Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Writing is Hard: Week Two

The words I pulled this week from my Word Bag were Loss, Heartbreak, and Puberty. Jesus, slit my wrists, why don't you, Word Bag. But anyway. Here are some off-the-cuff-thoughts on each:


When my first grandparent died, my grandfather on my mom’s side, I was seven. We got the call when my mother was reading me a bedtime story, and I remember being annoyed that she didn’t come back to finish it. I didn’t really know my Grandpa Max at all – I’m sure we spent some time together, but most salient in my memory is that he would buy me a package of Soft Baked chocolate chip cookies and let me eat them while he and my mom talked. As an adult I often consider buying those exact same cookies, but I never do. It’s just nice to know they still make them.

My first heartbreak was Mario in the 1st grade. I can’t even remember his last name, but I do remember the feeling when, one day at lunch, he chose to sit next to my best friend Maple van Keuren (totally her real name) instead of me. I cried right there in the cafeteria, feeling miserable and full of self-pity. I am glad that I didn’t know then what I know now – that it would get much worse.

Puberty. What a loaded word. It is as awkward as its meaning; it’s hard to say it without blushing, even; it sounds vaguely dirty. The ‘pube’ part makes me think of those diagrams, like in Our Bodies, Ourselves (which my mom got me as soon as I hit junior high, or maybe even earlier) where drawings showed the gradual growth of pubic hair – first just a few, then a little bush, then a full-grown forest. Yikes. I guess they can’t show real naked people, but those digrams just seem kind of wrong, like looking at budget pornography drawn by a child.

Stay tuned for next week's scintillating installment!

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