I know where it is. I see it pretty frequently, but, unless you knew it was there, you’d probably miss it. I picked it up, rescued it really, from the lawn mower a couple of years back and put it in a fairly strange place. It was hiding in the tall grass, all the way back in the yard, just this side of the home-run fence. It was what we always called a “game ball” to differentiate it from a “practice ball.” Game balls come off the bat hotter than the smooshy practice balls, so it was worthy of a rescue. If you’ve ever been around wooden fences, you know that sometimes the posts begin to … [Read more...]
Editor's Note: October is National Bullying Prevention Month. According to the Stomp Out Bullying organization, one in four U.S. students say they have been bullied and 5.4 million kids stay home from school on any given day due to a fear of being bullied. A boy was bullied yesterday. I know, I know, a million or more boys -- and girls -- were bullied yesterday. But yesterday it was one boy, a specific boy, a boy I know, a boy I like. I went with my two boys to pick him up for practice, his parents both work and the practices were bumped up to five recently to accommodate the earlier … [Read more...]
Editor's Note: September is Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Awareness Month, designed to honor families who have used these medical facilities and the health professionals who care for the them. My son starts preschool today. It doesn’t seem like that long ago when I was sitting in the NICU snuggling his entire tiny body on my chest. My son was a preemie, born at 34 weeks. Those were some really long and tough days for us. My wife felt guilty but it certainly wasn’t her fault. She had a normal, healthy pregnancy. We don’t know why he came early and we’ll probably never know. … [Read more...]
“Thickly Settled.” That’s the road sign that appeared as my wife and I drove around the Massachusetts town where we had just moved our oldest child into her college dormitory. I had never seen such a sign, but my first thought was how “thickly settled” my heavy heart had been all weekend. I knew drop-off would be bittersweet, but the crowded mix of contradictory emotions that had taken up residence in me kept shifting through pride, sadness, joy and fear. Upon second thought, I realized the opposite: my heart was “thickly unsettled.” But I found the metaphor of a family as a … [Read more...]
Although my book is intended mainly for the entertainment of boys and girls, I hope it will not be shunned by men and women on that account, for part of my plan has been to try to pleasantly remind adults of what they once were themselves, and of how they felt and thought and talked, and what queer enterprises they sometimes engaged in.
-- Mark Twain, The Adventures of Tom SawyerFor years I had the pleasure of teaching The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. I loved following Tom and his adventures and witnessing his foray into young adulthood. The simplicity that … [Read more...]