March 1st, 2017
@realDonaldTrump, Make My Brakes Great Again!
My safety and security is at stake!
CONGRATULATIONS! In your speech to Congress, you exceeded presidential expectations – which have never been lower! No wonder you’re still GLOWING after acting “presidential” for a whole hour! (I thought “presidential behavior” was just part of Being President! Dumb!) Read more
February 22nd, 2017
Right Brain or Write Brain? Either Way, I Let It Lead The Way
Recently I sat down at my computer thinking about a conversation about online education I had with a neighbor, which led me to search YouTube for videos about editing and writing. Next thing I know, I’m remembering my favorite high school A.P. English teacher and trying to recall whether she wore black and white saddle shoes or red Converse high-tops. Read more
February 17th, 2017
Ab Fab? Try Ab Flab
The world is in turmoil. It’s the perfect time to write an open letter to my tummy.
Why, hello, Belly Fat.
I haven’t seen you ‘round these parts lately. My, you’re soft and jiggly. Where ever did you come from?
Hold on. I do remember you. You hung around for a good long time after I gave birth, especially the second time. Eventually, though, you kind of disappeared. In fact, I was confident I’d seen just about the last of you. I was pretty determined to keep you at bay, so I was diligent about doing crunches and lifts at the gym. Read more
February 9th, 2017
In Troubled And Troubling Times, I Turn To A Dear Old Friend: NPR
I’ve listened to National Public Radio for so long it has become a part of me on a cellular level. When I hear the theme music for “All Things Considered,” my reaction is multisensory. At once, I’m transported back to 1979, one of several years my family and I spent on sabbatical from New Zealand, living in a little red cottage we rented from my grandmother in rural, northern Vermont. Read more
February 1st, 2017
Sharing Sound Advice From A Teenage Activist
Every summer, my family and I visit relatives in Rutland, Vermont. Located near the center of the Green Mountain State, Rutland has roughly the same population as my home town of Mill Valley, with about the same number of public schools. Now Rutland has something Mill Valley doesn’t: Syrian refugees. Nine, to be precise; five children and four adults. Read more
January 25th, 2017
The Girls and I want to share a few thoughts about mammograms
The friendly reminder from my doctor’s office came by email: Time to schedule your mammogram!
You know the belief that women are biologically programmed to forget the pain of childbirth so they’ll reproduce again? I think the same rule applies to mammograms. Thanks to this week’s appointment, the memories all came rushing back. Read more
January 19th, 2017
Buyer’s Remorse (A Strange But True Tale)
A while back, feeling indulgent, I bought a Groupon for a facial at a nearby salon I’ll call Sheila’s Skin Care. I envisioned 90-minutes of bliss: massage, moisturizer, steam, the works. I arrived a few minutes early and found the salon empty, except for one woman sitting in the chilly, dark room, peering at a magazine. From the back, through a closed door, I could hear a loud phone conversation taking place. Sheila’s voice was rough, like shredded wood, the voice of a hard-living woman who didn’t put up with any nonsense. From the sound of things, there was nonsense afoot. Read more
January 11th, 2017
Dear, Dear Diary
I started keeping a diary when I was nine years old. It was bright yellow and came with a gold lock and a tiny key. Believe it or not, I’m looking at that very diary right now. The key is long gone, and the cover has faded to the color of wheat, but it’s still decorated with carefully selected stickers. On the front is a striped kitten, a tiny chipmunk in green shorts and a little dog wearing a red winter coat. On the back are ladybirds and bunnies, plus this declaration in dark blue ink: “Harriette waz here, ’83.”
I started this five-year diary when I was a child of nine and kept it, with complete dedication, until I was officially a teenager. In 1979, I rode a short, fat Shetland pony named Ginger through verdant fields in Vermont and played The Dukes of Hazzard with the boys next door. Read more
Newsy! Pondering Politics and Punctuation + White Bean, Kale & Parmesan Soup + The Book Of Eli (v.30)
January 5th, 2017
Pondering Politics, Punctuation and @realDonaldTrump!
Anyone else finding the 45th president’s punctuation utterly exhausting?
I’m not a millionaire, a businessperson or a politician, but as a professional writer, I’ve got some advice for you! Since you’re super busy these days on Twitter, I hope you won’t mind if I offer a friendly reminder about one of the cardinal rules of writing! Here goes!
An exclamation point is a punctuation mark that a) denotes the end of a sentence and b) expresses excitement or emotion.
Sounds simple, I know! Read more
December 22nd, 2016
My Vest Is Revolting And Other Thoughts About Sartorial Resistance
How do you solve a problem like Ivanka?
In October 2015, a friend and I were browsing at T.J. Maxx. A black velvet-and-faux-fur vest caught my eye. I tried it on and decided to buy it.
It wasn’t until after I’d made my purchase that I checked the label. “It’s an Ivanka!” I told my friend, oddly delighted to be in possession of a brand I associated with strands of fake gold (clearly, I was thinking about a different Trump).
I wore my new vest to a dinner party. In response to compliments, I unabashedly shared the designer’s name. It’s an Ivanka, I said. Read more