Proud happy kid

She went straight from a yellow/orange belt to an orange/purple belt in karate! Skipping is fairly rare, and her promotion letter said she was only being promoted to orange, but since sending it, the teachers conferred and decided she had attained the next level. They kept it as a surprise until they presented her with the belt last night.


The best

Indigo was lying on her side on her bed, reading. I went up close, kissed her shoulder, and said, “Aren’t books the best?” She looked up, said “No,” pulled me in with one arm, and went back to reading. I stayed there for a long time, her arm around me and mine around her, listening to her heart beat.

A special Monday off

Mondays are the second day of my “weekend,” Saturdays being the first, and since Joy and Indigo have work and school, I usually have a quiet day at home alone. The public schools now have a full week off for Thanksgiving, though, so today my daughter is home and one of her best friends is spending the day here too. They don’t see each other much since they started in different middle schoolls, and they are really loving being together.

So it is not as quiet as usual. Instead, in the next room, two 11-year-olds are laughing over a jigsaw puzzle and chanting along with the Hamilton cast album. They are practically letter-perfect. I am practically perfectly happy.

Election Day

Even though I was only delivering a mail-in ballot that I could have popped into any mailbox during the past several weeks, I went to the polling place today because my soul needed it, and because I like Indigo to see it. The line slinked out the basement door of our branch library, which was great to see, especially since we didn’t have to wait in it. I put the ballot in the red box (Indigo declined to do it for me: “I’m not voting”) and the volunteer pollworker gave me a sticker.


She cheerily insisted on giving one to non-voting Indigo as well. If Fox News gets a hold of a photo, there will be a scandal: “San Francisco stuffing the ballot boxes with 11-year-olds’ votes!” They’d be right to be nervous; she’s a radical.

Tuesdays are also the nights we put out the trash / compost / recycling, a task that always gives me a pleasant feeling of renewal. The house is lighter by several pounds of unwanted stuff, and we’re contributing organic matter to the soil and recyclables to the waste stream. It’s so tidy how it all gets picked up and taken to the right place by a well-planned, well-executed process. At least, it looks good on this end.

This Election Day has been a long time in coming. I hope its effects are as useful as Trash Day’s, for my daughter’s sake. Despite her sticker, she can’t vote, and her future depends on what the rest of us decide.


We were sitting at the table together, eating, when Indigo looked up and saw the cantaloupe I’d cut into for our breakfast. “It’s Pac-Man!” she said. She finished her breakfast before I did, and I didn’t realize what she’d done afterwards until I got up to put my dishes in the dishwasher, and saw this.


Joost Elffers and Saxton Freymann, your work has not been in vain.

Annals of adolescence

I am marking this date in my calendar: September 26, 2018. About 7:40 a.m. The first time that my daughter has sped up to walk ahead of me and said, “I’m pretending I’m not with you.”

We were walking up the hill to the car, because last night, getting home late from a board meeting, I couldn’t find any place to park on our block. And I had forgotten this point when making the decision not to get dressed before driving her to school, so I was walking up the hill in my pajamas. They are green, with little polar bears all over them. To be perfectly honest, I was pretending I wasn’t with me too.