Monthly Archives: April 2011


You know how you have a little bit of something good left over and you stick it in the fridge thinking you’ll save it for a treat later and then you sort of forget about it, but not for too long, and then you find it again and it’s kind of a nice surprise?
So, this is kind of like that.

 When I started this Zero to Sixty project back in November, I didn’t factor in that by April I would also be writing a thesis and having a two-day-a-week internship and so on and so forth. First rule of blogging: don’t apologize for being MIA, just get the butt in the chair and write again.

And now, reaching for that mysterious container full of leftovers from the last five years….

Well, shoot! I didn’t even get around to wallowing in Watergate. Too bad, because I really had the chance to wallow. Some quick headlines from years 21-25. Pardon my backtracking.

But hokey smokes! This place closed in 2004
  •  Our first married vacation: the Grand Canyon. We learned that you can’t really capture the whole thing in a photograph. It’s just you in front of something really big. On our way to Arizona, we visited the Watts Towers and  Dudley Do-Right’s Emporium in L.A., both must-sees. Stopped in Nye County, NV on the way back.
Who knew we had a county?

  • OK, some wallowing: During the Watergate hearings I was taking a class at Cal that required me to read the New York Times every day, and then discuss the news. Tough duty. (Although we should’ve been reading the Washington Post, it turns out.) And since I was working at the School of Law on campus then, I heard the latest Watergate hearing news from someone really in the know: the resident Constitutional Law professor would stop by the office, hang out in the doorway with a cup of coffee and review the day’s events with us. We’d read his quotes in the papers and news magazines later. Lively times!
  • More about the law school: I worked there when Joanie Caucus, a character from Doonesbury, was “attending.” Garry Trudeau was the commencement speaker in 1977, the year she “graduated.”  

  • My dinner with Alice: Tried a new restaurant that opened up the street from where I lived in Berkeley. Funky old house, mismatched dishes and flatware…good food. We came up a little short on cash and had to go back the next day to leave a tip. My first dinner at Chez Panisse…
  • Food, booze and football. Did a lot of cooking in those days. One memorable dinner included Beef Wellington, which should really be illegal: a cut of meat that cost a month’s rent, slathered in an artery-clogging pate and wrapped in a butter-suffused dough that left a sheen on the rolling pin. This was the main course, after a cream-based soup and an appetizer that left us in a caloric stupor. What were we thinking? 
  • Cal football had some good years, and we went to the games with a crowd of grad students who were adept at smuggling alcohol into the stands. After the games: more to drink. And then there were Friday night Happy Hours. Gave it up (drinking, not football, sadly) when I got pregnant.
  • Leaving Albany for San Jose was, in fact, a big move– away from home in the East Bay. Our house was usually a mess, and the yard was overgrown. Not our finest hour as renters. And I learned that I don’t like to live where I can’t see water. An important lesson.
  • And this is another big one: although I had been driving for several years, I hated to drive on the freeway or cross the bridge. In fact, I didn’t do it. But when I had a baby in the hospital in San Francisco, and I lived in San Jose–about an hour’s drive away–I was forced to face my fears.I did that drive almost every day to see my baby. Had to get over it if I wanted to see her. So I did. Big step.


    …this is the sun’s birthday

    1977. What a crazy year it had been: Elvis died in August, kids went nuts over Star Wars, Jimmy Carter scared everyone talking about the energy crisis, and there was a drought in California.  Here it was December and it hadn’t rained in months. And ten days before my due date, we moved from AlbanyContinue Reading

    He was the Egg Man

    His obituary doesn’t say very much. It’s written in a tiny font and takes up about a square inch of newsprint. I keep the yellowed square of paper in my jewelry box, the one I took with me the day my house burned down in 1991. The obituary states when he died: June 11, 1977,Continue Reading

    Tuna on sourdough with extra pickles

    Life is good, right? We had already decided that we didn’t want to have kids. We’d been married for a few years and were enjoying life as a young married couple with three cats in a cute one bedroom apartment. Why mess things up? I had little confidence in my ability to be a parent,Continue Reading

    Doublecrossed by a Dummy

    The heading of the ad in the local paper said “Recruiting for the Albany/El Cerrito Fire Department.” Listed below was information about a series of qualifying physical tests to be given at a nearby school. The tests included the dummy lift, the ladder climb and the hose pull. I asked myself: why not try out?Continue Reading

    one’s not half two. It’s two are halves of one, revisited

    Dad walks me down the “aisle” A happy memory of my dad as we walk down the front path of my in-law’s house, right after he slipped a little. We’re smiling because neither one of us fell and ruined our entrance. He will have been gone ten years this month. Thanks for the memory, Dad.