Tag: #inpraiseofmen



Greetings from Book Editing Land!

Just dropped by to red alert you re: Mud Soldier, a kinetic sculpture conceived by Killian and Damian Van Der Velden.  This extremely poignant (the mud was gathered from Flanders Field, where thousands fought and died) and creative (the rain melting away the mud mimics the rain which fell during battle) tribute to the men who lost their lives in World War I is so very worth seeing.

Currently on view in Trafalgar Square, this thought provoking piece was commissioned to commemorate the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele.  You can visit it on-line here:

-File under #neverforget.



A quick AHOY from Book Editing Land!

My dear friend Erin Carere found something that you might find of interest.  Remember this chap, Ethan Hawke?


Many of my generation first met him as Todd Anderson in the film Dead Poets Society, in which he, Robin Williams, Robert Sean Leonard, Josh Charles and a cast of many made us laugh, smile, cry, and take classic literature a little more seriously.  From Shakespeare to Dickens, 1990’s Seattle-tinged cinema to Sci-Fi, we’ve seen Hawke shapeshift through a slew of characters, but what many of us may not have caught: he’s been moonlighting as… an author!

Hawke’s most recent release, Rules For A Knight is a fascinating read.  Here’s a small snippet from Geekdad: geekdad.com/2016/02/rules-for-a-knight-review, and an excellent interview with Jimmy Fallon:



And here’s a link to preview/peruse the book:





Our U.S. Navy ensign taking in the Tall Ships at Duluth.

A great, BIG end-of-Summer SALUTE!

This past weekend, I sojourned to Duluth, Minnesota to visit the Tall Ships, and had the privilege of meeting a few of our  U.S. Navy fighting brave, including ensign Blake Ramsdell and Alex Isakson (pictured above).  They had impeccable manners, were full of enthusiasm and optimism, and I couldn’t help but feel like a very proud Auntie.

This led to meditating on how We the People are a little bit like one giant, extended family, and thinking a good deal about my Grandfather, U.S. Navy veteran James ‘Jim’ Richards.


Jim- who in later years preferred to be called by his middle name, Grahame- was a World War II recruit who served as chief announcer and program director for Armed Forces Radio on Leyte.  The Battle of Leyte (part of the Pacific Campaign) is perhaps most famous for being where General MacArthur– aided by the Navy, U.S. Army and native Philippinos fighting for their lives- landed and took back the island from the Imperial Japanese Army  in 1944.

As we finish editing the Men At War chapter of In Praise of Men  this weekend, my gratitude and thoughts are with all of those who served, who currently serve, their families and with our Navy, who shall always be especially dear to my heart.

Last, if you donated (or chose a perk/perks equal to… ) $100 or more to the book publishing campaign, look for an invitation to read the Author’s Edit of the first 1/3 of In Praise of Men this Wednesday!

With Bright Blessings,


PS:  If you purchased a perk or perks that were under $100, but want to qualify for this week’s preview: I’ll honor your original amount, kick in a $15 credit, and additional donations and/or perks to reach the qualifying $100 may be located @: www.indiegogo.com/projects/in-praise-of-men-book#/




Hello from Minneapolis, where summer’s kiss is upon us…  Where orchids and lilacs bloom relentlessly as boats race back and forth on Lake Harriet, Calhoun and Mark Twain’s Mississippi.  ‘Tis truly a sight for sore eyes that have been staring at this computer screen, micro-editing a certain book endlessly…  😉

As mentioned in our Indiegogo update, we had a slight snafu concerning the cover art for In Praise of Men.  Corbis- who owned Lunch Atop A Skyscraper– was acquired by Getty Images on May 2nd, and licensing costs have since doubled.  For more detailed info, please visit:  www.indiegogo.com/projects/in-praise-of-men–3#/

-Please vote for your favorite cover in a comment below or email me directly!

With Gratitude,


elder PRN
Dearly Beloved,
First things first: apologies for the radio silence.

Next, the truth.  Two weeks ago Thursday, I put a pot of coffee on, fired up my laptop and began typing here when my husband (Simon) gave me a terrible reason to pause.  He relayed something shocking he’d read online; I- not quite believing it- messaged a few people, then paced our apartment nervously.  As we anxiously monitored the Internet for developments, a confirmation text arrived: someone dear to many of us had died.

I must digress…  O.U.A.T. (Once Upon A Time), in a galaxy far, far away, I did time as a music personality (Lolly Pop), the star gate into which was a tiny video stint with Prince.

Story condensed: During the mid-1980’s, I knighted him my fictitious big brother; arriving in Minneapolis in ’94, I was lucky enough to be cast in Get Wild, which- when paired with hard work- would change my life.  There’s more of course, but I probably won’t be qualified to pen that book for another decade.  Something deep will surface at some point, but I’m just not ready to swim through that sea yet.

Now, speaking of points: all that followed led me here, to this precise moment with you.  So…  THANK YOU.  Thank you for tuning in.  Thank you for caring.  And as several of you transitioned here from my life in music, THANK YOU FOR YOUR LOYALTY.


Last…  My friend Brian Gallagher (Prince‘s saxophonist circa NPG; also one of the founding members of Greazy Meal) likewise very suddenly passed away in March.  You can read a bit about his life here:  www.startribune.com/brian-gallagher-of-greazy-m….  While Brian was an infinitely talented musician and songwriter, he was also an amazing Dad to three beautiful, smart as well as loving children (Ava, Cesar and Magdalena), whom he would have given ANYTHING for.  He loved to paint, cook, landscape and laugh.  Brian is survived not only by his music, but by his parents, sister (Kristin), children, his partner (Gina), by his nieces, nephews, friends and co-workers.

Given the unexpected ascension of these two bright souls, I’ve needed time to reflect.  It’s been a surreal month to say the least.  It is my hope that you’ll forgive delays pertaining to In Praise of Men, and know that things will be back on track shortly.

Brian-Gallagher-378x300Brian and Prince, circa ’95/’96 (?)




Hello  You,

First things first: have you remembered to set set your clock(s) an hour forward?  Excellent.  Now, a quick recap of this past week…

  1.  Whilst Winter is wistfully melting away, Spring is en route.
  2.  I literally *JUST* finished the last chapter! Disclaimer: entire book needs a revision (or three) before handing it over to the editing team. 😉
  3.  Publishing Campaign updates live here: www.indiegogo.com/projects/in-praise-of-men–3/x/144809#/updates
  4. Do something you’ve never done before today and check it off your bucket list!



Thirteen years ago today, on February 27th, 2003, one of the brightest beacons of our time- Fred Rogers–  ascended.

As if but months back, I recall briskly strolling home from a writing session at Nina’s Coffee Cafe, only to discover the New York Times article announcing his departure on our dining room table.  The wind knocked out of me, I surveyed the headline to make sure I’d read it right…  I had.  Blankly, I stared out of the window of 589 Laurel Avenue- a house in historic St. Paul that I shared with beautician Sandra Albert, author Von Braschler and actor Dan Fuller- swallowed the lump in my throat, then mustered up the courage to read the obituary of my television Dad.

Tear-stung half way through, I fumbled for the nearby phone, in a weak attempt to call my Mother, who was probably the only person that might understand my impending melt down.  I couldn’t finish dialing on first try, hung up after the first buzz during the second, then deliberately let it ring.  The 27-year-old me was embarrassed, but the kid in me couldn’t help it.  By the time she answered, I was sobbing unintelligibly, whilst silently thanking various Catholic, Roman and Greek deities that none of my aforementioned housemates were around to witness this hot mess.

You see, for many of us Gen-X/Y-ers dealing with divorce and/or Fatherlessness in our families, Mister Rogers was our part-time Pop, Uncle or Granddad.  For others, he was a mentor, friend, tour guide, self-esteem coach, or if nothing else, that familiar, reassuring, smiling face between channels.

After a heart-to-heart with my Mom, I finished reading his obituary, then dragged my feet upstairs, to the privacy of my then-pink bedroom.  And so, one block away from where F. Scott Fitzgerald was born, I dug out what childhood toys I had left, surrounded myself with them and cried myself to sleep.


Of all the bigger pieces I’ve read about Fred, this 1998 Esquire Magazine  cover story by Tom Junod is one of the most touching:
esquire.com/entertainment/tv/interviews/a27134/can-you-say-hero-esq1198.  I also cherish this recently republished New York Daily News article from 1973: www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv/mister-rogers-focuses-children-feelings-article-1.2542259.  Reading this coverage of his funeral has also helped me to make peace with it, as rainbows, hearts and coloring pencils couldn’t have been more appropriate, and I’ve always admired Yo-Yo Ma (now more than ever):  http://old.post-gazette.com/localnews/20030504rogers0504p1.asp.

Tonight,  I hope that you’ll take a moment to remember Fred with me, to reflect on all of the helpful things he taught us, and to re-visit an important episode.  In our adult lives where everything moves at near-light speed and all has changed, this episode is particularly pertinent:  www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8eEHV-b6WM.

Next, I’d like to acknowledge that it’s partially due to Mister Rogers’ work that I’ve been able to pen In Praise of Men.  If ever any thing’s out of place in your life and you need advice, to see the smiling face of a life-long neighbor or friend, all you need to do is find him on Youtube, or visit his legacy site: www.fredrogers.org/fred-rogers.

Finally, I’d like to spread some good news: Fred is still very much with us, in the countless lives he touched.

Thank you again Mister Rogers, thank you to your family, staff and to PBS.

With Speedy Delivery and Love,


Two of my favorite men in the world, who are featured in our final chapter,
50 Magnanimous Men.

Welcome + Official Twitter

Welcome to In Praise of Men.com!

You can also find us on Twitterwww.twitter.com/inpraiseofmen
-Say hi and follow for daily wisdom from brilliant men, articles of interest and to preview excerpts from In Praise of Men, arriving September, 2016.

As I’ve been working on this book for nearly a decade and would like it to be an interactive experience, we’ve been engineering an app, designing a discussion board, as well as a quarterly video conference.  If you’d like to be a guest speaker, a discussion board moderator or a once-a-month blogger (re: men’s and/or family issues) in exchange for read-it-first privileges and other perks, please message directly via the contact page.

Last, while I’m keeping much about  IPoM confidential until February 14th, you can uncover clues and sneak a few snippets by exploring the Menu tab above or tuning into our aforementioned Twitter.

With Bright Wishes for 2016,