October 19, 2019

What We Leave Behind

“As we celebrated my granddaughter’s third birthday this summer, I made the following rough calculation: I’d trekked from my home in New Jersey to her Brooklyn apartment roughly 150 times to provide once-a-week day care, plus other times as needed.

I had taken Bartola (a family nickname borrowed from former Mets pitcher Bartolo Colon) to a toddler music class. We’d spent an hour or two at the park every Thursday if it wasn’t a) raining or b) over 92 degrees or c) below 20.

I refer to our time together as Bubbe Days, using the Yiddish for grandmother.

We’d sung, read, strolled, shared meals, exchanged viruses, occasionally squabbled, spent days each summer at the beach, played and played some more — the whole grandparenting gamut.

And she will remember virtually none of it.

Psychologists I’ve been talking to about kids and “autobiographical memory” — the recall of specific events of personal relevance — tell me that we retain very little of what happened before we turn 3. Childhood amnesia, Freud called it.”

Read more

JJ Editor's Picks

"In June, I joined the crew of the rescue ship Alan Kurdi. It was a cantankerous old brute of a boat, a former East German research vessel that now belongs to a small German nonprofit called Sea-Eye. “You are an eye on the sea,” the crew manager..."

"A few of us weren’t on the debate stage last night. Supported by its friends and sponsors in the corporate media, the Democratic National Committee has sought to narrow the field of presidential candidates at the very moment when it should be..."

"For more than six decades, Loren Coleman has dedicated his life to Sasquatch. Since beginning his investigatory fieldwork in 1960, he’s written books, given talks, and taught university courses related to the concept of Bigfoot and other cryptids.."

"In 1859, around 450 passengers on the Royal Charter, returning from the Australian goldmines to Liverpool, drowned when the steam clipper was shipwrecked off the north coast of Wales. What makes this tragic loss of life remarkable among countless.."

"“Billionaires should not exist,” Senator Bernie Sanders said last month. And, at the Democratic presidential debate this week, he said that the wealth disparity in America is “a moral and economic outrage.” “Senator Sanders is right,” said Tom..."

Americans are lucky they can't see it. Starring Selena Gomez and Timothée Chalamet, ‘A Rainy Day in New York’ won’t be shown in the U.S. because of the sexual abuse allegations against its famed director. Good thing; it's terrible."

"After spending six months in jail on the outskirts of Moscow, a young Israeli woman named Naama Issachar was sentenced on Oct. 11 to seven-and-a-half years of imprisonment in Russia. Both the extreme sentence and trumped-up charges of drug..."

"Kamala Harris wants to ban President Trump from Twitter. The California senator put her case for digital ostracism front and center at the fourth Democratic debate Tuesday, pushing Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) to join her in pledging to delete.."