I've just returned from my youngest son's Rite of Passage, something his brothers also went through at his age. It's a curriculum I've developed — teachings, rituals and ceremonies — for turning boys into men.
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Flagstaff, Ariz., 1975. I'm 18 years old and standing in a convenience store on a lunch break from my part-time job. That's when I see the book.
Like any veteran flier of Southwest Airlines, I was ready. Exactly 24 hours before my flight, I checked in. If you tarry a moment longer, you'll be condemned to the dreaded "C" group, mooing last onto a plane with only middle seats left in the back where you get to cuddle with the forearms and shoulders of strangers for a couple of hours and then lose a day and a half trying to exit the airplane.
My son has a friend. Every evidence points to a sincere, mutual, warm and caring friendship. They stay in touch. They support each other. They are informed about the other's comings and goings, the ups and downs of dating, their respective journeys of education and vocation.
I don't bandy about the word "liar."
Given that I only hang with you only once each week, Good Reader, I'm normally reluctant to continue a dialogue from the previous week. But there are exceptions that feel important to me, and this is one of them.
I step out of the bank and see the red low-rider truck pushing down the street. Ironic that it’s Charleston Boulevard.
Celebrities open our souls to joy, hope, and purpose. And as recent scandals remind us, celebrities often forge public faces that are hid ugly human sides.
We can only promise not to harm. Never not to hurt. Because sometimes the only way not to harm is to hurt.
Value love and friendship. Pay attention, celebrate and be grateful. Because we simply never know. Human beings have no rights or claims on the ever-so brief moments they are given to be together.
It’s shameless fun to watch couples find a renewed momentum for the work of marriage. To watch them stop confronting each other and start confronting themselves.
A father’s selfless love benefits than those he loves. His selfless love benefits the father, too. It rescues and redeems his soul.
Abandoning all symbolic understanding of sex and gender on the grounds that we are especially enlightened and very cool is desperately unenlightened and not the least cool.
Don’t get married unless you think it’s a good thing to be totally, radically exposed. Because you will be. Love grows intimacy. And intimacy exposes us.
“Stress gurus” usually offer a simple — and patronizing — solution: “Relax.” It’s more useful to identify the fundamental sources of stress and deal with those.
It takes a lot of courage to risk dreaming. And it takes a lot of courage to walk away from the tombs of dreams unrealized.
Baltimore Mom becomes icon of our collective frustration regarding permissive and absent parents. She is a prototypical mother in whom terror, outrage and shame collide.
It takes energy and empathy. It takes the ability to teach. And it takes the willingness to let your children go to live their own lives.
It’s a beautiful thing to stand in the presence of a couple’s love, fidelity and mutual respect. Thriving marriages pour light into the world.
I just got off the phone with Elie Khoury, owner of Larry’s Great Western Meats. For a guy who can’t be very happy with me, he’s very understanding. He believes me. He knows I meant him no harm.
Hiding hate behind the mask of pathological religion is a disturbing and dangerous thing.
Sunday was the highest of High Holy Days for Christians — Easter! But, even if you are one of those folks who swear you don’t have a religious bone in your body … well, the story can still compel and inspire.
Let’s talk about mothers and sons. We live in a world absent shared symbols, ceremonies and rituals for rites of passage into manhood. In the premodern world, these rites were universal and effective. Every culture, every tribe made overt the vital and necessary steps from puberty to manhood. Today, this journey is left largely to the clinical observations of psychology.
I know a published novelist. She is my friend. She is brilliant. A birth accident left her with cerebral palsy. Her speech is difficult to understand. Although she can ambulate, her gait is awkward. The motor skills of her arms and hands are functional, but impaired. But, cognitively, she’s perfect. She is a perfectly normal human being trapped in a disabled body.
The most common enemies of marriage are treacherously subtle. Domestic violence, infidelity, addiction, vicious arguments — these enemies of marriage are obvious. But they are not the most common enemies. Just the most obvious.
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