Author: Laurie Davies

Freedom Is a Tall Order

Two years ago today, I stood at the base of Freedom Tower in New York. I looked up – way up – to locate the top of the tower’s 1,776 feet. I couldn’t totally tell where One World Trade Center ends and the sky begins. But I remember fighting off vertigo and noting the metaphor: Read More

The difference between looking and seeing

Breaking a sweat and trying frantically to remove a shoe while rummaging through her carry-on bag, the woman flashed angry eyes and barked at her wheelchair-bound husband. She waved Mr. Impatient Business Traveler ahead, wiping sweat from her brow and maybe wiping a tear too. It was only 5:45 a.m. – early to already be Read More

When Wreck-It Ralph Is Your Spirit Animal

When you turn 40 everyone gives you grim reaper greeting cards and tells you it’s all downhill. What they don’t tell you is downhill has an upside. It’s easier to swing a wrecking ball on the way down. Walking on eggshells in “relationships”? Wrecking ball. Limping along with the same tired parenting patterns? Wrecking ball. Read More

How End of School Tyranny Taught Me to Hope

End of school tyranny had us under its thumb. Finals, papers, concerts, and cramming rained down on the Man Cub and writing deadlines had me in their crosshairs, too. “I’m off to the grocery store,” I announced to my then 15-year-old son. He nodded and I breezed out the door. Time was short, my list Read More

Well, It’s About Time

In college, my media law professor exacted a very strict on-time rule. If you weren’t on time, you weren’t present. And if you weren’t present you didn’t get credit for the day’s pop quizzes, exams or homework. We knew who the pushover profs were. And none of them were named Steve Helle. When graduation day Read More

Start Walking: How Cult Survivor Anna LeBaron Is Redefining her Notorious Name

“Start walking.” Those two words burn a hole on page 154 of “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” a chilling child’s eye account of life in a cult led by a 1970s self-proclaimed prophet dubbed the “Mormon Manson.” “The Polygamist’s Daughter” will take you on a 300-page journey from all that’s awful about this world to all that’s Read More

Seriously, God – You’re Not Fair

How we respond to life’s ubiquitous “it’s not fair” moments is a true measure of our maturity. This is why I decided against scratching a grown human being’s eyeballs out this week. Context probably matters right now. “Hi, Mom.” Two words, tone, and time of day told me everything I needed to know. The Man Read More

A Sewer, a Palm Tree, and a Prison Escape

I feel like one of you needs to see beauty come from a hard place today. You need to be reminded that God has a long résumé of making unattractive places fertile and unlikely people fruitful. You need to know He still releases prisoners from darkness, brings beauty from ashes, and causes palm trees to Read More

That Time I Met an Armadillo Half-Naked

It’s a good thing armadillos can’t see because my pants were at my ankles. Five hours earlier, the chilly air and sputtering campfire had enticed me toward the chocolatey liquid warmth of hot cocoa. But as 10 p.m. cups of hot cocoa at campsites do, this one woke me up at 3 a.m. with an Read More

Fake It ‘Til You Make It? That’s Dumb.

My first big break on the road to winning the imaginary Pulitzer that sits on my mantle came the day my Daily Illini editor tapped me to cover a presidential candidate’s wife’s press conference. Her name was Hillary Clinton. I grabbed my notepad, cruised across the University of Illinois campus on my snazzy red Honda Read More

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