Monday, November 27, 2017


Why ‘Wonder,’ the Movie, Can’t Best the Book It’s Based On
By MARIA RUSSO NOV. 24, 2017

Like most people who love the best-selling book “Wonder,” I’ve been thrilled by the success of the movie version. It captures beautifully the book’s central premise, that we should choose to be kind and inclusive to people like Auggie Pullman, the protagonist, who was born with facial  deformities that are at first shocking to look at. The young actor Jacob Tremblay, wearing mask like makeup that rearranges his features, gracefully inhabits the role of Auggie not only by showing his pain and vulnerability, but also by convincing us of one of the secret weapons of R. J. Palacio’s  book: Auggie is fun, clever and generous, and the kids who call him “the freak” actually have the most to gain by his friendship. So I feel gratified that the movie seems to be catching on — but also, I’ll admit, a bit wary.

Also see: Wonder, The Movie

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Reclaiming Resilience

I was in the seventh grade when I first began to identify as trans and express my gender identity as a girl...This shift in my personal aesthetic made me feel good about my body, confident in my appearance and at ease in social settings where my peers were also exploring, changing and growing.

Janet Mock was a black and Native Hawaiian trans girl from a single-parent home. I was not naïve. I knew that struggle was part of my coming of age, so I wore a smile every day as part of my armor. I didn’t want anyone to see that I was in pain, that I felt like I did not belong and that my body, my clothing, my being was wrong.

From NY Times Op-Ed piece 2/23/2017

Janet Mock’s first book, Redefining Realness, is a brilliant, raw, educational journey with a transwoman that takes her from being a child and follows her through hormone therapy and transitional surgery in Thailand.  It is important reading for educators, parents, health professionals and anyone with an open mind.  I listened to the Audible book and that makes the story even more poignant as Janet narrates her own story.