Skip to main content

Posts

Here's to you, Mister Hoffman

Dustin Hoffman is eighty-years-old.  Dustin - say it isn't so. Baby Boomers around the globe worship your legacy - your brave, outrageous career where you stepped out - risked much - and led us into our maturity. As Michael Dorsey in  Tootsie  - you exposed an artist brave enough to lampoon his feminine side. As Ted Kramer, in Kramer vs. Kramer  - you challenged other men to reexamine their ability to nurture, to settle for the glories of domesticity. And no one else could have exposed the complexities  of Raymond Babbitt as did you in  Rain Man.   The world honors your excessive and grand talent - but if these allegations are true, none of that will matter.  History will forget your artistry and remember you as a dirty old man. That's what I do not understand.  You're not a B list guy - - not a "made for TV" Hollywood guy. You're Hoffman, for god's sake.  And I cannot fathom you jeopardizing your lionized legacy around someone's seve
Recent posts

The end of all things

Only those of us who live in this place understand the insincerity of death. Too much we love the wild, eager summer.  Even so - Minnesotans are ever-ready for the next tornado, hail storm, blizzard. We expect the worst and are seldom disappointed.  No matter how lovely the moment, how elegant the day - the end of all things is always near and we know it.  People who visit in spring are shocked to see us half-naked, tanning on half-frozen roof tops.    We don’t care what you think.  Our summer sunshine is our liquid gold; rare, fleeting and precious.  For six, eight brief weeks each year, we chase the light - wherever it leads. Our lakes were carved by glaciers, but we don’t mind.  We flock to them like the geese and loons we love.   Only wild birds do what we do for fun.  If a decent lake is too far away, we lounge beside an underused, over-budget swimming pool owned by one of our municipalities, YMCAs or neighbors.  For one brief, shining season we fish, we

Fired from the MAYO CLINIC and what I learned

When I was a young, sassy, eager young woman, I was fired by the Mayo Clinic.  I was devastated. I worked two years to get the job - interviewed for six months - celebrated when I was hired by buying a house in Rochester, Minnesota. I was with them for eight months and loved the work, adored my colleagues.  But I was flawed, and they knew it.  I couldn’t get to my cubicle on time.  I couldn’t sit still during long, purposeless meetings. I resented the dress code, the deportment code, the high-energy mandate for all staff.  More than anything - I resented not being the most important person in the room.  “The needs of the patient come first.”  I was a mess. Only eight months out of my nasty, long-term marriage, I needed more than Mayo could offer. My little soul was battered - my frail self image smashed.   I needed a place to work, of course - but even more, I needed a place to heal.  Mayo Clinic was not about to deliver.  Their motto is - “The needs of th

If Hillary were as bad as Trump

My mother once told me a girl's reputation is worth her weight in lipstick and I believed her. Not so much for boys, I guess. A girl's reputation is worth her weight in lipstick.  Many of the men seeking to  lead us as the next President of the United States have dropped their former guise of morality, righteousness and dignity and chosen instead to market their homophobia, racism and sexism as our new, national norm.  Donald Trump is an excellent example.  His candidacy, marketed by every media outlet in the nation, proves that today, the naughtiest of little boys can be president.  As long as he has deep pockets, a string of blond wives and a healthy hunk of mean-spirited larceny in his heart, we're tuned in to his leadership. Does that same ethic apply to little girls?  I think not. Truth be told - Mr. Trump comes to the race hauling more trash than the Manhattan creates in ten years. What if Hillary were to match his scandalous history? A few highligh

Christ is risen - how about you?

Except for a haphazard egg hunt and the occasional brunch at W.A. Frost, no one in my family celebrates Easter.  My grown daughters are self-confessed atheists.  My ex-husband spends  Sunday at Caribou with the New York Times.  My brothers and most of my cousins believe this life -  this  insignificant flirtation with eternity - this is it.   And I have a hard time talking anyone into anything anymore. Church people don’t make my work easier.   Congregations are populated with adorable couples chatting  about gluten-free recipes, the best Door County bed and breakfast or their last siting of Garrison and his darling wife.  Remind me - her name? I kid you not. This is what Presbyterians do for fun. A gluten-free ham dinner anyone?  So, here am I, facing the Big One again.  On my own. The Resurrection. The Sunday for which all other Sundays were made. Christ is risen  ( the Anglicans tell us he is risen “indeed.” I always giggle when I hear it)  and those of us who

GOD GIRL challenges and inspires!

Meet Summer Hagen and Sean Dooley, the lead actors in my new show, GOD GIRL. In this video they share their impressions of the play, and their experiences traveling back in time. GOD GIRL runs through March 1, 2015 at the History Theatre in St. Paul, Minnesota. Tickets are still available.   Click here for more information. 

A Christmas miracle

I was sixteen when my father left. That year there was no Christmas tree, no turkey dinner, no presents.  My mother worked two jobs as a cleaning lady.  I sold hats at the Emporium in downtown Saint Paul. It was Christmas Eve, 1965. The store was closed.  The streetlights were decorated with the tinsel of the season.  Somewhere a church bell tolled "Silent Night." I stood alone on the corner and waited for the bus to take me home. The wind whipped my thin coat and threatened to tear off my hand-knit hat.  My mother had sewn a pair of corduroy pants to pull up under my dress, but I carried them.  It was better to freeze than look ridiculous. It was a snowless night, bitter and empty.  I shivered against the wind and considered how one year had changed everything. My parents' marriage was over.  My home and heart were broken. The divorce did not surprise anyone but me.  My father's fierce anger had exhausted my mother's forbearance years ago.  But