Category Archives: writing

Where do the Stories Hide?

At any given time, I have hundreds of stories in my head flitting around. But then once it is time to grab one out and spill it on paper, I can’t find a single one. They all dart back into dark, unreachable caves and I’m left with shattered sentences and “let me think about it”s.

Where do they go? They can’t have gone too far.

What can I do to bring them out? Sometimes it’s as simple as an “a ha!” moment or a quick chain of thoughts. Other times, it’s torture. I’ve got point A, but where’s point B?

Even when I write the stories that I have lived . . . they hide from me.

Sometimes I will think of a very specific thing and I want to memorialize it in writing. I start with the bigger story, give it some background, but then . . . it’s gone. Where did it go? Will it come back?

Sometimes it’s frustrating. I just want to get it all down when I want it to get it down, and I can’t. And then when I am not capable of entering it into permanency, the ideas they are a flowin’.

But I’m really not complaining. At least there’s something up there . . . I think.

* * *

Just trying to write.


Summer of Dishwalla

There are some things I can remember with such clarity. Every odd detail preserved in my mind. I can feel those times, smell them. But then there are other times when I all I have is just this general sense of the time that is so strong yet vague that it means so much and leaves me wishing for the clarity. And yet I don’t want it–the feeling of it is enough.

The summer of Dishwalla fits both these descriptions. You could not go anywhere without hearing “Counting Blue Cars.” The radio, MTV, David Letterman, in my head . . . If my memory serves me well, this would have been the summer before my freshman year. Wikipedia does serve me well and confirms this as accurate. And although I choose to declare it the summer of Dishwalla, it was also the summer of Nada Surf’s “Popular” and Primitive Radio God’s “Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth with Money in my Hand” and Tracy Bonham’s “Mother Mother” . . . maybe it was my age at the time, but it was a summer of very distinctive music that has stuck with me to this day. (Okay, now that I think about it was my first summer with cable. But not MTV. Canadian MuchMusic, eh.)

Back to the summer.

This was me that summer. The brunette.

What I remember is this:

I remember a day spent at a friend’s house. One of those friends I was very close with but didn’t spend too much at her house. But that day I was there. And I was spending the night. Which seems odd. But enough digression. I was there and we were in this sub room/living room watching MTV and Dishwalla was on. And then it was on again. And then we were outside. And there was a trampoline I do believe and definitely neighbor boys. And one of them did not go to our school so there was FRESH! And EXCITEMENT! And DANGER!

My heart was racing and there was Dishwalla on in the background of my mind and there was the prospect of someone new. He was wearing an orange shirt with a Reese’s Cup on it and I thought it was SO HOT. Or cute. Whatever choice word soon-to-be-high schoolers use to describe a boy who catches their eye.

And I remember we snuck out to meet the boys after dark. And then it was just him and me. Or at least that’s how it was in my head. We propped our backs up against a rock or a sign or SOMETHING and it was dark and there were stars and we were just looking UP and not saying anything. But everything was racing in my head. And at one point, at one magical point, he put his hand either on my hand or my leg and I’d swear there were falling stars. There weren’t, but I’d swear there were.

And then it was over. That was it–that one moment. With a boy from a different school in an age before cellphones and before Facebook (and even before myspace) and it was MAGIC. When would I see him again?! I DIDN’T KNOW! Who were his friends?! I DIDN’T KNOW! I did know of a recently ex-girlfriend who I’d heard stories from. Another local girl who didn’t go to our school. And I believe she was chased up a tree by devil worshippers. But I could be wrong about that.

To be honest, I pity kids of awkward ages these days for not being able to have these moments. Except maybe the Amish. Maybe the Amish kids can still of innocent. mysterious romantic encounters. But now I bet these kids of awkward ages can look up these kids from other schools on the inter webs and KNOW THINGS ABOUT THEM and EVEN TALK TO THEM. But we couldn’t! So it was magical.

And there were butterflies. Remember those? That faint, overwhelming feelings of their wings fluttering against your insides until you couldn’t bear it anymore?! It’s that feeling, that general and unconcrete feeling that I get when I think back to the summer of Dishwalla.

And one day, maybe one day, I’ll share the rest of the summer of Dishwalla but for now I want to keep that feeling of butterflies as my association with that summer.

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In My Head.

Most mornings, I wake up with a song in my head. Totally randomly. I don’t have a music alarm clock and I don’t listen to music as I fall asleep. It just pops in there some time between slumber and morning. And it’s usually totally random.

One week, far longer ago than I should probably admit, I decided to track what was in my head every morning.


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“Kookaburra” – Yes, I started the week with this infectious nursery rhyme from grade school in my head. And I was truly evil and let people know and then they had it in their heads. MUAHAHA.


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“I Love You More Today than Yesterday” by Spiral Staircase – Seriously?! How the hell did this get in my head?! Ok, so this song is really awesome. My sleep-self must be super awesome.


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“Are You that Somebody?” by Aaliyah feat. Timbaland – This did not surprise me at all, seeing as during this timeframe it was in my head more than it was not (baby noise).


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“Stronger” by Kanye West – My sleepself must also be part robot. Me likey.


“Talk that Talk” by Rihanna feat. Jay-Z – Yup, no idea. A song I’ve only really listened to in passing. Yay passive listening inserting itself into your brain.


“Hello, My Baby” – Three letters: WTF.


“Take Care” by Drake feat. Rihanna – Totally understand this: I just love the song.

* * *

No shame. Ever.

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What I Said During the Second Half of the 2012 NCAA Basketball Championship Game

There was one thing I really wanted out of this season of college of basketball, and that was for Kentucky to lose. I don’t like it when people start saying in NOVEMBER a certain team is going to win . . . and then they do. Where’s the excitement in being the favorite?! I want the upsets! I want the butterflies! I want the standouts!


(Yes, I selfishly selected One Shining Moment from 1987 because, you know, HOOSIERS.)

As I sat and watched the game while impatiently sipping my Angry Juice (aka gin & tonic), I jotted down everything I said during the second half. Kansas almost made a comeback, and emotions were all over the board. Mostly due to the Angry Juice.

Without further ado, I present to you: Things I Said during the  Second Half of the NCAA Basketball Championship Game (while sipping my angry juice):

Play like big boys.

That was nice.

Are you kidding me?!

Slow it down.


Play smart.

Come on!

Ok, we hit 30.



This is not volleyball!

I wouldn’t want to disappoint him . . . he has a lot of compassion.

*inaudible yelp*

Set it up.


Where are you?!

F’ing asshole.

I can’t wait until ONE SHINING MOMENT.

He seems wholesome.

Such a nice boy.

I think he keeps his brows like that so he is not distracted by women.

Why don’t you help each other out a little bit more?!

OH OH OH OH OH OH you’re just going to leave him f’ing alone?!

Think about what you’re doing.

Oh you’re just going to hand it to him?!

Ok ok ok ok ok ok ok ok ok ok . . .

Thank you.


The momentum has been . . . ok.

*head nod head nod*

Yeah, that was a good, that was a good.

Keep the momentum alive!



Sometimes I don’t know what to say.

Look! They’ve scored!

*blows kiss at coach*

Oh the rim?! REALLY?T THE RIM?!?!?!?!

God they can’t miss!

That’s what’s exciting about basketball: it’s never over.

That was nice.

*mimics free throw*

Go back to high school!

Yup yup yup–more of that, more of that.

Eight minutes is an eternity.

*disbelief face*


You’re like freaking preschoolers.

This is the biggest job interview of your lives, little boys!

How about you SUCK IT, Kentucky?!

Quit saying perverted things, announcers!

That was good.



Yeah suck it!

Gross. Mouthguard.

Within nine!



Calm down.

Oh really? Don’t you remember they make every three?!


Are you scared?

You do NOT let them shoot threes . . . but thank you for getting that.

That’s interference of some sort!

Almost! That would have been amazing. Keep it up!

AHHH! You’re not invincible.


Not to those white people!

Don’t cheer too early!

Don’t cry too early!


Miracles miracles miracles miracles . . .

It’s mathematically possible.

Steal and three!

Gentle touches.

What if I cry during One Shining Moment because basketball is over?

You’re a fartface.

Hey snaggletooth . . .

Miracles can still happen! But they probably won’t.

Yeah, you just f’d up.

Ok you guys . . . let’s just be angry for a while. But then One Shining Moment will come on and everything will be okay.

(It didn’t. They muted the TVs right after regulation so I did not get to experience One Shining Moment in the heat of passion. It feels so incomplete, so so unsatisfying. But now I will lay in bed listening to the Lexington police scanner and pray to God those kids don’t hurt any horses.)

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Things I Said to the Cat.

One of my roommates is a cat. There is a bit of a communication barrier as cats do not speak english. Or any recognizable human language. That does not, however, prevent me from saying things to the cat. Therefore, I present you with all the things I said to the cat within a twenty-four hour period.

This is Hank, the cat.

  1. Hank, you have emotional problems.
  2. Get a job. Work on your resume. Sign up for LinkedIn.
  3. I can’t fix your problems.
  4. Meowing won’t fix your problems.
  5. Get out of the sink.
  6. You’re so soft.
  7. Stop being so creepy.
  8. Hank you are a funny cat.
  9. You’re so cute!
  10. Hank, not the cactus!
  11. Hank, get out of the box.
  12. Hank, are you serious?! You are going to hurt yourself and I am going to laugh.
  13. I told you that you were going to hurt yourself.
  14. Hank, that’s for people.
  15. You have no rights.
  16. Pizza is for people.
  17. You learn how to open the door, then you can go outside.
  18. Shut up.
  19. You’re going to burn your paws.
  20. Hank! Don’t eat the bourbon!
  21. Speak with confidence. That’s not a very confident meow.
  22. Hey, you wanted up there.
  23. Don’t do that.
  24. Stop that.
  25. What are you doing? I don’t need a massage.
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