“Death of a Goat” in Whirlwind Magazine’s Paralysis issue

The Death of a Goat

            “My brother was killed like a goat,” Boi said, leaning up against the crumbling concrete wall of the old campsite.

“What?” I said.

“That’s why I didn’t watch when they killed the goat today. My brother was killed like a goat.”

“That’s awful, Boi. I’m so sorry.”

I leaned against the wall next to him, my mind racing with doubts—about if I could begin to understand his situation, if I could appropriately respond, and then, just as quickly, if Boi was telling the truth, if his brother really was beheaded with a knife.

I had not noticed that Boi hadn’t watched the slaughter of the goat with the rest of us that day. Yet he felt as if he should explain himself, as if the absence of his presence was abnormal and required justification.

“Did you watch?” He asked me inquisitively, but with no judgment behind the question.

 

Read the rest of the story at Whirlwind Magazine.

 

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Be Well Philly: The 19-Year-Old CHOP Patient-Turned-Playwright Whose Poetry Will Make You Cry

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I enjoyed interviewing Elizabeth Kennedy on both her medical issues and her creative process. Check out my latest post for Be Well Philly here.

Get Inspired: Kinzey Lynch Is Blind — But That Doesn’t Keep Him From Running Marathons

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This Drexel student, who has been blind since birth, runs on Kelly Drive every weekend. This is Kinzey’s story in his own words, which I put together for Be Well Philly and Philadelphia magazine based on a run (he is FAST) and interview I did with him.

Group fitness movement November Project adds togetherness

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There’s a bitter wind whipping through the streets, and the sun is just starting to creep up behind the mounted bronze George Washington overlooking the intermittent traffic of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Yet Dan Layo and Suzanne Allaire are already running determinedly up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Since October, through the polar vertex, and including workouts on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, Philadelphia’s chapter of the nonprofit fitness group November Project has held a free, open-to-all workout at 6:25 a.m. every Wednesday on the Art Museum steps.

Read my article on Philly.com and in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

How to Laugh at Your Worst Days (and Why You Should)

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A Q & A with 22-year-old author and nonprofit founder Shane Burcaw in Philadelphia magazine’s Be Well Philly.

Coming back from foreclosure as ‘boomerang buyers’

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A foreclosure, or a short sale to dig out from under a mortgage whose payments have become overwhelming, might seem like an insurmountable obstacle to owning a house again in the future.

Not for so-called boomerang buyers, a new breed of would-be homeowners who are determined to rebound, slowly and painstakingly, from the most strenuous housing hardships.

Read my article on Philly.com and in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

From Nairobi to NYC to High School

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(photo courtesy of Xavier High School)

Andrew Kiare Mumbi grew up in villages and markets outside of Nairobi, Kenya, but now he lives in Brooklyn. He wanted to pursue his education in the U.S. Through the diligent efforts of Mark Orrs, a PhD in the sustainable development program at Columbia University and a professor at Lehigh University, as well as through the generosity and open-mindedness of Xavier High School and sponsor family Joe Schrank and Laurie Dhue, Andrew is now doing exactly that. Xavier just published an interview with the newest member of their class of 2017, called “The Longest Commute to Xavier.” It’s inspiring that these kinds of broad cultural leaps can be made when people are passionate about making them happen. Thanks to everyone involved with Andrew and with nonprofit organization Harambee USA, which continues, despite all obstacles and odds, to make things happen.

To learn more about the Harambee USA Foundation, which is 100% volunteer-staffed, visit harambeeusa.com.