Sure, we want to know what a president believes in... but that doesn't always mean he should tell us.
The real luxury travel of the modern age is not through space; it's through time.
As long as people have been making little people, they've wanted to know how not to.
Progress is seldom simple; it comes with costs and casualties, even challenges about whether a change represents an advance or a retreat.
Whatever people thought the first time they held a portable phone the size of a shoe in their hands, it was nothing like where we are now, accustomed to having all knowledge at our fingertips.
I have two daughters: One an open book, one a locked box. So the question of privacy is a challenging one. How much do kids need? How much should we give? How do we prepare them to live in a world where the very notion of privacy opens a generational chasm?
As a candidate, Obama disdained the game of politics, a self-conscious contrast to all the tireless political athletes named Clinton.
You can't predict when a crisis might hit your family, whether it's with an elderly parent or with your children.
It's hard to think of any tool, any instrument, any object in history with which so many developed so close a relationship so quickly as we have with our phones.
New Orleans lives by the water and fights it, a sand castle set on a sponge nine feet below sea level, where people made music from heartache, named their drinks for hurricanes and joked that one day you'd be able to tour the city by gondola.
Pain is the most private experience, but its causes, whether natural or man-made, demand public accounting.
When I was coming out of college, storytelling was very much something you did with pencil and paper, so the technological platform versatility, I think, is really valuable.
It is actually the neuroscientists and evolutionists who do the best job of explaining the reasons behind the most unreasonable behavior.
Most of us were probably less than immaculately honest as teenagers; it's practically encoded into adolescence that you savor your secrets, dress in disguise, carve out some space for experiments and accidents and all the combustible lab work of becoming who you are.
A lot of camps and summer programs for kids seem to have discovered that among the most valuable things they offer is what they don't offer. No Wi-Fi. No grades. No hovering parents or risk managers or parents who parent like risk managers.
Obama was elected on a slogan of hope and change because both were in short supply: the military exhausted by two wars, the banks failing their public trust, the U.S. Congress a comedy of dysfunction, and a federal government that seemed designed to idle on the sidelines.
Back in the really olden days, dinner was seldom a ceremonial event for U.S. families. Only the very wealthy had a separate dining room. For most, meals were informal, a kind of rolling refueling; often only the men sat down.
Modesty means admitting the possibility of error, subsuming the self for the good of the whole, remaining open to surprise and the gifts that only failure can bring. There are many ways to practice it. Try taking up golf. Or making your own bagels. Or raising a teenager.
The leading cause of death for girls 15 to 19 worldwide is not accident or violence or disease; it is complications from pregnancy. Girls under 15 are up to five times as likely to die while having children than are women in their 20s, and their babies are more likely to die as well.
Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth were slaves by birth, freedom fighters by temperament.
Summer is not obligatory. We can start an infernally hard jigsaw puzzle in June with the knowledge that, if there are enough rainy days, we may just finish it by Labor Day, but if not, there's no harm, no penalty. We may have better things to do.
I've always found that once you're in the door of a place and you have the chance to show how you operate and how talented you are, then anything can happen.
It's always been a luxury to be able to hop a plane to Paris, to Venice, to the Grand Canyon.
On the court, Jason Collins is not a huge basketball star, but he has already claimed his place in civil rights history as the first openly gay athlete to play in one of the four major U.S. sports leagues.
When National Guardsmen shot four unarmed students at Kent State, virtually the entire system of higher education shuddered and stopped.
In 2001, President George W. Bush was condemned for politicizing science with his decision to limit federal funding for stem-cell research; in 2009 President Obama was praised for reversing it, even though his decision was arguably just as political.
Our children will outwit us if they want; for when it comes to technology, they hold the higher ground. Unlike other tools passed carefully and ceremonially from one generation to the next - the sharp scissors, the car keys - this is one they understand better than we do.
Emotional life grows out of an area of the brain called the limbic system, specifically the amygdala, whence come delight and disgust and fear and anger.
Adolescence, that swampy zone between safety and power, is best patrolled by adults armed with sense and mercy, not guns and a badge.
The Reverend Jeremiah Wright would baptize Obama, perform his marriage to Michelle LaVaughn Robinson, baptize their daughters, and draw him into the raucous, restless family of faith that Obama had never known before.
Virtues, like viruses, have their seasons of contagion. When catastrophe strikes, generosity spikes like a fever. Courage spreads in the face of tyranny.
If anything, the power of the cover of 'Time' has increased as the media landscape has atomized.
Once a conflict has dragged on for a decade, most people are tired of war - and the troubles that flow from it.
If boomers were always looking to shock, millennials are eager to share.
The Catholic Church is one of the oldest, largest and richest institutions on earth, with a following 1.2 billion strong, and change does not come naturally.
Be bored and see where it takes you, because the imagination's dusty wilderness is worth crossing if you want to sculpt your soul.
For the truly faithful, no miracle is necessary. For those who doubt, no miracle is sufficient.
Runners exalt the marathon as a public test of private will, when months or years of solitary training, early mornings, lost weekends, rain and pain mature into triumph or surrender. That's one reason the race-day crowds matter, the friends who come to cheer and stomp and flap their signs and push the runners on.
The one problem with the Internet for journalists who like doing long form is that any story that's going to involve 16 screens on the web page... that's asking a lot of people.
All wars, even the noblest, bring a reckoning of means and ends.
High school is a haunted house in April, when seniors act up because the end is near. Even those who hate school sometimes cling to the devil they know. And for the kids who love it, the goodbyes are hard to think about.
I feel like my competition is everything else that's competing for people's attention, not just other print magazines, newspapers and cable. It's your kid's report card and the games you want to play, all the things that compete for people's time.
Today's kids aren't taking up arms against their parents; they're too busy texting them.
Pour a liquid out of its container, and it changes shape, fills the space you give it. If you give children a lot of space, it may surprise you where they'll go and the shape they'll take.
Obama promised a return to competence and confidence and asked the nation to believe again that the government could do big things well. In the end, he got his big thing, a once-in-a-generation revision to the basic social compact, a commitment of health coverage to nearly all Americans. He has yet to prove he can do it well.
I'm wondering how many elected figures any of us could find who do not, in the front or back of their minds, remember who does them favors, who doesn't.