ARCHIVE FOR Ben Berman

Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Dream

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My daughters have been obsessed lately with the soundtrack to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

 

And though I’ve grown tired of it looping endlessly on repeat, the English teacher in me loves to sing along whenever the narrator croons to young Joseph: If you can interpret you will go far. If you can interpret you’ll be a star.

 

September 13, 2017 | Ben Berman

The Writing Life

Anatomy of a Line

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My four-year-old has been refusing to eat dinner lately.

 

Sometimes she tells me that she’s too tired to eat, sometimes she protests the tiny specks of color that somehow made it into her meal. Once she tried explaining that some people are eating people and some people are not.

 

At first, I thought I’d let her suffer the natural consequences of her actions. But once I realized that the natural consequences of her actions involved her waking me up at 2 a.m. to ask for a bowl of cheerios, I figured I needed a new strategy.

August 9, 2017 | Ben Berman

The Writing Life

Learning to Trust the Contrary

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My four-year-old asks me to fill her water bottle with really, really, really cold water. She likes her water on the rocks. Or, perhaps better said, she likes her rocks with a splash of water.

 

I’m on my ninth ice cube when I notice that she is doing the pee-pee dance – legs crossed, hopping as she shifts her weight from side to side, as though she’s practicing for Riverdance.

July 12, 2017 | Ben Berman

Craft Advice The Writing Life

Making it New

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My four-year-old has been coming home from pre-school lately singing songs about recycling, which my wife and I have seized as an opportunity to get rid of the stacks and stacks of paper – covered in purple scribbles and Trader Joes stickers – cluttering the house.

 

It’s our way of honoring the earth, we tell her whenever she begins to protest.

 

June 14, 2017 | Ben Berman

The Writing Life

On Winning and Losing

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My daughters had been playing quietly for a good ten minutes, which is always cause for alarm.

 

After following a trail of graham cracker crumbs, I finally found them in the bathroom with my three-year-old on the potty and my six-year-old sitting on the floor in front of her – the two of them holding hands, rocking back and forth, singing row, row, row your boat.

May 10, 2017 | Ben Berman

The Writing Life