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Author Archives: Karen Skinazi

The Lilith Blog

December 9, 2016 by

Following Our Cycling Foremother: Spinning Fiction on Two Wheels

Karen Skinazi and her bike. Soon, her surroundings will be transformed into an alternate world through the magic of pedaling.

After dropping my three kids off at school, I hop on my bike and head to work. The ride always seems short—too short to fully work out the stress that accompanies the morning routine. The little one wouldn’t get out of bed. The middle one wouldn’t get off his screen. The oldest one couldn’t find his standard-issue gym shorts, couldn’t wear any other shorts, and was not going to school. The walk from our house to their school is no less painful: the older two fight, the little one keeps stopping (“my.feet.can’t.move”), and I’m yelling the whole way, clutching the handlebars of my bike, which I’m more than ready to ride.

As soon as I’m on my bike, however, the tension begins to dissolve. My surroundings dissolve too, in cinematic fashion, houses disappearing, asphalt road becoming a dirt path, the trees suddenly lush and tropical.

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The Lilith Blog

March 26, 2014 by

Being That Girl—Plus Three

http://www.flickr.com/dmhergert/

http://www.flickr.com/dmhergert

“Are we on vacation?” asked my 3 year old suddenly—and gleefully—during one of our many housebound days. I could have construed his question as a very sweet one. After all, the last two and a half months have been almost entirely devoted to playing Settlers of Catan and Ticket to Ride and card games, to building puzzles and baking muffins, to watching “Brave” on the couch and “Frozen” in the theater, and, once, to a short bout of sledding (after a long bout of wrapping ourselves in layers of winter gear). Then again, it could be construed as a delusional question as many questions of 3 year olds are (but five minutes earlier, he studied the Greek yogurt with honey I set before him and asked gravely, “Will it taste like shawarma?”).

Actually, the last ten weeks (but who’s counting?) of snow days, snow days, no power days, potential snow days, holidays, weekends (I know those pop up regularly, but they seemed to have popped up more often than usual recently), and illnesses ranging from vomiting to diarrhea to vomiting and diarrhea to colds with fever to ear infections, have been (in my less than sweet opinion) the antithesis of vacation. When I chose to parent my three kids alone for half a year, I hardly could have imagined what was to ensue. I thought I was staying stateside for a logical reason: my husband’s job in England began in January, and it seemed to make sense that the kids and me—as I teach–finish out our school year without disruption.

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The Lilith Blog

January 2, 2014 by

Do What I Do, Not What I Say

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My mother says a lot of things that drive me crazy. A favorite, which she has said to me my whole life (and which I try desperately not to say to my own kids) is: “What’s wrong with you??” (variation: “I don’t know what’s wrong with you.”). Another is: “Sarcasm is the lowest form of humor” (even when I’m barely being sarcastic). But there is one thing she says that bothers me like nothing else: “Oh, her? She doesn’t have to work.”

As in, “Did I tell you? So-and-so’s daughter’s husband is making so much money as a radiologist/dermatologist/cardiologist/endodontist. They just bought a huge house in Thornhill Woods. And they have a live-in nanny, and they just spent two weeks at an all-inclusive in Aruba.” 

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