"I went for a walk in the woods..."

Many of us sometimes find time to escape the city and go to where the air is a little fresher, the birds are a lot more numerous, and we are surrounded by the swish of the wind in the treetops as we walk for miles through terrain that might have looked the same, hundreds or even thousands of years ago. We reconnect. We remember who we are, at heart, as human beings. As Thoreau put…

Three Ways To Beat a Snow Day

All parents know that trying to get a stroller past a nasty pile of icy untended sidewalk, with precious cargo on board, can be a major hassle. And we all have cabin fever, young and old alike. So how do you get through the times when the snow is falling and there’s no hope at all for getting out this morning, or even this afternoon? Well, here are a few ideas that we have to…

A Grab-Bag of Pet Activities

Can you name the breeds of the dogs in the ring at Westminster before the announcers say them? Do you know where to get cat toys that will actually be played with, without desperate urging on the owner’s part? Do your friends and family come to you for advice about their pets? Maybe it’s time you leave the amateur-pet-expert arena and start to go pro. Head out to the Volunteer Orientation at Coastal Humane Society…

Do nothing ‘till you hear from me

The Maine Legislature doesn’t like to be told what to do. That’s because the Legislature would prefer not doing anything. For a politician, doing stuff is risky. No matter how innocuous the action (a proclamation declaring National Don’t Do A Damn Thing Day), there are going to be people who won’t like it (probably the Alliance of Highly Motivated Doers). Once legislators are on record for or against, the folks annoyed with whatever they did…

More Votes Than Protests

“I was Donald Trump before Donald Trump became popular.” Progressives hate to admit it, but sometimes Gov. Paul LePage is right. He was spot-on: Maine offered a glimpse of what it’s like to elevate a blustery, aggressive, quick-mouthed bully to the most prominent position in government well before such elections went national. Not just for one term, but two. Eight years. Think about that. Gov. LePage was authentically himself not once but twice, and he…

Dispelling common myths about marijuana

While cannabis continues to make strides towards mainstream acceptance, it has long been the most misunderstood drug – pharmaceutical or illegal, and many cannabis myths still ring loud.  The amount of rumors and hearsay surrounding this controversial herb have been prevalent for decades, from as far back as reefer madness in the 30’s, up through to current D.A.R.E. programs (Not to say D.A.R.E. doesn’t do it’s good, but cannabis should be left out of that…

How Do You Treat Animals?

We have always been pro-animal at The Portland Phoenix, and that isn’t likely to change. The enjoyment of our city’s arts and entertainment scene, all the fun things we and our readers do on a daily and weekly basis, comes with a responsibility. As adults, we must face the debt we owe to ourselves and each other, to be decent, hardworking people who love not only on the inside, but also externally, demonstrably. Whatever you…

Our Foundation is Crumbling Because It Was Built on Supremacy

Remember that bit of wisdom that those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it? Well, start digesting this as well: America was built on the foundation of white supremacy. That’s not a guilt-trip or an accusatory slap to white people today. It’s simply a fact. We are a nation that was built on land stolen from nonwhite natives largely by the labor of people stolen from another continent and enslaved. That is…

That Time of Year Again...

It’s February vacation. The kids aren’t old enough to leave them at home alone. Their aunts and uncles work nine to five, like you, and they already have your nieces and nephews to worry about. Could we put them all in a room with a TV and a fridge and tell them to stay there while we’re at work? Why don’t they just have school year-round, maybe forty hours a week, like us? What if…

Looking for the next bad thing

Rick Bennett isn’t going to be Maine’s next governor.   Too bad.   Bennett is probably what the state needs: a fiscal conservative with common sense and no pathological aversion to compromise. In other words, he’s 10 percent like current Gov. Paul LePage and 90 percent not.   One other difference: Bennett is pro-choice, LePage pro-life. With the U.S. Supreme Court likely to overturn or restrict Roe v. Wade, abortion is going to be a…
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