Personal Essays

Loss For Words: A Meditation on the Ubiquity of Bizarre Corporate Language

"Sometimes a CEO would come in and pace. He needed to “think out loud.” We’d have pastries, coffee; I remember feeling at a loss: how do I behave in front of this client when I have truly no idea what I’m supposed to do or be?"

Closer to the Nursing Home

Is this the last magazine I'll read before I die?

The Last Dirty Picture Show

A love letter to the Tiki Adult Theater: "When it’s gone, where will all these lost souls go?"

A Walk Down the Towpath: What Actually Happens?

I don’t feel like a scared person, someone who is constantly afraid of being hurt. I try hard, actually, not to be that way.

Anniversary

Ten years after one of the deadliest tornadoes in history ripped through his town, an ex-newspaper reporter remembers all that was lost and all that was left.

I’ve Always Wanted to Look in a Dress the Way Albert Brooks Looks in a Dress…

Wishing I looked as good as a man in a dress is an ancient feeling for me.

Scheming for Moderna in the Black Heart of Budapest: An Ex-pat’s Vax Adventure

If I’ve learned anything this past year, living in a somewhat unstable foreign country during a vicious global pandemic, it’s to trust my survival instinct: Stock up on rice and beans, make sure my bills are paid, check in with family and friends, and stay away from vaccines that sound like Captain Beefheart album titles.

A Life of Dignity

"Your pictures rob her of dignity," someone white says, because to them there is no dignity in aging, and especially not in dying. To me, dignity is nearly all Maurie Jo has left.

Shoplifting at Sephora and Other Acts of Humanity

"We were the majority. For the first time in all our lives. A trans majority."