No, It’s Not That Place

The enveloping comfort of the chair pulled at my eyelids and I slipped imperceptibly into sleep’s embrace. A moment later, I woke and looked around nervously. Why am I so tired, I thought. Wait, I know the answer to that. I’m tired because I didn’t sleep last night. Wait. That’s weird, I usually sleep during the week. Okay, there must be a good reason. I just have to think of it. Oh, right, I stayed up all night because I needed to finish the memorial sideshow. But now that that’s settled, I’m suddenly more concerned with a different question. Where am I and who are all these people? 

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The Context of Contacts

I recently went through the contacts on my phone with the intention of getting the jump on a little virtual spring cleaning. I planned to shorten the list and remove the contacts I no longer needed. It did not go as planned.

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Taking it Seriously

The year 2010 is known in my family as the year Everything (no really everything with a capital “E” Everything, not just a few things or minor annoyances, but Everything, I’m talking major life altering events types of things everything, not some imagined emo kind of everything , just a couple of major things, or even I’m way to prone to hyperbole everything, but everything Everything) changed. This is (part) of the story of one of those things.

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The Tipping Point

After my father died in early 2012, I struggled with how to honor his memory. Dad was a truly great man and I often feel at a loss to live up to his legacy. There were many things I wanted to try, but they were, well, too grand, to big. There was no way I could pull them off without serious capital, time, or talent. Fortunately, it didn’t take long before I passed the distractions of my grandiose ideas and settled on a memorial more fitting to the man he was.

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Moments in Amazing Parenting

I pride myself on being ready for most questions my kids might ask. I usually do OK, though it should’t be surprising that sometimes they catch me short and I tell them I have to get back with them with an answer. Occasionally though, they really throw me for a loop with a question so unexpected that it takes a moment to recover.

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One of Those Nights

It took weeks, but we managed to plan the perfect night out with another couple. It involved driving into Kentucky to a restaurant everyone assured me was “just the best,” getting sitters so we could enjoy adult conversation, and finishing off the evening with a play we’d all enjoy. It had all the hallmarks of a memorable night. If only we had known why it would become memorable.

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Burning Ember

Quick reminder: I change the names sometimes. You know, for reasons.

It was my junior year of high school. In about a year, a group of college students would invite me to hang out with them and I would finally start to feel as if I truly fit in somewhere with people worth fitting in with. But that was in the future and currently unknowable in my French class.

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The Rain Fell

For Joe Brown, my dad, and one of the greatest men I will ever know.

March 17, 2012 was a beautiful Saturday morning. The day, like many in February, was unseasonably warm, but not uncomfortably so. Unlike many of the days in February, I wasn’t spending a lot of time sitting with my dad on his deck. It seemed especially odd not to be sitting with him, mainly because it had been only ten days since we heard the dreaded words, “There’s nothing else we can do. It’s time to think about making you comfortable.”  Instead of sitting and visiting, I was outside with several friends working on a project that my father-in-law dreamed up. We were all moving a remnants of 78 foot Maple my parents had cut down (the “professionals” idea of cleaning up was putting everything in a couple of piles right by the house). I threw myself into the work, eager to avoid the thoughts spinning in my head and how much Dad had declined in the previous week. Then, something magical happened and that Saturday became a Good Day.

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Faster Than I Write It Down

It’s been a year since I started writing without a net here on Stories Now Told. Twelve months, 158 posts (including this one), one poem, and over 170,000 words later and I still have a notebook brimming with ideas for new stories to write. Which brings me to a recurring question I get, “Where does this stuff come from?” Continue reading

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Lesson Learned

I was given two great gifts in the summer of 1987. One was the opportunity to see the Drum Corps International finals in Wisconsin with my future classmates. I got the second gift the same week we piled in a van and rode many miles north. I received it from an attractive, soon to be senior named Pam. Continue reading

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