Browsing All Posts filed under »Still Human After All These Years«

A Well-Grounded Childhood

February 7, 2014

79

As kids growing up in the North Bronx, we spent our summers mostly roaming the streets and alleyways, picking through the rubble of empty lots and analyzing anything that seemed out of the ordinary. One of my friends found a five-dollar bill once, which in those days was a small fortune, enough to buy a […]

You Better Watch Out

December 21, 2013

123

The carols are playing in the background, pretty much everywhere I go. But I don’t hear them anymore. They seem to appear a little earlier every year, so that the first one causes me to say out loud – even if I’m alone – “Is that Christmas music?” The shock lasts for several seconds, just […]

I’ll Stay Home If I Want To

October 18, 2013

114

My son, who is nineteen, goes to a lot of parties. In fact, in any given three-month period, he goes to more parties than I’ve been to in my entire life. And so, he has stories to tell, because that’s really the primary reason for getting together with other people: to take note of all […]

Literally Confused

August 31, 2013

101

One day, when I was old enough to comprehend the words, but still young enough to be impressionable and immune to sarcasm, my mother made a startling announcement to me. “I don’t have eyes in the back of my head,” she said. She may have been washing the dishes at the time, or ironing shirts, […]

Post-Scholastic Stress Disorder

August 23, 2013

104

It’s the last week of August. This was just about when the nightmares would begin. Bolting awake, I would find myself gasping for air and drenched with sweat. What day is this? I’d be terrified that I’d slept right through the end of summer vacation, and that the return to school was a single sunrise […]

Trying to Avoid Eye Contact

May 29, 2013

115

I recently cut up some hot peppers. When I say hot, I mean the kind that drives diced onions to run for cover, and produces a choking, blistering sensation in your throat that impels you to gulp down a cold drink in the desperate hope that you might soon resume breathing. I’ve done this before. […]

Key Considerations

April 28, 2013

92

When I was little, people were sometimes given the Key to the City. It was a reward, either for doing something heroic or for winning a lot of football games. At least that’s what I remember. It’s possible that I’m recalling a scene from a cartoon I saw on television, or one of those ridiculous […]