Raccoons, the Internet and Me: A Cautionary Tale About Confirmation Bias

Years ago, I learned a valuable–and hilarious–lesson about confirmation bias and how easy it is to be misled online. We were doing spring clean-up in the yard when my youngest son announced he’d discovered “poop” under a tree. I trotted … Read More

Shrugging Off Camouflage

Whatever else is true, Inauguration Day is about new beginnings–for the country, of course, but also for individual citizens. This feels like an opportunity to push a reset button, and I’m taking advantage of it to restart this blog. I’m … Read More

Crazy Hair Magic

I wrote this story many years ago and read it recently at a Personal Stories Production at Center Stage Theatre. The daughter who stars in it—and gave me permission to read it– is now a happy adult who works at … Read More

What It Means to Be a Neighbor

Fred Rogers was ahead of his time. Fifty years ago, in one of the first episodes of Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, King Friday the 13th built a wall and prepared to go to war in order to “keep out the changers.” … Read More

How Can We Recover From This?

The Monday after the Thomas Fire, everyone in Montecito knew it was going to rain. As a resident of neighboring Santa Barbara, I’ll admit that I felt grateful. The fire had created toxic particles that still seemed to be hanging … Read More

A Few Words about Catastrophic Molting

The little seal didn’t look good.  The first time I passed it, I didn’t even see it because it resembled one of the many rocks that had eroded from the cliffs during the winter storms. I went back to look … Read More

One Way to Prevent Sexual Misconduct

The flood of allegations about sexual misconduct is, at its least, a teachable moment, especially for men. Many are anxious about whether they have crossed lines in the past and confused about how they should proceed in their workplace relationships … Read More

Lessons from a River

The inauguration of a new President is always a time of uncertainty. The American system is strong in part because it recognizes the reality of change. Each President gets a fixed amount of time to do the best he or … Read More

Finding Our Way Through Fog

The other morning, I stepped out the front door and realized I was standing directly under the dividing line between clouds and clear sky. If I turned one way, I saw dense fog. If I turned the other way, I … Read More

The Power of What If

In our book, Cooperative Wisdom, my co-author and I write about five essential social virtues. One is called Intentional Imagination. When we face problems that are likely to result in conflict, we can often change the dynamic by challenging premises. … Read More