John Darling

Jefferson Monthly Contributor

John E. Darling was in the Marines, the Air Wing, becoming a journalist in the pre-Vietnam run-up. He was delivered by kind angels to Oregon right out of college, from Michigan (MSU) in 1967 to cover the legislature for UPI. John fell in love with the state post haste, then covered Bobby Kennedy and Gene McCarthy. In 1969, he dropped out, turned on, tuned in and bummed around Europe and the US. He dropped back in as a TV journalist in Medford and worked inside Oregon politics which he found instructive, but mostly a ghastly, soulless business.

John then received his master’s in psychology from SOU and taught personal growth seminars. Formerly writing for The Oregonian, John now writes for the Medford Mail Tribune and the Ashland Daily Tidings. He had kids, a life-changer, and has written 60-plus e-books. He’s worn the letters off several MacBook keys. Luckily, he has them memorized.

Jefferson Almanac
10:35 am
Sat June 1, 2013

This New Century Has Birthed A New Dimension

In 15 years of doing these essays, I’ve always tried to focus on something about the State of Jefferson — and now it seems time to realize this includes an invisible new layer called Facebook. Most of my 600+ “friends” live in Jeffersonia and this is how I know and communicate with them. 

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Jefferson Almanac
10:32 am
Fri June 1, 2012

Oregon, An Optimal Place For Liking Oneself

I have a secret.  I want to share it.  In fact, I kind of want to brag about it.  Actually, it’s not bragging, like look at me, I’m so cool.  My secret is that many decades ago, after a fairly tedious, isolated childhood, I grew up, got the hell out of Lansing, Michigan and rather rapidly discovered I like myself and life.  A lot.  It took a few years to let go of the reel-to-reel head tapes, that inner voice that’s always asking you “what’s broke?” and how can you fix it and “do better!” fer the love of Pete. 

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Jefferson Almanac
11:56 am
Sat October 1, 2011

Praying For Nature To Behave Better

This column is called “Jefferson Almanac” and in reality there is no state of Jefferson. After a bit of research, I’ve discovered that no one really knows where the word almanac came from. It was first used in England 800 years ago for a document foretelling weather, seasons, tides, moons, sunrises and sunsets, so as to help farmers, hunters and fishermen do their work.

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Jefferson Almanac
10:51 am
Tue February 1, 2011

A Long Slog Through The Gender Jungle

One autumn night in Ashland, half a dozen people rent the Community Center and hold a forum where anyone can take the mic and talk about that old question: What Do Women Want?  And What Do Men Want?  

I purposely don’t take notes -  I just want to recall this as a finger painting of emotions, longings, anger, tears, hope, blame, even one young lady jumping up and down with frantic joy, exuding that we have to get in touch with the nature spirits and doing a cartwheel at the end.  Not to make fun of her; I got it.  That was as good an answer as any.  Been there.  I think.

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Jefferson Almanac
10:46 am
Sun August 1, 2010

A Portable Blessing

“I have traveled a great deal in Concord.”  —Thoreau

This is my Concord, this Ashland and I have traveled a great deal in it and found it my balm, my guru, my god-infested Athens, my healer, my Renaissance painting (as good as any Botticelli). And though I’ve traveled the world, much of it hitchhiking or hopping trains, ever eager to see new vistas, it’s all toned down in past years and I find it all under my feet and I don’t want to leave, even for a day.

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Jefferson Almanac
10:49 am
Mon February 1, 2010

There's Enough? Isn't There?

A lot of indexes indicate the recession is over. The economy is sort of growing again. At the same time, many voices from the green/sustainable realm say, excuse me but if it all keeps growing, it ain’t sustainable. Therefore what is good for growth is bad for the planet and our sustained survival, at least with our customary comforts.

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