Wednesday, January 30, 2008


First of all, thanks very much to Jessica for staying with the girls tonight so that Paul and I could go out for a movie and dinner. I originally wanted to see Juno, but we ended up seeing Charlie Wilson's War, and enjoying it very much.

I didn't think that I was interested in seeing a movie about US 1980s cold war politics in the middle east. But I like Aaron Sorkin's writing and there was a good cast, so we went.

I'd love to talk about it with any of you who've seen the movie, especially other feminists. Obviously, Wilson is a flawed character (and I liked the way that's obvious from the opening scene). But his politics were pretty sound, and he was good at working the system to accomplish things. How did you feel about the sexy female aides? How about the way he treated them in the film (flirtatiously, but with respect)? He relied upon them and trusted them to do the jobs that needed doing; they certainly weren't just eye candy. Except for the belly dancer and the Playmate.

A Few Good Men. The American President. Sports Night. The West Wing. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. If you write it, baby, I'll watch it. But (note that this is the tongue-in-cheek part) I wish he'd do an interview confession which projects he wrote while straight and which ones he wrote while high, so I can decide how I prefer his work. For example, Matthew Perry is often better looking while on pills (the emaciated look makes for a strong jawline) and he's got a haunted quality that is more serious actor and less class clown when he's fighting his monkey. And Stephen King admitted that he can't even remember writing Cujo. I'm as square as they come, but I do find it interesting to compare people's work while loaded versus sober.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Bucket List

No, not the movie, the St. Louis Bloggers January Carnival. My recent not-cancer freak-out threw this one into bold relief for me:

Sarahlynn's To Do Before I Die List:
1) Watch my kids grown up healthy and happy.
The End.

Since I'm trending a bit contrary, my other would-like-tos include:
  • Have my whole house organized, top to bottom, with no Monica Closet. Not even a Monica Drawer. Just once, just for a few minutes, just to see what it feels like.
  • Publish a good book, to good reviews and sales.
  • Find a miracle cure for my feet so that I can rollerblade again.
  • While I'm at it, find a miracle cure for cancer. And world hunger. And so forth.
  • Have sex with Taye Diggs and his identical twin brother.
What? What?!

OK, well, I don't like New Year's Resolutions and I don't like Bucket Lists, so I don't play nicely with either. My mind just doesn't naturally think in superlatives like, what's my favorite book/movie/song/color? What do I most want to do before I die?

There's a lot of stuff I want to do before I die. There's a lot of stuff I want to do before Easter. There's a lot of stuff I want to do before bed tonight.

But last Sunday, I did "ask" my Sunday School class make some sort of New Year's Resolutions, because the lesson suggested that we do so.

We Believe that our lives are pieces of God's plan. What can we do in our immediate futures to help imagine our eternal lives in God's presence?

Ah, this exercise I like better. It's far less morbid!
  • I can practice saying, "Yes."
  • And I can stop waiting for the question, looking instead for opportunities to volunteer in ways that make a significant contribution without inspiring me to feel resentful or overwhelmed.
  • I can continue the practice I began working so hard on last year, involving compassion and understanding.
On these, I've already begun. About these, I already feel hopeful.

And, in the end, I think they're more important and valuable both to me and to others than worrying about when I'll die, or where I'll travel, or even the state of my half-organized basement storage closet.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Big, Fun, Scary

This is a follow-up to NaNoWriMo. The challenge is to take on one big, fun, or scary goal for 2008. You know, sort of exactly like a New Year's Resolution. Which I don't do. But.

Why not?

Big: Weigh less than my (stunning if I do say so myself) Y2K weight by Christmas

Fun: Cruise the Inner Passage, go to Disney World, and spend a long, hot, child-free weekend in Mexico

Scary: swim cage-free with sharks

No, really:

Big: Limit gorging and resume regular workouts (notice how this is not a SMART goal, but I'll know and that's all that matters)

Fun: go on at least one date per month, and therapy sessions do not count

Scary: Submit at least 2 magazine articles to editors and at least 5 novel query letters to agents.