Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Hiatus Now Over

Okay. I've been AWOL for well over a week now, but I'm back! I have no real ecxuse except for maybe work and writing and life and PMS and. Well. Laziness.

But, in an effort to jumpstart things here again, I'm joining in with NaBloPoMo--that's National Blog Posting Month, started by fussy.org, for those not in the know. (I toyed ever so briefly with the idea of doing the national novel writing month thingy, but, to be honest, when I write that quickly I tend to churn out crap. But a post a day for a month? No prob.)

Exciting events on the horizen for November include: a couples date (yes! this is a NY thing apparently) with our friends' cousin and her husband; a trip to visit my grandmother and crazy aunt in northeatern PA; a weeklong Thanksgiving trek to San Francisco with R and my parents to visit both our friend M (in SF proper) and my sister G (in Davis, CA); my ongoing struggles with in-progress short story X; cats aplenty!

Thanks to everyone--Wandering Coyote, Diana, Candy, Red, Martha--for stopping by in my unforgiveable absence...


Monday, October 30, 2006

Fully Creepy

Somehow I never connected tampons with arts and crafts in my mind.


I'm A Pornographer.

No, really. If you happen to buy the January issue of Playgirl Magazine there might be a certain column in there about great places in Colorado for outdoor sex by a certain husband and wife team. Our pseudonym, which I won't name here, uses an amalgamation of our initials--JNR.


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

When In Doubt Meme

I found this neat little meme over at Perfect Blue Buildings.

1. What time did you get up this morning? 5:45 a.m.
2. Diamonds or pearls? Diamonds.
3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? The Science of Sleep.
4. What is your favorite TV show? Lost
5. What do you usually have for breakfast? Coffee with soymilk and granola.
6. Favorite cuisine? Sushi.
7. What is your middle name? Lynn.
8. What food do you dislike? Sardines.
9. What are your fave colors? Bloodred and black.
10. What kind of car do you drive? 2000 hyundai elantra.
11. Favorite sandwich? Roast beef and provolone.
12. What characteristic do you despise? Smarminess
13. Favorite item of clothing? My blue tank top.
14. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation? Machu Pichu
15. What color is your bathroom? White walls, bloodred shower curtain.
16. Favorite brand of clothing? No particular favorite.
17. Where would you retire to? Vieques.
18. What was your most memorable birthday? 21st. Champagne and strawberries in my dorm room.
19. Favorite sports to watch? I hate watching sports. Period.
20. Furthest place you are sending this? Dunno.
21. Who do you least expect to send this back to you? My grandmother. She doesn’t use the internet.
22. Person you expect to send it back first? Dunno.
23. Favorite saying? Yeah, well.
24. When is your birthday? Beginning of January.
25. Are you a morning person or a night person? Night.
26. What is your shoe size? 7.5
27. Pet: Four long-haired cats.
28. What did you want to be when you were little? An “Arthur” then a "balla" girl.
29. How are you today? Exhausted but good.
30. What is your favorite Candy? Reeses pieces.
31. What is your favorite flower? Gerber daisies.
32. What is a day on the calendar you are looking
forward to? December 25. I’m a sucker for Christmas.


Wagyu @ Craftsteak New York

Last night we went to Craftsteak in Manhattan for my sister-in-law's birthday celebration. We had oysters and porterhouse steak and a plethora of magnificent sides. But the highlight of the meal was the Wagyu carpaccio. Wagyu is a kobe-style Japanese cattle that is massaged (yes!) and fed beer before butchering to make it the tenderest and most succulent available. And damn was it good.


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

I'm Back

I just spend 5 days with 400+ prostate cancer patients and their wives. And you know what? I like older men. I mean I really do. Some of these guys I've known for years--through the newsletter company I help run or through these conferences--and it's like having a hundred or so Aunties and Uncles.

That said. I'm still unpacking/catching up with office work and more.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Case In Point

In this week's New Yorker there's a cartoon in which a man stonily watches television while an irate woman yells at him. The caption says: "Are you sure you don't want to save this for your blog?"

I'm in Reston, Virginia, where, for the next 5 days I'll be helping facilitate a conference for prostate cancer. (This is where the money comes to support the writing habit.)

This morning, as a knock on my door told me the breakfast and coffee had finally arrived, I realized how much I love hotel living. Is it the way my room is cleaned each evening when I return? The friendly person just a phone call away, ready to bring me all the extra pillows and blankets I desire? Or is it the 24-hour fitness club with heated pool downstairs?

Later this afternoon I'll have some time to explore the famous Reston Town Center and report back what I've learned. (Forget Paris! Try Reston.)


Monday, October 16, 2006

A turning point

Used to be I thought New Yorker cartoons were sometimes a little amusing but for the most part odd . Now? I think they're laugh-out-loud hilarious.


Best Weekend Ever

I sort of regret my angry post of Friday. Because this weekend was truly one of the best I've had in a long time.

On Friday I actually didn't go to yoga like I'd planned, but instead just went to the gym to do some cardio. (Nothing like pounding out the evil poor-me demons). I made myself a beautiful salmon steak and had a class of white wine (okay: 3) while I watched cheesey movies on TV. (R was at a bachelor party. Where did they go for said party? There are these Russian supper clubs out in Brighton Beach: run by emigrants, these drinking halls have a plethora of food, dancing, and caberet-like performances. Plus, they slap a bottle of vodka down on the table to facilitate the fun. R said everybody had a blast.) So I had the apartment to myself that night, which was actually a great thing. I love NY--and especially Brooklyn--but the apartments are small and just about every place yo go there's a crowd, even my favorite coffee shop... So a little alone time was in order.

On Saturday we had brunch at Gravy, a local diner, and then lounged around the apartment before treking over to the Cobble Hill Cinema to see "The Science of Sleep." A little bit of French absurdism to cap the night.

And yesterday I worked a double shift at the Yoga studio--for Tara's anusara class and Rachel's vinyasa. These women are two of my faves at Yoga People--there's just something about the way they approach their lives and work that I find so refreshing and inspiring.

An example? A while ago I overheard a conversation between Rachel and one of the studio's regular students. This man, let's call him X, and his wife, Y, used to come in all the time. Y was pregnant and came to prenatal; he attended one of the advanced vinyasa classes. It'd been a while since Rachel had seen Y and so she asked X how she was doing--assuming, of course, she'd had the baby a while ago and that was why she'd not been in. Not so well, he replied. She'd had a miscarriage and was pretty depressed. She wasn't working, which meant that she didn't really leave the apartment. (See my above note: apartments here tend to be on the small side. Staying inside all day has an entirely diferent meaning than it does in, say, Virginia.) So Rachel said that maybe she'd like to volunteer as a karma yoga here--she'd get out of the house for that two hour shift and then get a free class in return. Both the yoga and the social interaction would help. X thought this was a good idea but wasn't sure if he could convince her. Rachel said she'd call--tell the woman they needed help. Maybe if it came from her, Y would feel differently. Such a casual kindness. She didn't need to reach out to this woman... But she did.

Anyway, after that I came back home and R made salmon (I know! Twice in one weekend. I've had my week's worth of Omega 3s) and we watched "Red Eye" with Rachel McAdams. So wonderfully horrible we had a blast making fun of it the whole time... (R actually has a bit of a crush on both Rachel and Sarah Michelle Geller. I indulge him every once in a while.)

And now I'm ready for my week. More on that tomorrow: we're gearing up for this conference on prostate cancer that we (R and I) are helping produce down in DC. (One of our clients is a cancer foundation...)

Friday, October 13, 2006

Pissed Off

I'm having a bad day.

For no reason at all just about everybody's on my shit list.

Wrong side of bed or more like wrong side of the apartment.

R's going to a bachelor party tonight so I'm going to go to yoga, have an early dinner and catch a movie. Hopefully that'll chear me up.


Thursday, October 12, 2006

Out Of Nowhere

So I sat down yesterday in my current fave writing spot (the Tea Lounge on Court Street) and started working on this story that's been ambling along for months now. I was actually just sort of free writing, half listening to the guy sitting on the sofa next to me as he chatted with his girlfriend, when all of the sudden the words just started pouring out of me. I started to tell R about it when I got home later that night but something stopped me. I don't know. I felt kind of superstitious about it--like maybe if I talked about the story itself it'd take some of the momentum out of it. Deflate it in some way.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Rick Moody's Demonology

I'm one of the few writers I know who hasn't read Rick Moody yet. So on Sunday when R and I were strolling around Park Slope I slipped into a used bookstore and bought a copy of Demonology, a collection of his short stories.

I have to say that I'm not really impressed. I mean, he's certainly clever and his writing profiscient, but I almost felt as if this cleverness was a detriment to the prose. There was no passion, no heart; somehow none of these characters felt real to me. The only story that came close was the title piece, "Demonology." (Two stories in the collection, by the way, are about a brother coming to grips with his sister's unexpected demise.) I found myself dropping the book half way through the collection to skim through the latest New Yorker in search for something halfway enlightening to read before bed. (There's a great piece by Milan Kundera in there this week... About the development of a novelist.)

I'll give The Ice Storm a chance, but right now I'm a little astonished.


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

And yet another weirdness

Every few months or so I surf the craigslist real estate lsitings to see what my money will buy me in various parts of hte world. A studio in Manhattan=3 bedroom house in Denver=Villa in Costa Rica. That kind of thing.

But this is by far the weirdest listing I've ever seen: a cemetary plot for sale in San Mateo, CA. Described as "a luxury resting plot for parents!"


Monday, October 09, 2006

Too Busy For Reading? Try Daily Lit

Got this from Scott Holden Smith. The basic idea behind Daily Lit is that you sign up to receive great books o' literature delivered to your e-mail inbox in chunks.

I signed up for Edith Wharton's Ethan Frome and Mark Twain's On The Decay Of The Art Of Lying.

I'll let you know how it goes.


But the weirdest thing was...

On the way home from the gym I saw, in the gutter at the corner of State and Clinton, a half eaten yam, teeth marks all around the jagged edge.

It was uncooked. Hard as a rock. I know: I tapped it with my foot just to be sure.
Eleven Kinds of Weirdness

Last week I posted a poem by David Bottoms, remarking how much he reminded me of Carver and Shep commented that he'd recently found Richard Yates, whose Revolutionary Road also reminded him of Carver. (It's a regular Carver lovefest here, you see.)

So, being as I had a little time on my hands and am currently book-less, I put my little Nancy Drew hat on and started reading whichever reviews and/or any commentary I could find on Yates, being not as familiar with him as I perhaps ought to have been. (Of course I was hoping for some online excerpts or perhaps even entire stories, but oh well. Cheapskates can't be choosy.)

An article over at Boston Review was particularly illuminating, not just about the man's work but also about his relative obscurity.

(An interesting aspect of the essay is Stewart O'nan's self-reflection in the face of Yates' relative current obscurity... O'nan writes:

To write so well and then to be forgotten is a terrifying legacy. I always think that if I write well enough, the people in my books–the world of those books–will somehow survive. In time the shoddy and trendy work will fall away and the good books will rise to the top. It’s not reputation that matters, since reputations are regularly pumped up by self-serving agents and publicists and booksellers, by the star machinery of Random House and the New Yorker; what matters is what the author has achieved in the work, on the page. Once it’s between covers, they can’t take it away from you; they have to acknowledge its worth. As a writer, I have to believe that.")

All of this is well and good and I marked off a couple of interesting passages while I was on the elliptical machine at the gym tonight but what made me stop mid-stride and stare down at the page in utter astonishment was the fact that Yates' first collection of stories was called Eleven Kinds of Loneliness.

Now. I think I've written about my obsessive reading as a child. (There was that whole bringing books into the shower with me thing that I confessed on one of my Thursday 13 Things About Minerva Jane...) Sure, it was an odd girlhood. We were never allowed to spend extra money on clothes or toys or sweet treats or (eventually) make-up but at least once a month they'd take us to the local bookstore--in this case a Walden's--and let us loose. We could get up to 10 books--and this was at full price. (Now I cringe at the thought: hadn't my parents ever heard of used bookstores for christ's sake? How on earth did they afford such extravagances?) In this way I accumulated a lot of books that I only half-heartedly read, or read in spurts, or read way before I was mature enough to understand them.

And one of those books was Eleven Kinds of Loneliness. Why does this title out of all those other casually-acquired texts stand out in my mind? Well. I remember being struck by three things when I saw that book on the stand at the bookstore in Cabin John Mall: 1) other people felt that black hole of loneliness I'd never been able to explain; 2) there were apparently ten other kinds besides the one I was feeling; and 3) these lonelinesses were things other people found interesting enough to write about and actually read about.

It planted the seed of an idea: maybe if I wrote about it--meaning my teenaged angst-filled loneliness--it wouldn't feel so bad. A warding off, you see. A way of diluting.


Sunday, October 08, 2006


Last night I went to a bachelorette party for K. K's good friends with my sister-in-law, LL; her fiance is one of R's best friends. They met at our wedding two years ago in the Poconos and are marrying in two weeks at an inn about an hour north of NYC.

Last night's party started at Madame X on Houston where, thanks to the Diva School, we learned the fine art of striptease. Adorned with pink feather boas we twisted and gyrated our way into moves like the hip swivel, the titty shake, and the handcuff. At the end we were all to do our own little dance--improv encouraged--for K and drape our boas around her. Two of K's cousins went, then my sister-in-law LL who collapsed onto K and the two sat side by side. Then it was my turn. I'll admit I got a little into it--I've got a belly dancing/gypsy fantasy rattling around somewhere in my brain--and shimmied and gyrated my way toward K and LL., at which point K says really loudly: "And can you believe she's doing your brother?"


Friday, October 06, 2006

What was I thinking?

I reread Raymond Carver's What We Talk About When We Talk About Love last night. I don't know why. It was there on the bookshelf, alongside the other three collections of his I own and the two volumes of peotry. There was a time, in my early career as a writer, that I was way too into him. (Gee, that was also the time when I was drinking and partying wayyy to much. Funny that.)

Anyhoo, I'm also going through some back files on my hard drive, trying to locate this fragment of a story I was working on a few months ago and came across this poem by David Bottoms called "Lord, What are the Sins" taken from his book In A U-Haul North of Damascus. (Don't worry: I'm going to paste it at the end of this post.)

He reminds me so much of Carver I think he's somehow managed to channel him. It breaks my heart in the same way Carver does and somehow makes me think of the desperation and heart ache of the Farmer when I met her back in Vacaville. (She wasn't a drunk, at least as far as I coudl tell, but there was a broken, frayed quality to her. The farm had been--well--let go. Things just dropped where she'd used them. Old carpeting and trash and furniture. It felt like it'd been along time since somebody had lived there, even though my sister and the farmer and the baker were all right there.)

Lord, What are the Sins

Lord, what are the sins
I have tried to leave behind me? The bad checks,
the workless days, the scotch bottles thrown across the fence
and into the woods, the cruelty of silence,
the cruelty of lies, the jealousy,
the indifference?

What are these on the scale of sin
or failure
that they should follow me through the streets of Columbus,
the moon-streaked fields between Benevolence
and Cuthbert where dwarfed cotton sparkles like pearls
on the shoulders of the road. What are these
that they should find me half-lost,
sick and sleepless
behind the wheel of this U-Haul truck parked in a field on Georgia 45
a few miles north of Damascus,
some makeshift rest stop for eighteen wheelers
where the long white arms of oaks slap across trailers
and headlights glare all night through a wall of pines?

What was I thinking, Lord?
That for once I'd be in the driver's seat, a firm grip
on direction?

So the jon boat muscled up the ramp,
the Johnson outboard, the bent frame of the wrecked Harley
chained for so long to the backyard fence,
the scarred desk, the bookcases and books,
the mattress and box springs,
a broken turntable, a Pioneer amp, a pair
of three-way speakers, everything mine
I intend to keep. Everything else abandon.

But on the road from one state
to another, what is left behind nags back through the distance,
a last word rising to a scream, a salad bowl
shattering against a kitchen cabinet, china barbs
spiking my heel, blood trailed across the cream linoleum
like the bedsheet that morning long ago
just before I watched the future miscarried.

Jesus, could the irony be
that suffering forms a stronger bond than love?

From "In a U-Haul North of Damascus" Copyright 1983 by David Bottoms.


Tea House On Court Street

I'm sitting in a place called the Tea House on Court Street in Cobble Hill--just over the Atlantic Avenue border from Brooklyn Heights. Sometimes working all day in my two-bedroom apartment gets so claustrophic I can barely think, so I hightail it outta there to a local tea or coffee joint. So imagine my joy when I heard this new place was opening up--just a few short blocks from me--and with free wifi! I thought I'd get my butt over here before it was completely run over by the stroller brigade. (Note: A Brooklyn phenomena. Lacking playgrounds and backyards, come too hot or too cold or too rainy days local mothers flock to these coffee shops where they can sip tea all day long and chat with other mamas while their toddlers loll about in their trendy Bugabo strollers.)

So I'm sitting here trying to take some notes on a short story I'm working on and that new novel I'm gestating. A little loud, but at least I've escaped the pull of the refrigerator and the TV and the loathsome sofa.


I Could Have Been In A Richard Russo Novel

I just finished reading Empire Falls by Richard Russo, which is an absolutely inspired view of small town life in rural Maine.

So of course I started a little search to see what else I could uncover about the man and his work and lo and behold what did I come upon? An online raffle. And the prize? Your name could be featured in an upcoming novel by Russo. I kid you not. Unfortunately, the raffle drawing was in February of this year so I waaaayyyy missed the deadline. Still. The possibilities.


Toby Wolff on Writing

Tonight I'm going to hear Tobias Wolff (author of This Boy's Life) as part of the New Yorker Festival. To prepare (and because I'm a chronic procrastinator) I did a little web search and uncovered an interview with him on posted salon.com

He had some really interesting things to say about writing and the writing life.

And this little nugget really hit home:

Writing is arduous, isn't it? When other people go to what they call work, they sit at their desks a little while, go over their stats, check the email, answer it, read some reports, and then they get up and go to the office next door, talk business, schmooze a little, go back, sit down and read a bit, type up some memos, go down the hall for a meeting, go out for lunch, then come back and do what they did in the morning. Work for most people is really very social, and the actual thinking is often done in community. There are very few professions in which people just sit down and think hard for five or six hours a day all by themselves. Of course it's why you want to become a writer — because you have the liberty to do that, but once you have the liberty you also have the obligation to do it.

You can read the whole interview here.


Wednesday, October 04, 2006

With nakedness my shield

In my family there's a long, multigenerational push to "keep things in the family." Secrets like alcoholism, abuse, insanity, and plain old divorce were all sort of swept under the rug and more or less not talked about. Covering for your family members' failures and pretending to the outside world that we were something we were not are both skills I've had ample time to hone.

As I'm sure you can imagine this doesn't really jive all that well with being a writer. Lucky for me, though, my generation seems to be a bit more open. In response to my first novel (based really really loosely on a close reltive who's a paranoid schizophrenic) a cousin said: "I've heard you've written a book about X and I'm not supposed to ask about it."


There's this poem by Theordore Roethke that's been rattling around in my brain for years that I thought I'd share with you. Perfect for those with a bent for blogging.


My secrets cry aloud.
I have no need for tongue.
My heart keeps open house,
My doors are widely swung.
An epic of the eyes
My love, with no disguise.

My truths are all foreknown,
This anguish self-revealed.
I'm naked to the bone,
With nakedness my shield.
Myself is what I wear:
I keep the spirit spare.

The anger will endure,
The deed will speak the truth
In language strict and pure.
I stop the lying mouth;
Rage warps my dearest cry
To witness agony.


Tuesday, October 03, 2006

In Memory

Yesterday was Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. From sundown Saturday night to sundown last night, my husband’s people fasted as they remembered their sins and sought atonement. Mothers and grandmothers lit candles in memory of the dead. Families gathered last night to break fast together.

I, too, fasted yesterday. I too remembered people now gone.

This is a way into a story I don’t really have any right to tell. Still, it weighs on me and the only way I’ve ever been able to excise anything is to write it down.

I tried to post this yesterday but for some reason couldn’t get the courage to do it.


As most of you who read this blog on a regular basis know, in last August before heading to the annual Burning Man Artfest-cum-Carnivale in Black Rock City, Nevada, I took a few days to visit my sister on the organic farm where she was interning for the summer before heading back to school to get her MA in English.

Since we live on opposite coasts we don’t get to see each other that often and even though it was a little awkward—I was supposed to be helping pack up for our desert trek, after all—I still made a point of visiting her on this farm about an hour or so east of SF.

R. and I spent two days hanging out with the three women who worked there: L, the woman who owned the farm, my sister; who used to be a cook at the chichi Berkeley eatery Olivetos; and the other intern, a former baker from Boston. The three women called themselves the Farmer, the Baker, and the Cook as a sort of joke that quickly became old hat.

The first night we ate a mixture of specialty produce from the farm and specialty meats they’d traded at that morning’s Berkeley farmers’ market. We hiked and talked. Talked and walked.

On Sunday our friend M (again, from Burning Man fame) came out and spent the night. The next morning he and R drove back to SF via Napa, wine-tasting their way into their own little Sideways adventure.

I stayed on the farm and spent that afternoon and the following day working alongside my sister, the Baker and the Farmer. I picked sungold tomatoes and peaches and pumpkins. I cleaned garlic and onions for market. I watched them pack orders for restaurants like Chez Panisse and Olivetos and Quince. Throughout, the Farmer’s dog, D, scampered between us, chasing mice and rabbits. When D stood still she always made sure some part of her flank was pressed up against somebody’s shins.

These women were all educated and their conversations ran along the lines of books and philosophy. (On the outdoor kitchen table, were several copies of the New Yorker and a primer of butchering. On the way down to the main field was a mattress where the Farmer was wont to sleep on the hottest of summer nights and on that mattress was a copy of The Turn Of The Screw, dog-eared and water-stained.)

During my visit I also learned that the Farmer and the Baker were dating and that the Farmer was toying with the idea of converting the farm from a specialty organic produce farm to an artist retreat or colony. She needed a break, she explained. Farming was hard work and it tended to isolate you.

On Tuesday afternoon after work my sister and I drove back into SF and I met up with R and M. We had dinner. My sister went back home and the next day we left for Burning Man, which I’ve written about extensively on this very blog.

When I returned to NY, life went on as usual. Just scroll back through the last few months’ worth of posts and you’ll see what I’ve been up to.

On the farm, my sister reported during our daily phone conversations, life just sort of coasted along. She was going to continue to live at the farm, in the yurt the Farmer had provided for both interns, throughout the fall semester. She’d work for about ten hours a week—tending the chickens; helping around the farm—for a small stipend.

She started classes last Tuesday. She attended an orientation on Wednesday afternoon. When she got home that night the Farmer wasn’t around but she learned from the Baker that the two had broken up at lunch that day. Perhaps, the Baker speculated, the Farmer just needed some space.

But the next morning at 7 am the Farmer didn’t show up for work. The Baker and my sister waited for a few minutes. They waited for a few more. They called her cell phone. They text messaged her. Nothing. My sister had a weird feeling. The dog wasn’t barking. And the dog always barked. And come to think of it, D hadn’t barked when she’d returned the night before, either.

She and the Baker walked up to the house and my sister, telling the Baker to wait by the door, went inside.

In one of the back rooms she found the Farmer sprawled on the floor. There was a lot of blood. She’d shot herself. The dog, too, was dead.

My sister rushed back out of the house, telling the Baker not to go inside. She called the police and then called me. I was speechless. I panicked. All I could think of was that I wanted to reach across the country and yank my sister away from this, yank her all the way back to what now seemed like boring but safe Brooklyn. Instead, I talked to her for a while. I don’t know what I said. All I know is that it felt inadequate. The police were taking a long time to get there, she kept saying.

Now, six days later, my sister’s staying with friends in SF. She’s helping the Farmer’s friends and family in whichever ways she can. But every time I talk to her she vacillates between sounding strangely calm, sad, angry and overwrought. She’s a tough kid. Always has been. She’ll get through this, scars notwithstanding.

Even though I only knew her for a few short days, I sensed that the Farmer was a good, kind person. (I still remember the look on her face when she thanked me for helping them out that day—the sudden flash of shy vulnerability. A timid sweetness.)

My heart goes out to her spirit, wherever it may be. My heart goes out to her father and brothers, her friends and colleagues. My heart goes out the Baker. My heart goes out to my sister, suddenly jobless and homeless days after graduate school started.

My heart goes out to all of us who, teetering at the edge of that dark place, somehow fall into the abyss.

And so I light this virtual candle in memory of the Farmer. And repeat the hindu mantra: Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu.

May all beings everywhere be happy and free.

Without exception.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Best Roadtrip Game Ever

When R. and I were living in Charlottesville we frequently went on long roadtrips--to DC; to New York; to Boston. After a while, bored of the radio, whatever gossip we could dredge up and our own paltry disagreements, we'd latch onto this game we called Baby Names. (No: I'm not pregnant nor trying to become so.)

It started as a sort of speculative 'When-we-have-kids-what-we'll-name-them' exercise but soon morphed into Who Can Come Up With The Craziest Name? Who could deliver the final trump--the name that would stop the game dead in it's tracks. Me giggling into the steering wheel, R grinning maniacally into space?

R won--and wins--hands down. Why? He initiated both the definite article middle name and part of speech middle name.


Attila The S_____


Angus Shwa S_____

Angstrom Umlut S______.

Or merely

Yeiger Ü S_____

The possibilites are endless.