Tag Archives: 1960s

How I Launched My Career (at Age 12)

My Real Memoir It had looked, when I was in 5th grade, like I might be heading for an art career in Japan. But then I’d gotten tsumetai ashi (cold feet). Not only because I wasn’t sure I would like … Continue reading

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Bringing Grandpa Home

My Real Memoir Somewhere along the line Grandma and Grandpa McLaughlin had moved from Los Angeles to the foot of California’s San Gabriel Mountains. Dating back to the early 1900s, the town of Upland was full of half-timbered craftsman homes … Continue reading

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Livin’ Large at Age Eleven

(Not my actual family) My Real Memoir It was New Year’s Eve. But I was only eleven, so it would be at least two more years before I was allowed to attend a Real Party. The moment we stepped into … Continue reading

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The Jesus Lady

My Real Memoir I grew up in a thoroughly secular home. God was simply never the topic of conversation. I literally didn’t know that Christmas was named for Christ. And Easter? Well, it was about eating chocolate bunnies and egg … Continue reading

Posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Humor, Memoir, Religion/Faith | Tagged , , , , , | 50 Comments

The Boy with Two Brains

My Real Memoir Many of my memoir posts have had a Tom Sawyer-ish tone, provoking “Oh, you had such an idyllic childhood!” responses. But in the last couple of months, there’ve been darker entries. In the past two weeks, I … Continue reading

Posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Humor, Memoir | Tagged , , , , , , | 39 Comments

My Phobia

My Real Memoir Last week I wrote about one of the darkest experiences of my life (it must have triggered some algorithm because WordPress cancelled all notifications). A train was involved. Then, a month later, a very different train encounter … Continue reading

Posted in Memoir | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 79 Comments

Our Replacement Home

My Real Memoir Mommandad were in love. With each other, yes, but also with a city: San Diego. Dad worked seven-days-a-week as a newspaper man, but finished early on Sundays. So that was our day to visit San Diego. Not … Continue reading

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The Darkness Within Us

Source: drawception.com My Real Memoir (Warning: Contains some disturbing descriptions) I thought I didn’t have a dark side. When a college professor asked us to talk about our most sadistic impulses, our temptation to hurt others, I was the only … Continue reading

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My Final Summer with Grandpa

My Real Memoir While raindrops hang from bare branches outside my office window, reflecting grey winter skies, I’m thinking about summer. And not just any summer, but my final summer with Grandpa Frank. Pencil-mustached Frank McLaughlin, former air ace and … Continue reading

Posted in Humor, Memoir | Tagged , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

My Prize Trip to Hell

Source: vintage.es My Real Memoir My dad, the newspaper dealer in our newie suburb, regularly took his most enterprising paperboys to housing tracts where we’d solicit for new subscribers. I was an ace! In fact, by age eleven I’d won … Continue reading

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