All posts tagged: family



We have become the people we ran away from. At least, I ran. Morbid thought after visiting Chicago this weekend from the wedding of my cousin’s daughter. [cousin on Mom’s side] All of us together looking like the ghosts of our parents — but in a good way. I am always surprised to find family I love, which says a lot more about my relationship with my cousins on my Dad’s side than one might […]



The firewood was always freshly stacked in its brass bin by the fireplace in the den each winter afternoon. When I was little, I would try to carve this wood with the blade of the letter opener that sat with its matching pair of scissors and note pad by the telephone in the bar. This was the only blade that I could get my hands on. The logs were soft and prone to splintering and […]

My father’s sayings


I don’t know how dad got from the Aquinas of his youth to the philosophy summed up in one of his favorite sayings — “Everybody’s got to be somewhere” — but get there he did. Throughout my childhood, he said this frequently. To my mother looking up a phone number. To his friends, wondering where yet another someone was and what they were up to now. “Like a greased pig:” this he said of everyone […]

The totem pole


Somewhere during those hazy days of summer when I was ten or eleven or twelve, my parents, feeling the pull of yet another empty space in their lives, took on the project of building a totem pole in a corner of our yard. This would have made more sense if we had had any Native American heritages among us. It would have made more sense if we had lived in a place where any Native […]

NaNoWriMo takes over


Even if you were to ask me, and no, this isn’t a covert fishing expedition for compliments on my writing, I would not show you what I am working on for NaNoWriMo. It’s just a great pile of stuff. I am putting down memories of my family so that Peter can have them. Peter, as well as Buck and I, have been estranged from my side of the family for a long time — details […]

OK, fine. I'm a cat.

books / Cat-blogging

Apropos of the second-to-last blog entry, I have been seriously delving into Natsume Soseki’s I Am a Cat. As you might guess somewhat from the title, Our Hero is a nameless cat, who lives in the house of a teacher and his family. He (the cat) makes wonderfully sly observations on the humans surrounding him. Now I want more Soseki. What goes on the reading list next: Kokoro.