Ayelet Waldman

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Ayelet Waldman (born December 11, 1964) is an American writer of fiction, born in Jerusalem, and raised in Montreal and New Jersey. She is married to the novelist Michael Chabon.


  • The Jews I knew growing up didn't do "do-it-yourself." When my father needed to hammer something he generally used his shoe, and the only real tool he owned was a pair of needle-nose pliers.
  • Dodgeball? My children were playing dodgeball? That cruel, brutal, violent schoolyard game so mercilessly satirized in the 2004 film with Ben Stiller? The game, more important, that exemplified everything that was wrong with my childhood in suburban New Jersey, a short, pasty-faced Jewish girl in a town full of scrubbed, blond, athletic WASPs, their long tanned limbs toned from years of tennis lessons and country club swim teams? Dodgeball? Over my dead body.
  • Those of us whose parenting style can be described as "a series of reflexes, instincts, and minute-by-minute adjustments," as Julie of A Little Pregnant puts it, rather than as a philosophy, are less invested in our own practices. What we do is often less a matter of conviction than one of convenience. What we need to remember is that there is no need to apologize for that, even in the face of the most red-faced outrage.
  • [W]hatever my intentions, whatever the truth of my claim, I had no business giving a lecture to a total stranger.
  • Why are the architects of the family-values agenda so eager to punish into the next generation? What is being served by seeking, quite literally, a tooth for a tooth?
    • Salon.com column
    • On Republican opposition to a bill legislating dental care for pregnant prisoners.
  • When I was 15, what I wanted in a boyfriend was just that confidence and swagger. I wanted someone who knew what he was doing, because I was just faking it. What I want for my daughter is the exact opposite.
  • We are the real Americans. Everett Moran, standing brave and resolute in the face of bigotry, is a real American. George Soros, devoting his life and his fortune to serving those less fortunate than he is, is a real American. The citizens of California who have donated their own money to support stem cell research, to compensate for the cowardice of our Taliban government, are real Americans. The rest of them? The ones that destroy the Constitution in service to their narrow-minded and zealously self-centered agendas? Those pinheads sure as hell aren't Americans. Secession. That's what we need.
  • I'd written personal essays before, but never on this scale -- never so often and with such, er, honesty. (If by honesty I mean slashing my wrists and hemorrhaging all over the computer screen).
  • [T]here is an inverse correlation between the cleanliness of a bathroom and my 3-year-old daughter's need to move her bowels.
  • Think about it, I say. How many straight men maintain inappropriately intimate relationships with their mothers? How many shop with them? I want a gay son. People laugh, but they assume I'm kidding. I'm not.
  • I tend to approach giving interviews with the same sense of circumspection and restraint as I approach my writing. That is to say, virtually none.

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