Time to stretch the parts of you that other days don’t.

Scientific research has two roads: curiosity-driven and problem-solving. In the first, you get to ask: “Gee, what would happen if?” In the second, you’re asking: “How can we invent a COVID vaccine?” What’s amazing is how…

Love letters

“Whatever field you are in, if it uses language, it is about to be transformed.” That’s the subhead of last week’s New Yorker article by Torontonian Stephen Marche. This is not just a big claim; it’s a stupendous and even preposterous…

Hemingway would weep

Wayne LaPierre is under fire. The head of the National Rifle Association used to lead America’s most powerful and well-funded lobby group. He  still does, despite using the NRA as his ‘personal piggy bank’, which forced New York’s…

Big ideas in small packages

Welcome to this weekend’s edition of Ramsay Writes, designed to divert our gaze from the dull and the usual, and remind us how odd and lovely life can be. 1. Tax the rich! Where you don’t expect to hear that from is the rich. But…

Feed the Arts. Grow the Nation.

Why do arts groups argue for more funds from governments and corporate sponsors by using their second-best argument for that money? It goes like this:  “The arts produce huge economic benefits: restaurants, hotels, neighbourhoods, even…

The No Diva Rule

My friend in the music business told me their staff were sent an artist profile whenever the company signed a new rising star. In the bottom right-hand corner was a little box with the letters “DQ.” This stood for “Diva Quotient”, with…

Playtime for Grownups

My enormous inner child needs constant feeding and watering. Yours should too. Not with other kids. Just the two of you because only you know what nourishes the kid in you because...well, you were that kid a very long time ago. You may…

Can a ward heeler be a real healer?

The Washington Post ran a contest long ago for the most boring headline of the year. The winner was “Canadian initiative launched.” The word that won it for us was “Canadian” because what could be duller or less newsworthy in Washington than…

Where are the clients’ yachts?

The world’s best con man, Bernie Madoff, died last week in a North Carolina prison, where he was 11 years into his 150-year sentence for bilking thousands of investors out of $65 billion in the most devastating Ponzi scheme in history. In…

This blog post is for your fox, not your hedgehog.

People are either foxes, who know many things, or hedgehogs, who know one big thing. That 2,700 year-old idea comes from the Greek poet Archilochus. He’s wrong. People are foxes and hedgehogs, especially on the weekend when our foxes emerge…

Department of Corections

My favourite cartoon shows two European intellectuals (berets, cigarettes) at a sidewalk café. One says to the other: “Do you not be happy with me as the translator of the books of you?” The joke, of course, is that no one would ever…

Gifting water and grifting politicians

What’s the one thing we all remember about the 94-page bill passed by the State of Georgia last week to “comprehensively revise elections and voting?” Exactly: It’s now illegal to give someone food and water when they’re standing…

“EXPERIENCE IS A GOOD SCHOOL. BUT THE FEES ARE HIGH”

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. Heinrich Heine said that when fees to attend Harvard in the mid-1800s were $250 and not the $48,000 they are today. He didn’t mean that kind of school, of course, though in America…

RamsayWrites – A Justice for a Justice

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. The Globe and Mail is not where I’m used to seeing “snakes in your bed” headlines. But this one came close last month: “Catalyst offered up to $11-million to Israeli…

RamsayWrites – The Strong, Silent, Psycho Type

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. In 1966, Harvard researcher Timothy Leary would spend weekends with his students at a mansion in Dutchess County, New York where they’d smoke dope and drop acid. Now Dutchess county…

Weekend Reading Doesn’t Mean Weakened Reading

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. Today’s blog is to brain food what eggs benedict is to weekends: great-tasting, highly socializing and not great for your arteries. But hey, try these tidbits and see how they fill…

RamsayWrites – Addictive overwork.

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. What are high-performers going to do now that addictive overwork is losing its allure? Not overwork as in 10 hours a day and the odd Sunday at the office. Or consecutive Zoom meetings,…

RamsayWrites – Jim Crow 2.0

Want to listen to today's blog post? Hear it here. None of us was alive for the original Jim Crow laws back in the 1920s which made racial segregation legal in the southern United States.  “Colored only” washrooms, poll taxes,…