Unconscious White Girl

My own awareness of racism in America and within myself awakened very slowly.  I still harbour some shame about that unconsciousness and unconcern that existed within me. Current times bring that personal history all to the fore and require not only national re-examination but personal soul searching as well. The city I grew up in…

The Way Things Were

Father’s Day becomes bittersweet once your father has passed away.  Sweet memories are combined with the ache of deep loss. This morning I watched a CBS Sunday Morning segment with the ever-smiling Jane Pauly about a young father who’s committed to splitting half the parenting time of his two-year old daughter with his wife.  That…

Caught in the Crosshairs

As Mother’s Day approached this year, I began to recall the long-ago “words to live by” that were oft quoted by my Mom.  I half-listened to her warnings and guidelines because they never quite fit.  I have since realised that she was the product of a post-Victorian upbringing, passing through the “liberation” of the 1920’s and…

Bali Hai Redux

Do you know the song Bali -Hai from the musical South Pacific?  I loved every musical I saw growing up and knew the lyrics to all of them.  When I first saw the Florida Keys in 1958, I immediately began to sing Bali-Hai.  Not a perfect fit for the occasion, but close enough to satisfy my attraction…

color

I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles. Audrey Hepburn First,…

Escapes

Today is one of those superb late winter days that we often enjoy in Santa Barbara.  It’s a day songs are written about.  If a day like this one popped up when I was growing up, I would have considered cutting school and going to a grassy meadow just to lay immobile in the rays…

My History of Eating, Part One

Disclosure:  I’m Jewish. Food and its consumption are a part of my culture. That might have something to with the attention I’ve paid to food most of my life.  Taking it to another level, I married a Jewish man whose Jewish Mother wanted to know when we visited, what we wanted her to cook for dinner….

Life is Just a Bowl of What Me Worry?

When I was a young teenager, I decided I was a hedonist. If we’re all going to die, what higher purpose could there be than to have a good time while waiting around?

Christmas Compensation?

The push/pull of the Christmas season was intense when I was a child.  Let’s face it, in the 1950’s, it was tough to be a Jewish child in an almost entirely Christian town. Particularly, if that young Jew thought holiday decorations and lights and greenery were  completely alluring. It was tough to be  the only…

Times they are a Changing

Our first grandchild is about to spread her wings and leave for her first semester in college. Fifty eight years ago, I did the same.  I couldn’t help but compare the excitement and anxiety she’s feeling with those I had so long ago.  The anticipation is similar. From experience, I know that life for her and her…

Know Your Blueberry Muffins

Once upon a time, blueberries were a seasonal treat.  Now, they can be enjoyed year round.  Once upon a time, the brief season was highly anticipated, marking a mid-summer’s high point. At my mother’s side, I quickly learned to be able to discriminate among available muffins.   Growing up, they were on our breakfast table almost daily…

Beyond the Blue Horizon

The venerable old synagogue in Park Slope, Brooklyn has seen a lot of life. It’s known joy and sorrow and been a part of its community for about 150 years. Recently, my granddaughter’s high school class used the sanctuary to hold its graduation, a time of celebration and just a little sorrow.