together have a lot to say about power and relationships.
 

NPR
September 1, 2014 | NPR · And, author Kwei Quartey adds, “The police may not find you for a little while.” That’s why he chose to set his second Detective Inspector Dawson book in Ghana’s capital.
 

Arts & Life

NPR
September 1, 2014 | NPR · And, author Kwei Quartey adds, “The police may not find you for a little while.” That’s why he chose to set his second Detective Inspector Dawson book in Ghana’s capital.
 

AFP/Getty Images
August 31, 2014 | NPR · In her new novel, Island of a Thousand Mirrors, Sri Lankan-American author Nayomi Munaweera shows the decades-long Sri Lankan civil war from the perspective of two girls who witness the horror.
 

Livestock Marketing Association
August 31, 2014 | NPR · Auctioneering runs in Blaine Lotz’s blood; he says he was “pretty near born in a livestock market.” Now, he’s won the World Livestock Auctioneer Championship — the Super Bowl of auctioneering.
 

Music

Courtesy of the artist
August 31, 2014 | NPR · After a three-year hiatus, the singer’s 14th album is the sound of a once-prolific genius who’s only recently relearned what it’s like to walk on steady footing.
 

Courtesy of the artist
August 31, 2014 | NPR · On his 11th album, the Massive Attack star still showcases a brooding, searching spirit and a cinematic sense of atmosphere. But he also plays around with new facets of his persona.
 

Courtesy of the artist
August 31, 2014 | NPR · Madman shows Rowe mixing his folk and junk-shop rock styles together with new elements: soul, blues, gospel, R&B. The upshot, surprisingly, is his most coherent record yet.
 

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