Monthly Archives: October 2012

“No,” I Told My Friend. “Federal Aid for Sandy Doesn’t Mean We’re on the Verge of Socialism.”

My friend Dee wants to start a business selling tee shirts with a special message. A native of South America, she wants people to know that she and millions like her are legal. Dee became an American citizen at least 15 years ago. Still, she struggles with her self-concept. She’s had too many encounters with people who have demeaned her accent, denigrated her looks, and just been pissy about the fact that she’s different. In fact, she said, “People treat me like I’m stupid because of my accent.”

I remember my European immigrant grandmother, whose English classes consisted of watching “Password,” a popular TV game show back in the ’60s. And my grandfather, who Continue reading

Thoughts on Being a Mom from the NYC Subway

She squatted on the subway platform and I noticed what appeared to be a black and white animal between her legs. A dog? I wondered. Can you take a dog on the subway? Surely a service dog can go anywhere. I walked around the woman and a few seconds later she stood up. What I thought had been animal skin was actually leggings.

I wanted to ask someone about the train schedule, and the squatting, animal skin lady – Continue reading

Enjoy a Cup of Atolé or Champurrado – Culinary Delights From the Land of Enchantment

It’s autumn. Time to enjoy the longer evening hours with family, and all those special treats we make when it’s not too hot to bake! Autumn is also a great time to try atolé and champurrado, traditional drinks from south of the border that are also part of New Mexican culture. I tasted my first atolé in college and still remember my first sip.

Every afternoon that summer, enormous thunderheads surged over the New Mexico mountains. The earthy scent of rain mingled with pine, delighting my senses. We had Continue reading

The Problem With Today’s School Lunches

I can’t imagine what would have happened in my high school if the kids had protested the lunch menu. We probably would have been given detention. Maybe even suspended.

But not any more. Encouraged by social media, kids are making videos about their inability to survive on the new leaner menus, aided and abetted by faculty members, no less.

The start of this school year brought protests over the federally subsidized school lunch Continue reading

Meet Maven, The Kitchen Sink Philospher

Cartooning has always been on my list of things to do when I grow up, along with being a female Charles Kuralt. (The dog I buy to take on the road with me will be a border collie that I’m going to name Dorothy). And I want to have at least one story aired on NPR.

I thought about being a cartoonist back in high school, and even spent about four minutes researching the career field in the guidance office. Study commercial art, the Continue reading