Showing posts from June, 2011

Dealing In The Tangible

Bach and My Father by Paul Zimmer Six days a week my father sold shoes To support our family through depression and war, Nursed his wife through years of Parkinson's, Loved nominal cigars, manhattans, long jokes, Never kissed me, but always shook my hand. Once he came to visit me when a Brandenburg Was on the stereo. He listened with care-- Brisk melodies, symmetry, civility, and passion. When it finished, he asked to hear it again, Moving his right hand in time. He would have Risen to dance if he had known how. "Beautiful," he said when it was done, My father, who'd never heard a Brandenburg. Eighty years old, bent, and scuffed all over, Just in time he said, "That's beautiful." "Bach and My Father" by Paul Zimmer, from Crossing to Sunlight Revisited. (c) The University of Georgia Press, 2007. Found in The Writer's Almanac, June 28. I thought it might happen, and people who know me figured it would. Here I am in the fitness business. So r


I need to get a blogroll going so you can see where I like to go out there in the vast internet. Meanwhile, here's a shout out to some interesting women. Girlboxing . Malissa does a great job keeping us current on the state of women's boxing. And she keeps up her end of the sport at Gleason's, where I plan to meet her next month. Creative Urges . I met Carol yesterday and bought a bunch of cool leather bracelets. I instantly liked Carol, not just because her first words to me were "So what's your story?" but because she's competing in The Warrior Dash next month (I never wanted to do a 5K, but now I definitely will). Go see and buy her stuff at her online store. Mosaic Language Group . It was at Jill's house that I met Carol. Jill has lots of great ideas in her interesting head, and she's now following one of those dreams by starting Spanish language classes for families. If you're here in Grand Rapids, consider this. The Glowing Edge . I don&

Comparing My Hobbies: How Live Boxing Differs From Live Theatre

You can call out instructions to the performer, and he might do them. You can drink beer. The person behind you, who is related to one of the performers, can yell the name of the performer in a loud voice continually over the course of the time said performer is visible. When a performer leaves the stage, people will stop him and list what he did wrong, and all the ways he can go about things differently next time.

Flying Monkeys and Me

There's a video wrap-up of the Applied Theatre Conference I taught at a few months back. If you're wondering what I'm saying during my little segment, know that I am, too; that's the day, as I recall, I walked around claiming to see flying monkeys. The exhaustion was worth it; it was a great conference . The large group of people waving their arms around was the last exercise I conducted. 80 some people doing Theatre of the Oppressed. Mighty cool.

The View From The Asylum

May 16, 2011 I've done just 7 days of Insanity: The Asylum , spread out over the course of two weeks. A few things got in the way--boxing, recovering from boxing, and an exercise class I help lead on Saturdays. And then there's the fact that I couldn't put any weight on my right leg for the past two days. It's a little better today. Let's not blame The Asylum. I've built a complicated defense for the program that turned me into an action figure, at least before the whole leg thing. Doing these extreme moves really had my body working the way it should. I felt like a well-oiled machine. A few pounds dropped away almost immediately, which had the effect of turning my muscular look into more of an athletic one. Then I ate that entire bag of chips. Anyway. The leg problem, I believe, arrived after a series of events. The second time through Speed and Agility, which I believe to be the toughest of the workouts, I went barefoot. Blisters immediately formed on my toes,


It being summer and all, I'm often outside when the paper is delivered, which reminds me of this post from February. --------------------------------------- He's finding his way through the snow, the orange stripe of his heavy bag crisscrossing his chest. He's carrying the news. He's a You see men delivering the news in my part of town nowadays, not boys. I have to make this clarification when declaring my crush on the guy who used to pull up in his dented white Ford. The world would move in slow-motion the moment his door opened and his blue eyes lit on mine; somewhere in my garage, Take My Breath Away would begin to play, and I would find myself saying things before completely thinking through the implications. On the day he pulled in while my kids and I waited for their playdate to arrive, I told him why we were there and added, "But you can stay and play." And you wonder why my husband is happier when I stay indoors. But my efforts

Found On My Camera


The Last Lunch

Today I wrote the last note of the school year. No more pencils, no more books, no more notes counting out each carb my boy will eat at lunch. No more waiting for a phone call at 12:05 on a high blood sugar requiring some calculations. "I'm mad at diabetes," Theo said the other day, and also a few days before that. Diabetes is getting in the way, and although we've done all we can to keep life normal, he knows it. Some days it's just what we do; other days, we're mad. And that's okay. You need to sit in the mad, sometimes. Because for the past nine months, packing a lunch has surprised me with its stress factor. I must pack a lunch that's healthy. That comes from the items on hand. That's not too substantial and can be finished in a short period of time. The carb count should range in the 40s to 80s, with no items too high in the glycemic index, or I'll get another call at 2pm. And finally, one I'm not embarrassed of--peanut butter and jell


Down the street from our apartment in Tallahassee, and just off the lovely Lake Ella, sat the offices for an Alzheimer's nonprofit. They placed an ad in my church's bulletin calling for volunteers to sit with a person with Alzheimer's while his caregiver took some time for herself. I had a grandfather with Alzheimer's (listen to my spoken word piece here ) and, though I didn't know it then, another grandmother just shy of a diagnosis. I offered to help. Weekly I'd drive to the small home and greet Mabel before she left for her hair appointment. Mabel was from Alabama, and her mouthful of marble talk made communication tricky. I sensed she wanted me for herself, was lonely for the company, but needed her hair set. I waved her off and sat with her husband, John, who was only slightly easier to understand (he had Parkinson's, not Alzheimer's). The shades were drawn most of the time I was there, and occasionally I'd suggest letting in a little light, but