As I write this, it’s Christmas Eve, and the third night of Hanukkah It’s also been a night spent thinking about Calvin, and Hobbes. Not the historical figures, although nothing says ‘holiday cheer’ quite like the writings of a dour sixteenth century theologian and a misanthropic seventeenth century philosopher.
Maybe I should back up a bit. I never much liked the comic strip called ‘Calvin and Hobbes,’ but Marrissa loved them. Sorry, I need to back up even more…Continue reading
I devoted an entire chapter in my first book, (“Does This Taste Funny?”), to my utter fear of all things baking. Not cooking mind you–I love to experiment in the kitchen, because cooking is forgiving. If you left a spice out, add it later. Undercooked? Put it back in the oven.
But not you, baking. No, you expect everything to be precise. Your temperature has to be exact…timing must be exact…every amount measured just so. . . Apparently in your world, you can’t substitute say, mayonnaise for eggs, even though mayonnaise is made from eggs. Apparently, you can’t just swap out cardamom for, say, nutmeg, even though nobody knows what cardamom actually is.Continue reading
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On March 31st, 2017, I quit smoking tobacco. And then, again, on April 2nd. Then, briefly, on April 27th, and most recently, yesterday, May 4th of whatever year this is. Who says quitting is hard? I’ve done it dozens of times. To be honest, though, thinking about quitting is so stressful, it makes me want to smoke. Continue reading
I’ll always remember the first review I ever got for a stand-up comedy show. Sometime in the late eighties, when I had just started to land paying gigs, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reviewed a show that featured me and several other ‘up and coming’ comics. The reviewer, apparently having exhausted all of the show business metaphors then in use, and at a loss for a way to describe my act in comedy terms, instead went for a more visceral approach, describing my part of the show as being like:
I don’t get out of the house much. Most of the time, I convince myself it’s by design, and most of the time, I’m kidding myself. It’s certainly easier to tell myself that I’m making a choice to stay home and write all day, or research markets for my writing, or continue binge-watching ‘Gilmore Girls.’ Continue reading
I don’t wade very often into the waters of political argument, and I particularly avoid politics online. I’m opinionated and sarcastic, and I am notoriously bad at letting things go, so it would be far too easy for me to get sucked into some Facebook black hole. The next thing you know, I’m scrolling through hundreds of comments, and comments about comments, and clicking links, and posting links, and then I wake up one day and realize I never finished writing that third book. Continue reading
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