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Blog Reboot

Posted March 30th, 2011 at 1:12 pm (UTC-4)
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One hundred-forty-seven postings into this blogging adventure, I’m taking stock, tweaking a few things  — not tweeting; tweaking, though we’ll talk social media in a bit — and fixing to invite you to share even more than you are in my  exploration of the American landscape and experience. I remember the time, eight years ago, […]

Clowning Around

Posted March 28th, 2011 at 8:34 am (UTC-4)
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In the unlikely event that you heard, five years ago, that there was a fascinating clown museum — that’s right, a museum and hall of fame about clowns — in the Midwest city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, I certainly hope you didn’t rush there to see it. That’s because it existed only in packing boxes in […]

Our Everlasting Civil War

Posted March 24th, 2011 at 8:49 am (UTC-4)

The other night I watched actor-director Maximillian Schell’s fascinating 1984 docudrama about Marlene Dietrich, the glamorous (on-screen), reclusive (off it), German-born femme fatale who mesmerized cinema and cabaret audiences but lived her final years cloistered in a Paris apartment. A pragmatic woman utterly devoid of romantic reverie despite her public persona, Dietrich told Schell, over […]

Discouraged Workers

Posted March 18th, 2011 at 1:14 pm (UTC-4)

Provocative words: discouraged workers. They could be those whose good work isn’t rewarded with raises and promotions, or isn’t even much noticed. And they’re the lucky ones.  They have jobs. Those whom the government categorizes as “discouraged workers” do not. They’re “marginally attached to the labor force” in official parlance — not employed, not even […]

Shifting Middle America

Posted March 16th, 2011 at 2:14 pm (UTC-4)
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Imagine that every one of the 310,989,947 Americans — even babies, fat people, and the frail elderly — weighed exactly the same for statistical purposes. Make that every one of the 310,989,955 Americans.  The number ticks inexorably upward and will probably reach 310,990,000 before I’m through writing this, and, who knows, maybe 311,000,000 by the […]

Everyone’s a V.I.P. at Work!

Posted March 11th, 2011 at 3:22 pm (UTC-4)

Next month, bosses across America will observe “Administrative Professionals Day” by taking their administrative professionals out to lunch.  Some will buy their “administrative assistants” flower arrangements for the occasion. The day’s official theme (I kid you not): “This year, celebrate all office professionals.” Talk about catchy! Everyone’s an office professional.  “I’m not a secretary,” one […]

Potting It Down

Posted March 10th, 2011 at 2:44 pm (UTC-4)

At the risk of agitating reader Brad, who already calls me “old and cranky,” let me tell you about a nostalgic email that I got from Dean Everette, a friend and old radio hand who laughs that he, like many in that transient profession, “was fired every couple of years or so.”  (I was fired […]

Landphair for President

Posted March 8th, 2011 at 1:52 pm (UTC-4)
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I like the sound of that.  “Landphair for President”! I can visualize the campaign buttons and slogans: Ted in ‘12 Let’s Be Led by Ted Theo’s for Meo For our Land, a Phair Deal Steady Teddy I Adore Theodore Speak Loudly for Teddy (a work-in-progress reference to the first Teddy president: man’s man Theodore Roosevelt, […]

Monument to Tashunka Witko

Posted March 3rd, 2011 at 1:50 pm (UTC-4)

You might be interested in a progress report on what many believe is the largest and grandest stone carving ever attempted — if you can call blasting out of solid rock a mountain-sized figure of a man on horseback a “carving.” It’s appearing, slowly, methodically, but unmistakably, in the Black Hills of South Dakota, just […]

Fat Tuesday

Posted March 1st, 2011 at 9:45 am (UTC-4)
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Next Tuesday, New Orleans, Louisiana, will officially shut down for the day.  It has nothing to do with a budget crisis or, let us hope, any sort of calamity.  The occasion is a street party, the biggest in America and one that happens every year. It’s Mardi Gras — “Fat Tuesday,” translated from the French […]

Ted Landphair


This is a far-ranging exploration of American life by a veteran Voice of America “Americana” reporter and essayist.

Ted writes about the thousands of places he has visited and written about as a broadcaster and book author. Ted Landphair’s America often showcases the work of his wife and traveling companion, renowned American photographer Carol M. Highsmith.

Ted welcomes feedback, questions, and ideas. View Ted’s profile. Watch a video about Ted and Carol by VOA’s Nico Colombant.

Photos by Carol M. Highsmith


March 2011
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