Let’s Talk about Sex, Baby

October is Let’s Talk month.  Here are seven tips to make conversations about sex (and love, friendship, pubic hair, boundaries and other important topics) as painless and effective as possible. When my daughter was seven years old, she popped the question. “Mommy,” she queried, innocent blue eyes blinking up at me, nose wrinkled in confusion.…

On Film Strips and the Floor: Sex Ed Gone Wrong

Sex education at Buena High School was of course taught by the assistant football coach, Mr. McFadden.  He was assigned the freshman health class, enlightening us on topics like nutrition and hygiene, biding his time until the last bell rang and he did his real job which was shouting at sweaty fifteen-year-olds to “be a…

Why 13 is Better than 3

Sure, there were some lovely things about the preschool years, but there’s also beauty in the early teens. Among my friends, it’s become something of a sport to gripe about our young teens. The sullen faces. The eye-rolls. The sinus-searing scent of their shoes. One dad I know, in the middle of a tirade about…

Worst-Case Scenarios

In honor of the one(ish) year anniversary of Eric’s free-diving accident, here is the full(er) story. I am in a taxi on my way to Hospital Mar Caribe.  It took longer than usual to find a taxi because it’s Good Friday, which appears to be a shut-the-city-down kind of holiday in Colombia.  The beaches have…

Pinterest Porn and the Pursuit of Perfect

I’ve always enjoyed my life porn.  Sunset.  Real Simple.  Pottery Barn’s catalog.  I cancel plans on the day that Ikea’s annual idea book arrives.  At points in my life, even the Dixieline Lumber circular or that one catalog full of drapey clothes and Buddha-themed wall plaques has scratched my itch.  And now there’s Pinterest, a life-porn…

The Cult of Efficiency

Once, years ago, my friend Natalie asked me, “You always say you’re too busy for stuff.  What are you doing with your time?”  There was an awkward, confused silence, because my every waking moment felt crammed with non-discretionary activity, stuff I had to do and do well.  I felt like I barely had time to…

Red Flags and Inertia

I did something incredibly brave.  And terrifying.  I submitted a piece I (re-)wrote to So Say We All, and it was chosen and last night I stood up in front of a huge crowd of people and read it out loud to them.  And I didn’t throw up or anything. What was most interesting is how…