Tag: Writing

A View from the Kids’ Table


kidsYou know the scene — it’s a holiday get together with tons of food and there are two tables. One table for the adults and off in another room is one for the kids (with one poor soul chosen to keep them in line). The reason was fairly simple: it’s hard to enjoy the company of other adults when there are kids talking nonsense, making noises, and just being “kids” at the table.

I consider myself to be a fairly smart guy. I’m no genius but I have a college education, read a great deal and in the last few years have tried to keep up with politics. I’ve always been a conservative I suppose. While working at a University (in IT) in the mid 2000s I started to read stuff at Townhall.com and the “Bigs” when they came online, because I was surrounded by a lot of lefties. Over time I learned a lot of the ins and outs of conservative ideas, read some Thomas Sowell and Mark Steyn, and found things like Uncommon Knowledge and PJTV.

Then just a few months ago someone over at PJMedia.com recommended a Ricochet podcast that had some familiar names and it turned out to be the live 200th podcast. It was fantastic! I’d never really heard of Ricochet (sorry, guys) but I learned it was a place where smart conservatives went to write posts and talk about the issues of the day. I surfed over and signed up just to see what was going on in the member feed and write my first post. I’ve been lurking ever since.

College Application Essays Are Bunk


With three kids in college and friends who’ve needed help with their paperwork, I’ve spent a lot of time navigating the waters of college applications, and nothing is more irritating to me than the essay. Some schools mercifully don’t require it, but many do—and it makes me cringe.

According to the College Board, essays are important because they give students a chance to “reveal their best qualities and to show an admission committee what makes them stand out.”

Does Scarcity Yield Better Results?


While at a weekend church retreat, we discussed those amazingly beautiful letters to home written by soldiers of even the lowest rank on either side of the American Civil War. The question arose, does scarcity yield better results?

Did having only a few pages of paper and one pencil (and maybe even a pen!) make the soldier writing a letter home want to write a letter with punch and vigor that said everything he wanted it to say? In contrast, look at the language and diction of tweeting and texting, of emails and even full-on essays in blogs.

Member Post


On Ricochetonedotoh Claire Berlinski had posted some thoughts about posting.  It was a wonderful little compendium of advice, and had a special link right on the Member Feed so that we would never forget.  Does anyone have a link to it?  Is that still around?  Will it be returning as a permanent link on the […]

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National Poetry Month – Ricochet Challenge


April is National Poetry Month here in the U.S. I haven’t seen any mention here yet of that subject, so I would like to issue a Ricochet poetry challenge. Write a poem on any subject you would like and in any form. That is all there is to the challenge. You can post it here or in a separate thread if you think it deserves one.

Now, some might argue that the world has too much bad poetry already. But in defense of bad poetry, it sometimes leads to better poetry from the writer in the future. I’ve been writing poetry for more than 40 years, and when I started, it was all bad. Now, just most of mine is bad. Or in the words of my old friend Dave Steinke: