Mary Beth Writes

The Zoom meeting with Tom Palzewicz yesterday was as easy and interesting to listen to as the last time I heard him.

He introduces himself by explaining the three issues he is running on.

1. Health care for all.  As anyone paying attention has realized; tying health care to employment can be and now is a disaster.

He mentioned this, though. Right now, 3.5 million people in the US work for health insurance companies. There’s no way we can simply turn that system off and some other system on; there needs to be a transition plan. He described lowering the Medicare qualifying age in stages. If Medicare began at 55 (not retirement, just Medicare health insurance) this would begin to address a lot of issues. All of us who are older understand that trying to get a new GOOD job when one is already in their 50’s or 60’s is nearly impossible because employers don’t want to hire people in the highest health insurance premium bracket.  Lowering the Medicare age would be a game changer.

There are a lot of other really positive ramifications to this idea of transitioning from private insurance companies to national health care in stages.  

2. Climate change.  It’s not an option to not take climate change seriously. It is insane that Trump can manipulate and end environmental policies that were enacted by Congress and by the EPA.

3. Gun Violence reduction. There are sensible practices that the majority of Americans want and support including gun registration.

Palzewicz described the dangerous and dysfunctional dynamic we are living in right now this way. “The bullies are running the show.”  Sensible legislation cannot even be discussed because Mitch McConnell does not allow the proposed legislation into the senate.  At the state level Robin Vos and Scott Fitzgerald do the same thing. If they don’t want change, they won’t allow any discussion.  And at this point the only action Vos and Fitzgerald are engaged in – is trying to sue the governor.

Palzewicz is running again Fitzgerald for congress, Wisconsin 5th District, this November.

This is his website:

If you donate through this URL, the accounting will show that your donation was received because of the efforts that Len and I put forth.  Not essential, but it gives us some sense that we made a difference:


I've been working several hours on some thoughts about St. Augustine of Hippo and shopping at Target.  I will finish those thoughts and post them here tomorrow.  

Even when one is on lockdown at home, one can run out of time.  Maybe I spent too much time this morning burning sticks and digging in my dirt?

Instead of words, here are some pictrues in no order and for no reason other than I like them and hope you do, too.




Love the pictures! The March Marigolds are lovely. Lots of them flourishing this year with all the rain. The cinnamon rolls picture inspired me to make some! Thanks!
Mary Beth's picture

Len asked me who took the marsh marigold photos - and I said me. Or maybe Kathryn... Last year at Scuppernong.

I read your Lutefisk joke with fond memories of the old folks on my Swedish mother's side. I could practically hear the Swedish accent in the lines. Thanks for a good laugh!

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Quarantine Diary #312

“You know me, I think there ought to be a big old tree right there. And let's give him a friend. Everybody needs a friend.” ― Bob Ross

This tree lives in Waukesha and stopped me in my tracks when I was out for a walk.


 When will this Quarantine Diary end? When Len and I drive out not wearing masks to go to a place where we will stay overnight. Just letting you know. FYI we started last year on Friday the 13th of March.


Quarantine Diary #308 1/15/2021

My life is pretty fine, and I bet yours is, too. Warm place to live. Food to eat. Friends to share and laugh with - even if we have to do it via Zoom.

At the same time, who isn’t feeling anxiety and dread? Will the white supremacist insurrectionist knobs attack the inaugural? Will they screw up state capitols and infrastructure? One lone guy blew up Nashville a mere three weeks ago. What the hell is going on?

Quarantine Diary #307 Brain Names

Remember when there was no autism? Sure, there were kids in our schools who were weirdly able to remember stuff, or were hard to control, or whose emotions triggered at the oddest time. We generally ignored those kids. Those of us who were kind did, anyways. Others bullied. 

Remember the mopey kids in high school who knew too much about depressing art and angsty music and sometimes killed themselves?

Quarantine Diary #306 Hunched Over & Paying Attention

I am going to write some Quarantine Diary entries again. There’s a lot going on and sometimes it helps to hear a small voice as well as the big voices of journalists, pundits, networks, the other public media we follow.

I have had a small headache off and on for days. I worried that I might have contracted Covid, except dang it, I haven’t gone anywhere! And then, thinking about it, I realized I am hunched over my phone much more than usual. These mild on-again, off-again headaches are from eyestrain and weird posture.

Rime and Treason

These photos were taken by Len on Monday in that other time and world that existed before the Trump gorgons mobbed the Capitol. (Gorgons existed in Greek literature. Gorgons are the poisonous siblings with hair of living snakes. Those who beheld them face-to-face turned to stone. Or were killed by being beaten by a fire extinguisher.)

I have been trying to write about that but it is too hard. There is so much that is clear and is informative. You are reading it as much as I am. Blessed be the journalists, right? 

Quarantine Diary #292 New Year's Eve

Many of us feel as if we are in limbo until Biden takes office. I don’t think you need me to say a lot about how long and hard this year has been; we’ve been in this dentist’s chair together.


Did you see how many days quarantine has lasted? 292 days.

So far.

This week I read a remarkable essay. On Natural Landscapes, Metaphorical Living, and Warlpiri Identity, by Barry Lopez. Life is weird. The day after I read it, Mr. Lopez died.

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