hurricane sandy

after watching ALL the news reports and predictions, sandy has arrived and it’s no longer a waiting or guessing game. it’s a watch and see and hide in your bedroom sort of thing.

so far, i’ve discovered:

(1) my bathroom window leaks.

(2) so does my living room window.

(3) my upstairs neighbors drop a lot of things. each time they do, my entire apartment shakes.

(4) there will always be people who confuse bravery with stupidity. in this case, it’s the college kids who live next door and who went whooping down the street just as the storm was picking up.

(5) ONCE UPON A TIME is a great show to take my mind off the storm raging outside. thank you, netflix instant.

(6) regular text messages from family and friends also do the dirty work of calming down my overactive imagination.

(7) the threat of the loss of power showed me just how much we all rely on technology and electricity. it’s scary.

mother nature is not someone to underestimate. i hope sandy didn’t mess with you all too much!

convos with strangers

conversations with strangers #45

talking to strangers? here’s why.

i had just settled into the hard plastic seat when the mechanic stuck his head into the waiting room.

him: you don’t have the chrysler anymore?

me: *thinks, first car was the performance edition, chrysler. second, current car, is cirrus, chyrsler* *pokes head into garage* *sees shiny chrysler logo on the side of the car facing us* *points to it* that is the chrysler.

him: oh. right. i thought it was a dodge neon.

me: *smiles* *thinks, a mechanic not recognizing a car? isn’t that like my hair dresser asking me if my hair color is real? (it is)* *wonders if i could get a discount for being so smart* *settles back in to wait*

20 minutes later.

him: abigail, your car is all set. that’ll be $$$$$.

me: *sighs* thanks.

him: i didn’t realize your car was a ’99.

me: yup. it is.

him: you’ve got really low mileage on it.

me: before me, it was owned by a family friend’s grandmother, and i probably drive it as much as she did.

him: it’s got some pep in it. when i drove it out [of the garage], it zoomed.

me: *smiles* *thinks, if you thought this car had pep, you should have seen the performance edition* *pour one out for the performance edition. what a great car that was!*

him: well, just keep doing what you’re doing and this should last you 150K to 200K miles.

me: at the rate i’m going (it has 53K miles on it), i’ll have this car until i’m retired.

him: not a bad idea. you have a good night.

me: thanks. you too.

and with that, i (the one who graduated high school in ’99) walked over to my freshly oiled car (who was born in ’99) and drove off into the sunset. seriously. it appears we’re going to have a long life together.

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book club

BOOK HUNGRY: all these lives

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, karla nellenbachand myself. we pick a book to read. we discuss via email/phone. we post a review on our individual blogs on the same day (3rd thursday of the month). we link to each other. done. i know, genius. click on each one of their names (above) and it’ll take you to their review. browse. enjoy.

(editor’s note: we’ve gotten a bit off track lately and so just discussed this book last week. this book was so unusual and so awesome (per my opinion), i figured i’d still post my review, even though the others aren’t. if you have read this or will read this, let me know what you think!)

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is: 

ALL THESE LIVES by sarah wylie

what it’s about from amazon: 

Sixteen-year-old Dani is convinced she has nine lives. As a child she twice walked away from situations where she should have died. But Dani’s twin, Jena, isn’t so lucky.  She has cancer and might not even be able to keep her one life. Dani’s father is in denial. Her mother is trying to hold it together and prove everything’s normal.  And Jena is wasting away.  To cope, Dani sets out to rid herself of all her extra lives.  Maybe they’ll be released into the universe and someone who wants to live more than she does will get one.  Someone like Jena.  But just when Dani finds herself at the breaking point, she’s faced with a startling realization.  Maybe she doesn’t have nine lives after all.  Maybe she really only ever had one.

my opinion: hmm. we asked karla to pick a light read and this is what she comes up with?!? this is NOT LIGHT.

this is also not a favorite of mine. in fact, it’s not even one i liked that much. sorry, book! the writing and the whole nine lives bit were fine, but dani? she was selfish and mean and ugh, i have to keep reading this?

i did keep reading it. all the way to the end. it never got better (for me). i understood the motivation behind dani’s actions (she wanted to give her “extra lives” to her sick sister) but in reality, any stable 16 year old should know she’s wasting her life instead of making good use of the life she’s been given. some people (aka HER SISTER) don’t have long, so for her to throw it all away? grrrrr.

basically, throughout the book, dani continued to push everyone (parents, friends, sister) away. i get that it was a means of self-preservation, but she also pushed me, the reader, away. all of us book hungry gals felt this way, BUT, don’t take our word for it — go on and read it yourself.

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writing retreat

i’d heard of these things where a bunch of writers travel to a specific locale and do nothing* but write. i’m not entirely sure how i got (a) the label “writer” and (b) an invite to rockport, MA, but i did and i was and i accepted both.

after a weekend of words, i find myself only left with these:


and here are these:

rockport, MA
a little brainstorming. a little handwriting, a little afternoon sunshine.
walking for inspiration
my shadow is going places. hopefully the rest of me will too.
leaving my mark.
alternate views
game night
back to work
one last trip to the beach. note, it’s a little difficult to form your own ideas when another author’s words run on repeat in your head: “the sky and the sand and the sea and Corr.”

the end.

*nothing but eat, drink, listen to music, talk, play games, cook, brainstorm, sleep and write.

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convos with strangers

conversations with strangers #44

strangers? why i’m talking to them.

i scanned the ground make sure the sidewalk in front of me was clear because i could hear footsteps behind me and i needed to know if i had clearance to shift my path should it become necessary (there’s always dog poop where you least expect it). up ahead, there was a man heading towards me. as i got closer, he smiled and waved.

i did not know this man, but he looked very happy.

our paths got closer still and as i prepared a hello, the footsteps behind me gained a voice.

oh! the man in front knew the person behind me. not me.

and with his “good morning, beth,” there went my opportunity for a conversation with a stranger and introduced my ability to look ridiculous* early in the morning.

*ridiculous = smiling and waving to a complete stranger.

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