bits & Pieces

An eclectic assortment of thing I like and things that peak my interest.


     In Minnesota we are all thankful for summer and everything blooms

Good Books

Mysteries: There are several Scandinavian authors both Beth and I have enjoyed lately such as Henning Mankel and his Policeman, Kurt Wallender, and alo Jo Nesbo and his unique character, Harry Hole. Check them out if you like mysteries.

Histories: I love good writing so Barbara Tuchman is one of my favorites who takes you into the times and brings it all to life.

Fiction: If you haven't read any Louise Erdrich you are missing some excellent writing.

Saving Democracy:  The 2016 Presidential Election:  An American Watershed

Saving Democracy is based on a deep belief in democracy, a faith in the basic goodness of ordinary people and in their infinite creativity and resilience.  It is about calling up the American Spirit and renewing faith in the American Dream

Purchase on Amazon
Available in paperback and Kindle editions.


A new perspective on politics in the United States.

  • What went so wrong?
  • How did we ever get to this point?
  • How do we begin to deal with it?
  • A unified grassroots Democratic collaboration is the solution.
  • What new focus will make that happen?

Hope Must be Nurtured

     Even in the midst of February we all begin to feel the hope that is so often connected with spring.
     But hope, like so many other human emotions, must be nurtured and fed. It is not just something you wait for, expecting some outside force to bring it to you like a gift. If you want to keep it healthy, you must put the work in.
     It is not some intellectual abstraction but it requires your engagement. Not just from some safe distance, but up close and personal. If you really care, you will put in the physical work to bring it to life. You will give it your intellectual energy to plan how best to make it useful. Most of all you will give it your heart energy, your love and your creativity so it cannot doubt that you truly care.
     When it is well-fed and matures into something to be realized it will spring fully-formed into the world and everyone will rejoice.        

*The hope that the mission of Saving Democracy can become a reality.

     Here is one hope that is waiting to be brought to fruition. The citizens of this nation and the entire world is waiting for us to resusitate democracy for the sake of all human beings in existance.
There is littled oubt that a huge majority of this nation and the world understand that human life can only be sustained under a democracy,

Pondering & Musings

Short vignette:
​He sat by the window of his cabin looking down at the lake. It was a mild fall day and the lake was calm.

He took his coffee and walked down to the lake.

He sat on a rock by the shore and watched the waves quietly lapping on the shore.

He picked up a few rocks and, after setting his coffee cup down on a level spot, threw them out into the lake watching the splash and the ripples. He tried to skip a rock and got only two skips. He was losing his touch.

He thought of the beauty of the fall, of the coming winter and the snow and ice on the river.

He was content.
​     Bob Passi

Favorites and Reviews

Movies - "The Shape of Water" is a strange and, I thought, quite wonderful and magical movie about being different and finding someone who understands you and wants to be with you. It is full of magical realism and has the feeling of some French movies like "Amelie" with Audrey Tautou, or some of the movies with the "Beauty and the Beast" themes…seeing beauty where it is least expected.

“Wind River”, a somewhat dark movie but with real depth dealing with native cultures in Alaska and the destructive arrogance of a dominant culture that does not understand or respect them.

Music:  Just the other day I heard several brass ensemble pieces and it took me back to my trumpet playing past and the joy of playing in a brass ensemble.
I also am a sucker for choral music.

When it gets cold outside and the we turn to cozy dwellings, my taste turns to Baroque music, especially Bach’s “Brandenburg Concertos”.

Ideas and Suggestions

     *This is the time to go back to those old democratic impulses that humanize us as a society and as a nation. It is a time for compassion…dealing with things with an open hand and daring to stepping away from distrust and separation.
    * We are all in this together as citizens, as a nation, as human beings and as inhabitants of this planet.
    * Remember that Saturday, 2/17/18, was Random Acts of Kindness Day,…not a bad model to carry forward,


The Healing

It takes a long,

 A patient
             most needs
   Something is gone…
                 a missing peace.
At times
      only  loneliness
                    can bring
                          the soothing
You heal,
        from the bottom up.
                as you stitch
                        and mend
                                 the frayed edges.
  Healing the gap
                from deep within.

Bob Passi

Photo Gallery

Click the image below to view my photo gallery.