On the occasion of my sister’s birthday

girls a


Yes, our mother made us both wear the hamantaschen costumes

It’s April 9th, my sister’s birthday. In what has become an annual tradition–for now anyway–I’m re-posting this edited version.

Five years ago, in 2014, I was out of town at the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop and missed being here for her birthday. So I put together something special to make up for being away, because we always celebrated our birthdays together.

When Susie turned 50, I did a retrospective of her many bad hairstyles over the years. She loved it! Obviously, I can’t do that again. Instead, I’m sharing some of our  history in photographs.

I went through my many piles of pictures and albums and tried to select some classics from over the years.

Many of the pictures from the early days are of the two of us, usually posed on the front lawn of the house in Richmond where we grew up. The hedges always look like they need pruning.

off the boat


Two babushkas right off the boat–with a jump rope, just in case.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

girls b I wish I still had that pompom skirt!

California girls in our sundresses.

 

girls 1

 

We lived in New York City for a year in the 1950s. She was in third grade and I was in first. We struggled with our new snow clothes, rode the subway, and tried many new kinds of food. I got the mumps first, and gave them to her. The measles too. It was a big year for childhood diseases.

In New York, we took dance classes and wore hats.

NY1

snowbunnies

On the sidewalks of New York

 

Back in California, where the hedges still needed pruning, we took tap and ballet lessons. She went further in ballet, and took up tap again several years ago. (2019 update: I am temporarily on the disabled list for tap class, but I’ll be back! I’ve loved dancing with her teacher and the wonderful “girls” in the class.)

ballerinas

      Two in tutus

Continue Reading

Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on PinterestShare on LinkedinShare on GooglePlus

Playlist for March 22: A hip medley

If they allowed me a playlist for tomorrow, it would have to include these three tunes. Thanks for all the good wishes from near and far.   Share :

The Writing Year in Review: 2018

I did this last year and it helped me see that I had been slightly more productive than I thought. Let’s see what happened this past year in my writing life… A look  back at what I wrote in 2018: A number of pieces for Retrospect, which are listed on my Articles and Interviews pageContinue Reading

From Bait Shop to Dive Bar: The Kingfish

I’ve started a new series on some classic old bars of the East Bay. Here’s the first one, published on Berkeleyside: From bait shop to beloved dive: Oakland’s Kingfish Pub and Café has a fascinating history Share :

Martha, My Dear

November 21st is Martha’s birthday.  She’s been gone several years now. Her birthday still pops up on my Google calendar. I don’t intend to do anything to change it.Seeing this reminder of her birthday gives me the opportunity to celebrate her life and our friendship every November. (This was originally posted in 2013)   AsContinue Reading

Another health update

The online magazine, You and Me, recently published the last of three articles I wrote about my journey from diagnosis to the present. In case you missed the first two, they are here too. Yes, there is still numbness and there are some awkward moments, and my food choices have remained somewhat narrow, but othersContinue Reading

Just doing my job

Here’s my latest for Berkeleyside. You’re welcome! Where in the East Bay to get boozy slushies, floats and milkshakes Share :

6/6/86: A birthday today!

7:58 AM  on June 6. Welcome to the world, James! My first words after his birth: “He’d better love me his whole life!” Well, it’s the kind of thing you say after hours and hours of labor… We knew some things about him before he was born (I had the test, knew he was aContinue Reading

A look at books

This is my latest piece on the wonderful site called Retrospect. Here I write about some of my favorite books back in the day. Oh, to climb a tree with a book! Easy Reader Share :

A few more tidbits about brunch cocktails

Once I started writing my latest article for Berkeleyside’s Nosh, I became fascinated with the colorful history of brunch and brunch cocktails. I may have gotten a little carried away, but that’s what editors are for. However, I really wanted to share a couple of things that were left on the virtual cutting room floor.Continue Reading