About the most exciting thing a baby can do is burp - I've spent hours of my life holding a baby on my shoulder and patting its back, trying to loosen up a burp. Burping was probably invented to give the father something positive to do, since our chests are not equipped to allow us to do much else.
My body believes a famine is imminent and has begun stocking up on provisions. These supplies are being stored around my waistline. I've tried explaining to my stomach that this is entirely unnecessary: I've never once, not even when I was in college and more broke than the E.U., done any actual starving.
I think, of all the holidays we celebrate, my least favorite is Earth Day. For one thing, I never know what sort of gift is appropriate. A jar of dirt, maybe? And it's not clear to me why Earth even needs a 'day,' since a spin on its axis creates a day. That's like giving a man who owns a shoe store a gift of a pair of shoes.
Pre-history tells us that our species used to be a hunter-gatherer society. This means that the job of raising a family was split 50-50 between the men and the women - the man's 50 percent share was to sit in the woods with a sharp stick, waiting for something to hunt to wander by, and the woman's 50 percent was to do everything else.
I don't think my father considered allowing a teenager to follow his dreams was necessarily good parenting, or even parenting. I think he thought I was a teenager with teenage impulses. I'm pretty sure he knew that if he just let me follow those impulses, it would wind up being very expensive and perhaps even life-endangering.
Most of what happens in the world is far beyond a dog's comprehension, so they must turn to their faith in us to help them navigate life's treacheries. Don't we, also, have unanswerable questions about the vagaries of modern existence for which the answer is beyond human grasp, so that only our faith can guide us?
I was an arrogant man. I not only thought I could manage my life without help, I wanted it that way. I had best-selling books and a TV show and movie contracts; I felt invincible, secure in the thought that everything was my doing. And then, like all arrogant men, I came to stumble.
You'd think skiing wouldn't be strenuous - all you have to do, after all, is start at the top and let gravity pull you to the dessert bar in the lodge. But at those elevations, you'll find about as much oxygen as you'll find kindness from your children. It's like spending six hours holding your breath.
Not too many people know it, but when I was in junior high, I was a pretty tough kid and was the leader of a street gang. Well, OK, it was less a street gang than an Ecology Club. We were pretty intimidating, though, and had our own meeting room until we got run out of there by a bunch of thugs from the Poetry Society.