à la carte archives

Fear

This category contains 42 posts

#MeToo: Thoughts on Vulnerability, Victimhood, Secrets and Privacy

During my freshman orientation at Bryn Mawr College, the resident advisor invited us into her dorm room to sit on the floor in a circle and get know each other. To break the ice and build connection, she wanted each of us to share something we were either bad at or nervous about (so I … Continue reading

What’s Scarier than Public Speaking? An Aikido Rank Test

It’s a truism that many people fear public speaking more than death. I can safely say that an Aikido rank test is more terrifying than addressing a group of people. When I began practicing Aikido in early 2017, I sought an intense physical and spiritual challenge to lift me out of a dark place. I … Continue reading

Unexpected Reflections for 9/11

I was at work when planes flew into the World Trade Center in New York and another into the Pentagon. Someone plugged in a small television and we watched the unspeakable unfold. Even the office manager, a normally stoic man with a love of beer, began to cry. He dismissed us for the day. I … Continue reading

It’s Possible to Drown Out Marching Nazis. What About the Ones in Our Heads?

That 40,000 people marched peacefully in Boston on Saturday against hate groups, including Nazis, gave me hope that civilization would survive, at least for the weekend. While it’s important to starkly delineate what is, and what is not, acceptable in a modern democratic nation, it would be a foolish mistake to believe that everyone on … Continue reading

Why It’s OK, Even Imperative, to Laugh at the Tiki Torch Troglodytes

My late father, a survivor of Auschwitz, periodically told variations of the following joke when I was a kid: “Did you know that Jews and bicyclists caused World War II?” “Why the bicyclists?” I naively asked the first time. “Why the Jews?” After delivering the punchline, my dad chuckled. I either rolled my eyes, groaned … Continue reading

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