All posts by Sean Shannon

Boxed In

The difficulties of eating well  on a budget in America are legion. I remember going to a grocery store a few years ago to buy a couple of good-sized red delicious apples, only to find that each of them cost over a dollar apiece. Working with college students like I do, I’m always mindful of the “ramen lifestyle” many of them fall into, and ever since theafternoon I bought those apples, I’ve always found myself making ramen-based calculations whenever I shop for produce, trying to…

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Glass City-Eyed

Eight days from today will mark the first anniversary of my departure from Toledo. Very early that morning, before the sun was even close to rising, a friend  drove me from her house, where I’d been staying for a few months, to Detroit Metropolitan Airport. It wasn’t the first time I’d been to that airport — I’d gone there before with family members who were flying, and even to help pick up a traditional Japanese music ensemble that was hired to perform in the greater…

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Blah to the Future

I made sure that Mom was one of the first people to own an Amazon Echo when they first came out a few years ago. Her vision had been steadily deteriorating for a long time, and I knew that the convenience of her being able to play music by simple voice commands would be more than worth the purchase price by itself.  Being able to ask for things like weather forecasts and other basic information was a bonus, and the bits of personality that Amazon…

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A Province to Call Home?

First past the post vs. proportional representation: B.C.’s referendum explained (CBC) Jared Golden declared winner of first ranked-choice congressional election, but challenge looms (Portland Press Herald) Brian Kemp’s Win In Georgia Is Tainted by Voter Suppression (Mother Jones) The combination of my growing interest in politics of all stripes in the early 1990’s, and me living close enough to the Canadian border that I was regularly watching CBC to satiate my hockey fix, meant that I quickly got hooked on CBC’s Friday night political comedy…

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Know Your Enemy

Don’t Look Now, but the 2020 Senate Map Is Brutal for Democrats (vice.com) Attempting to define the word “democracy” beyond its most abstract sense often proves incredibly difficult. The mechanisms we humans have devised to try to enact democracy, like all our other creations, are subject to imperfections and errors, some more glaring than others. When this country realized that its initial governing document, the Articles of Confederation, were working so poorly that civil war seemed imminent, our founders reunited to write the Constitution in…

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