Today I Didn’t Eat Lunch with My Kid at School

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It starts off a typical Friday morning, where I stand in the shower and meticulously plot out what to do with my 2.25 hours of allotted free time for the week.

Husband has the cute suggestion that today I should go have lunch with our kindergartner, Kid #2.

Husband had lunch with Kid #2 before and it was no less than the highlight of Kid #2’s life since October 2009 when he first breathed air.  Continue reading

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An Antidote to Helplessness (I Hope)

This afternoon I took my sons swimming, eager to help them savor one of the last hot days of summer. They shot their cousins with water guns (thanks a lot mom, I’ve managed to keep them away from toy weapons for six years, and you walk past the clearance rack at Walgreens ONE TIME…) and, when we wearied of the pool, the boys picked fresh raspberries and gobbled them, juice dribbling down their chins. (No, I do not live in a Norman Rockwell painting; it was just one of those top-10 days.)

Raspberry-Picking-5Because I had this day, I want to share some information about Syrian refugees and how you and I can help. We all know we’re lucky, and this week’s gutwrenching photo of the drowned toddler brought that knowledge home to roost in a major way. Our village may be punch drunk, but it’s still a village, replete with creature comforts, security, friendship and compassion. So please, indulge me in this departure from pop culture and snark. Soon enough, we’ll return to our regularly scheduled programming. Continue reading

The Most Dangerous Game II: Avenging Cecil

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Author’s note: Please enjoy this stock photo of a golden, statuesque lion. I refuse to re-post the photo of the douchebag dentist who shot and killed 13-year-old Cecil, a beloved lion who lived in a Namibian national park. Every time I encounter that photo of smug, paunchy white guys smirking atop a bloodied, majestic carcass, I want to puke, punch my computer screen, or invest in a bow and arrow and head to the Land of 10,000 Lakes in search of vigilante justice.

When I snuggled up with my laptop last night, I aimed to write a poetic essay about the slaughter of wild animals and our responsibility to the planet, with a little moral outrage and light politicking thrown in for good measure. But, I realized quickly, that essay was going to be a total drag to write and an even bigger drag to read.

Instead, I’ve decided to GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT! And by “the people,” I mean one super brave, courageous and macho dentist from Minnesota. That’s right, Walter James Palmer, this post’s for you! I can tell you’re a guy who likes a challenge. You’re a sportsman with a can-do attitude and a Cabela’s platinum card nestled in your crocodile skin wallet. A man like you needs to feel important. Powerful. And I’m here to help. It’s time we take the volume dial of your life and crank it to 11. Continue reading

Manufacturing Courage: Or, That Time a Bull Shark Almost Devoured My Kid

Unless you’re living under Donald Trump’s combover, you probably saw this week’s big story about a South African surfer who barely survived a shark attack. Twitter blew up, experts experted all over the morning news shows, and I experienced a little something called déjà vu, because four months ago, my five-year-old son was THISCLOSE to being an amuse-bouche for a bull shark.

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How could a guy named Mick Fanning NOT become a professional surfer?

As I sat sipping wine on the deck of a rented Florida beach house (thanks, mom) my son frolicked in the late afternoon surf with his cousins. I kept a casual eye on passing dolphins and talked politics with my aunts and uncles.

(Note: earlier that day, while lounging in the sun, I’d speculated about how I’d act if I saw a shark approaching one of my relatives. In my daydream, I was super heroic… sprinting in the sea, launching my sizable self–fists flying–straight at the shark, and then cradling the victim in my arms as I strode onto the beach, level-headed and calm as I shouted for assistance.) Continue reading