Category Archives: Parenting


Late and lost in small town New Hampshire on a recent trip and perhaps contrary to the stereotype for my gender, I asked for directions. The whole town was the size of a postage stamp, how hard could it be to find a boarding school with dozens of buildings? But I had been walking in…Read the full article

Help Wanted

Not that it matters to most students, or most universities for that matter, but several hundred test-takers score a 1600 on the SAT each year. Some of these kiddos with “perfect” scores are admitted to highly competitive colleges (HSCs), some not. As one HSC admissions counselor pointed out, “we could fill our first year class…Read the full article


All things being equal, I suppose I would rather have a child who is able to look up words in the dictionary on his own than a child who wakes me up in the middle of the night asking me how to spell giraffe. On the other hand, I would rather spit out G-I-R-A-F-F-E after…Read the full article


Colleges are businesses. Colleges are businesses with some nice folks trying to good things, but colleges are businesses nonetheless. Colleges aren’t creepy dishonest businesses like Enron, but somebody at the college is aware that income should exceed expenses. Just as a chicken is in egg’s way of making another egg, how this year’s entering first-year…Read the full article

Safe at Home

After 300 college visits over the past several decades, perhaps I can be forgiven for skipping out on the information session and taking a personal tour. I have heard “take the most academically rigorous courses your high school has to offer” enough times to believe that it’s true. I have heard “there are no drugs…Read the full article


On a cool South Florida night in 1968, my buddies Alan and Elliot appropriated a dozen eggs from Alan’s refrigerator and positioned themselves in a thick hedge near an overpass on Miami Beach. Before the first gooey projectile had been lobbed, flashing lights appeared. The 12-year-olds were taken into custody and their parents called. After…Read the full article


At a recent conference in New Orleans I had the mixed pleasure of reconnecting with an old college friend who had apparently never heard of “never mix, never worry.” I learned from colleagues that Stacie had started with Kahlua and coffee at lunch and had slurped an entire bottle of Bordeaux at dinner. When she…Read the full article

Child for Sale

A twenty-five dollar gift certificate, a $2.95 card that reads, “Welcome to the family,” and a 47-cent stamp can undo a year of misunderstanding. Total expenditure: $29.42. Not a bad price to pay for an adult child if you think about it. I know folks who routinely pay $29.42 for bad Chinese take-out food. Bad…Read the full article