• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
  • Archives

When My Smallest of Dreams Won’t Come True

Every night when I go to the gym (okay, on the rare occasion that I haul my ass into the gym), the woman who has the locker next to me is always there. Yes, we make the perfunctory remark about how the place is empty and here we are right on top of each other. Of all the! This woman takes off all her clothes and sits on the bench and looks at Facebook. She has an athletic body and is proud of it. And why not! I, on the other hand, use my towel like a magician hoping no one can see what’s hiding behind it. I can literally get dressed and undressed behind a towel the size of a postage stamp. Tonight, she was talking on the phone while sitting there naked. It sounded like she was getting estimates on flowers. She liked the paper whites.

Do you have a writer’s body?


15 Responses

  1. Paper white, wilting, and decaying rapidly. Does that mean I have a writer’s body?

  2. I DO have a writer’s body. Most of one. I keep it in the freezer, and once a month I take out a little, thaw it out overnight, put it in a slow cooker, and make a nice stew.

    Before we had our little disagreement, he used to whinge and whine and complain all the time. “I just want to be red,” he’d say. “To be enjoyed!”
    And I’d say, “Don’t worry, one o’ these days you will be.”

    So now, every month, I make up that nice stew, put in plenty of beets, and enjoy him. Best part is, he is finally red — just like he always said he wanted.

    • Red — ha! The body knows what the mind doesn’t.
      Friend of mine told me to be conscious of the dinky do theory — that’s when your belly sticks out further than your dinky do.

  3. I am typing away during the night, a common occurrence, so I haven’t seen my body for a very long time. Yep, I’m sure I have a writer’s body.

  4. I live in an expanding universe.

  5. Do you have a writer’s body?

    Yes, and I’ve worked damn hard to get it.

  6. It reminded me of something I wrote in 2009, during back surgery rehab.

    “This morning, before my Healthy Back class at the gym uptown, I hobble into the women’s locker room and hang up my coat. Though I stare intently at the row of coats and the plentiful hangers (the kind with full-circle holders, so they can’t be stolen off the rack), I can still see naked women from every corner of my eyes. A woman my age is in a half slip and stockings at the sink. Another strolls from the shower to her locker. Still another stands at the bench arranging her clothes, her gigantic dark nipples like dinner plates dangling from her chest. Young and old, fat and thin—mostly thinner than I—all these women are moseying around in various states of undress, not one of them hurrying or hiding behind a towel. Not one of them seems to possess a modicum of self-consciousness, as if walking about without clothing in a large room with other naked women were not a deranged thing to do.

    “I am both modest and modest about my modesty, shamed into folding my clothes neatly and carefully, so I don’t look like I’m as embarrassed as I am by the way I look, in a race to hide myself. But I don’t want, even for one second, to be a flash of puckered thigh in someone else’s peripheral vision.”


    Probably answers the question.

  7. “Do you have a writer’s body?”

    One of them. I exercise every day, to keep from collapsing into a pile of sticks and sludge, but there is no doubt that my sport is that of the keyboard and pen.

  8. I think she wants you to ask her out.

    I don’t know.
    I have a hairy body.
    Except on most of my head.
    It’s a body formed by years of hard labor, strong but not sculpted and gone just about 10 pounds beyond svelte.
    Long ago I realized my imperfect body was just a vessel for transporting my brain, important to maintain, but secondary to synapses firing and misfiring.
    I think I have my body figured out, although every once in awhile I see signs of it starting to break down.
    My mind? That’s the part I don’t understand.

  9. A few years ago I lost a hundred pounds. At my age because I lost that much weight I look “normal” in clothes even though my body looks like a melted candle. Honey. The only towel I would use in a locker room is a king size bedsheet.

  10. Some time ago (maybe at birth) my body and my writing became inexplicably linked. They were both huge and terrifying. The only thing to do was to hide.

    Occasionally I take them out and try to save them, but I’ve never had much success.

  11. I have an old writer’s body. It means I’m invisible.

  12. I just finished Forest For the Trees about twenty minutes ago. Loved it! I laughed out loud in a few places, too—this from an inner chuckler. I’ve already recommended it to a couple of friends. It filled in some gaps for me as I am getting my first collection of essays ready for publication this fall.

    I’ve just subscribed to your blog, so I’ll be enjoying your writing on a regular basis.

  13. Welcome to the mad house. So glad I got you to laugh. Now, I’m going to need you to blow coffee on your computer screen. I’ll try!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: