Responding to Charlottesville – The Hughsletter #103

Good Morning!

What a weekend.

Saturday was the 2 year anniversary of my wife’s heart transplant. One day I am going to write a memoir of that time, but in the interim, I assembled all of the Facebook posts and Instagram pictures from that time in one place.

To celebrate, we took an impromptu trip to the beach and I was offline most of the day, but on the way home, caught the news from Charlottesville. Ultimately, three people dead, Nazi’s marching in the streets, cars running down protesters. It was horrible.

I have to be honest: On mornings like this, when I am overwhelmed with our capacity to do violence to each other, it is hard to sit down and send out this email. But I also know that it is all the more imperative that I do it on days like this.

Because while it is true that the world is filled with hate and ugliness, it is also true that it is filled with beauty. But while the ugliness is confrontational and in your face, the beauty often hides, waiting for you to find it.

Here are five things I thought were beautiful.

Rilke Guillen is a muralist who was commissioned to do an Aztec themed mural to cover graffiti. Here is a time lapsed video of the process. Also, check out his Instagram page.

Cakes that are too pretty to eat? Yes, it’s a thing. Buttercream is delicious, y’all.

National Geographic announced the Travel Photos of the year, and here are the winners.

The book Abandoned Wrecks is a collection of pictures of abandoned planes, trains and automobiles. It is cooler than it sounds – here is a sample of the pictures. Personally, I find these fascinating – I wonder what the story behind each abandoned vehicle is, when the last time someone cared for it, when the last time someone used it.

Is it The Hughsletter if I don’t mention gardening at least once? I love these macro photos – extreme close-ups – of everyday things in the garden. They remind me that beauty is everywhere, but we may have to look closely for it, however.


Over on my Facebook page, I did a Facebook live event last night where I talked a bit about how we white Christians can respond in the aftermath of Charlottesville. It was my first ever FB live experience, but it won’t be my last.

I am going to begin doing Sunday night “livecasts” every weekend. I am picturing a 20 minute or so session, where I riff on the week. Like a “live” blogpost. Some weeks will be news related, like this week was, and others will be more philosophical. As I said when I started The Hughsletter, I like starting things, so I don’t know if this will stick around or not. But I want to get better at video, and I figure the regular practice won’t hurt.

Stay tuned to my Facebook page for more details.

Take care of yourself, and each other.

Hugh Hollowell
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