On humbleness

[POI: embarking on another father-daughter Costco run; a coffee catch-up with my unofficially-adoptive mother, Sue.]

I was terrified of Sue when I first met her. She has the gaze of Mulan‘s Shan Yu (minus, you know, the falcon sidekick and bloodlust) and a résumé to rival that of Condaleezza Rice. Years of negotiating with the world’s most intimidating, and therefore often stubborn, climate lawyers have lent her a particularly impenetrable aura, like the shell of an ostrich egg. She has an uncanny ability to perfect anything; competition is irrelevant to her because she is the competition, the one everyone loves (wishing they were her) and hates (knowing they could never be her) with equal ferocity. Her sense of humor is as wry as it is biting. Her first words to my parents were, “can we trade kids?”

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