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Chris Parent

Sunset in a City
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Creative Nonfiction Portfolio

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Open Net

The Under Review 

Winter 2023

For all intents and purposes, my football career ended on a cool October day in 1984 in New Rochelle, New York. I was 13 years old and playing linebacker for the Fairfield (Connecticut) Giants.

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Four Years in the Desert

The Whiskey Blot

November 21, 2022

Whereas my drinking now involves European lagers and gins filled with botanicals picked by the petite hands of Slovenian children, I was focused on volume in my twenties.  I drink in moderation now.  I abhor hangovers and dehydration.  After graduating from college and moving to Washington, DC, though, I embarked on a period in my life when I was a searching for direction.

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One Brick Missing

Across the Margin


July 14, 2022

The news came as a curt text for which my wife later apologized. Denied. My daughter, Madeline, had been rejected by her dream school, the same college my wife and I had attended, Notre Dame.


The message was gracious and even referenced how difficult this was considering that Madeline was a legacy. But it was still a paragraph, and essentially said eighteen years of dreams, late night study sessions, SAT prep work, and countless hours of extra-curricular activities came down to not being good enough. And that was it. Final answer.

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Girl in the Doorway

Memoirist 


Published on June 27, 2020

A  memoir of how a birthday party I attended when I was 8 years old changed my views on race.

“I have a dream that one day … little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.” Martin Luther King Jr.

Race and money made for an easy roadmap in 1978 Atlanta. It was orderly. The white and black communities knew where to go and not to go. Each knew where to eat, where to shop, where to live, and where to send their kids to school. Against this backdrop, controversy brewed when my classmate, Raquel, delivered invitations to her birthday party.

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City of Seven Hills

Memoirist

Published in March, 2022

On the morning of June twenty-third, 1956, however, their family lives were utterly upended. Tony was searching the streets of Yonkers for his daughter, Rosemarie, who’d failed to come home the night before. It was a most unusual occurrence and a cause for concern in that Tony’s cosseted child, who, at twenty-four, still lived at home, led a sheltered life as a parochial school teacher. Accounts at the time in local papers inevitably referred to her as “pretty”, and from the pictures I’ve seen of her, she was. With her mixed Italian-Ukrainian heritage, Rosemarie had high cheekbones, dark hair and a full mouth that wore an innocent, girlish smile. I could also see for myself what everybody else had always said – that she and my mother looked almost alike. My mother was ten when her cousin, Rosemarie, disappeared. It was an event that she has struggled to talk about for the rest of her life, and which deeply influenced her own overprotective parenting style.

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Name is a Four-Letter Word

Memoir Magazine

Published on October 27, 2021

A few days after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, I received a call from an organization that was making blankets for the families of the victims.  I was working at the time as trademark counsel for Nintendo and was tasked with offering legal approval of licensing requests.  One victim was Noah Pozner, whose family had described him as a Nintendo fan, a brand loyalist even at his young age.

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Song of Silence

Kairos Literary Magazine

First Published in December, 2021

In truth, to “live with the monks” had been a goal of mine since I took a seminar in college 20 years before on the subject of Transcendentalism.  After reading Self-Reliance, I did not abandon my Catholic faith or trust in authority.  I wasn’t radical enough to do that.  It did, however, challenge my pre-conceived notions about the power of silent prayer versus the value in Mass.  I heeded the advice of Ralph Waldo Emerson that “Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of our own mind” and pushed myself to hear the voices that only one can hear in solitude, something that has never come easy for me.  I found sitting in the silence of my university’s Cathedral and by its pristine lakes more enlightening than the manic ritual of Mass.

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“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Muhlebachstrasse 28
8008 Zurich
Switzerland

+41 79 897 67 30

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