I’ve now encountered the word ‘residency’ twice in my reading in the last few weeks, referring specifically to artist residencies, but I’m curious about any kind. I know doctors do a residency – what’s involved in that? Who sponsors them? Have any Ratburghers done a residency in some other type of program?

I saw the word recently was in regards to a cartoonist for the New Yorker who is doing a kickstarter to get funds to purchase a house in rural PA. She will then run a ‘residency’ there for humorists, of the literary or cartooning kind – and it’s solely for women. (I don’t know what she’ll do if someone with a 5 o’clock shadow who identifies as a woman applies.) It sounds kind of like a retreat, where the writers/artists would work on their craft and then after some period of weeks, have an exhibit or a reading or some kind of event. The second reference was just yesterday in my local paper, where an art club is raising money to fund a residency for painters – and the first session, again, will be exclusively for women.... [Read More]


The National Garden

President Trump’s plan for the National Garden of American Heroes will include statues of these illustrious Americans: John Adams, Susan B. Anthony, Clara Barton, Daniel Boone, Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, Henry Clay, Davy Crockett, Frederick Douglass, Amelia Earhart, Benjamin Franklin, Billy Graham, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, Martin Luther King, Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Douglas MacArthur, Dolly Madison, James Madison, Christa McAuliffe, Audie Murphy, George Patton, Jr., Ronald Reagan, Jackie Robinson, Betsy Ross, Antonin Scalia, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Harriet Tubman, Booker T. Washington, George Washington, and Orville and Wilbur Wright.

It should be open to public access before the 250th anniversary of the proclamation of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 2026, according to the press release.... [Read More]


The Bible and the Final Frontier

My husband and son went to DC this past weekend for a guys’ sports trip – encompassing  a college basketball game and wrestling match at son’s alma mater, American U, and hiking around his undergrad haunts in the beautiful spring-like weather.

They went to the National Cathedral for Mass Sunday morning and were surprised and pleased when an unexpected little ceremony took place. The priest introduced to the congregants the Episcopal Bishop of the Armed Forces and the Chief of Chaplains, who came to dedicate a Bible for the newly formed United States Space Force.... [Read More]


Warm Wishes

I just want to thank everyone here for the great variety of wonderful writings and pictures that tumble through Ratburger every day! I don’t always comment but I see them and appreciate the work and the brain power that precedes them. I hope to be less of a Scrooge with my time, now that my busy season in work is almost over.... [Read More]


Humor Me

My husband and I are part of a theater group in our town; he sings with them, I do their posters, promotion and ushering. Our group just finished performing The Pirates of Penzance, one of the few Gilbert & Sullivan operettas you may have heard of. We had a huge opening night audience, even bigger Saturday, and filled to the rafters on Sunday, we were scrambling to seat everyone.

People loved it. We have received dozens of emails from audience members saying how delightful it was, how they never expected a 140-year old show to be so funny, how gorgeous the music and orchestrations were.  One woman just sent us a $100 donation, saying it was the first time she saw us and she looks forward to “more glorious productions.”... [Read More]


Analyzing an Illustration

I’ve been looking through the illustrations of Arthur Getz, one of my favorite New Yorker cover artists. Getz painted 213 covers for the iconic magazine between 1938 and 1988. In addition to illustration work, he painted cityscapes and landscapes – ‘fine art’ sold through galleries – although he sometimes signed them with his middle name, Kimmig, because at the time a fine artist was not supposed to cross the line into commercial art.

A particular favorite of mine is his cover from 1957:... [Read More]