Redline to Twinbrook

Half my suitcase catches in the wheezing doors of the metro. I panic and pull, while a bot-like female voice urges passengers to step back from the entrances to the trains. The red bulbs blinking adjacent to the tracks blur as I keep tugging. I recall a poster

Dream House

I am 15 years old and standing in the back yard of a house in Seaford, Long island. It is a four bedroom cape with an above ground pool in the yard. My parents are with a real estate agent and they are discussing the property or rather

A Narcissist-Free Thanksgiving

I didn’t go anywhere for Thanksgiving this year. My husband and I opted to stay in this year and eat some baked ziti that I made. My bonus kids spent the holiday with his ex-wife, and we’ll be doing our Thanksgiving dinner on Friday. For us, veterans of

Lather, Bubbles, Burst Bubble

A few years ago, I joined a non-profit organization that works for the welfare of underprivileged children in India. It was a surprise to those who knew me, considering my reservations about kids. “I can tolerate them for a couple of hours,” has always been my response to


I watch a man stop, put his head in his hands. His balding head sports a shadow of hair; the street light gleams in the folds of his leather jacket. He stands, head bent, for only a few seconds while I watch from afar. One of

Rotten Bananas

I love being in my 40s. I have a pass to do whatever I want. It’s also a pass to come into my own and let go of old, dysfunctional patterns. A couple of weeks ago, some friends invited me to come hang out at their house. The next thing

Guide to Navigating a Funhouse

“If I have lost confidence in myself, I have the universe against me.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson One way to confront a monstrosity is to pretend that it is perfectly ordinary, like a moth whirring blindly into the glass of a cake display. Recently, I gained an acquaintance who simultaneously admires my

Unwelcome Roles: A Story of Sexual Harassment in Academia

A timeline of my last year in academia:
  • December 2011: Ask a materials scientist I’d been working with since 2010 if he’d be interested in advising my bachelor’s thesis project. Talk with the head professor of the materials science department, who’d be my official adviser with my colleague actually running the