A reader sent me this picture today, and it made my day. It seems to symbolize where I am at the moment. It’s a New Year, I’m starting my second half-century, getting married soon, just started a new phase of my working life at Coney Island USA and NYC Community Media, am launching a new official web site this week (thanks, Noah Diamond!), my youngest son is about to start college, and the older one is about to begin his life as an adult. That’s a lot of change — a little scary, but mostly just kind of thrilling, much like the roller coaster metaphor we often use to describe life. Anyway babies are symbols of optimism. And babies who are smart enough to read my books make me most hopeful of all. This isn’t my kid but I may need to carry this picture around.