Throwback Thursday

When I was in junior high, I was cursed with the worst thing that could possibly happen to an adolescent girl circa 1980: my hair did not feather.

Back then, feathered hair was paramount to success.  All the popular girls had feathered hair and glossy lips and satin jackets.  I, on the other hand, had limp, red hair that never did anything right, much less did anything at all except hang there, looking greasy. Kissing Potion lip gloss made my braces stand out more, and my mom refused to buy me a satin jacket or Gloria Vanderbilt jeans.  To make matters worse, I wasn’t cute or coordinated in gymnastics, two other tickets to pre-teen success.  I couldn’t roller-skate very well, nor did I have a winning, flirty personality.  I read ‘Teen and Seventeen magazines, hoping that I would stumble upon the secret that the other girls seemed to inherently know, that was navigating them through the horrors of adolescence with confidence and pizzazz while I just felt irritated and gross and like a giant dork.

But one day I found the secret, and it wasn’t in any magazine — it was in the bins at the record store at the mall.  Thanks to an album with five girls in towels and face masks on the cover, I learned that I didn’t need feathered hair or designer jeans or to fit in; I learned that I didn’t need to fit in at all.  I learned that I could like what I liked and to pay no mind to what the popular girls may say — it didn’t matter anyway.  Hey hey hey.

I’ve heard this song maybe about, oh, a million times since the first time I put the needle on that record all those years ago, but every single time I still feel that joy I felt the first time I heard it — that life was filled with possibilities and I was going to find an escape from the angst, even if it was only for the two plus minute duration of the song.  Back then angst was more about zits and bad hair while now it’s more about paying taxes and bad hair, but still.  No matter how old or dorky I am, there’s always joy.

Here’s some joy for you.


I’ve signed up for the 100 Day Project!

I always see people doing things like this and I admire their creativity, and envy them for their motivation.  Honestly, I could sit on the couch and eat Taco Flavored Doritos every day for 100 days and that’s about it, because I’m lazy.  I’m not exactly what you’d call a go-getter, but I do like lists and checking things off.  And I have a lot of things I could put on and check off this list, including spring cleaning, dry cleaning, soul cleansing, and all the other things I see on Facebook that I’m supposed to be doing while wearing some sort of yoga pants.  (I do own a pair of yoga pants.  However, I call them “pajamas.”)

So I don’t have a big plan for these 100 days — I’m not going to do a paint-by-numbers “Last Supper” or invent something or even diet (though I should do all three of those things) — instead I’m just going to live my lazy life, but I am going to update here every single day for 100 days, even if it’s just a quick story, a quick sentence, or a stupid picture.

So today we begin.  And I will start with a photo from yesterday, the lamb cake I made for Easter:


(This is him on my lap on the way to my mom’s.  By the time we got there, he’d sort of melted.  But he still tasted delicious.)

I’d wanted to do a lamb cake forever and I finally got a mold.  I’m not a good cook; my baking skills are as good as the directions on the box.  But I was determined to do it and I did!  The sense of triumph I felt when I took off the mold and his face and ears were intact rivals any other triumphs in my life, including winning the Brownies costume contest in third grade (I was Minnie Mouse) and getting my MFA (just before I tripped and fell off the stage).  The ears were perfect!  The face was golden and shapely!  I had done it!  My neighbors must have thought I was being murdered or won the lottery, thanks to my screams of joy.  And then I frosted him and he kind of looked like a poodle, but still.  I was STOKED.

I loved him so much I wanted to shellac him, but alas, he was sacrificed for dessert.  Now I know how kids in 4H feel.  (Kind of.)  But this little lamb made me so happy, and made me feel like I could take on so many more things in life and succeed — within reason.  I know I can’t do a complicated paint by numbers set or invent anything or go on a diet.  But I can make a cake from scratch, and that is a mad skill.

Aaaand there you have it.  What you can except for the next 100 days!  (You should sign up. too.  Go to the link above for more information.)

Big 500!

If you’re reading this, you probably got here because I forced you to “like” me on Facebook.  (And I thank you profusely.)  Back when I started this website, I made the Facebook page, connected it here, and pimped it out.  Then I got distracted, and it sat there, and that was okay.  I knew it was there, and that was enough for me.

Everything was fine until Facebook started being all, “Karen, Your Next Milestone is 500 Likes!” with the little thumbs up symbol.  And I was all, “Oh.  I have to do that?  Okay. I can pimp more.”  So I did. And today, SH-BAM!  I reached five hundred LIKES!

And because Facebook made such a big deal about it, basically forcing me to pimp myself out to the point I should be sporting a grill and large hat with a feather (according to “pimp” Halloween costumes, but I don’t actually know what real pimps wear because I don’t think I’ve ever met one — er, wait, that’s not true, but that’s a story for another post), and because my friends are kind, I hit 500 likes.

I saw it on my phone, and raced home from my writing group to see what would happen — would there be a special prize waiting for me?  Confetti?  Champagne?  A “Congratulations, You Did It!” message?  Nope, nada.  Nuthin’.  Just the little milestone thing is off my page, so the pressure is off, too, I suppose.

But that’s not really true.  There’s no champagne or confetti, but it means that 500 lovely people liked my page, and that means a lot.  That’s a lotta lovely people!  And it also means the pressure is on to write more, and that’s a really good thing.  I can handle that, and it’s pretty exciting, too.

Besides, I have champagne in the fridge.  I’m all good.



Thanks, everybody!  Cheers!