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© 2019 by Mark Konold

Analysis, articles, and reflections spanning my interests, life, and work.

June 26, 2018

A great, if not slightly romanticized, account of the Battle of Gettysburg. It's a historical novel that takes liberties filling in the gaps between troop movement and battles with conversations between those present in July 1863. As I understand it, the book is required reading for those about to e...

March 30, 2018

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Since January 2017, I have remarked (more than once, I believe) that marching is the new brunch. This weekend was no exception. The March for Our Lives descended on Washington in full voice demanding sensible gun reform legislation....

March 16, 2018

In keeping with years past, the next four days will be devoted to college basketball. With the exception of my year studying in Italy, I have always been in Chicago for the opening of the annual tournament. With the exception of events related to my immediate family and my faith, I cannot think of a...

February 5, 2018

That went just about the way I thought it would. I know the Patriots were favored to win the game, but not by much. Ask anyone with whom I would have talked to about this: I didn’t have a good feeling going in to tonight. That photo above? That was the name of the Zipcar we used to shuttle to and fr...

January 30, 2018

Our president is not well liked.

Look at the actual results in this polling data.

Seriously, take your lunch break today and pore over this. I admit, it gets monotonous after a while, but it’s telling. Aside from niche groups, by and large Trump can’t even muster 50% support on anything.

Yes, there are...

June 21, 2017

I recently completed my civic duty and served on a jury. Whenever I hear the words "jury duty" I immediately think of the moment in the move The Grinch where the title character is stuffing the mailboxes at the Whoville Post Office. I was excited to do it. I've been summoned twice before: once just...

June 2, 2017

Before I launch into my missive, let me just point out Trump announced withdrawal from the Paris agreement on the official first day of hurricane season. Life is never short of irony.
 

Before all the focus turns back to the administration’s attempts to obfuscate the truth and obstruct justice, just...

March 16, 2017

Taking a small but needed break from the maddening erosion of Western democracy, I turn to  something that has become a staple of the transition from winter to spring: March Madness.

Once again I find myself on a plan to Chicago in the middle of March to join my compatriots for what has become somewh...

November 10, 2016

Back in 2006 I went through a pretty tumultuous time. I walked around in a haze for three months and spent nights plagued by anxiety. I could only describe the feeling in my chest as two sharp-edged pieces of metal being ground against each other. It was horrible. I was in a perpetual state of feeli...

November 3, 2016

There are people who spent their entire life never seeing what I just witnessed: A Cubs World Series victory. Some fans have waited their entire lives to see this. Some have admitted to fighting to stay alive just to see it. I have no doubt some will consider this a reason to finally take their dese...

August 15, 2016

Another National Park in the books: The Great Smoky Mountains!

Ray Ray and I just returned from a wedding road trip in North Carolina. The proximity to the national park straddling the North Carolina/Tennessee border was too great a temptation to pass up. Unlike visits to National Parks in the past w...

June 14, 2016

It’s clear I’m not getting to as many entries this year as I’d like. It has more to do with a lack of time than material. As ever, we live in increasingly complex and interesting times and with the current general election season, there is no shortage of things to be concerned about.

However, I am ma...

March 17, 2016

It occurs to me; here at 35,000 feet and on my way to Chicago, I have never shared my March Madness picks in this space. How could I let such an obvious staple of my life escape this corner of cyber space? A symptom of the madness I suppose. Too focused on the games to take a step back.

Plenty - if n...

July 2, 2015

The United States’ decision to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba is about as big a foreign policy shift as I think I’ve seen in my lifetime. It’s certainly the largest since I really started paying attention to these things at the turn of the century, it’s long overdue, and it’s the right move.

...