The Plagued Parent

posts about surviving our children, the Baby Boomers who raised us, and everyone else with an opinion...

Let them Be

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According to a recent study out of MIT, your friends don’t like you. You’ve probably already suspected as much. Your family probably doesn’t like you all that much either, they just tolerate you because of the shared DNA and the money you owe them. This MIT study suggests that, at least in terms of friendship, […]

Did you sign the waiver?

At the beach the other day, I saw something familiar play out . A mother was trying to coax her daughter into the rough surf at the Charlestown Breachway Beach. “Look,” the mom said, “your father and sister are out there, and I’m going because it’s too hot to sit here. So, let’s go!” The little girl, about […]

Hammer Time

Maggie hated shopping with her four kids but she especially hated going down three specific aisles: snacks, cookies and cereal. Inevitably, fights broke out over who picked what last time and who always gets his or her way and that the criteria for choosing stuff should be: age, or height, or the ability to actually read […]

Traveling Mom-isms

We spent a recent weekend with family friends in New York City. My family has been numerous times but this was the first that I actually “listened” to what the moms were saying to our kids — and not just the two moms we travelled with. Mother’s and wives from all over — Germany, England, […]

Pests

Across the Adirondacks, sweeping down from Michigan, the emerald ash borer has rapidly devoured 50 million trees reducing forest bark to pulp. Swaths of eastern forest dead and yet the cause for concern is that Rawlings may not be able to make baseball bats for the major leagues when ash trees cease to grow. Gypsy moth caterpillars […]

Beware the Millennial Apocalypse

Not so long ago I had to face the fact that I fathered a narcissist with a capital “N”. I am not alone. It would seem that many of us responsible for bringing children into the world over the past twenty years have raised, well, assholes. We didn’t do this on purpose. We had the […]

Chops

Mrs. Mianelli’s middle son just hauled away the white five gallon bucket containing the innards and head of the calf my grandfather was butchering; the man exchanged some words in Italian with my grandfather but the only ones I recognized were “Grazie” and “Prego”. After pushing the heavy steel delivery door with his hip my […]

The Pain of Shortcuts

For months we’ve been taking yoga classes on Sunday mornings with a specific instructor. Recently she left the studio to pursue a cross country odyssey with her husband to downward-dog it across the country to California. I had grown to enjoy her classes and the way she opened me up to the principles of yoga, […]

Elevate You

I have always loved live music. I remember exactly when the idea of the vitality of live performance penetrated my brain — I was probably 4 or 5 years old. We didn’t have much extra money growing up, so my parents entertained us with coloring books at the kitchen table, going to the pet store […]

Epic

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He hunkered down behind the shrubs and tried to conceal himself from enemy troops as best he could among the dead leaves and undergrowth; despite his shady position he was drenched in sweat thanks to the summer heat. A soft low voice spoke, “Where’d he go?” Others mumbled with uncertainty, confusion, and another said and his […]

Nerve Endings

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My daughter is at the kitchen table a bundle of nerves. Finals week. Soccer tryouts. There doesn’t seem to be enough time. The phrases, “I’m not” and “I can’t” are tossed about. At some point the tears start. We reply with the old standards: “You have to” and “You will” and “It will be fine”. […]

Legend has it…

A legend exists but the origins of its antique lore remain unclear to me — probably ancient India or somewhere in the Near East —  most likely the stories genesis lay buried deep below layers of ancient Sanskrit which few of us knows and fewer recall from their previous lives. It goes like this: eternal beings responsible for the […]

Having fun yet?

I sit on the couch looking out the open windows onto the front porch. My daughter is supposedly out there studying, but mostly she seems to be fiddling with my Macbook trying to get Youtube to offer her a better John Mayer playlist and complaining about bugs assaulting her. In between busting her chops about […]

Slow Learner

The Plagued Parent

For months I have been struggling in yoga class with certain poses, one of them being “half moon”. Consistently I have fallen out of this pose, much like several others that plague me — eagle pose, warrior three, crow pose and wheel. But for what ever reason half moon pose has become one of the […]

Rough Sketch

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She draws self-portraits with over-sharpened pencils that often break under the pressure behind them and the paper tears after being subjected to ferocious tirades erasing lines deemed unsuitable and ugly, lines that failed to match the purity of her “vision”. The result becomes these angry sketches that — while mysterious, dark and brooding — seem more contrived and more fragmented […]

Snack Time

Along with the leaves, innumerable acorns have been raked to the corner of the yard where other dead and dying things rest and compost. Several chipmunks dart beneath the leaves thrashing about uncovering the acorns only to be usurped by a couple gray squirrels. Seemingly the five work as a group, a unit, plucking acorns from the […]

Growing Season

THE NEW YOU-2

My front yard now inspires me. This had not been the case prior to last Friday. For years the front of our house has been a mess. On one side of the front porch the pine tree that started out small was crowding out the Pee Gee hydrangea, as well as encroaching on the corner […]

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