On regrets and second chances at age 60

I don’t particularly like February in New England, with its snowy days, dark nights, and bitter winds — but at least it passes quickly. …


A gay boy and his deaf uncle connect through the unspoken experience of being outsiders in a family

It was a warm evening and we were eating outside on my grandparents’ rarely used patio. We gathered at Nanny and Papa’s, my maternal grandparents’ home for Thanksgiving, the High Holidays, and…


I’m being watched, tracked, followed. Prostate, thyroid, dry eyes. My heart and sludgy arteries, my deaf ear, (the hearing gone suddenly one winter morning when I was 49) and now the skin, the very architecture of my body –- the café-au-lait birthmark that maps the terrain of my left arm…


And taking apart his life’s work

On a stifling July day a few weeks after my high school graduation in 1975, I walked in our back door, surrounded by the silver kitchen wallpaper that reminded me of gift-wrap. There I saw my mother’s scribbled note on the white Formica counter — “Papa collapsed at store rushed…


A trip back to my hometown

Lately I’ve been caught up in a maelstrom, a mix of major life events, all coming together at once. After 18 years living alone in my one-bedroom apartment, I’m preparing to move into a communal house on Beacon Hill in the center of Boston, where I lived in the mid-90s…


Sweating it out on a stress test

I was stretched out on a narrow gurney as a technician pasted electrodes onto my hairy chest. Soon, I had a series of wires trailing from my body with a rectangular box, which looked like an old floppy drive, anchored on my hip. …


Marking time past 60

As I grow older, I mark my aging process by comparing myself with my peers –- a slippery slope, indeed. I look around, checking out my contemporaries for evidence that I am ‘holding it together,’ and doing, if not better, at least as well as most of the other ‘Boomers’…


When I’m making other plans.

One of my late father’s favorite expressions (credited to John Lennon, though my Dad didn’t know it), was “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans.”


The summer of ‘72

It was the summer of 1972, my second and last season working in my Dad’s electrical supply warehouse on East 25th Street between Superior and St. Clair, a mile east of downtown Cleveland. My father was an engineer — uptight, rigid like the tools that filled the warehouse — though…


Accepting my mother as she is now.

Several years ago I saw the Canadian film, “Away From Her,” which followed the journey of an active sixty-something husband and wife, as the woman gradually lost her memory, sinking into dementia triggered by Alzheimer’s disease. During one of the early scenes, the wife, played by Julie Christie, goes cross-country…

Judah Leblang

I'm a Boston writer/storyteller. I've written the memoir "Echoes of Jerry." and commentaries for NPR stations around the US. Find out more at judahleblang.com

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