Islamic Center of Saginaw (Michigan)

“You must feel great to be outta there.” That was said to me tonight. Not even a question. It was the pure assumption that America trumps, that living in Middle Eastern or African countries has no value, that I am safer on American ground. You are wrong. I don’t feel great. I feel good sometimes, yes,… Read More

How Relationships Are Made, or Unmade

People meet. A majority couple-up during their lifetimes into partnerships, marriages, and relationships of all kinds. The “How We Met” stories bring smiles, but I often I learn more from the stories about how people’s relationships are really made, or unmade.   Grocery Store   BK (before kids), our relationship was built during our trips to… Read More

She and I: A Toast to the 19th Amendment

My paternal great grandmother, Bessie May Schuster, was born in 1897 and was mighty short. The family record says her grandfather was “always a Republican but has never held office, nor was he a member of any church.” In 1904, when she was 7, her young mother died, I think of disease. Bessie May had… Read More

Mom's bike

A beautiful butterfly (which I haven’t seen one in years) landed on me, but it wasn’t the graceful scene you imagine. It smacked me in the neck. This is re-entry. Jehovah Witnesses came knocking when I was home alone. I haven’t encountered that in years and was excited to have a conversation on religion. They… Read More


I will start off by admitting that I am a very white dancer. My dance aesthetic grew out of white, lower middle-class, mid-Michigan, 1980’s rural-Suburbia. I mastered the Roger Rabbit, Running Man, and MC Hammer but my Hip-Hop was oblivious appropriation at best. My tap dancing had a very high center of gravity, far closer… Read More

Dance class large

Have you been a friend of mine since (at least) 2008? Do you remember a child named Donna? Do you remember her dancing? Did you know she was my greatest teacher? Do you remember when I was on both the Young Associates Board of Children’s Memorial Hospital (now Lurie’s Children’s Hospital of Chicago) and Donna’s… Read More


Transitions are the perfect combination of possibility and anxiety. When you are age 3, they can be terrifying. When you are 13, they can be bitter. When you are 30, they can be cringe-worthy. I know I will face incredible transitions as I age. Transitions are when the world, the day, or a trajectory, is becoming… Read More


There might not be curtains or a backstage. The floor may not be exactly right. The audience will probably be in their pajamas. The music might come from a laptop/portable speaker and there may be playback problems with your intro. The dressing room might be a hospital bathroom. There may be a small crowd with no… Read More