Archive for July, 2012

conversations with strangers #36

July 13, 2012

i’m speaking with some strangers … here’s why,

as i approached the street corner, i noticed a girl facing away from the road, looking confused.

her: can i ask you a question?

me: sure.

her: how do i get to massachusetts avenue?

me: *thinks to self if the accent didn’t give her away, her not calling it mass ave would have.* *also thinks to self, ummm* umm, if you follow this road straight *points* you’ll hit mass ave on your right.

biker pulled over due to red light: well, which part of mass ave do you want?

her: the 1000s.

me: *gulps*

biker: oh, you want to keep going up mem drive to that street light up there, turn left and it’ll intersect with mass ave. you might hit mt. auburn first, but keep going.

her: *looks at both of us* great. thank you!

me: *looks at biker* thank you!!!

i was grateful to be saved by someone who had a better sense of direction, but, truth be told, i was a bit bummed to have missed my walk signal at this very busy intersection, although, if the worst that came out of this is that i had to wait, i’d take it. i’d rather that than giving someone the wrong set of directions (which, despite the amount of time i’ve lived here, has happened. curse my lack of sense of direction!)

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dear sugar

July 10, 2012

today’s the day cheryl strayed’s new book TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS is released into the world.

although, technically, it’s been out there for years now, as this is a compilation of letters from her advice column on the rumpus. i’ve never read an author who is so fearless, so generous, so brave, so compassionate, so gentle, so always says the right thing, or so humble.

you all need to read at least one of her columns. here are some of my favorites to start:

if you’re a writer: #48

how to say i love you: #41

how you get unstuck: #44

on parenting: #74

and that’s just a small sampling of the genius that is cheryl strayed as sugar.

her first column was #27 and it continues today (albeit at a much slower pace since she’s in the middle of a whirlwind with her best selling non-fiction title, WILD) through #98. before column #97, she wrote it anonymously. for two years she gave her heart and soul to those who wrote in, and since her big reveal, she still gives her heart and soul to those who write in. we just now know her as cheryl instead of sugar.

take a moment, read at least one column because you know what?

we are all sugar.

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song lyrics + reality

July 6, 2012

i had already seen fireworks (on june 28th. in somerville. AMAZING, as usual) but when rachael told me she and two of her out of town friends knew of a secret garden rooftop viewing spot, i said yes to more.

there was a small cover charge, a “free” beer, food, drinks, and ample space. we set up camp and ate and drank and chatted as we conducted our countdown until 10:30, the posted start time of the boston fireworks.

conversations and kids floated around us. we parted with our glowing necklaces, beaming at the smiles the kids now wore.

the minutes ticked by slowly. the wind shifted. the temperature dropped. the clouds rolled in. the sky flickered and the buildings around us echoed those bright lights. was it early fireworks? was it a thunderstorm rolling in? was it a heat lightning storm? was it the flash from the cameras around us? all of the above? or none?

slightly nervous at being on the top of a building and potentially turning into lightning rods, we pulled out our smartphones and checked the radar. okay, just E did and she declared, “the storm’s going to miss us.”

i looked up at the swirling, thickening clouds and wondered just how smart that phone and its radar really was. 10:20 came and went. the sky cleared. 10:30 came and went. the smartphones came back out and this time, we checked

we looked up at the (now) relatively clear skies over the cambridge side of the river and cried, “are the fireworks canceled?!” we double checked the time stamp on that headline and realized it was from 30 minutes ago. the fireworks would go on, just slightly delayed.

we felt rain drops, small, insistent.

the sky lit up.

and then everything opened up — the sky, the fireworks, our mouths. laughter and cheers and shrieks tore from us as we scrambled to duck under blankets and jackets and umbrellas all while trying not missing a single crack of a firework.

soaking wet, but wearing a grin as wide the barge the fireworks were shot from, i couldn’t help but marvel that just like adele sang, we had set fire to the rain.

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5000 words

July 3, 2012

they say a picture is worth 1000 words, so here, have 5000 words.

the end.

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