Showing posts from November, 2017

So Hono(u)red

In the spring, my essay " Bypass Instructions " appeared in Compose literary journal. Compose has been a going concern for at least five years--it's set to publish its 10th issue soon--and nominates its content for prizes. I learned today that Compose nominated "Bypass Instructions" for a Pushcart Prize ! You can read all their nominees at the announcement in the link. I so appreciate this vote of confidence from the journal--as well as the positive responses from readers. Thank you, Compose !

Of Course! Wait...Really?

Lately, I've been moving several projects forward simultaneously. My days are packed with teeny incremental steps on several fronts. I'm learning several surprising things. Some big. Most small. Like, for example, what I do and don't need to have handy. Decades ago, I bought a Filofax planning system. (Influences: Thirtysomething and Alexandra Stoddard.) Ever since, it's held All The Important Things, as well as Most Things It Came With. A couple of months ago, I decided I should use my Filofax more wisely, or not use it at all. To start, I asked myself some questions. Do I really need to carry the addresses of all of my cousins (especially when we communicate mostly through social media)? How about that fold-out four-colour map of the world, including time zones? Is that a "gotta have at my fingertips!" kind of insert? What about the daily to-do lists from two months ago? The answers: No. No. No. And answering those questions has made me face a


"I don't remember my jeans." I stood in front of the credenza where a stack of denim lies folded on the top shelf. My husband, poor man, happened to pick that moment to pass within earshot. His raised eyebrow told me that he didn't quite know what I meant. Whatever. I did. It happens every year--at some point in April or so, I quit wearing jeans so much and start wearing shorter versions of jeans, or more lightweight workout pants, or (gasp) dresses. And at some point in the fall, I go back to the long pants. In the interim, I forget my jeans--the individual quirks I used to know about each pair. That one, the most comfortable pair, has a small rip near the zipper. I remember now, vaguely, that I decided in April I'd think about later. Later is now, and now is later, and I can't worry about the times I've worn them recently without remembering that rip. I can only hope whatever else I was wearing covered it up. Because I realized I didn't r

Blank Square

Sometimes, there's no more beautiful sight than a blank square. Like this one. That's today on the desk calendar my husband and I share. It's the first blank space on the calendar in several days. You can even see some of yesterday lapping over the edge to today. The events that have filled the past several days have been great--lots of celebrations and fun events, a few meetings, some generic errands, much that has been entirely pleasant. And yet--it's been a lot of interaction for me. I really enjoy this blank square. There's another one, tomorrow. Errands will fill up one or the other of these days. But for now, I'm enjoying that sense of possibility stretching ahead. Maybe I'll even find the internal space to face a blank page. It's high time.

Autumn Leaves

This time of year I'm still walking outdoors, and enjoying it, for as long as I can. Soon, the snow on the roads won't melt during the day, and the ice will force me to the treadmill. But not yet. Monday, I picked up two leaves--one a bright orange birch-type with a dark streak down the middle, another with lobes (like a maple or white poplar) that was a tasteful pink-and-yellow. They were lovely, a really eye-catching moment of brightness on a grey day when autumn has nearly-but-not-quite lost its glory. There they are, below: No, really.  See, it started raining while I was out, and an unpleasant encounter with workers in my neighbourhood had left me rattled, so when I got home I put my dripping waterproof jacket and pants into the dryer without emptying the pockets.  And then I had to race through the shower and get to town for a work date, and on the way, two different cars apparently didn't see mine (though I was driving with my lights on, even) and