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Abortion in Austria

In the 1920s there was a severe housing shortage in Vienna, and when my friend Mariella’s parents got married, they could find no place to live. So they moved in with the husband’s mother, who specified that while they could live with her, but there could be no children. The new wife got pregnant, andContinue reading “Abortion in Austria”

My North Carolina, and Why I Am Not Surprised

The guiding principle is to emphasize the positive, but today I am not inclined to do so, because that would not reflect my experience. Every once in a while you have to move past “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I am not surprised by what is happeningContinue reading “My North Carolina, and Why I Am Not Surprised”

Tragedy all around

Yoga evens you out and strengthens you, but more importantly, meditation (which simply means sitting there and breathing) invites strength and balance to deal with tragedy and pessimism. So what is the pessimism of the day?  Global warming, which threatens our very existence, the unexpected accidental death of an extraordinary person you know, the massContinue reading “Tragedy all around”

Bless Marilyn Marlowe

A long time ago, while I was married to my first husband, Ernest Coates, I mixed up being married to a writer with being a writer myself. Ernest churned out thousands of pages of writing but never got around to submitting them anywhere, while I supported the family. Not a good plan, and for thatContinue reading “Bless Marilyn Marlowe”

Domesticated men

I have been watching two men take over the domestic life of their families — my son and my husband.  My son has to take care of two children by himself for extended periods of time.  He irons their school clothes and makes their lunches at night, figures out methods of discipline, gets them toContinue reading “Domesticated men”

Husbands and crutches

I just hobbled to my desk, hugging two crutches under my left arm so I could carry a mug of hot tea in my right hand.  I broke tiny bones in my foot and this is what I am reduced to. Fifteen years ago I badly sprained my ankle and had to commute to theContinue reading “Husbands and crutches”