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Tag Archives: personal history

Excerpt: Things That Scare Me

I’ve been thinking about Things That Scare Me for a while, and when I wrote it, it turned out much longer than a blog post. So here’s an excerpt, including photos of the video shoot in Steve Garfield’s dining room … Read More »

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‘What Happened to Your Nose?’

It’s usually children and foreigners who ask: those who have no sense of propriety or privacy, or those who consider Westerners too uptight about all the wrong things, and, paradoxically, not uptight enough about others. The waiter at the Indian … Read More »

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Wii Are Family

In college, I had a friend named Jane. She was the oldest daughter in a family of tennis players, and they all looked like her: tall and willowy, but strong as thoroughbreds, with defined muscles in their long arms and … Read More »

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Evergreen Christmas

1970 It’s four days before Christmas, and my father finally retrieves from beneath the cellar stairs the huge Sears box that houses our Christmas tree. The tree is heavy, its metal trunk solid and plumed with thick branches trimmed with … Read More »

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Punk’d

When the flight attendant advises that passengers place the oxygen mask over their own faces before assisting those seated nearby, I always interpret this imperative more broadly—that I should take care of my own needs first, whether or not I’m … Read More »

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Sarah and Me: Junior High with Sarah Palin

On the surface, I should like her. Sarah Palin is 44, precisely my age. We were born three months apart. And like me, she’s a mom and works full-time. We should hang out, clink our highball glasses, and salute the … Read More »

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Birthday Boy

Thirteen years ago today, we threw a first birthday party for our blond, apple-cheeked boy. Three months later to the day, he would be dead, from a virulent and rare form of strep. One day he was sitting in my … Read More »

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In Case of Emergency

I was alone in the house and on my cell phone, talking to my friend Leigh about a Web site she’s thinking of launching. Leigh speaks very fast, especially when she’s fired up about something, which she was. It can … Read More »

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Froggy Fugue

A toad lived under our patio for a few summers when I was a kid. I didn’t feed him or take care of his needs in any way, but I nevertheless thought of him as my pet. I named him … Read More »

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Looking for Eddie Field

Eddie Field had ears that stuck out like mug handles from either side of his head and a face that was a constellation of freckles. He wore his hair in a Boy’s Regular barber cut, cropped close to his head, … Read More »

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Dancing with Bears

The other night, I stayed up too late reading Jonathan Franzen‘s The Discomfort Zone, a book I both devoured and savored. His writing is that delicious. I wanted to stuff myself silly as well as nibble each nuance, taking pleasure … Read More »

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Korean Otters

My friend Maryse called me the other day with a question, she said, about her daughter Laurie-Maude, who is in the same grade as my daughter Caroline. It was Korea Day at school, she said, and Laurie-Maude wanted to dress … Read More »

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