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Terrible Twists of Fate

Posted November 23rd, 2011 at 5:36 pm (UTC-4)

Hundreds of healthy, strong Americans who awaken to a new day do not live to see the next one.  In a blur, they’re killed by a gun, a knife, a screeching car or the proverbial bus.  They are gone from us, and the lives of their loved ones and friends are changed, usually for the […]

Dealing with the Fat of Our Land

Posted June 13th, 2011 at 6:18 pm (UTC-4)

Of late I’ve lost 16 kilos (35 pounds).  Friends look at me with startled wonder, as if they’ve bumped into a unicorn.  “You OK?” they say.  Since I’m well known for lacking dietary discipline, they figure I’ve come down with a deadly disease. To their surprise, and mine, I have shrunk the puffy jowls and […]

Doomsday, Take Two

Posted May 31st, 2011 at 12:18 pm (UTC-4)

You know how it is when you tell people a riveting story about a good movie or book or sporting event? They want to know how it turned out.  So I waited to be sure it hadn’t really happened before I wrote about the most recent End of the World. By now you have probably […]

Reparations Simmer — On a Far Back Burner

Posted May 9th, 2011 at 7:00 pm (UTC-4)
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You may have heard the term “reparations.” It comes from the same root word as “repair,” and it refers to repairing, or correcting, a past wrong with some sort of tangible payment. The idea of compensating victims of terrible mistreatment is not new. Ten years ago or so, Austria established a $380-million fund to recompense […]

The Young and the Restless

Posted April 12th, 2011 at 11:00 am (UTC-4)
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I recently wrote about “discouraged workers” — often older ones — who have lost jobs and sought new ones, but have given up hope of finding decent any.  And I came across a corollary, and chilling, article in the New York Times.  In it, Matthew C. Klein, a research associate at the Council on Foreign […]

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 […]

Generation ZZZ

Posted February 4th, 2011 at 4:11 pm (UTC-4)
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Last summer, I told you about a challenging retreat that some of us at VOA attended.  The subject was the “convergence” of many media in the world of journalism, and how we might keep up with it.  No longer are the consumers of our information relying on traditional newspapers, radio, and television alone.  Not only […]

The Two Faces of Bawlmer

Posted January 21st, 2011 at 1:38 pm (UTC-4)
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  I get several chances each year to drive to, through, and around Baltimore, Maryland, usually without spending more time there than it takes to watch an Orioles’ baseball game.  But it’s always high on Carol’s and my “bucket list” for exploring, just for the atmosphere.  Not its modern side that I’ll describe, but its […]


Posted November 29th, 2010 at 2:31 pm (UTC-4)

A sure way to get a giggle out of your young child is to challenge him or her to SPELL “Mississippi” — and fast! M-I-S-S-I-S-S-I-P-P-I.    M-I-S-S-I-S-S-I-P-P-I. It’s actually not as hard as it looks, once you get the rhythm of it. The Old South state of Mississippi, not the lazy “Old Man River” Mississippi, on […]

Bite-sized America

Posted November 17th, 2010 at 3:28 pm (UTC-4)

Every once in awhile, you’ll hear a radio host or a comedian joke that “a letter poured in,” implying that a lot of response to something was expected, but a minimal amount was received. Nowadays, not even one letter would pour in. An e-mail or two, perhaps. Or a text message. When one receives an […]

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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


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