If memory serves (sorry, no guarantees!) I was about five years old and we were visiting my aunt and uncle and cousins in Long Island when my father told me we were Jewish. I’m not sure what the context was. …


Last week The Fabulous Wife took our Prius to a dealership and had an anti-theft device wrapped around the catalytic converter. (Thieves covet converters for their specks of precious metal, and sawing them off has become common here.) At 4:45 The Fabulous Wife got a call from the dealership. “We…


It’s quiz time again! On a scale of one to seven, with one being strongly disagree, four being neutral, and seven being strongly agree, how do you rate the following statements:

  1. Rich people should be forced to give up virtually all of their wealth.
  2. The current system is beyond repair.


A few nights ago I was web surfing between check-ins on the San Francisco Giants game when I thought, “I wonder what Rachel Bitecofer is up to these days?”

No, Bitecofer is not an old college flame — shame on you! She’s the political scientist who argues that negative partisanship…


Sigmund Freud introduced the concept of psychological projection in the second chapter of Totem and Taboo (1913). The gist is that we hold ambivalent feelings toward everyone, including ourselves. Rather than acknowledge the negative aspects of vital relationships, we “eject [them] from internal perception into the external world . …


I had to watch The Chair, the six-episode Netflix dramedy set in a university English department. I was an English major, I spent most of my career working at UC Berkeley, and Sandra Oh plays the lead. The clincher was the sub-head to Sophie Gilbert’s review in The Atlantic: “The…


Today is the twenty-fourth anniversary of Princess Diana’s death. The date has enormous meaning for The Fabulous Wife and me, but not because of Princess Di.

Makeshift memorial to Diana at the Pont de l’Alma, Paris, February 1998.

Our first cat, Darryl, died the same day.

While co-author Adrienne Miller, The Fabulous Wife, and I proofread galleys of The Hamlet Syndrome one…


I like this take from Andrew Sullivan about the reaction to the fall of Afghanistan:

There is something about the unreal huffing and puffing this week from the left-media, the neocon holdouts and the opportunistic Republicans that seems far too cheap and easy. It’s as if they have learned nothing…


When conversations with friends turn to the news, no one ever brings up California’s gubernatorial recall election, now a mere month away.

That’s bad for Governor Gavin Newsom. It means his base isn’t fired up, even though polls show him in trouble. I suspect that’s because he doesn’t inspire passion…


With the job market as hot as it’s been, those of you still in the workforce may be hiring. I participated in plenty of hiring committees at UC Berkeley, and often provided good employees with a reference or advice to help them get a new job. But what happens when…

Andy Goldblatt

Former Risk Manager at UC Berkeley, author of four books, ectomorphic introvert.

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