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zinefest

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I've been selected to participate in Grand Rapids Zine Fest! It's Saturday, August 31 from 1-6pm at Fountain Street Church. More info here.

Like my blog writing? You'll be surprised by what you find in my zines.

Can't wait? Purchase them at my website here.

How We Met

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Head over to my husband's blog for my most recent piece; I experimented with the form I use to write about other couples in order to tell the story of how I met my great love. Here's the link:

Our Story, and how stories are made.

It Is Finished

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It was a frantic morning of ridiculous reaching out, an episode made possible only in the age of google, in which I tried to reach a farmer in upstate New York.

I had found, randomly, online comments by a man who claimed a beloved Christian writer had tried to molest him thirty years before. The writer is now dead and this man must be in his 70s, yet the wound was still very raw, and in his description I heard my own cries to be understood.

I have not been molested, but I was married to a man who works in church leadership. He's written books on church worship and travels the world as a speaker. Churches sing his songs of praise to Jesus. This Easter Sunday, he'll stand in front of a congregation and lead them to the throne room of the Lord.

He left me with a $1900 medical bill for our diabetic son after having sought advice on a legal loophole that would absolve him. He told our teenaged boys I cheated on him (I hadn't). He left me with a $272 insurance bill for our other…

What I Did This Summer

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The heart of the BS 3000 is our time tested and contractor proven piston paint pump. Designed for spraying 2500 gallons per year, this pump is used daily by thousands of painting professionals worldwide--with a reputation for trouble free performance that’s unmatched in the industry. It’s compact, easy to use, and quick to clean. Even changing colors is a breeze. Stripe with water-based paints made for athletic fields or traffic lines. A professional quality spray gun is mounted on a multi-position spray arm. Great balance and light weight make it ideal for a one-man operation. --from the BRITE STRIPER 3000 Instruction manual

The BRITE STRIPER 3000 is my colleague, my therapist, my companion in the stark sun, a test, a coach, a whiny child, an unbidden challenge and unpredictable buddha. I spend long days in vast stretches of parking lots and fields, painting lines in white and safety yellow, and the BS 3000 soothes me. No thoughts are possible beyond this line and then the next, a cl…

sarah

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I'm using my storytelling skills for good! 
Read about my new venture here, and see Sarah's story here. It was an honor to write on such a vulnerable subject, and I appreciated her trust. Joe's photos are a perfect accompaniment to this raw, tender account.

Manual Labor and Exercise: should there be one without the other?

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Who Did This To My Son

My son watched "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" and said, "It's amazing how they got you to like the main character by the end."

Mildred's daughter has been killed, and she rents three billboards to challenge the chief of police to seek justice, as the case has stalled. The billboards are seen as insensitive--the chief has cancer--and the town rebels in ways that are aggressive (Mildred is confronted in the gift shop where she works), passive aggressive (the chief suggests he'll keep her too busy to work and therefore be unable to pay future rent on the signs) and stupid (high school kids throw cans at her car).

Mildred, in turn, is also stupid (she kicks the high school students in their groins, even the girl). The billboards themselves, in their stark black lettering against a red background, are a passive aggressive act (RAPED WHILE DYING / AND STILL NO ARRESTS? / HOW COME, CHIEF WILLOUGHBY?). And she is aggressive in the face of danger; w…