The Swinging Sixties

I grew up in the Swinging Sixties on a suspended wooden seat, pumping hard to kick the sky. While adults talked of riots, assassinations, and a war in Vietnam, I thought of playgrounds, Schwinn bikes, and Charles Schultz. I watched black and white episodes of Bonanza, Andy Griffith, and The Lucy Show at home despite major television companies producing them …

Christmas in Taiwan

This one is best when you have the tune to Julie Andrew’s “My Favorite Things” in your head.   Santa with pandas and reindeer on ramen Plastic poinsettias and breakfast of salmon Clerks dressed like elves in their red and green bling Christmas in Taiwan, a favorite thing.   Mock snow on windows and shiny foil displays Fake trees of purple …

Do You Know Sumo?

  “Look Mommy! It’s fat-bottom wrestling!”   Maybe your children grew up on football and Disney. Mine grew up on sumo and PiYo PiYo.   Our three-year-old was especially fascinated by sumo. Who wouldn’t be entranced by two hefty, thong-clad giants who stomp in, throw stuff on the floor, and then push one another around?   We were introduced to …

All I Really Needed to Know, I Learned in Second-Grade

  They say that all you really need to know, you learn in kindergarten. Well, I didn’t go to kindergarten. And since I’m a slow learner, I didn’t get the important stuff till second-grade. And there I learned that you should share everything.   (Except maybe for saliva.)   This was pretty apparent because Mrs. Crouch had stressed this from …

Charles Dickens and Sleepovers

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity.” I’m speaking of course about childhood slumber parties. This was indeed the best of times. In our small town, slumber parties were usually celebrating …