The Conversation

Arrrr. This photo is unrelated to the story that follows... “I think I need to see Nicole.” “You’re feeling pretty bad, huh?” Who’s Nicole? She’s the only mental health professional I see. Tourette syndrome, obsessive compulsive disorder, general anxiety disorder, (rarely) depression, social anxiety. I should employ an army of neurologists, psychiatrists and therapists. Instead, … Continue reading The Conversation

Dead Space

I was twelve when Bad Ronald first aired. American TV network ABC played it as an afterschool special—a ninety-minute movie aimed at tweens like me. They loaded it with commercials selling cereals and toys and other TV shows I might watch later that night. I can’t remember the specifics, but I imagine a fridged January … Continue reading Dead Space

iShower

I took a shower!!! Confetti-cannons fire. Balloons drop from the ceiling. Strobe lights flash and sirens scream. The crowd erupts in cheers and applause. Conversation: Nephew: I shower twice a day. In the morning and after I work out.Me: You Americans shower too often. I used to be an American. I started each day with … Continue reading iShower

Loss

Susan’s mom died last week. It came out of nowhere. Jeanne was well, grocery shopping at Giant with Susan’s father. Her energy dragged. She sat on a wooden bench by the pharmacy while Al finished gathering the groceries. It’s been a rough year for her. Bouts of confusion led doctors to suspect seizure activity. She … Continue reading Loss

Repo Man

Debbi: Let's go do some crimes. Duke: Yeah. Let's go get sushi and not pay.     --Dialogue from the 1984 cult-classic movie Repo Man I called it a cult-classic. For the past thirty-seven years I’ve called it a cult-classic, but I just watched it. Nothing classic about it at all. Truthfully, it kind of sucked. Repo … Continue reading Repo Man

Average, Ordinary, Run of the Mill

In my favorite scene from the movie American Beauty, Mena Suvari, representative of a typical high school cheerleader—blonde and thin—spars with Wes Bentley’s character Ricky Fitts. Suvari’s character compares herself to Fitts’ girlfriend Jane: Yeah? Well, at least I'm not ugly! Yes, you are. And you're boring, and you're totally ordinary, and you know it. … Continue reading Average, Ordinary, Run of the Mill

Life-Changing

Life-changing. How often do you hear this term? I, for one, certainly overuse it. Possibly weekly, at least monthly. “Oh man, switching to decaf, that was life-changing!” If I take careful stock of my history, how many events actually changed my life? Like changed *all* of my life? Just a handful: marriage, kids, relocating to … Continue reading Life-Changing

And Another

Sixty isn’t old, right? I browse the obituaries daily. As part of my job managing finances for the county library system, I keep up with local current events. In a small town like mine, knowing who died might be the most important part of that effort. As I inch closer towards the end of my … Continue reading And Another

Crows

Crows in Australia go Vrark. Or so I hear. I keep writing about crows, and given the international nature of WordPress, it’s natural to get a global perspective. I heard this Vrark description from two sources. Both are bloggers who live in Melbourne. In a conversation with David W Don contrasting my small-town experience living … Continue reading Crows

Stuck

When I tumbled off my mountain bike two months ago, I knew immediately that I damaged my shoulder. Crumpled on the ground, the sensible side of my brain took over: Get up, get riding. Most people who grew up playing sports know that after a significant muscle strain or joint injury, there is often a … Continue reading Stuck