I What?

Because I love the sound of my own voice (false) I made the first of what I hope to be the entire series of old columns in MP3 form. You can listen to me drone on and on about the planets in Lucky Stars, Bad Signs and Planets in Retrograde. Text version here. The awesome music you hear in the intro is a sample from a song two of my brothers did for my sister on her birthday some years back. The end song, which I included in its entirety just for the fun of it, is my brother, Nato, singing a song that us younger kids sang growing up called I Like You. I believe my sister Rhoda made it up one day as we walked to the swimming pool on a hot summer afternoon and we all started singing different parts to harmonize. In this version, Nate is doing all the parts himself. Kind of talented, isn’t he?

I have a little bit of a cold but I hope that makes me sound sexy, not drunk and sleepy.

HuffPost Column

My next piece at The Huffington Post is up: Teaching Fearlessness to My Daughter

A few weeks ago, I took my sixteen-year-old daughter to what some might think was an inappropriate event. I know her father did, as he repeatedly reminded her the day before we went, and actually on the phone a few hours before, that she was beautiful and healthy and in no way in need of what this event had to offer.

Clearly, he didn’t understand why I was taking her.

Thin, a documentary by Lauren Greenfield, is a stark, honest and riveting look at eating disorders. The effect they have on the human brain, twisting body image into something toxic, is so pervasive that you almost can’t believe it. But then you do believe it, because it’s true.

I was lucky enough to go to see the documentary a few weeks ago with Alex. We had many a lively conversation in the next few days. I’m so thankful we were invited to the screening. The book is quite lovely, too.

Gloria Steinem & Greenstone Media

I was lucky enough to speak with Gloria Steinem about Greenstone Media the other day. She and Jane Fonda, among other great women, have created a national radio network owned by women and featuring women. You can read what I took away from the call over at Huffington Post.

Also on the call were these classy ladies:

Que Sera Sera
Mommy Needs Coffee
Motherhood Uncensored
Her Bad Mother
Three New York Women
Brazen Careerist
Mom 101
Almost Literary
Pamela Slim

I'm sorry, Mr. H.

I’ve been obsessing about something for the past few months/years. It keeps me up at night and reminds me that I’m an idiot on so many levels. It peeks it’s head around the corner and tells me the best idea is to go to bed, tuck the covers around the shape of my body, and lay like a mummy for the next two years because I suck suck SUCK. In order to put it back into perspective and quit giving it so much power, I decided to write about it.

A year and a half or so ago, I did an interview with Matt Haughey. I was so happy that he decided to answer my questions. I was ecstatic that he had even answered my email. About that same time, I took some classes at the local college.

Now, sometimes it takes 2 days to get the answers to my questions back from someone and sometimes it takes weeks or months. It doesn’t really matter to me, as long as they are still having fun. And I don’t remember how long it took for him to send me back his stuff. That part is irrelevant. I do know it coincided with schoolwork. And the part that keeps replaying in my mind is where he offered to rewrite his bio.

Now, he’s a kick-ass kind of guy and it’s not the worst thing to have him write his own bio. When I looked at the email, he had indeed written a fine intro. Mine was incomplete and not anywhere done yet. He knew himself better than I knew him and there it was, already written and pretty. And I had tests to study for and homework to do. And so I just copied and pasted and shut the lid on it. And ever since then, I have hated the fact that I didn’t finish it. That he felt like he needed to write it for me. And that I didn’t take some kind of pro-active role in writing a great bio-intro that used what he sent but was also my own.

This might be just some kind of weird obsessive compulsive thing or I might be being totally a tardhead. Or it might be valid to want all your work to be your own. And it might be mostly about doing a great job instead of a half-assed one even when you have homework.

So, anyway, I’m sorry, Mr. H. It’s possible that you hardly remember this interview, if at all, but the apologizing is always mostly for the sender and not the receiver anyway. I think you are the Rad and thank you for doing the interview with me and next time, I’ll write such a crazy-ass-cool-bio-intro, you won’t even believe it.


Words Overheard: Airport Conversation

Three men, British accents, standing in line in front of me and waiting to check into the flight, speaking with much more passion and exuberance than my day calls for:

1: “No way! No one’s done what we have. No one!”
2: “I’d like to see them put themselves in that situation and survive!”
3: “You think it’s all that impressive, do you? That’s a little sad, really.”
1: “I don’t need this! (pause) You’ve obviously already forgotten Saturday, pallie.”

Same gentlemen in the airport eatery. It’s 7:45p and the only open seat is next to them on the long booth going along one wall. The table doesn’t move but I try to inch it closer to me anyway. My plane has been delayed indefinitely. I’m hungry and would like a beer. The waitress smiles at me and motions that she will come right over as she makes a path next to me and goes to a different table. Three times. By the time I order my nachos and get my beer, I’m getting a slight headache from the din. All these people with the intention to leave shortly yet stuck in place for the unforeseeable future. They are chatty, tired, on edge and colorful.

I lay my head back and decide to relax. Seven seconds later, realizing that relaxation is far, far away from my grasp, I get out my notebook and start to jot. On my left I hear

1: “…..if I can get her to fall in love with me.”
2: “She’ll see right through you.”
3: “Don’t you think you are too gay for that?”
1: “Only if I am really gay. (somber pause while they all take a drink) Am I gay?”
2: “Don’t say that too loud. I think you’ll spook our neighbor there. You sound lovelorn.”
3: “She’s writing furiously. She must be a restaurant reviewer.”
2: “Or is that a picture she’s drawing? Look, Pete, I think it’s you.”
1: “That’s a drawing of a Gothic square. Are you daft?”
Me: “I’m just doodling. It’s nothing, really. What I should draw are some nachos. I’m starving.” 8:35p and still no food.
3: “Yes. I noticed you had nothing in front of you. I would have offered some of our nachos but they seem to have disappeared.”
2: “I believe they are on the inside of Pete right this very second and wishing they could find a way out.”
Me: “Well, I think they will find a way out eventually.”
1: (hoot of laughter) “Now that is a charming thing to say to somebody!”
3: “And here I thought you were a restaurant reviewer! But you couldn’t be with that kind of cheeky mouth!”
2: “But really, what would a reviewer be doing in this place? This place called ‘The Home of the Haut Dog’ what with it being in the airport and all?”
1: “Well, I might have shared my chili but it’s too late now as well.”
3: “But not me bratwurst. No.” (shaking his head)
2: “Shall we motion the waitress for you and ask her what for?”
3: “Must you call her over here again? She sounds positively shocking. Like Jar Jar Binks!”
1: “Yes. Do you think you could be a dear and not want your food now? We’d like it much better to leave without the pleasure of her voice again.
Me: “Well, that’s nice! Here you’ve just finished your food without sharing and then ask me to not have mine because the waitress sounds like a science fiction character!”
2: “Yes, but Jar Jar Binks is a really horrendous character.”
3: “Yes. Everyone thinks so. In fact we call America the Land of Freedom Including the Right to Create a Terrible Movie Character.”

Rolling Eyes

So, Mighty Girl launched her new stuff over on Mighty Goods and I saw this head thingy which is technically named The Tingler. I read her description which included phrases like “this thing will make your eyes roll back in your head” and “it can make you feel vaguely uncomfortable, like it�s a little too sexual to be happening in a public place” and thought to myself, ‘Huh” because I couldn’t decide if I wanted to have my eyes roll back in my head but sex in a public place has always intrigued me.
Continue reading “Rolling Eyes”

in my little world…..

So I got the column.

On Saturday, Joe and I went to a meeting and met the publisher and
editors of Writers Monthly. They were happy to see me but mostly I
think because I had brought with me my very own webgeekguru for
their use. David Boyne had lots of nice things to say about us,
including the following I received in an email the next day:

… The gods sent me a brilliant new columnist who has more talent
than she knows what to do with, and a kick-butt web geek who not
only speaks fluent English, but is charming, sincere, has a great
sense of humor and can communicate with mortals…..

Joe wasn’t even going to get involved in this project, but he has
somehow been added to the list of ‘people working on the
magazine’. I’m glad. I look forward to working on a project with him.
And he’s getting into it, too.

I also got wind of another column/journalist position that pays real
money, thanx to Lilia of digitElle…….we’ll see how that transpires.

And I’d like to take a moment for station identification and thank our

My parents read to me and my siblings on Saturday and Sunday
nights when I was growing up. I don’t mean little kid books. I’m
talking about real literature like Little Women and
Little Menby Luisa May Alcott or books by C.S. Lewis,
The Secret Garden by Tasha Tudor,
A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett to name a few…..
and my father had a never ending supply of wonderful poetry and prose
he would read us or recite to us from memory. The love of books, reading
and using words as expression was instilled in me very, very young. My
library card was one of my most prized possessions.
I read everything I could get my hands on. And asking what a word was
or meant was never laughed at or looked down on. We were encouraged
to understand what we were listening to or reading.
And THAT is what I want to thank my
parents for…..a vocabulary of more than the standard 50 words. I
love words. I use words. And I have many to pick from because I
heard them early on and consistently.

Back to our regularly scheduled program….

I had a great weekend. Really, really wonderful.
Did nothing much.
Nothing really exciting.
And in that, my friends, is the secret to a great, approximately 50
hour weekend.

I am continually blessed. It never stops. I’m so thankful.

quick recap for the kids:
things are good, i love you, i miss you, call me more, and read. read.