A Short Story The Love Pool It was becoming a scandal of mixed bathing proportions. The Horner kid – the cocky one, the youngest one, not the slow-witted older brother, but the good-looking kid, the one with the physique and the guitar skills and the amiable, effortless presence (you have to be careful with young..
Confusing Movie Dream Trailers.. Somber music. Winter. A man examines a cottage bedroom with an empty crib by the window. He sits on the bed, alone, and puts his head in his hands. Summer: he is running across a meadow with his wife, a child in his arms. Winter. Alone again, he looks down the..
A Short Story I spent the evening afraid of his face. Brother Hendricks wore the pits and the furrows of his adolescence; his sons had that sort of pomegranite acne that might have made lesser young men more recluse, but they plunged into the fray without apology – basketball players, musicians, bearers of girlfriends to..
Seeing Through The Clutter So, in this no-man’s land between Christmas and our official re-awakening of commerce—about one week after New Year’s—I’ve been swimming through a rich sea of YouTube documentaries. It’s an impossibly large feast; it’s like being being tossed around by a huge school of Atlantic Cod, two minutes with a fork in..
Which Cable Gets you to Heaven? I spent my 58th birthday organizing my USB cables and engaging, half-heartedly, in a theological debate on Facebook. I wasn’t “all in,” because you get the sense, sometimes, that some fellow believers just don’t share the same assumptions, even remotely, about the faith, and so there is very little..
The Man of “Science” I took a call years ago from one of my father’s business friends. We had Stanford in common; he had graduated a few decades before and his daughter was on her way there at the time. I recognized, in his voice, a kind of nerdy, technical view of the world. I..
I try to start my day in an ancient text. I scold myself if my mind wanders, because I’m trying to treat it with at least the reverence I give Scottish shortbread. I’m trying to savor the stuff—even when the words feel dry and tasteless. The point isn’t just to read, but to think, and..
Wormwood Imagine you’re a small boy and two men from the government let your mother know your father has had an accident. He fell, or jumped, out of a 13th story hotel room in New York. It is 1953 and your father is a germ warfare scientist. Over the rest of your life, you will..
Fort Building Doctor: So tell me about this flu? Patient: Well, the standard stuff: congestion, headache, sore throat, upset stomach, nausea, dizziness, insomnia, difficulty swallowing, fever Doctor: all at the same time? Patient: No, they appear to be working in two man teams, like assassin squads. Just when the congestion and headache go away, nausea..
A brief inventory of human conflict I have witnessed, first or second hand, over the years: My father is preparing a ski boat for a sales/business trip down to Baja. He’s giving my mom a hard time about helping him out, barking orders. They have words, and when dad drives off, boat in tow, mom..