Sages, mystics and warriors

As I drove to get coffee this morning, I saw them out in full force. The mystics, the sages among us. One was sitting by a quiet lake, book in hand, about to meditate. Another was one of just a few left outside a church after service ended. They were holding hands and praying. And…

On the self-edit

My biggest mistake, as I looked at the thank-you note covered with red correction marks, was that I had forgotten to self-edit. And yet, that was no mistake, really. It was the beginning of true freedom. I was in my twenties. I still remember exactly where I was standing in my Lincoln Park gray-stone apartment….

More than one steady march today

I know quite a few women marching in the D.C. rally today for women’s rights. And some in our local rally here in Chicago. While I am generally outspoken, I am not much of a marcher. It is not that I don’t value the message and the show of solidarity. I do. I certainly do….

The price of civility

I was bred to be polite. If there were a thoroughbred stable for polite people, I would have been a Kentucky blue blood despite my Ohio roots. I sometimes even bless myself when I sneeze. It’s a knee-jerk reaction that I blame on—who else—my mother. Her instructions in etiquette were a large dose of, “What…

A contradiction in terms

I am always amazed at people who like things to fit into neat boxes. Because most of us, with our sharp edges and uneven corners, do not fit well into homogenous containers. I’ve written about this before, but it hit me anew this week as I found myself proving yet again that I am a…

Good breeding

I was asked my first ignorant question about the matter in a diner, with my four-year-old son sitting beside me. “What is he?” I looked askance at the waitress who had posed the question to me, wondering where this exchange was headed. “I’m not sure I understand your question,” I said. “Is he mixed?” “Mixed…

How very simple (minded) of you

My neighbor’s garbage cans were the inspiration for this post. Yes, I’m digging deep. As I walked by them yesterday, I was reminded of a time when she left them at the curb for four days. Go on. Guess. Ill? No. Disabled? Not at all. Absentminded? Nope. It seems she has a rule. Her husband…

I need a little leg room

It is a little cramped in here, people. In this box you keep putting me in, that is. Not all of you, of course. The expansive, breezy souls among you are content to just let me and the rest of their fellow human beings be. But you know who you are (or maybe you don’t…