Two going on old-enough-to-hotwire-your-car.
- As a newborn, the boy used to fall asleep to Mack The Knife, but he secretly preferred Billie Jean.
- His first hobby was laughing.
- He knew Pumped Up Kicks was a hit before anyone else did.
- He eats guacamole by the fistful.
- A big, sloppy kiss from Jack is the cutest thing that can happen to you in life. He grabs you by the ears and just goes for it. Sometimes he’ll even slip you the tongue. Continue reading
Dharun Ravi at trial. File photo, AP.
It’s time again to talk about bullies.
Yesterday, a jury in New Jersey found former Rutgers University student Dharun Ravi guilty of most of the 15 counts against him, including anti-gay intimidation, a hate crime. Ravi is the former roommate of the late Tyler Clementi, who jumped to his death from the George Washington Bridge after learning that Ravi was using a webcam to view his encounters with other men. Clementi was gay.
Now Ravi is a convicted felon, facing at least a few years of jail time and possibly deportation to his native India after he serves that time. When a firm nationwide policy of zero tolerance arrives for the bullies — and it now seems it will — it will probably look like this. Continue reading
People had feared this one. My parents have six children, twelve grandchildren, and nieces and nephews, and all of us knew the end was coming for my Dad. On the last day of the first month of the year, he’d had a massive heart attack, which he survived. But that event had finally given us all the map to what was going on inside him: a series of small strokes (doctors traced the first to about 2009; I’d put that one at least a year before), progressive dementia, and now the thing with his heart.
Dad struggled to understand it himself. Months later, we would find handwritten notes he’d made. “Hart attack,” says one, dated February 17. “Thank them for the gifts,” it adds. “Flowers and fruit.”
As his children recognized the enormity of what had happened (was happening) with Dad, we planned the annual family gathering with more attention than usual. It was understood that no one would make the mistake of sitting this one out. No one, that is, except Dad.
He just never spoke about it. August. San Diego. My mother would talk to him about these things, but he never really responded. To Dad, it was as if they did not exist.
Of course he was right. That event simply wouldn’t happen for Dad. We didn’t want to hear anyone say this, but it was true. Continue reading
Neil Postman — writer, cultural critic, thoughtful guy — would have been 80 years old today. In his memory, and because memory is important, I am asking you to read his son’s appeal on DayRiffer.
Neil Postman wrote that line. Accept no substitutes.
Most of what I have written in my life now belongs to corporations (the bastards!), or to all of you; I have always been either a paid consultant or a blogger. So this is in no way a selfish appeal.
Neil Postman, unlike me, had important things to say about childhood; about humanity itself. If we lose sight of these things, we risk forgetting what it is about us that is special: what is most worth remembering, if you will.
Happy birthday, Mr. Postman. And belated thanks.
My niece turned four yesterday. This is the slideshow I made of those four years.
It was not easy to compress all four years of this little girl’s light and laughter into five minutes … but interestingly enough, the slideshow lasts about as long as it feels it has taken her to get this big.
Love to all, and happy January.