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I keep a travel journal on the trips that I expect will have good stories - Once, when a friend asked to hear about one of my trips I offered him one of these journals to read.  Without a pause he responded, "You're a storyteller, not a writer."   Judge for yourself.  Below are several categories full of my writings, arranged by genre & category.

Additional information on my writing and design experience can be found on the Language & Logistics page, elsewhere on this site.

An important note about this site and its contents:
A small amount of the writing, artwork, and photos on this site come from others, and I have credited them all,  All remaining work on this site is my own (all rights reserved).  If you wish to use any content or portion of this site then ask me for permission first, and credit me when you use it.  most likely I'll just say, "sure" and be flattered, but I want to know.  If you like it so much, then do me the courtesy of telling me.

The Index:

Travel Writing
A few years ago, some out of town friends asked to hear stories of my trips, so I sent around an index of story titles.  I explained that I would write up 2 or 3 on request.  I didn't count on enjoying the writing as much as I did, and the process soon took on a life all its own.  

Below are several of these "installments", along with other pieces - both published and unpublished - inspired by the thrill of being away.  Some come from adventures that took me thousands of miles away, some from adventures only 2 or 3 miles away that somehow inspired the same feeling.

If you like this sort of writing, check out the stories and discussion board at BootsnAll.com
Or check out my page at BootsnAll.com

Scotland, 2008 -- 3 weeks to walk a song in Sutherland.

The Summer Walkers - walking the Runrig song and the people along it's path.

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Scotland, 2003 -- I needed a break, but had only a short time to plan and research my trip.  I decided to bring a tent and stop wherever I liked so that a lack of planning wouldn't be a drawback.  I knew Scotland would take care of me.

From The Plane - My attempt to escape from a hectic schedule by going to Scotland succeeded before I had even landed!  Who knew a crowded 747 could be calming.

A New "Home" - The tent I left with is now somewhere in France, replaced by a far better one.
In this installment: A perfect plan for hiking.  Less than perfect equipment.  Tent stores don't usually offer free beer.  Bargaining with song.  Home.

Mainland, Orkney - 15 miles north of the "sceptered isle" is a part of Scotland that hasn't fully entered the United Kingdom, and gave me an interesting break from my Highland hiking.
In this installment: Island or Mainland?  Not entirely Scottish.  The trip north.  A quiet night out.  Keeping it quiet.

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Scotland, 2000 -- for some reason I had decided not to keep a journal on this trip.  Whimsical fate noted this decision and set odd people and occurrences in my path from the word go.  I ended up scribbling notes in my memo pad, and finally buying a small essay book in the Hebrides; I brought it up to the counter and explained that I wasn't going to steal it, but wanted to make certain it fit in my raincoat pocket before buying it.  The 6.25" x 7.75" book barely make it in, and I smiled and said, "I'll take it!"  The girl behind the counter was amused.

The Index - I wanted to catch up on current events from my friends and they turned the request for news back on me.  Here's how I summed up the trip.

The Irishman's Teeth - Sometimes the stories begin before you even arrive at your destination.

Tabloid Astronomy - News reports of midsummer at Stonehenge.

Up & Down Ben Nevis - Hiking Britain's tallest peak.
In this installment: Mounting the Ben.  Causing rain.  Watch out for that last step.  A wish for salve.  Magic Mixtures

Stories Surrounding A Popular Harpist - one title from the Scotland index seemed to make my friends more curious than any other.

Favorite Moments - Good soup and Scots Yiddish.
In this installment: Choosing a favorite moment from the trip.  Scotch broth and the search for delicious.  "Ganefs"?!!

Surfing Lewis - I had never even touched a surfboard before, and was soon completely out of my depth.
In this installment:Why the Hebrides.  An offer I couldn't refuse.  Pokémon & the road north.  "Next stop, Canada!" (or, D is for David who was swept out to sea).

A Castle in the Hebrides - Everything you wanted to know about breaking into the Stornoway castle.
In this installment: Shopkeepers of Ullapool.  Ferry to the Isles.  Some Castle history.  I'm in!  Souvenirs.  "You don't say"

Lewis Shuts Down - This island takes the sabbath seriously.
In this installment: National Stillness.  A Traditional Island.  Nec Tamen Consumabatur.  Eavesdropping at the Free Church.  Exit, Stage Right!  Jerusalem and Stornoway, Sister Cities.  Havdalah on the Ferry

An American Yankee in Prince Charlie's Court - spending July 4th in Scotland (Why do so many travel guides tell you not to discuss politics with the locals?).
In this installment: Being "Away" (or Innocence Abroad).  Plans for Inverness.  Finding my hostel.  The Home of Highland Music  expatriots in training.  Blue Moon at the Bardic Circle.  More musical bars.  A nationalist serenade.  A Jacobite debate.  Independence Day Travel. An American Yankee in Prince Charlie's Court.  Ambassador Kessler debates policy.  Calling it a night.  Leaving

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Aboard the tall ship "H.M.S." Rose -- When Boston University offered a class in Maritime history that would be taught on board a tall ship, I knew I had to go.

The index - trying to separate one big, tarry, sleep-deprved mess into distinct stories.

Land Shanties - Music, bars, and fishermen.
In this installment: Land Shanties (or "A Sailor Ain't a Sailor").  Tuning Clayton's Guitar

Lobster Porn - At least I was able to prepare for some parts of the trip (if only I had stuck with whisky).
In this installment: Before Sailing.  The Dangers of Water.  Lobster Porn

Thoughts on Swagger - Reflecting on the trip, while 3 stories up on a yard arm.
In this installment: While Out on a Limb.  Thoughts on Swagger.  A reverie for the Life

The Romance of the Sea - Life, when your inhabitable world is 178' long and leaks.
In this installment: A Different Kind of Romance.  On and Off the Clock (or, Always Something Doin').  Land versus Sea.  Midnight on the Water

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Other trips -- A good way to wrap up the travel writing section.

"Hail, Hail, Fredonia!" - En route from Boston to Chicago, Dean & I discover that vaudeville really is dead.

The City of Petra - A travel article I wrote for MaRKETS magazine about the capital of the once great Nabatean empire, in modern Jordan.

July 4th at the Farm - commemorating Independence Day at the Elysian Fields of my youth.

Ode to My Backpack - A tired old piece of gear that I love dearly.

What's French for "Crazy Brits"? - What do you say in a foreign country when a drunken rugby fan mistakes you for an Australian and tries to get away with your hat?.
In this installment: Rugby fans in Paris.  Mistaken for an Aussie.  The chase.  "No Troubles, Mate".  What's French for, "Crazy Brits"?

Bates House - Stumbling on a war of 1812 landmark while looking for coffee

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Odd Thoughts and Musings -- A good catch-all category.

An Annual Declaration - Reading the Declaration of Independence aloud each year and some of the thoughts this brings, especially this year (2009).

"Security Questions" - Corporate security gives me a glimpse into a strange world, possibly populated by a majority of Americans.  (Yes, writing can come from even the smallest of absurdities.)

"Elephants At Dinner" - Learning about individual elephants from their eating habits.

"But is it Art?" - So you bred a glowing bunny, now what?

The Child Book of Etiquette - The ballad collection of F.J. Child is an extremely important collection for singers and historians alike, but to listen to its lyrics, you'd think that all people ever did was have sex and murder family members.  What lessons can we learn from this collection? (I mean besides the fact that it's possible for a song to have 465 verses).

Paddy East Associates can make you into a shellbacked salty dog, literally overnight!  You can work hard for years, or you can get your "sea-cred" NOW! Why wait, when we can have you ripping yarns by tomorrow!!

Anarchistic Patriotism - A brief thought on Anarchy, voting, and logistics.

A Mideast Comment - Thinking about Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

A Kind of Barometer - The flowers were nice, but I got more mileage out of the vase.

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Not so far from my front door -- on some adventures it seems like you've entered a different world, but really, you're still in your own neighborhood.

Fearful Symmetry - Stage managing a Beijing Opera performance on the eve of the millennium.
In this installment: It's a long story.  Meeting the Monkey King.  The 6-day edit.  "It's my own invention" (or, Updating the opera).  Scones for the rigger.  Big Dig interlude.  Tech booth or isolation chamber?  A "perfect" dress rehearsal.  The first show.  (Most of) The second show.  Maybe we could see that video NOW!?  The night is young.  Parking-in the millennium.  How many performance artists does it take to screw in a doorway?  Because Michael loves Beijing Opera.  An ad campaign for Ford.  Fearful symmetry!

Mythical MITERS - Looking for a bar that doesn't exist, with a vcr remote in my pocket.
In this installment: How to Search.  A Title for My Fairy Tale.  The Set Up.  A Rumored Place.  Once, Twice, Thrice.  Success!  Exploring the magical land.  Back in the Sunlit World.

Glitch Boy Rides Again - I'm not trying to find flaws in the system.

DK in Corporateland; Doubletake 1 - My first corporate orientation.
In this installment: Preamble to "DK in Corporateland".  "I Got My Head Right, Boss"  The Power of Repetition.  Don't Try This at Home.  A Judgement Call.  A Formulaic Train Wreck.  I'll Plead Entrapment!

Santa and a "Noachite" Standard - Some friends gave me a Christmas present.

Field Research - Looking for a good pint and conversation on St. Patrick's Day.
In this installment: No Green Discos, Please.  A saner situation.  Thanks, dad.  "I see by your outfit that you are a sailor".  Field research

A Slow News Day in Arlington - When grocery shopping becomes a spectator sport.

Grownups These Days - Mad dogs and bicycle gangs?  No problem.  But watch out for that guy who's minding his own business.

Souvenirs - Memories and odd thoughts on finding an unlocked door.

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Millennialism and Apocalypticism -- From 1998 to 2001 I helped run the Center for Millennial Studies at Boston University (CMS), which studies the effects that millennialism and apocalypticism have on their surrounding societies.  Most of the pieces below come from my time there - intentional and unintentional research.

Millennial Expectation and the Jews from Today's Ministry magazine (Summer 1999)

Y2K as CSAT: A Civil Society Aptitude Test A Boston Globe Editorial co-authored by Richard Landes (September 1999)

On the strengths and weaknesses of "Roosters" & "Owls" (December 1998)

What We Can Do In 500 Days co-authored by Richard Landes (1998)

Should we celebrate the year 2000? from The Congressional Quarterly Researcher (October 1999)

With a view from the 21st Century - When reporters just can't let go of a question. (2001)
In this installment: Sign her up for "Harbingers Anonymous".  With a view from the 21st Century

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