Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Blandly Bonding

          While I was in the hospital, Mamie stuck close to My Guy’s side and ate practically nothing.

Monday, July 30, 2018

(Reality) Check, Please!

No one could say that useful trait of denial ever dodged my family. I remember my sister’s starry-eyed rendition of “I Enjoy Being a Girl” for her 7th grade talent show – in spite of her very modest vocal skills.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Sunday Nostalgia

We unearthed a forgotten box of photographs the other day and I lost myself for a good hour going through them.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Big League

You know how in movies about a boxing match or maybe a horse race, after all the bets are in, they bring out the competitor that no one had planned on and all expectations go out the window?

          That’s called a ringer.

          After playing in this new golf league on 5 dates, I had acquired enough scores for the organizers to determine my handicap.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Tortes and Whales

Yesterday evening we made the fatal error of watching last week’s episode of The Great British Baking Show. . .tortes.

Friday, July 13, 2018

I am who I am - Really

I have no idea why I thought retirement would provide a force shield against bureaucracy, but there was a definite rupture today.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Quiet Epidemic

Today’s return to my water aerobics BFFs connected in a small way to Tuesday’s exercise class at a neighboring Senior Center. 

Sunday, July 8, 2018


Halleluiah, the weather has broken. Mamie’s out from under the bed – most of the time – and our porch no longer resembles the punishment box in Cool Hand Luke.

Friday, July 6, 2018

13 Pound Power Struggle

     It’s been in the upper 90s for the past six or seven days and Mamie’s had it.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Knowing Your Place

          After a wacky air-head hitch in which I went an hour early to pick up my friend R for our Tuesday exercise class, and then had to return one hour later, we finally got to the neighboring town’s Senior Center as people were setting up chairs. The class involves a lot of aerobic step work but uses chairs for some of the weight lifting portion.

          Everyone had arranged their chairs in a big circle, but one woman had pulled hers farther out. R asked her if we were in her way but she said no, she liked to be in the outer portion for more room.
          “Everyone has their favorite spot, don’t they?” commented R.
          We discussed classes we’d taken or seminars we’d attended and how you needed to think long and hard about where you chose to sit on that first day. There might as well be brass plates attached to them the way everyone always gravitates to the same spot on succeeding days.
          As we spoke, I had an immediate flash of sitting in my particular spot at my parents’ dining table in Virginia, my sister always across from me.
Then I was teleported to the dining room in Tulsa, my grandfather at the head, Granny to his left, my sister next to her, and my mother and me on the other side.
My own kids always had their particular side of the dining table across from each other, perfectly positioned for tormenting the other or making him/her crack up and spew milk midway through the meal.
Maybe now this whole concept is probably hopelessly outdated. I wonder how many families really sit down at home and have an actual meal at a table together.

Monday, July 2, 2018


        I grew up in Virginia and Oklahoma and I thought I knew hot. 
        I remember my non-airconditioned childhood of sleeping in the snow-angel position: spreadeagled on the bed so no body part touches another body part.
        I remember my arm sticking to my worksheet as we waited for the last day of school.
        I remember my grandparents’ sleeping porch, the source of any possible breeze on an August Oklahoma night.

          Our current porch here in Massachusetts looks cool and welcoming, doesn’t it?
   Look again. 

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Hearing Voices

Whenever I see an avocado pit balanced on toothpicks over a jar of water I think of my mother. She always seemed to have one sprouting, with its slim green stalk. I think of her just about every time I cut an avocado around its circumference, pull the two halves away, and whack the pit with my butcher knife to twist it out.
          It’s those simple moments that bring long-gone people back into my everyday.

          At least thirty years have passed since I’ve left my toaster plugged in. Back in my television production days at the cable company, my boss Brian’s wife departed for work with her toaster still engaged and somehow burned down their kitchen. Now, after the English muffins are done, as I’m yanking the plug from the wall I think of him.
          My mother may have been a champ with avocados, but she was a bit casual about housework. It wasn’t my mother but my neighbor Nancy, who had obviously been raised better than I had, who pointed out to me the benefits of washing the sink before you did the dishes.
          And just about every time I peel one of those annoying stickers from a piece of fruit I think of Linda. It was lunchtime in the faculty room and I was grousing about the sticker on my apple. When she said that she always removed hers when she washed her fruit, my apple suddenly felt like it had a neon light on it shouting, “UNWASHED! UNWASHED!”