THIS IS US

You bring him home from the hospital, in our case so early that you haven’t yet bought him a bed.

You look at him, inscrutable in a quickly assembled bassinet, and set about understanding him.

You hold him.

You hold him until, and while, he learns to walk, then hold…


We go up Liberty Street (this choice perhaps deliberate, something America would totally do) to Greenwich, through sluices of concrete blocks to slow movement, to where a surprisingly small number of people point cameras at the construction. The entrance to the 9/11 memorial is laid out to process large crowds…


I am in love… Photo: abbyladybug

She’ll be gone a good hour, perhaps two. You’re happy, of course, to watch the kids while she pays respects. Don’t think, obviously; nothing good can come of that. Try to make yourself useful instead. Maybe look for the long blue spatula, the one good for flipping hash browns for…


Gordon Parks, Untitled, Harlem, New York, 1963

The Jack Shaiman Gallery’s decision to split its “Gordon Parks: Half and the Whole” exhibit in NYC made some sense. The West 24th Street location was given over to his potent images of social-justice protest — crowds holding signs and newspaper headlines about Blacks killed by police that could (and…


Detail from Q’s homemade zine

The calendar said that 2020 began on January 1 like always, but the year had its own official start for each of us. Our kids’ school abruptly decided to close a day early in mid-March for spring break, and at the time we all thought we’d be back to something…


We discovered that the ACT was canceled due to the pandemic for the third time just two days before my son M was supposed to sit for the test. The first cancellation was in March just when everything slid into the sea of the pandemic; the second test date was…


This pandemic has been insatiable. It gnawed at the spring, slowly at first, then picking up speed until it consumed the last portions of the school year, including the usual habits and rituals of transition and completion. It ate my daughter Q’s birthday back in late April, which had to…


Father’s Day weekend in New York tends to be beautiful, all early summer sun and soft breeze, some of the city’s best days. …


We live in a New York neighborhood that doesn’t seem like a New York neighborhood. Battery Park City is a relatively new notch added on the lower west side of Manhattan, built in the 60s and 70s from earth excavated for the World Trade Center buildings and a few other…


Photo by Jack Hamilton

We spend this Thanksgiving as we have the past several, with each other at our own table and with way too much food. Since it’s just the four of us, we don’t need to cook the full-on meal, but we’ve ingested enough tradition over the years that we find ourselves…

Roblin Meeks

Essayist, lapsed professional philosopher, associate dean of ice cream. Author of creative nonfiction about work, love, self and other stuff. Welcome, pals.

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