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I handed in the first draft of an article this morning. I have no idea whether it’s good or not. It’s somewhere on the spectrum between “GENIUS!” and “SUCKS!” and the stress of waiting to hear the verdict from a new editor sent me outside doing laps around suburban blocks. Getting 10K steps is much better than my other vices for dealing with stress. So, yay me!

I hate being a cliché, but I monitored my steps using my Fitbit, while listing to the NYT podcast using the Spotify app on my iPhone which was strapped to my arm. On The Daily, Barbaro interviewed Caitlyn Flanagan about her recent article in the Atlantic. I ran into a neighbor who has a small business making home cooked meals for wealthy families where both parents have mega jobs in Manhattan. Yes, I’m not exactly a character on the Rosanne Show.

The media cycle is dominated by the Kavanaugh story right now. I won’t write a separate blog post about it right now. You’ll can keep up that conversation in the previous thread.

In meantime, let me you to other articles and topics.

Everything That You Know About Obesity Is Wrong

Breaking news – Ford won’t testify on Monday.

Why women don’t report rape.

Pig manure. Still not going to be a vegan. But ugh.

Photo: Sometimes my adorable family will meet up for brunch in the city.

 

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Is Kavanaugh Done?

Over the weekend, the Washington Post reported that Christine Blasey Ford, a professor and therapist from CA, accused Supreme Court Justice nominee, Brett Kavanaugh and a friend of assaulting her, while at a drunken party in high school.

Her story is highly credible in part because the details of her story are so familiar to many women who were in similar positions in the 1980s. Getting jumped by drunken guys happened a lot.

Is he done? Is it fair?

Those Who Stayed

With Hurricane Florence bearing down on the homes of Steve’s parents and his cousin, we’ve been glued to the news for the past couple of days. Steve’s folks live on a barrier island near Morehead City. His cousin and his family live in New Bern. His folks eventually left to stay with friends in Raleigh, but their neighbors stayed, as did the New Bern cousins.

Here’s what Steve’s parent’s island looks like right now.

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Why would people stay after all the news coverage told people to go, go, go? Some stayed because they think that being there will save their homes. Lockean “life, liberty, and property” is part of the American culture.

But I think that most people in North Carolina stayed, even after all the news and authorities told them to go, because they simply didn’t believe the news. Trump’s constant “fake news” taunts have undermined confidence in news, and his buffoonery has undermined confidence in leaders.

And now rescue workers are putting their lives at risk to save these people.

 

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pyramid.jpgI’m going to try to get tickets for King Kong when it’s in preview.

Worst professor award goes to….

My in-laws are near ground zero – near Morehead City — for Hurricane Florence. I’m glad that they finally agreed to go inland, but I suspect there are a whole lot of people who are refusing to go. It’s going to suck.

Why aren’t kids being taught to read?

The teachers’ strikes are going to be a factor in upcoming elections. I’m going to come back to teacher pay sometime soon.

I’ve had lox on a raisin bagel before. It’s delish.

(Credit: Image)

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Frats, Beer, and In Loco Parentis

Last Wednesday night, Jonah and two of his housemates went to a frat party two blocks from their off campus house. His roommate, David (name changed), was a member of this fraternity. It’s a high end frat, according to Jonah, and one that he’s considering on pledging.

Everybody had a good time. They connected with friends that they hadn’t seen since last semester. There was a keg of cheap beer, but people weren’t totally smashed at that time. Jonah and his other roommate left early at around midnight, leaving David, a first generation kid whose dad is a pipe fitter from Philadelphia, with his fraternity brothers.

Around 2:00, Jonah was going to sleep and called David twice to see where he was. No answer. In morning, when he was bed was empty, they called him again. No answer.

By mid-afternoon, the housemates were stressed, so they tracked down his girlfriend through Instagram and heard that David had been in an accident on the way home.

It seems that David did come home, but slipped on the front stairs and fell on the back of head on the pavement. There’s a pool of blood about five feet from the stairs. He staggered around for a while, nobody know how long, before the cops found him and took him to the hospital.

He had four skull fractures and bleeding on the brain. At first, his brain was still swelling, and he couldn’t recognize his parents. By last night, he was eating food and his memory was returning. Still, he’s out for the semester with months of speech therapy, at the very least.

Did this happen because of booze or was it a freak accident? While Jonah insists the kid wasn’t smashed, he probably was. If I was the parent, I would have already employed an army of lawyers to wreck unholy vengeance on the university and fraternity. Weirdly, the cops and the university haven’t come by to talk with the kids. When we were there this weekend, I made Steve take pictures of the dried blood puddle, in case the parents should need it in the future.

Jonah was a hot mess, so he came home for the weekend where we babied him with special foods, hugs, and frequent lectures about responsibility, education, and the fragility of brains.

What should we do about fraternities?

 

What To Do With Kids With High Functioning Autism?

I first wrote this blog post back in October 2013. Due to the mysterious magic of google searches, it is my most popular blog post. I thought I would update it this morning, five years later. 

My son has high functioning autism or Level 1 autism or whatever they’re calling it these days. Because researchers now think that there are many different kinds of autism, my kid’s variety is characterized by speech and social deficits, average to superior IQ, hyperlexia, some anxiety and sensory issues, no obsessions, no stimming.

He’s only a sophomore in small public high school right now. His story isn’t over yet. He still has two more years before graduation, and we face major decisions about his future. Sill, in those five years, he has made so much progress. He’s now completely out of special ed for math, and he participates in after school activities with the typical kids. Even in the past year, he has made stunning changes. We’re now considering future plans for him that were inconceivable when I first wrote this blog post.

Because this blog post brings in so many random parents desperate for answers, I thought I would spend the next thirty minutes writing up what worked for us. Now, I’m not a hundred percent sure that our methods for dealing with my kid’s autism are responsible for these changes. Maybe simple brain maturity would have gotten us to the same point. Maybe these methods only work for my particular kid. I can’t be certain, but just the same, I’ll share.  Continue reading