• Blog
  • Peggy Noonan’s Advice for Gentlepeople

    I don’t study issues of gender, but I do think about them. Lately, I’ve had a new opportunity for thinking about gender and leadership because, for the first time in thirty years, my boss is a woman. Hers was an internal promotion, so she had been a peer. It’s been fascinating for me to observe […]

  • Books
  • Versatile Shirley Jackson

    Did you read the short story “The Lottery” in school? The story takes place in a small town, at an unstated time. Palpable excitement builds over a cherished town tradition. Which tradition, exactly, is revealed to the reader in pieces. We finally learn that one town member, chosen by lottery, is to be stoned to […]

  • Blog
  • Thanksgiving in the Desert

    Rancho Las Palmas

    Home from Thanksgiving travel. My family has a decades-long tradition of spending Thanksgiving in Palm Springs. If you know me from elementary school, or summer camp, or college, or any other time, you may know about this tradition. My family likes traditions. There are traditional parts of our tradition (duh?), like three, or in some […]

  • Books
  • Words In Air

    Elizabeth Bishop Robert Lowell

    My husband and I mostly had a long distance, international, pre-Internet courtship. We wrote a lot of letters, and I have boxes of them still. One of my retirement projects will be to organize, scan, assemble, and annotate. I’m a romantic about letters. Thus, I fell in love with Words in Air. The book contains […]

  • Teaching
  • Since When?

    I recently shared a story about Halloween my freshman year of college. I like thinking about those good old days. I made lifelong friends. I am grateful for those friendships every day. Did I get a good education? Maybe. If I didn’t, I own my young-person’s choices. Because, as I have quoted elsewhere on this […]

  • Books
  • Roxane Gay’s Bad Feminist

    I binged on two of Roxane Gay’s books: Bad Feminist and Hunger. Bad Feminist was wise. Hunger was shocking, in an impressively plainspoken way. The essay in Bad Feminist that moved me to post was “Typical First Year Professor.” This incident, in particular: When I was a student listening to a boring professor drone endlessly, […]