Don’t Squander Your Greatness

What a week! My inbox has been bursting with so much good will vapor, it’s as fragrant as Bath and Body Works during their 75% off sale. Here’s a sampling of this week’s bouquet: Julie wrote to say she’d forwarded my story  “Same Little Legs Still Carry Me” to her sister, who, God bless her, is not only dealing with the loss of her 25-year-old-daughter, but breast cancer as well. Julie sent it to her sister to remind her of just how strong she really is. I was blown … [Read more...]

Same Little Legs Still Carry You

The little girl in the bright yellow tee-shirt caught my attention. Must have been nine, maybe ten. It was rainy, not a downpour, rather one of those spongy May mornings. Stationary raindrops clung where they landed, glistening spheres on feathery iris, pale and pearly white. The landscape was awash in purples, pinks, grey and green. Many shades of green. I noticed her because she was alone. This is a rare sight on a busy street during the morning rush and the little … [Read more...]

‘Cause I’m (reasonably) Happy

My consulting travels recently took me to Indianapolis. I posted up in an office that had been vacated just days earlier. Somebody had been 86’ed, shit canned, pink-slipped, workforce reduced.  Book shelves and desk drawers were empty. (I know because I checked) There were no photos, no stapler, no box of Kleenex on the desk, no abandoned pad of Post-It notes. There was, however a small affirmation taped to the computer monitor which had been left like the skeletal … [Read more...]

Zen Dentistry and Other Acts of Courage

  So, I was talking to my shrink yesterday. We determined that I had not seen him since 2009, as he was in his former location, not as fancy as his new place. Must be a high demand for therapists these days. I understand from whence this comes, being a card carrying member of the Highly-Functioning Merely Neurotic Club. Even we need an occasional tune-up on the couch. I did not lay down. I did lay out what I called the churn. The dreaded … [Read more...]

Random Acts of Elevator Kindness

On the G train heading home to my son’s place in Brooklyn Saturday night, I committed a cardinal sin. I spoke to a stranger. Well really, he started it. I was reading the playbill from the show we’d just seen, curious over why Toni Collette was the only actor to have this disclaimer after her name: “appearing with the support of Actors’ Equity Association.” “Surely she’s not the only union member in this play,” I said to Patrick. A gentleman sitting across the car … [Read more...]

Listen, Seriously, Just Listen

The husband and wife at the restaurant didn’t notice me staring, how could they? They were absorbed in their texting. Who were they texting? Their kids were already sitting at the table playing Angry Birds. I couldn’t help but think that this broke the hearts of the birds overhead, singing so sweet and so clear, it made you want to tip them. What I really wanted to do though,  was walk over to the parents on this first warm evening of spring, and diplomatically … [Read more...]

The Reassurance We Crave

This is a story about bravery, bumper cars and baseball. Well, kind of. Even though he’s a diehard Dodgers fan, what with living in L.A. and growing up watching the Albuquerque Dukes groom players for the big show, my son Nate was wearing the St. Louis Cardinals hat I got him for Christmas when he took me to the airport last week. I cried when I hugged him goodbye. Every time I leave a kid at the airport, I swear I won’t cry.  Always do. Such is the reality for the … [Read more...]

Three Little Words

He had no idea the maelstrom of emotion that would blow in behind one short, declarative sentence.  On a day when I was supposed to get a make over at the Clinique counter, with a particular interest in the “Dark Circle Corrector” and a new, natural look, which for me is code for “get out of the 80s”, but I cancelled due to too many competing demands for my squeezed-into-two-precious-days life now, I went to the gym instead. The gym was just one entry on my unrealistic … [Read more...]

This One Moment

It was happening with so much frequency, I finally had to Google it. When all else fails, when our hamster brains stumble at the starting block of deciphering some meteoric message from the universe, as we wander through the fog which has created an impenetrable shield like a cosmic condom over our antennae, when we’ve leveraged all the drug or drink and every meditative pose or prayer we know in pursuit of enlightenment and still we come up empty handed, it’s time to … [Read more...]

Make Peace With Your Momma

Discovering the cache of Kodak slides in the basement could have made me feel bad or guilty or filled with regret. Instead, I laughed. I threw back my head and laughed out loud, like l-a-u-g-h-i-n-g out loud, spelled out. Then I said to no one except the cobwebs, “Okay, Mom. You’re in.” I had noticed the honey-colored wooden box on my cluttered work bench, amongst the rusty channel locks, duct tape and socket wrenches, laying where they were dropped by careless kids … [Read more...]