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Summer Storms and Switching Places

August 6th, 2016|

I should know not to tempt fate. Maybe a year ago I started feeling cocky, like we’d gotten this parenting thing down. Nobody knows what they’re doing, of course, but I felt we’re going to survive it—the adults, the kids, our marriage. I felt that everyone will emerge, more or less, unscathed.

And of course we will, […]

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Coming Out

July 6th, 2016|

It was time to start telling people. Probably past time.

There’s a dull pounding in my ears.

I take a breath, and steady myself. As nonchalantly as possible, I say “Yeah, Jaden’s in kindergarten in the fall…”

Pause. “…Again.”

It’s strange how vividly every time I ever told someone I’m gay flashes before my eyes when I’ve got an even mildly […]

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My Bad

May 17th, 2016|

One of the perks of writing — and I guess parenting — is that I get to be right so much of the time, or imagine that I am. School dropoff is time for the adults to share war stories, and these don’t tend to paint our little dears in a great light. They’re headed to class, unable to rebut […]

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Time Out

May 15th, 2016|

I’ve stormed out of the house again. Standing by the garage, I see my neighbor up the street wrangling clippings into the green bin, and I think maybe I’ll head up there. Make conversation. But I’m not sure. There’s a wet dishtowl over my shoulder, and probably a fire in my eye. I might seem […]

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Four Years

March 27th, 2016|

We just saw Laurie Anderson’s lovely documentary Heart of a Dog, about losing her mother and her Rat Terrier Lola Bell, and obliquely about losing Lou Reed. It’s really about memory and loss and the strange business of being alive.

Anderson tells this amazing story about a long hospital stay when she was a kid, and while she’s […]

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She Doesn’t Like Surprises

February 29th, 2016|

You can know someone for a long time and still not get it.

Last week I picked Shayla up from school, headed to an appointment. I’m sure we’d talked about it, the time, the plan, everything. But from the dark cloud on her face I could tell she was not expecting me.

“Poppa is supposed to pick me […]

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Two Books

February 19th, 2016|

As a somewhat introverted person, my different roles sometimes feel like parallel lives. I’m a father, a son, a husband. A web producer, geek, proud member of the PTA. I’m a gay man, a political moderate (not easy!) and have my level 2 Reiki certification.

But perhaps my most solitary, private role is reader. Absorbed in a book, I have […]

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Death and Cookies

February 5th, 2016|

The girl scout industrial complex landed this week and there was nowhere to hide. Of course it’s my own fault. Last year Shayla got excited and we sold lots of cookies. When the Troop needed a Cookie Manager, it seemed harmless enough. Why not store a few cookies in the garage and help out?

Fast forward: cookie class, […]

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Getting My Walk

January 18th, 2016|

The rains keep coming, and if it’s not the full solution to our drought, it’s a step in the right direction. Besides, I love the rain. Nothing like a few hours of quiet, reading the paper, enjoying the rain outside… Oh.

Maybe I mean I loved the rain before kids (BK).

I’m sure even BK I spent more […]

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The Hard Work of Good Fun

January 3rd, 2016|

I laughed out loud to read my friend Whitney’s caption under a delightful movie of her child sledding in snow. “This video is misleading,” she wrote, “Today has not been all fun and games.” While she’s always enjoyable to read (and her blog 510 Families is an East Bay must for parents), my delight was also because I’d […]

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Happy 2016: The Cheesy Holiday Letter Goes Online

December 4th, 2015|

I was carrying the Halloween box up from the garage, and Jay seemed dazed. “It seems more like last month when we had this stuff out, not last year.” The years cycle more and more quickly for me, like riding in that horrible/delightful gravity-defying cylinder where I was both weightless […]

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You Can’t Go Home

November 29th, 2015|

We had a lovely Thanksgiving visit with Grandpa Ted and Grandma Mary, packed with adventure. We joined 40,000 in a downpour for the Austin “Turkey Trott,” the one mile kid version, raising funds for local housing and food services. The kids dug for genuine Texas dinosaur bone casts buried beneath a giant sand pit at the Nature […]

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Goodbye Mr. Bubbles

November 6th, 2015|

As Woody Allen put it, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.”

Our little baby rat, Mr Bubbles, rescued from our psychopathic cat at maybe a week old, eyes still closed, improbably stayed alive, fed by hand with milk from a dropper. He was thriving.

Don’t fear, he’s alive and well. But while he […]

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The Lady Makeup

November 4th, 2015|

We were almost ready for trick-or-treating, but I could tell Shayla wanted to ask something. Her hesitation made it seem unlikely I’d be able to say yes. (No, we can’t take the pet rat with us. No, you can’t unstuff the couch cushons and use the fabric for your outfit. No, no, no….)

I was startled by […]

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Animal Story

October 22nd, 2015|

In my (priviledged) experience, you have to look pretty hard in Berkeley to find somebody who’ll object to gays, or two guys raising children, polytheistic and vegetarian. (We’re actually omnivores, that last bit just an example). I don’t think my expressive dance therapy, Ojai psychic, or Reiki training could manage a rolled eye for at […]