Browsing All posts tagged under »family«

The Long Hall

August 24, 2014

121

It was the summer of 1985. Jill and I were taking the first steps into our thirties, and while our goals were still ambitious, they were no longer earthshaking. The dream of changing the world had begun to fade, and we had started to focus on the smaller world right around us. We wanted what […]

When Men Were Boys

June 2, 2014

60

I can remember exact moments. It’s early afternoon on a Saturday, and we’re getting into our pale blue Chevrolet, a two-door Impala coupe. I turn sideways to squeeze into the back seat, then step onto the hump in the middle of the floor and drop next to the window on the far side. My father […]

Related by Blood

May 17, 2014

83

When we were young, my cousins and I got together at least once a week. We all grew up in big, Italian-Catholic families that were in a constant state of competition — the fathers vying to see who could smoke the most cigarettes, and the mothers to see who could have the most babies. Holidays […]

The “Let It Slide” Collection

November 12, 2013

76

Every year, as Catholic school students, we were sent out into the neighborhood on fundraising expeditions, wearing our uniforms and carrying cardboard suitcases filled with overpriced chocolate bars. It was my first sales job, and I was terrible at it. I’m pretty sure my Aunt Josephine bought the entire box every time, not because the […]

How the Old Days Got Their Name (Part 1)

March 14, 2013

73

My father was a spice salesman. It was a dull and thankless job that required him to visit about three dozen supermarkets every week. He’d finish his workdays coated with nutmeg and onion powder, his hands bleeding from having torn open hundreds of boxes and having extracted thousands of glass bottles from between corrugated dividers. […]

Dare To Say No

February 17, 2013

100

Recently, a fellow blogger named Rachael challenged me to write a post that addressed the topic of childhood dares. I said I’d do it if she did. Then she turned things up a notch: she double-dog dared me. It had been a while since I’d heard that expression. Decades, maybe. When adults use the word […]

Scarred for Life

February 8, 2013

104

When we’re young, life takes place on two physical levels. There’s the world of adults, shifting like storm clouds close to the ceiling, and the world of children, where kids create games to simulate the behavior of their parents and relatives. I could barely figure out what was happening on my own level, so I […]