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Ken Goldstein: Tribal Ways and Open Doors

Few of us will ever have the opportunity to spend an extended period of time on an Indian reservation. If you don’t live or work there, it’s just not something you’re likely to do. You might drive onto native lands for a festival or to buy some crafts, or you might enjoy some vacation time at an Indian casino. If you ever do have the invitation to fully immerse yourself in the culture of tribal ways, I recommend you walk through the open door. If you embrace the opening of that door, you will be changed. My wife and I recently spent a week volunteering at the Fort Mojave Indian Tribe, a federally recognized sovereign nation that sits at the three-way intersection of California, Arizona, and

Marcia Gloster: I Refuse to Become My Mother

It’s pretty common wisdom that the way we parent is significantly influenced by the way we, in turn, were parented as children. That doesn’t mean, however, that we are doomed to repeat the mistakes of our parents. When I was in my twenties, a friend who had also come of age in the 1960s confided that she had been unhappy as a child and still felt anger toward her overprotective mother and distant, disinterested father. In response, I blithely stated that I thought my early years were pretty normal. She looked at me with wide eyes. “Think about that, Marcia,” she said. Once I did, I realized that my childhood had been anything but what could be called normal. As the only child of parents who

Susan Petrone: When Our Mothers Die, We Become Unmoored

When our mothers die we come unmoored. There is no one to call on a Wednesday night to ask how you can tell if frozen food is still good; how you know if you’re really sick or just have a normal cold; or the best way to get a stain out of your favorite shirt. There is just you. If you’re lucky, you have someone–a husband, a wife, a roommate, a best friend–to puzzle over these things with you. But still, it’s just you and your little brain in your car, alone, at 8:15 on a Monday morning looking for someone to tell you that everything will be fine in a way that makes you actually believe it. When your mother dies, there is no one to tell you that you’re doing things right, or more crucially, a

Ken Goldstein: When Your Team Loses

The Houston Astros won the 2017 World Series last week. The Los Angeles Dodgers lost. It was an epic contest. Many have observed it was one of the greatest World Series match-ups in the history of Major League Baseball. It lasted into the mythic and deciding Game 7, crossing tentatively into the month of November, creating the first-ever Game 7 at Dodger Stadium and the first-ever MLB game played in November at Dodger Stadium. This year’s fall classic delivered all of the drama any fan could want from a World Series. There were come-from-behind victories one after another, larger-than-life villains and heroes caught in an explosive discussion of racism, more lazy walks and majestic home runs

Molly D. Campbell: As Parenting Mistakes Unfold

We do the best we can as parents. After all, there is no instruction manual. No required classes to take. No certification. People just get pregnant, the baby is born, and we take it from there – on faith, with much hope, vowing not to make the same mistakes our parents made. Our kids grow up, watching our goofs. It doesn’t matter that we don’t make the same mistakes that our parents did, because we come up with a litany of our own. Despite all the best intentions, all the parenting bloggers’ advice, sleep scheduling, breast feeding, baby-wearing, organic applesauce, and “everybody wins” sports, we screw up. In my novel Keep the Ends Loose, fifteen-year old narrator Mandy Heath watches her m

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