Untethered Dog

You Never Know Where He Will Go


Tassels and Plywood

He stood tall in full cap and gown. He smiled. A camera would, no doubt, soon be aimed in his direction. Maybe more than one. Family had gathered. Hands were around his shoulders. They were on the front step of a house on 42nd Avenue. I saw his carefully combed hair and intuited from the […]

Quarantine Crankiness

I go along thinking shelter-in-place hasn’t affected me much. For every adverse effect, I can find a positive. For every downside, I can see an upside. As one who is neither sick nor unemployed, it is, frankly, hard to muster a complaint. With so many in true duress, I am, by comparison, fortunate. No doubt. […]

Things Related and (Maybe) Not

My car battery is dying. My electric tooth brush is dying. Both still can still take a charge but neither can hold it very long. Come to think of it, this weekend I had to replace the battery in my kitchen clock. I have noticed of late, too, that my phone battery drains noticeably faster […]

It’s About What You Expected

Everyone has an opinion about Mondays. Love ’em (some) or loathe ’em (most). Wednesday has it own nickname. Hump Day. It’s maybe not the sort of nickname you wish for when you’re a kid on the playground. And, as an adult, it might keep first dates at arm’s length. But, hey — it’s better than […]


After a few weeks of adjustment, I feel settled into my shelter-in-place life. I generally resist the placement of restrictions on my options but, when I am really honest about it, sometimes I do better after they are imposed. As long as I have my health and a notebook and my dog and some snacks, […]

Benefits of Restriction

I don’t have as much experience with fasting as some — I have never done a multiple-day fast, for example — but, as someone who has used intermittent fasting intermittently (how else?) over a period of years, I have fasted enough to discover that one of its benefits is that, in the absence of food, […]

Harrowing Hours

It takes so long — and yet the time goes by in a flash. First, you have to put on your protective gear — head to toe, with face mask in place. (In my case, the mask is a scarf. It is plaid.) You have to make sure you have made your game-plan, and that […]

On the Fear of Not Being Able to Wipe Your Own Ass

You don’t need a year’s worth of toilet paper. Of course not. And it’s silly to fight with someone over what you don’t need. But the senselessness makes sense: we are not rational beings. Certainly not entirely. Not even mostly. We are, in a way, always fighting over toilet paper — always grasping for things […]

Russian Connection

It wasn’t just a hockey game. It was Us versus Them. It was our way versus theirs. Capitalism versus Communism. America versus Russia. We were all Americans then. After our boys beat their men, our students beat their professionals, Americans who didn’t know the difference between icing a puck and icing a cake sang the […]

The Miracle

Forty years later, the moment still gives you chills. You have been bottled up this week — literally (tension in your back and shoulder) and figuratively (lack of writing, irritability) — and you have for some weeks now felt pervasive despair over the state of our country. We are at that point in winter, even […]


It’s not the verdict that scares. It’s the deliberation to reach that verdict. The president was not just let off the hook; his behavior has been endorsed. This changes everything. We have failed before, we failed this time, we’ll fail again. The beauty of the system: we have always had correctives. We have always had […]

In Praise of Lethargy

This week has included a whole lotta blah. Tired. Slow. Not much mojo. Very little giddy-up and go. This is not my preferred status, of course. One wishes one were running on all cylinders. But in lethargy lies a gift. Lethargy forces you to … … slow down. You can’t go past your personal speed […]

Ah Ahh Moments

On Saturday, I tidied my medicine cabinet. Here I don’t mean just that I tidied a shelf of my medicine cabinet. Or just that I plucked out and tossed from my medicine cabinet tubes of ointments last used before President Obama left office. Or that I discarded from my medicine cabinet bottles of medications that […]

Something Good This Way Comes

Expression is one of my current core values. For reasons I won’t go into now, expression has not always come easily for me. Also for reasons I won’t go into now, writing about expression is not coming easily for me at present, either. That is why they invented bullet points — to create the illusion […]

Words About Numbers

01/01/2020. You have to love the symmetry. The cleanliness. Today is a day that even the most rabid anti-Gregorians would have to admit is pretty frickin’ sweet, dude. I think we all know that even-numbered years are better years. And balanced days on even numbered years? Off the charts, man. Plus you have the perfect […]

Gratitude Review

I wrote recently — on November 17, 2019, to be specific — about a pet project I had undertaken pertaining to my gratitude practice. My goal was to make a more concerted effort to add to my gratitude journal (maintained on this site) each day. My aim was less about what or how much I […]

Concentration is Crucial

I don’t like that of late it’s been harder to focus than it used to be. Specifically, I do not like I’ve noticed it’s become more difficult to concentrate on a book. I don’t like that I reach for my phone instinctively. Even if I do not have a reason to reach for my phone. […]


I keep coming back to a draft of a post on the topic of distraction but I guess I am, um, struggling to focus on it long enough to form a coherent utterance. Let me try again. Sometimes bullets help: I have been thinking a lot about distraction because I want to know I am […]

Finding It

You know. You know what you must do. You know what you must give up. What (or who) holds you back. You don’t always know the how. Or the when. And why bother with the why. Be gentle. But listen. Listen to the voice that tells you. To pick up the pen and write that […]

Anxiety Incarnate

Like a window shutting in front of your face. That is what it is like. A window you didn’t know was there. That you did not shut. Not wittingly anyway. You just could tell the view was being … skid, skid, skid … reframed. Thump. After this window closes you see as you did before […]