• 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.
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Don’t Go Changing to Try and Please Me

DAY 14. If you’re reading this you’re half way there. Congratulations. I’ll come clean: I didn’t write today. I’m not going to make excuses because there are no reasons good enough not to write for just 30 minutes. I was also going to have a yogurt for lunch but somehow found myself demolishing a bagel with tuna fish. The whole idea behind the 30/30 was continuity whether you had a good day or a bad day or a blah day. It was about no excuses and balls to the wall. Sorry to have let you down,

What have you learned in 14 days?

12 Responses

  1. Betsy, don’t beat yourself up. Who of us has had perfect attendance in every school or job we’ve ever had. Especially in these times, we’re all entitled to some free mental health days! What I’ve learned in these 14 days is that showing up in an end in itself. Some of the stuff I’ve written here was just clearing clutter out of my head. It’ll never see the light of day. Some of it is material I can use for a post or I can save it for another time. (I have a whole drawer full of sentences, paragraphs, and ideas that I love but have had no place to use–yet.) The writing is what’s important and building the habit of writing. It’s like going to the gym during the off season is for an athlete. It keeps your writing muscles in shape so you’re ready when that awesome idea that’s been brewing in your head suddenly turns into something coherent and you need to get it down on paper! I’m loving it! P. S. Thank you!

  2. I’ve learned that having other people around me, writers, people who understand the pain (& damn joy) of doing what we do is important to me. I’ve learned what it is to teach from your honesty, Betsy. Of course you didn’t write today. Yesterday went well for you, and we are all so afraid of flying. Sometimes, writers just have to stay on the ground, eat big fat bagels, and blink slowly. I’ve learned that writing is impossible to understand. This morning, after I was done, I went to pee and sat there, staring mindlessly, wondering for the briefest moment where I was and who I am. We dream and then we wake up to remember the dream. It is all good. Thank you for this. You have no idea how grateful I am.

  3. I’ve learned that not every day is a bad writing day.

  4. Betsy, you can do no wrong. You are the Queeen. Why not add on a day for every day you miss? That way those of us who started this experiment late or miss days ourselves will have company.

    • Thirty/thirty. Then we jump out of the nest! I got back on it today, bright and early, before the baby chicks cried out to be fed.

  5. I’ve learned that sometimes bagels beat yogurt and chocolate chip cookies beat kale. Thirty minutes can sometimes be the difference between love, hate, life and death and yet life is way to short to beat yourself up over a millisecond of it.
    We are all failures, heroes and brilliant BSers.That’s why we have so many stories to tell.

  6. Are we meant to be learning? I thought we were just doing pages…

  7. “What have you learned in 14 days?”

    That it’s okay to give yourself a break. You can’t count on anyone else for that. No reason why you should.

    That the confusion of quantity with quality is an example of The Fallacy of Misplaced Intrinsic Value.

    That the housecat has the most complex and nuanced form of vocal communications among the land-dwelling non-human animals.

    That I can murder my darlings.

    That to learn something new and to be reminded of something already known but passingly forgotten are two forms of learning.

    That misunderstandings can arise. No, I did not kill my cats. I cut a favorite portion of a story when I saw that it no longer worked, but rather it called attention to itself as a piece of writing, detracting from the larger context of the story within which it was to have functioned as a seamless part of the greater whole.

    That it is possible to eat too much chocolate, and you would think a man my age would know better.

  8. What have I learned.

    That I’m dogged and obsessive to get to the goal – even when I know it’s bad.

  9. Beginning to understand my voice and the correlation between an abusive, alcoholic stepfather, long distance running and Marx Brothers movies, although a brisk, 2 mile walk is as close as I’ll ever get again to long distance running. I made amends with my stepfather before he died. Rediscovering the Marx Brothers has been a joy — my wife, however, is grateful I haven’t requested she watch entire movies of Groucho, Harpo, Chico and Zeppo running circles around polite society and my daughter thought the best of Harpo clips on Youtube were silly. It’s a start. The Marx Brothers as a missing piece of the puzzle. Who knew?
    Thank you, Betsy, for this encouragement to write.

  10. The 14th was good. I tried a scene in screenplay form to see where the dialog needs a brake for action. I learned it seems to work… but what do I know about movies?

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