August 14, 1996
The Bowman Ensemble's double billing of two one-act plays, Eugene Ionesco's 1950 classic "The Bald Soprano" and a brand new play by Bowman artistic director Matthew Ramsay, "Mr. Positive," makes for an evening devoted to the theater of the absurd.It also might seem absurdly bold for a young Baltimore playwright to link himself so directly with Ionesco. The surprise of the night is that while it's easy enough to make some negative observations about "Mr. Positive," Ramsay does deliver plenty of laughs in his surreal comedy of manners.
February 6, 2009
A Baltimore County man who has been implicated by the Web site The Smoking Gun as a key informant in baseball's steroid scandal has denied any association with the federal government's investigation into illegal performance-enhancing drugs. In an exclusive interview with The Baltimore Sun yesterday, Andrew Michael "Mike" Bogdan admitted to helping the FBI in a real-estate fraud case as part of a plea agreement. But he said he did not use his close friendship with former Orioles outfielder Larry Bigbie to assist the FBI in nabbing one of baseball's primary steroid distributors.
October 24, 1999
Flannery O'Connor 1925-1964After graduating from Georgia State College for Women, Milledgeville, O'Connor studied creative writing at the University of Iowa. Her first novel, "Wise Blood" (1952), explored, in her own words, "religious consciousness without a religion." The work combines the keen ear for common speech, caustic religious imagination and flair for the absurd -- all traits that were to characterize her subsequent novel and collections of short stories. She is regarded as a master of the short story and one collection in particular, "A Good Man is Hard to Find," is a classic.
February 16, 2008
A lot of past medical practices strike us as instantly absurd -- all that nasty bloodletting, for a start. But time was when otherwise sensible professionals didn't think twice about applying cures that flew in the face of logic, not to mention common sense or common decency. One of the most egregious of treatments, prescribed for women who didn't seem themselves after childbirth, became the subject of an influential short story in the 1890s -- The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gillman.
January 3, 1991
PARANOIA often blurs the boundary between the rational and the absurd.When a U.S. Department of Education official recently observed that universities cannot sponsor race-exclusive scholarships, the ensuing uproar forced the administration to recant.After the blizzard of criticism, Michael Williams, the Education Department official, declared that his view had been "legally correct" but "politically naive." Not only was his view legally correct; it made sense.In the swirl of America's racial maelstrom, common sense and logical reasoning are early casualties.
June 5, 2005
What's absurd is tolerance for acts of torture President Bush's response to Amnesty International's report criticizing U.S. treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay was to characterize it as "absurd" ("`Gulag' charge absurd, Bush says," June 1). What is absurd is this administration's penchant for flouting the international rule of law, detaining individuals without charges, trial or access to due process. What is patently absurd is the U.S. interrogation and detention policies and practices that condone torture and mistreatment of detainees.