Tag Archives: wisdom

“Mom, What’s the Right Age to Start Having Sex?”

“Mom, what’s the right age to start having sex?” That was exactly the question I wasn’t expecting, sitting with my 13-year-old son and my husband in a restaurant overlooking the Hudson, sipping a cocktail, waiting for our food to arrive. I … Continue reading

Posted in Motherhood | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

What Are We Preparing Our Students For?

Today on Perfect Whole we have a guest post by my colleague, Richard Smith. A longer version of this essay was published in our school newspaper. Rich and I work in an extremely high-achieving school district in which nearly all … Continue reading

Posted in Education | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Terminal Curable Disease

I’ve been brewing an essay on the illness that is perfectionism for a long time now. It’s not quite cooked yet. But this morning, after a terrible loss in our community, the thought came out  like this: Be a beautiful … Continue reading

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Bigger

(The following is a version of the speech I gave at my son Isaac’s bar mitzvah last weekend. To illustrate the point before I began, I took off my high-heeled shoes and stood next to him in front of the … Continue reading

Posted in Motherhood, Volta | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Expanding the Universe

This week, a guest post from Ruth Hansen about the crucial role the arts play in expanding our circles of compassion. Acting teacher Sanford Meisner defined acting as no less than living truthfully in imaginary circumstances.  Actors are trained to imagine … Continue reading

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A New Year Every Day

I paid more attention than usual this year to people’s New Year’s resolutions and to the obligatory articles in the media about the most common resolutions and how long people keep them. Unsurprisingly, people want to improve their health, financial … Continue reading

Posted in Criticism, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 15 Comments

Lobbing Nerf Rocks

At a workshop I attended recently, Emmy Laybourne, author of the Monument 14 series, shared a rule, well-known among screenwriters, that I had never heard before: “Chase your character up a tree and throw rocks at him.” It’s smart advice: … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Libraries, Motherhood, Volta, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Perfect Whole, Superstorm Sandy Edition

We are grateful to have come through the storm safe and well, with no property damage, though I did not at all like the threatening looks one old, majestic oak was casting in the direction of my dining room. It … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Libraries, Motherhood, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Against Positive Attitudes

A few days ago, I lost someone I cherish, my mother-in-law of seventeen years, Marjorie Feldman Springer, who died of an extremely aggressive form of leukemia. Marge was a vivacious, energetic, athletic person, who biked, hiked, swam, played a devastating … Continue reading

Posted in Criticism, Volta | Tagged , , , , | 9 Comments

Permission Slip

Today’s post contains a gift for readers who already know which candidate they intend to vote for in the American Presidential election this November. If you’ve been following the campaign since the Tim Pawlenty days and are sickened by the stupidity, disgusted … Continue reading

Posted in Criticism | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments