Making Meals

As a middle class male growing up in Japan in the late 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, my friend Nobu enjoyed the privilege of never having anything to do with meal preparation. Three delicious repasts appeared in front of him each day and afterwards, the dirty dishes disappeared. When work brought him to Hawaii in his…

Read More

Pleased Protoplasm

I didn’t plan to become a blob and I certainly didn’t imagine I would enjoy the experience. Like much of my life, it happened accidentally.  I had literally sailed off the grid into remote Alaska and Canada to relish hiking and kayaking. I spotted whales, grizzlies, Orcas and eagles daily, happily absorbing more wilderness than…

Read More

Food Glorious Food

The other day I spent time with a lovely sixteen-year-old young woman. I remembered how self-conscious I felt about my body at that age. I’d already begun to restrict my diet in attempts to lose weight. In the 1960s, during my teen-aged years, my friends and I idolized the British model, Twiggy, whose figure matched…

Read More

I Love Meditation

Why do I love meditation? Let me count the ways. 1. When I’m anxious or upset, I count each breath. When I can’t sit with closed eyes, respiration is always available. Perhaps for this reason, focus on breath is the foundation of most meditation. It’s easy to remember to do it. Sometimes, I put a…

Read More

The Last Playboy

On the last Friday of each month, when Ernie, my mother’s third and final husband, had finished his Playboy magazine, Mom took it. With her flashing blue eyes and platinum wig, she effused dramatic flair. Over time, she devised the most interesting and amusing way to recycle the monthly subscription.  Their driveway swooped up a…

Read More

Busy Birds

Amongst birds, it apparently matters who you spend the night with. At sunset, I love to wander outdoors to hear the raucous and high-pitched chirping and squawking from the tops of trees. The brouhaha emits intense sounds and makes me laugh. I take great comfort in the birds’ busy squabbling. Animal research has found that…

Read More

Odd Hairdressers

Why is it hard to find a good hairdresser? I want a simple “bob” haircut (longer on the sides than the shingled back), which seems to be fairly standard. But apparently not. When I meet a new stylist and make my request for a “bob,” most hem and haw and turn me over to someone…

Read More

Equal

I walk around in the world considering that, at my essence, I’m equal to everyone else. Of course, I see that some people are smarter than me or more skilled, for example, at surgery or computer repair. However, in terms of basic human respect, I feel parity with others. We’re human, with all our joys…

Read More

Crazy

The other day, walking out my front door, I found myself glancing down to make sure my shirt was buttoned. Then I laughed. I’d caught myself doing one of Mom’s Sanity Checks. She always told me, “If you forget to button your blouse, that’s a sure sign you’re looney.” My mother passed away more than…

Read More

Unfurling Fern Frond

At times, my life appeared to resemble an unfolding fern frond. An inner force pushed me to create and face hard challenges: a career teaching adults, public speaking, forming enduring relationships, becoming an exhibiting artist, child-raising, learning meditation and aspiring for enlightenment and founding two civil right organizations (the Ingraham-Garfield Student Exchange Program in 1964…

Read More