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Life & Times

A portrait of Perry Baird, the subject of Mimi Baird's book, "He Wanted the Moon," discussing her father's life with bipolar disorder, sits in her home next to other artifacts related to the book in Woodstock, Vt., on Jan. 23, 2015. (Valley News - Sarah Priestap) <p><i>Copyright © Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.</i></p>

A Daughter’s Discovery: Memoirist Draws From Her Father’s Diary of Mental Illness

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Mimi Baird was 6 when her father went away. She didn’t know where he’d gone, or why. Questions to her mother went unanswered; a wall …

Has America Killed Off Satire and Turned Into a Spoof of Itself?

Friday, January 30, 2015

Did postmodernism kill literary satire? I’ve been wondering about this in the wake of the terror attack on the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, known …

Book Notes: New Works by Local Authors and Readings Scheduled, Including Bookstock 2015

Friday, January 30, 2015

Best-selling author John Vaillant will be talking about his new novel, The Jaguar’s Children, on Saturday afternoon at Woodstock’s Norman Williams Public Library. Vaillant, who …

New Jewish Leader Seeks Policy Influence

Friday, January 30, 2015

Washington — A plaque in the conference room at the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism spells out the group’s storied history: Drafted here, it says, were the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act …

Blogger Andrew Sullivan Decides That It’s Time to Stop Dishing

Friday, January 30, 2015

With bold opinions and a witty and erudite writing style, Andrew Sullivan has long been one of the most important British imports among the American pundit class. He has also been a media pioneer, becoming a successful blogger before the term was widely known and an entrepreneur who …

Colleen McCullough, Author of ‘The Thorn Birds,’ Dies at 77

Friday, January 30, 2015

Colleen McCullough, the Australian author of the best-selling novel The Thorn Birds, an epic story of illicit love in the outback that became one of the most successful television miniseries ever, died Thursday at a hospital on Norfolk Island in the South Pacific. She was 77. The cause …

Art Notes: Combat Paper Project Turns Military Uniforms Into Art

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Combat Paper Project grew out of Drew Cameron’s active duty service in the Army from 2000 to 2004, during which time he was deployed to Iraq. His father, also a veteran, had taught him the craft of …

Entertainment Highlights: ArtisTree and Pentangle Team Up to Produce ‘Fiddler on the Roof’

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

With opening night of Fiddler on the Roof bearing down on the ArtisTree Theatre Company, director Jarvis Antonio Green wasn’t going to let the impending Blizzard of the Century keep him from checking out the set at the …

Once Given Short Shrift, Biopics Find Favor With Audiences and the Academy

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Looking across the Oscar nominations you’ll see a landscape populated by pictures about real people. Look beyond the Oscars and you’ll see even more. The last 12 months has produced an abundance of biographies. It’s as if film’s …

TV’s Female Antiheroes Are Saddled With Irritating Quirks

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Have women in television dramas earned the right to be strong, prickly, even — dare we say it — antiheroes? The television landscape is filled with strong, competent female characters. They’re CIA agents, attorneys, doctors of all stripes, politicians. They advise presidents, sit as judges, solve crimes. They’re …

USDA Revises Maple Syrup Grading

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Montpelier — Grading standards for maple syrup have been revised to match international standards, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Wednesday, and now consumers can have a better understanding of what topping they’re buying. The revisions to the voluntary standards were released Wednesday. The move comes in response …

Route 4 Work Ongoing

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Workers continue to build the substructure of the Route 4 bridge crossing the Connecticut River between West Lebanon and White River Junction on Wednesday. The new bridge is scheduled to open in October 2015. Valley News — Sarah …

Super Bowl Spuds: Pub Inspiration for ‘Smashed’ and ‘Loaded’ Potatoes

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Baked, fried or mashed, the potato remains America’s favorite vegetable. We inhale, on average, more than 50 pounds of spuds annually, no doubt much of it in darkened cars parked in back alleys, far away from dietitians, spouses …