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Human Parts
A publication from Medium about humanity: yours, mine, and ours.


In Human Parts. More on Medium.


‘Marilou Is Everywhere,’ one day at a time

Former party girls know how it is: Each night is a sheet of fresh ice. You go skating across it, feeling young and free and invincible. You go faster and faster. You start falling down, and it’s funny at first. Everybody is laughing, too. Play another song on the jukebox…

Lived Through This

On the powerlessness of wishing for someone else’s recovery

Photo of the dark silhouette of a person walking in front of a pink sunset.

A rocky trail through forests and fields winds around the back of Quaker Hill in rural Maine. Before traveling to the summit, I pack a bottle of water and some grapes and my notebook. This time I also pack my nephew’s letter.

The tradition of letter-writing survives in families like…

Mind Games

How alcohol distracted me from living the life I really wanted

Several years ago, I went to a live comedy show with some women from work. The name of the show was I Mom So Hard. Apparently, it was a YouTube sensation. Though I had no idea what to expect, I was looking forward to a night out with my smart…

This Is Us

At a gay club in the ’90s, I compete for attention with lighter-skinned men — and confront years of internalized racism

My erection is pressing against the zip fly of my jeans. They’re JNCO jeans. Everybody’s wearing them but, if I’m honest, I think they look silly. They have wide, flared legs — you know, for dancing. The legs are so wide they cover your shoes, and God help you if…

Mind Games

I thought self-medication was a solution, not part of the problem

A sepia-toned picture of an alcohol bottle.

I dip my oar into the water and push my kayak away from the dock. I can see Evan and Cassy ahead of me, threatening to capsize each other and giggling. Beyond them, the San Rafael Bridge cuts the skyline in half: bulbous hilltops on the bottom, speckled clouds on…


We give ourselves away with our smallest, most innocuous actions

I once knew a man who insisted on serving his family their food at every mealtime, for 40 years or more, so that he could ensure the best, largest, and rarest portion for himself. And, having served everyone else their allowance of meat and two roast potatoes per capita, he…

The pathology of addiction

1. Who are you and whom do you love?

2. Where did you come from/how did you arrive?

3. How will you begin?

4. How will you live now?

5. What is the shape of your body?

6. Who was responsible for the suffering of your mother?

7. What do…

I’m not the only one who wishes they could hear ‘I’m sorry’

“Never apologize; it’s a sign of weakness,” is a phrase my father used on many occasions throughout my childhood. My little-kid brain associated this motto as simply a part of his vocabulary. …

Human Parts

A publication from Medium about humanity: yours, mine, and ours.

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