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‘Gaslighting’ is the word of the year. What took it so long?

Merriam-Webster's designation is very 2022. But it also could have been the word of the year in nearly every period of American history.


Of course audiobooks count as reading

The notion that there are cultural gatekeepers who get to say “what counts” feels … medieval. And I mean that literally.


This Veterans Day, I'm searching for my dad's Army buddies before it's too late

I’m left with a feeling of expiration. Nearly all the people who know anything about my dad’s time in the service have died except for my mom.

Cicadas emerging now from their 17-year slumber have a lot to teach us about time

They're loud but brilliant, particularly for their ability to be mini-time capsules that push through the soil and remind us of earlier versions of ourselves.


Covid quarantine confirmed that sleeping in separate beds is the best thing for my marriage

In movies and shows, sleeping apart is represented as a sign of trouble in a relationship. I used to bristle and take these scenes personally. Now I just laugh.



Rush Limbaugh died from lung cancer after denying smoking's risk. Why'd he believe his lie?

If liars believe what they're peddling, they can better spread their lies by having more confidence in their presentation.
This essay received a lot of attention, and it might be tied for the essay that garnered me the most hate mail. It's really not about Rush Limbaugh as much as it is about self-deception in general. People objected to me saying he was a liar, which tells me they are not people who will ever be interested in what I write.

Many teens don't have sex. So why do older virgins often feel so ashamed?

We don’t talk enough about how it’s neither strange nor shameful to have your first sexual experience well after adolescence.


Trump, Covid-19 and racism taught me to stop being nice and embrace my rage

This has been a year for rethinking my affability. Which is how I found myself screaming at a nun.

This essay received a lot of attention on social media and I heard from many readers who shared my sentiments.  I love the illustration on this piece so much. Even if you don't read the essay, I think the illustration says it all.


Early Menopause at 46 Was a Surprise. Now I Realize it Was Also a Gift

I've traditionally been a late bloomer, but when my body decided to go through menopause starting at age 45, it made me reflect on how I've always been part of the atypical 5 percent—and how this was yet one more chance to seize an opportunity.