The best

The best time I had as a child was playing hide-and-seek in my grandmother’s three story rooming house. With the basement and the front porch thrown in, the house was a treasure chest of hidden alcoves, narrow stairwells, obscure corners and roomy built-in cabinetry. You could move silently from floor to floor on the downhill route because you could slide down the banisters. If you held really still and didn’t breathe, searchers would pass right by your hiding place and not notice you there. Of course, you couldn’t go into rooms that were rented out to grandma’s roomers, but you could . . .


Public speaking

There’s nothing more terrifying to a shy person than opening your mouth in public. All the more reason to be a writer, no? What do you do when you want to be sitting quietly in the back row, yet you find yourself standing in front of the crowd, expected to speak? And even to make sense?

Here are some helpful tricks to get you through this ordeal . . .

Stupid mistake

You don’t have to be young to make a stupid mistake, but it helps. Youth doesn’t comprehend danger or consequences. Maybe there’s an evolutionary reason for that. Maybe if young people were cautious and mature, no progress would ever be made, nothing new would ever be tried.

A lot of young people have been injured or even killed doing stupid things. How can that be a valuable trait? As a person, I take a personal approach to stupid mistakes, especially those made by my own children, who I am trying to protect from harm. But in evolutionary terms, do individual stupid mistakes matter? Do individuals matter . . .


Momma sat me down here
And I gotta be still
While the reverend up there
Flap his arms all over
Like a big old crow
Gotta have me some church

Lotsa ladies standin in the choir
Where Miss Louella singin bout Jeeesus
She sing loud and wobbly
Her mouth big as a cave
Sound like and old screech owl
Gotta have me some church

Jamie-boy he sittin
A couple rows down
He wiggle his ears to say hello
So his momma don’t pinch him
For for gawkin around
Gotta have me some church

My favorite

Today’s topic: My favorite. My first 50 words . . .

My favorite ice cream no longer exists. Burgundy Cherry from Baskin Robbins. The closest thing you can find these days is Cherry Garcia at Ben and Jerry’s.

When I was a kid we went to the creamery for ice cream. You could smell it coming a block away. After you left, your clothes smelled of moldy milk all day long. They also sold ice cream at . . .

My dad always said

Today’s topic: My dad always said. My first 50 words . . .

My dad always said he wanted to die by being shot at age 99 by a jealous husband. He missed that by quite a few years and a massive heart attack. He also frequently said it was hotter than a two-dollar pistol. He found plenty of hot places in Colorado in the summer, climbing around in attics as part of his work as an electrician. I don’t think he ever owned a two-dollar pistol, but he loved to hunt and owned several guns.

Now me, I possessed two matching two-dollar pistols. Gold colored cap guns that had the distinct characteristic of realism because they shot a disc of only six caps, just like a real six-shooter. I ruined my repulation forever by wearing these two cap pistols out in public . . .