Views & Reviews

Category for columns, book and entertainment reviews, etc.

Top Stories, Views & Reviews, Virginia Buckingham


I find myself thinking a lot about Danny Pearl these days. He was the Wall Street Journal reporter kidnapped in Pakistan a few months after 9/11. His murder was filmed by his terrorist captives, in which they made him say out loud before beheading him, “My father’s Jewish, my mother’s Jewish, I’m Jewish.”  It was shocking, the brutality of it — all the hate of Jews that sometimes seems so hard to comprehend when contemplating the vast evil of the Holocaust, brought home in the singular torment of one man staring into the camera and saying the simplest of facts about himself and his family, the reason for his slaughter. Virginia Buckingham I follow the Auschwitz Memorial on Twitter and its leaders understand the impact of individualizing our understanding of what happened in ...
Columns, Community resources, Local News, Views & Reviews

ASK LIZZIE: Preparing little ones for Halloween

The Current is proud to partner with columnist Lizzie Assa, founder of The Workplace for Children, a parenting strategist, play expert and mother of three who lives in Marblehead. Send your questions to Lizzie at Dear Lizzie, My preschooler is really excited about the idea of Halloween, but he’s also a kid who gets scared easily. How can I make sure he has fun with all of the spooky decorations and costumes?  Dear reader,  Parenting strategist LIzzie Assa COURTESY PHOTO Your child is lucky to have a parent who is attuned to his emotions, and I completely understand your concerns about how to ensure they have a good experience on Halloween, especially if they are easily scared. Costumes are so realistic these days! First and for...
Art, Community resources, Culture, Local News, Nonprofit corner, Views & Reviews

MLT opens ‘Arsenic and Old Lace’ to full house

On Friday, October 6, Marblehead Little Theatre’s production of “Arsenic and Old Lace" opened to a packed house. The show sold out its first weekend long before opening night, and will return for those who missed it for another round of performances Oct. 12-15. Running at about two hours and forty minutes including intermission, MLT’s “Arsenic and Old Lace” is full of eccentric characters, dark comedy and seasonal ambience, all amidst the backdrop of a beautiful hand-made set. The themes of murder and insanity fit right in with the Halloween spirit.  “I think it’s the season for this kind of show — for theater in general,” commented producer David Foye. “It’s getting cold outside, the weather is frightful and it's time to go back to the theater.” MLT's production of "Arseni...
Columns, Education, Health, Views & Reviews

ENDING THE STIGMA: Helping your student cope with anxiety

Stress seems to be as omnipresent for our students as it is for their parents. The pressure to perform, compete and outpace their peers can feel overwhelming at times.This pressure presents itself most when exams arise or students are called on in class. Stress hormones flood their body as the pressure mounts, making it difficult to think clearly and recall information. We’ve all heard “I studied and knew the material, so I don’t know what happened. I just blanked. I got too nervous.” Wendy Tamis Robbins offers support to men, women and children struggling with anxiety and other mental health challenges. COURTESY PHOTO While learning the material is important, at least for the next exam (even if it may not ever be applicable in real life), learning how to control and refocus the str...
Views & Reviews, Virginia Buckingham

EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE OKAY: What’s in your “go-bag”?

Last week, we all received what I thought would be an unnerving alert on our cell phones from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. As much as possible, the agency forewarned that the alert was a test only. It seems they did a good job. There were no widespread reports of alarmed callers checking with local police and fire and plenty of funny notes about being in a conference room when hundreds of phones went off at once. The alert still jolted me but, then again, I don’t think I’ve once been near a cannon going off at sunset that I didn’t jump a million miles in the air right after I told myself — don’t jump, the cannon is about to go off.  Virginia Buckingham The alert and the very real natural disasters people have had to contend with around the country got me thinking — if th...
Columns, Views & Reviews

Ask Lizzie: How to avoid morning meltdowns

The Current is proud to welcome columnist Lizzie Assa, founder of The Workspace for Children, a parenting strategist, play expert and mother of three who lives in Marblehead.  Send your questions to Lizzie at Dear Lizzie, I'm having a hard time getting my elementary schooler out the door in the morning. She's always saying that she doesn't want to go to school. How do I make this less painful for everyone? Dear reader, I write this to you after a morning that left me feeling like I’d lived a thousand hours… My kids have a hard time going to school sometimes, too.  You are not alone in the struggle. Each morning, there are kids across Marblehead refusing to get out of bed, not wanting to get dressed, crying, begging and negotiating to j...
Views & Reviews, Virginia Buckingham

EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE OKAY: Comfort me with goulash

I devour books by chefs like I sometimes try to make and devour their recipes. There’s something about a chef’s appetite for life that’s alluring. Some favorites are by Bill Buford (“Dirt” and “Heat”), Gabrielle Hamilton’s “Bread Bones and Butter” and anything by Ruth Reichl. Her “Tender at the Bone,” “Garlic and Sapphires” and “Save Me the Plums” are akin to having the opportunity of sitting at the knee of a perfect observer of what matters in life (read: family dinner). Virginia Buckingham Which brings me to goulash. If I could write a chef’s memoir, which I can’t because I’m a recipe follower, not one who is at ease playing with the combinations of “Salt, Acid, Fat, Heat” (h/t Samin Rosnat), I’d riff off of Reichl’s “Comfort Me with Apples.” But I’d sub in Hungarian goulash i...
Views & Reviews

After receiving a cancer diagnosis, I knew I needed a theme for my recovery

“Five hundred twenty-five thousand, six hundred minutes. How do you measure, measure a year?” - “Seasons of Love” from the musical “Rent” Christine McCarriston For me and mine, this year could be measured in health scares, fears, prayers and, incredibly, joy. On September 27, 2022, I was diagnosed with cancer. After a myriad of tests, I learned I had two cancers, they were forming a third which thankfully never materialized, and I would need a temporary colostomy bag to prevent a possible blockage. My diagnosis changed everything, but at the same time it couldn’t change the most important things: the people I love lifting me up, joy in the little things and gratitude. After receiving the news kindly, but matter-of-factly, I had labs drawn as my husband and sister who accompanied ...
Local News, Views & Reviews

MY MARBLEHEAD FIRST TIME: From dusty farm fields to the wild blue sea

It will not be news to the seafaring folk of Marblehead that in order to get out to a boat in Marblehead Harbor, you have to get into another boat. I have observed this from the safe shore of Crocker Park many times. Recently, a kind neighbor invited my partner and I out onto his boat over Labor Day. And so as we stood on the dock at the Boston Yacht Club waiting for a ride, what caught my attention was the youth of the taxi pilot: a young man, barely out of his teens if he’d made it there at all. Back home, I was literally raised on a tractor seat. That photo is me on my dad’s lap at bean harvest, circa 1979. The open-cab combine had manual steering and whirring blades of death a few feet below my perch. A scene so commonplace on the farm back then that my mom thought nothing of snapp...
Local News, Views & Reviews

FOOD 101: September breezes and lobster

Mid-to-late September. The town draws a collective breath and puts on its “resting face.” That’s the intimate smile reserved for year-round neighbors, more at-ease than the outward-looking seasonal smiles that welcome summer vacationers. As we settle into the familiar routines of school days, after-school activities and serious weekly groceries, we’re aware that summer has not quit us yet. This moment is our own private summer. We take time to note briney breezes, houses still decked in flags and flowers, the evening song of crickets and the silence between breaking waves. Mid-to-late September is a great time for a lobster roll, says chef Linda Bassett COURTESY PHOTO Now’s when we really savor a lobster roll. On the deck, the front porch or the beach. No waiting in lines at our ...
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