• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies Sometimes I think a meteor could strike the earth and wipe out mankind with the exception of my mother’s Bridge club — Roz, Bea, Bette, Rhoda, and Jackie — five Jewish octogenarians who continue to gather for lunch and Bridge on Mondays as they have for over fifty years. When I set out to learn about the women behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, and most of all the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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It Feels Good To Be Out of the Rain

Image result for umbrella

When I was little, I used to love to do impressions. Mostly of grown ups, Hebrew school teachers, cashiers, bank tellers. If I made my family laugh, I’d keep going with the impression, sometimes even losing control, unable to break character long after everyone stopped laughing. It was then my mother would scold me with the reprimand that shut it all down: you just don’t know when to quit. To this day when I push something or someone too far, I hear my mother’s damning words: you just don’t know when to stop. The thing is I know when to stop. I don’t keep going because I don’t know when to stop. I keep going because I’m a relentless bastard. Because if I can get two laughs, I want four. Because I want to get under your skin. Trust me, this relates to writing.

Do you feel me?

7 Responses

  1. I feel you. Like a woman scorned with a gallon of ice cream. Sure I know when to stop. But go ahead, try and make me.

  2. I agree with the getting under the skin part, but, whether it’s a blessing or a curse, I’m sensitive to others discomfort and lay off when I sense uneasiness. Just a polite fella, I guess. Of course it depends on the circumstances, too. Put me in a room full of evangelical Trump supporters and I wouldn’t be so cautious. As for writing, I like confrontation. I read “The Nickel Boys” by Colson Whitehead recently and I’m glad certain stories get told, even though they’ll make you sick and mad as hell; masterful writing will often do that.

    I’ve never been good at impressions — just because I like Neil Young doesn’t mean I can sing like him — but I’ve noticed I pick up on certain inflections, the way a person laughs, giggles or uses a certain phrase incessantly and I imitate that. I don’t want to do it, it just happens. It’s annoying and insulting and I try like hell not to do it, but if something intrigues me I’ll ride that pony until the cows come home.

    So. There. Light the fuse. Worse that will happen will be something gets blown up.

  3. I have the opposite problem. I like writing because I don’t have to interact with my audience directly.

  4. Yes! I get the picture clearly, as usual in your writing. Restraint is hard to do.

  5. I’m feeling a flashback from the moments when my physical attributes, nationality, clothes and even the books I read were the fuel for teasing, heckling and impersonations by some classmates, strangers and even family members. Initially devastating, now choice material for my writing efforts. It’s not all cellulite under my skin.

  6. “Do you feel me?”

    I feel you. If I knew when to stop, I never would have started.

    “The safest procedure, it goes without saying, is to write nothing at all.” — Paul Bowles

  7. Being a relentless bastard has served you very well. xo

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