Secret Summers

My Secret Crazy Panic Button

BEL AIR—Panic Buttons are words or topics that trigger an emotional response. When pushed, it makes you go crazy and sets you off.  We all have panic buttons. Luckily, there are not many topics or things that make me emotional or set me off. I’ve somehow seemed to avoid panic buttons in my lifetime… except one secret… Don’t call me "crazy"! My mother taught...

Got A Flu Shot?

UNITED STATES—The CDC has reported that last year's flu season was the deadliest in 40 years. I am sure you already heard this on just about every media station who blindly reports it every few hours ending the segment with, "Go get your flu shot, today." So the average person gets nervous, runs to their nearest doctor or give aways...

Chivalry Is Only Dead Down The Hill

Bel Air, Los Angeles
BEL AIR—I was but a little girl when I spotted my brother sporting his Sigma Nu hoodie emblazoned with the words "Chivalry is not dead." Curious, I asked what chivalry meant, sparking a lengthy family conversation. I relished the notions of respect, honor and valor, especially when demonstrated by these charming, older frat boys. I couldn't articulate the essence of...

Statin Cure: Against Medical Advice

Editor's Note: This is Part Three of a four-part series. Part 1 and Part 2 are instrumental in understanding this article. MALIBU—My young, fit, healthy father was the strongest, most powerful man I have ever known. After joining Kaiser and getting an initial physical, he was prescribed statins and immediately suffered horrifying side effects. For two years, doctors vehemently denied the...

Good Enough

BEVERLY HILLS—It’s 6:00 a.m. as I sit here in a cold, dark, lonely flat with my heart shattered into countless pieces. They tell me I’ve checked-out again. I’d have to agree that is the best phrase to use for my disconnection from the world. I think I’m back, at least temporarily, thanks to waking up to my fluffy-faced German Shepherd...

Snowboarding On The Slippery Slope

WRIGHTWOOD—Word on the street is if you want to really have fun on the slopes, avoid Mountain High. However, I had visited before and besides the icy and slippery slopes at times, I wondered why people said that. After all, it is close to Los Angeles and you can often get there without chains. So what is the big...

The Four Stages Of Dating Theory

BEVERLY HILLS—Of my eleven closest girlfriends, I had the fewest relationship problems. My ongoing examination of why they were continuously crushed by their short-lived relationships helped me discover my secrets of dating theory. I wasn't the hottest of my clan, but you'd think I was considering my dating success. They would attract good catches, but only for a limited time. I learned...

Cultural Secret #2 Boys Are Better

LOS ANGELES—Freedom and opportunity led my parents to America. Once they arrived, they built an American Dream upon a foundation of their native cultural beliefs and ideals, loads of love, and a sense of liberal freedom. My mother valued the freedom she never experienced in Lebanon. And yet, she remained tied to her cultural secrets. She firmly believed the...

Nexxus Blew My Curly Secret

BEVERLY HILLS—What do you tell your plump-lipped, chubby-cheeked daughter with curls down to her bum? Her peers are stick-thin and tight-lipped, boasting perfectly straight shoulder-length hair. They are the standard of beauty, she's not. You do the only thing you can for your distraught princess. You appease her, finding the best hair product to relax her nagging curls. You buy...

A Statin-Induced Nightmare

Editor's Note: This is Part Two of a four-part series chronicling the medical history of Hazel's father and the complications of his prescribed choleserol treatment. To properly orient yourself within the story you may read Part One Here. MALIBU—My beloved, once-healthy father was withering away. It broke my heart. I channeled my despair into determination. Fueled by a desire to...
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