Greetings to all you ships passing in the night,
Here are some things that I wondered about this week:
What possible use it it to enter my password to access facial recognition?
Why can I invariably stop for twenty minutes on a sidewalk to catch up with a neighbor, but can never find calendar time for coffee with a neighbor until the middle of the following month?
Is it possible to explain to a kid the banks’ recurring charges for spending your own money below an arbitrary minimum balance without the use of the word “evil” or “greed”?
How can we train people to be on time in a city where showing up even five minutes early varies from being socially embarrassing (because they’re not ready for you) to impinging on the time of the previous group?
Why is folk wisdom called “old wives’ tales”? Is this to contrast it with what young wives tell you to do? Why isn’t it called grandmother tales or old crone tales? Why “wives”?
A question for those of you significantly older than my kids: did the term Wang Chung get defined after the song was popular or was there already a contingent of people who thought “oh yes, I do believe I will Wang Chung tonight.”
This is the good stuff I did:
Last weekend I went to a wedding and finally I was one of the random “who is that?” people! Only the mother of the bride knew me (from college) and I hadn’t seen her for years. We accepted the invitation despite a lack of communication during the year leading up to the pandemic, and showed up full of cheer for the new married couple. Imagine my joy when my college friend practically screamed my name from the bus and dragged me in among their closest family! The bride had seated us at Table 1 and we felt so honored. The whole ceremony was outrageously beautiful, incredibly tasteful, loving, welcome, and kind—as were the bride and groom. May Pearl & Keiran live happily ever after.
I had an exhilarating time interviewing Malena Crawford and my good friend Daniel Keys Moran who I deeply miss having around (even though he hasn’t been around for decades) and the inimitable and prolific David Gerrold for Pen Parentis last night. I have to admit I wished I was not on a zoom but at my own dinner table without any microphones or audience members hanging on my questions! It is astonishing to me that I first read David’s Chtorr books when I was still in my early 20s and those silly jokes and absolutely brilliant little sayings at the start/end of his chapters are still stuck in my head. Have you read any books that were intended as brain candy you meant to forget but that ended up permanently embedding into your memory?
Come to think of it, are there any books that have not permanently embedded themselves…at all?
I published another walk-with-me story on Medium: this time I walked to the post office and ruminated about garbage, Christian Science, writing and jerk chicken: Here’s the link. (ps. it pained me to remove the Oxford comma at the end of that list)
I had a lovely back-and-forth with the editor of a big fantasy magazine who have decided to hold my story for further consideration—they said I would hear by end of October whether they will take it. (please light candles)
That’s it. It’s summer. Go do something in the sun. Everyone wants to see it on Instagram while they work in the air conditioning.