On Being 56: The Year of Living Jewishly

At sunset on December 4th, 1972, a 12 year old boy featuring a teen-age-not-yet-shaved-but-should-have-been-but-it-was-too-embarassing-because-none-of-the-other-kids-were-so-hairy moustache was waiting at the yellow Formica kitchen counter.  To the right a glass fish bowl with 2 guppies looking pretty good despite having had 10’s of babies 2 days before which had been immediately removed and given to the neighbors…read more

On Being 54: Dinosaurs, Ponies and Jewish Mothers

Rose is in her second year at Evergreen State College. After having wandered two years in the wilderness of Reed College and Seattle Community Colleges, she has re-discovered the joy of learning. Evergreen not only suits her academically, she has been living 1 minute away from her supportive first cousin, Annie Cantrel; and one and a half…read more

On Being 53: Revelations on the Persistence of Low Energy

Most Annual Letters  are listings of accomplishments, ie celebrations.  It is the rare Annual Letter that is revelatory, ie revealing of juicy details.  For 2013, I have much to celebrate… and a bit to reveal.  (Relax Rose and Christopher; the “reveal” is about me, not you guys)  First: the celebrations! My Film Short:  “On the…read more

On Being 52: How Downsizing Becomes Upsizing

In 2012, my frequent travels lead me to a revelation about excess square footage.  I enjoyed living out of the 3 square feet of my suitcase and I stopped enjoying living out of the 3000 square feet of my house. So I downsized, albeit in true Richard style. I turned my 2900 excess square feet, in…read more

On Being 51: Baby Boomer versus Millennial Gratitude

In the Richardian calendar, earthly distractions are not permitted during the Holy Festival of Skiing, November to April.  Therefore, I have waited until now to reflect on last year. Last year at this time, I had just completed my One Man Show for my 50th birthday.  I hadn’t done theater prior to that show and…read more

On Being 50: When in Doubt, Do a One Man Show !

I thought that 2009 was a big year…. dealing with Rachel and the kids’ impending move to CA, getting back together with Steve, the ending of migraine headaches after 40 years (thanks to gluten free diet), kidney stone surgery, a cervical disk herniation and its resolution, ongoing study of the Work by Byron Katie, the…read more

On Being 49: The Inner Animal Evolves

  In previous episodes, my inner animal had evolved from Pomeranian to Water Buffalo and finally to Otter.  I had gotten divorced, come out as a gay man, gotten involved in a relationship with Steve Cheung, joined the Seattle Men’s Chorus, continued in the Work of Byron Katie and in Body Electric, and had remodeled…read more

On Being 48: Remodeling a Kitchen and a Sexuality

Now that the ski resorts are closed, I’m finally ready to do my 2008 Holiday Letter! My last Holiday letter reported a “very eventful” 2007 in which I had a crash course in how to be single and divorced.  Not satisfied with a merely “very-eventful-life,” in 2008, I entered a phase of “super-eventful” by remodeling…read more

On Being 47: Journal Entry on the Whole Year

Rose has definitely entered the pre-teen/teen years.  She spends a lot of time computer chatting and socializing with friends.  She has her own cell phone and knows how to use it.  She dyed her hair red.  (I dyed it for her the first time)  Then, she cut it short like her favorite Manga character Gaara. …read more