Category Archives: Life Lessons

MEMORIAL DAY

TweetWhen I was in high school, a boy a year ahead of me lied about his age and joined the Marines. It was the height of the Vietnam War, and that’s where he was headed. I didn’t know him that

HOME

TweetThe street behind my gym has become a sort of tent city. Homeless people have turned the sidewalks on both sides into their own encampments. Shelters have been fashioned from blue tarp, piles of bedding are wedged between plastic water

IN A FRIEND’S DEATH, A LESSON FOR THE LIVING

TweetI wrote this in 1999; it was published in The Washington Post. Lewis, the friend I lost during a time when so many were dying of AIDS, came into my mind recently, so I decided to reprint this.   A

GOODBYE 2015

TweetI’m glad to see this year go. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. Whichever month you choose, the memories haunt, the heart hurts, and it’s devastating to tally up the tragedies. So many lost lives, so much violence that

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

TweetWhen I was a child, my parents would choose one night to drive me around the neighborhood and look at Christmas lights. The lights at our house were not that elaborate; my father put up a single strand of lights

UNWRAPPED HOLIDAY GIFTS

TweetA friend of mine lost his mother to cancer the other day. We’d had a long phone conversation the night before – mostly about getting older and falling prey to diseases that turn out to be cunning hunters. We talked

GRATITUDE

TweetThere was a recent New York Times piece about gratitude in which it was pointed out that some people are genetically predisposed to be grateful (I would include joyful in that since they seem to be connected.) Apparently a 2014

BETRAYAL

TweetMost of us learn about betrayal at a young age. I remember my best friend in grade school suddenly dumping me, taking a new best friend into her life, and saying cutting things about me to my face and behind

IN MEMORY OF MELISSA

TweetI didn’t know her well. I saw her several times a week, whenever I worked out at the Santa Monica stairs. A trainer, she was a dependable presence there. We always said hello, and occasionally we had brief, casual conversations. 

LEARNING FROM ALZHEIMER’S

TweetI had a powerful teacher in my adult life — one who was uncompromising and harsh, one who reached into the depths of my being, my soul, and rearranged landscapes. One who taught me that what I saw with my

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