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Illustration by Matteo Gallo

So far, it has been a constant.  Ants drawn in from under the front door; cockroaches flitting into their spaces whenever the light is flicked on; that one spring when ladybugs huddled upside down in the corners of my ceiling; mice; rats; bedbug welts the size of golf balls. My house has never been able to keep them out. There always seems to be something unwanted. And I began to wonder if this was a long tradition, something inherited.

            I remember my parents setting...

How did your parents meet? I remember when my friends in grade school compared notes about the first romantic meetings of their moms and dads—my parents went out in high school, mine met on a blind date, mine at the movie theater—and they’d turn to me with an extra charge of curiosity, a more purposeful focus: How about mine?


I wish I could say, "I wanted to write a story about..." But I seldom think that way. I usually find myself writing something and maybe eventually along the way thinking something like: "Hm, I seem to be writing a story about..." And then after a while, maybe I start to wonder if anyone might be interested in reading this story about... And then, if I think some poor bastard somewhere might be hard enough up to be interested in reading this story about something, I start thinking maybe I ...

I wrote most of my story “One Day, One Week, An Hour,” on my iPhone. In our house with our four kids, I would hear things being said or see things being done that, I realized, needed to be documented.

“What do monkey’s hands look like?” one of the kids asked from the dining room, and I had to stop whatever I was doing, thinking for a moment, Why would anyone ask that question? What sort of homework or project could the kids be working on? And come to think of it, what exactly DO...

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