Power of One

November is a fine month. Between October’s football and bonfires and December’s sensorial chaos, we have a glorious four weeks in between to sit back, take in the view, and indulge. In this blessed window, we may reflect on the year’s comings and goings, and what we’ve gained, lost, and ultimately learned from. We allow […]

Landscape of Style

In autumn, the bend of the light changes. Nights become longer and cooler, colors shift from green to yellow to auburn. We mirror what we see, donning jackets and boots, layer upon layer, drawing closer and more reflective as the days turn inward. The seasons alter our feelings, priorities, and interests, just as the Earth responds […]

That’s an Idea

In November 7, 1997, Carl Sobocinski hit gold. That day, his eponymous restaurant Soby’s opened in a former shoe store on Main Street. At the time, the Westin Poinsett Hotel was dilapidated and boarded up, and walking in that area of downtown was a questionable prospect at best. There was no trolley, no bookstore, no […]

The Best of Men

Men live to tell a good story. In the case of some, they don’t have to embellish it; they opt for understatement. Their reputation precedes them. These are the genuine article, gentlemen of the finest order. They take care in their manner, dress with a fine touch. They aim for chivalry and aren’t afraid to […]

Escape Tactics

We’ve all been there. Incessantly staring and swiping, hoping for a ping, a promise, a distraction. These days, our screens are more like bodily attachments than technological helpmates. We slip easily into pixelated addiction. But social media allows us to channel someone else’s world for a while—stories of trips to faraway places or hikes happening […]

Natural Life

Being outside is essential—it’s a call delivering us from our homes, our desks, our man caves. Nature offers space and clarity, a reminder that life is much bigger than any nagging deadline, argument, or neurosis. Time outside offers pause, a moment to catch our breath, to calm down. It’s often our best therapy. Going into […]

Artistic Legacy

The Kennedys, the Windsors, the Kardashians . . . we are enthralled by family drama. Presidency, royalty, and celebrity become the stuff of biography and reality television. Deemed the First Family of American Painting, the Wyeths ignite a similar fascination. Andrew Wyeth, arguably its most popular member, rose to prominence in the 1930s during the […]

Freedom of Expression

Pura vida. Literally, it means “pure life.” In Costa Rica, pura vida is a way of life. A phrase that is action-based. A directive to live freely, simply, compassionately. Folks say it as a greeting, a response, a goodbye. I haven’t been to Costa Rica, but friends tell me that its laid-back vibe is hypnotic […]

Mixed Company

In life, we typically think in terms of what is. But there is also plenty of value in what isn’t.

Southern Noir

We carry our stories close to the vest here, but we also live to tell them. Life in the South is unlike anywhere—and it unfolds in ways beautiful and destructive, right before our very eyes.


Greg McPhee is an artist. But his work isn’t in any museum or hanging in any gallery. In fact, it’s destroyed on the same day he creates it, and he prefers it that way.


The Giving Issue is our yearly celebration and reflection of the humbling acts of charitable donation, work, and time. Read November’s Letter from the Editor.