Category: Life in America

Notes from Inside the Train

Pyramid Electric Windows along Amtrak NER train 141

In Philadelphia, the quiet car fills up completely– so completely that I can’t keep my screen hidden from my seat mate. I don’t know him, but I know enough that he was kind. He gave up his window seat to a couple so that they could sit together. From WAS to PHI, the quiet car…

On Year 44

What All Those Birthday Wishes Mean to MeAs I walked from home to the playground today to pick up the kids, it occurred to me that — perhaps — at some point in one’s life it is considered “untoward” to make such a fuss about one’s birthday. Of course, not that I’ve ever given a…

In Love with ‘Love, Actually’

Love Actually Perfect

Because I forgot to take the bacon out of the freezer Christmas Eve, I got the chance to see “Love, Actually” again this year. It just so happens that this is the 10th anniversary of the film, and for some reason that means that people are thinking/talking about it and revisiting their dusty opinions of…

Why Not? She Asks Again – #reverb13 – Day 17

Wide Open Original photo by E. Howard

Resolve – Firmness of purpose; to solve a problem or a dispute. My word for 2013 was “resolve.” I dissected that word last December, and like any misguided wordsmith, instead of thinking “how does this apply to me” I just pulled it all apart and wrote in second person. I have a tendency to do…

This is really really true.

I haven’t written much here lately. I don’t have a really good reason, other than the THOUGHT of writing a POST has gotten so HUGE-NORMOUS in my mind, that I actually get terrified and just run away. However. Yesterday, my friend Chris posted a link to Hyperbole and a Half’s latest post “Depression Part 2.” This…

What We Did in Summer

Aniah and The Swimming Pool

My memory of my youth is a haze of fine particulate.I don’t remember what I did in the summer as a kid. Not specifically. I remember that I played outside with the neighbor kids and my siblings. We rode bikes and ran around. I went on vacation with my family. There was the library and…

Our Memories Become Theirs

At the beginning of my parenting experience, I said “no” often. The noise and the mess was a lot to handle. Not to mention the plain issue of just keeping track of where all the little live bodies were in space and time. And what they were planning to put in their mouth at that…

I Submit to You This Broken Heart

I submit to you this broken heart. A year ago, I (unintentionally!) kicked a little snowball down a snowy hill, and I discovered how cold and mean life can be. I am awfully terrible at telling personal stories, and since this story has intertwined a few other hearts of people I love, I am not…

On Going Mental

Yesterday one of my oldest friends called me… from the “inside.” Well, to put it more clearly, she called from an inpatient psych ward. My friend and I have known each other now as long as we have not known each other… longer actually. And since she met her husband about 3 weeks after I…

Take a Letter, Maria

The person I most dig, admire, croon after, and just all-around want to brain-pick (for the year 2012) is Maria Popova. In case you haven’t gotten any of my many nudgings about her awesomely curated website Brain Pickings, here’s another one. Her site (and the weekly newsletter, which is any artist or bibliophile’s perfect inbox source for…

Resolve – A Beautiful Word

In the next week, you’ll likely ponder, and then make, New Year’s resolutions. Yes, you’ll break them eventually, and that is what I’d like to mention. The root word for “resolution” is the word “resolve.” This is a beautiful word. As a verb, it means “to solve a problem or a dispute.” This could be something personal and internal (the classic…

Food We Eat (or Don’t)

I stopped by Nick and Heather’s house yesterday to drop off a tablespoon of bourbon for a truffle recipe Nick was making. I asked Nick what he made for his family Thanksgiving. “I made this delicious farro recipe. Want to try it?” It wasn’t until a depressing day in 1994 sitting on the steps of…