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Best. Summer. Ever.

By October 20, 2015 78 comments Permalink

Ten years ago I changed careers. One of the appeals of becoming a teacher — in my case, a college professor of English — was the time off. I remembered the end-of-school, coming-of-summer feeling as a student, and the promise that those pending months of freedom held. And, of course, I remember the actual moments…

Lacrosse Beats Baseball for Our Boys

By March 23, 2015 105 comments Permalink

As this winter, straight from the ironic depths of heaven’s fiery antithesis, comes slowly to an end, and the layers of snow and ice begin to recede from sidewalks and meadows and yards, there are probably more than a few parents of young boys who are — perhaps unconsciously, perhaps, not — filled with a…

Cop Story (too)

By December 12, 2014 70 comments Permalink

I went to a reading last month to celebrate the release of Prison Noir, a collection of stories written exclusively by men and women, currently or formerly, incarcerated in the American prison system. Esteemed and never-incarcerated author Joyce Carol Oates edited the collection and spoke with great empathy that evening about the lives of human…

End of the Writer/Teacher?

By September 25, 2014 128 comments Permalink

Imagine a young Ernest Hemingway in the 21st century. He’s abroad for a few months in Paris and arrives at the home of Gertrude Stein to sip Sancerre and discuss writing and other writers and those things a fledgling author and his accomplished mentor might chat about after a day of creative labor. They consider…

What Ever Happened to Sportsmanship?

By January 23, 2014 85 comments Permalink

My 7-year-old son likes the 49ers. They’re his second favorite team (next to our beloved Giants). I remember as a little kid liking lots of teams. It was a product, I believe, of curiosity and wonder about other places, other people. In light of the 49ers revelation, I told my son that, one day, our…