How my pink-loving son made me confront my weird gender biases

In our household, the lines of the past that steadfastly identified what was considered "man" and "woman" responsibilities were more opaque. It's not the easiest job in the world, but to be honest I felt pretty good about being what most people would label a "modern dad" and I wore that title like a badge of honor. My title was put to the test however the day my wife brought a particular hula monkey toy home for my son…


I'm queer and religious: Yes, we exist

I'm happily engaged to another woman, and yet, I find myself adhering to more conservative religious dress standards. I have seen glimpses of others like me online — the ba'al teshuvah lesbian on Tumblr who actively dates women; the queer "frum from birth" Jew who got a tattoo to commemorate his struggle with traditional Torah observance; the genderqueer Muslim I went to school with who wears a hijab; the Seventh Day Adventist and Pentecostal LGBTQ activists who blog for other queers in their denominations.


Making the choice to believe in people, or: Why I choose to be "naïve"

When someone cuts me off in traffic, I imagine that they're in a terrible hurry and didn't see me. When a young man asks to use my cell phone in a bad part of town, I hand it over and ask if he needs anything else. When I'm taking a Greyhound bus ride and the bus is half full of freshly released prisoners, I always happen to end up right in the middle of their group of seats. I am often called naïve. But I won't let that change my world.


Be your own cheerleader against the zombies of self-doubt and celebrate your accomplishments

When you accomplish a goal, are you the type to doubt that your accomplishment is worth acknowledging at all? If you succumb to the zombies of self-doubt, you risk burnout, loss of motivation, and being generally bummed out. Besides that, the zombies are really not good for your self-esteem. I struggle against them myself. Here's what I've come up with to try to help remind myself to be my own cheerleader and celebrate my accomplishments.


Are you a mover or a stayer?

In recent years, I've begun to develop my own theory: people are either movers or stayers. I've met people who have lived in the same town their whole lives, and never felt the need to leave. I've met others who have "itchy feet" and are constantly on the move: six months here, two years there. So, I'm a little curious, Offbeat Homies: where do you fall on the mover/stayer spectrum?


Come the revolution: Homesteading as an act of radical resistance

We wanted land. We wanted to grow real food, and raise animals for real milk and real meat and real eggs. We wanted to sit at our dining room table without a goat jumping from chair to chair. I had enough of a background in historic agriculture (to say nothing of a full-time job doing historic agriculture) that I was willing to take the leap out of the suburbs and into hobby farming. My husband quickly jumped onboard. We are the ones who are actively resisting the industrial food systems of the twenty-first century. Are we radicals? Absolutely. Are we rabid? No. We've just simply assessed the way things are going locally, nationally, and globally, and chimed in with Bartleby the Scrivener: We would prefer not to. We are not alone.