Because we need more oompah bands.

a powst about edzul?!

It’s raining today; at the most, it’s going to be 64 degrees. They also call that “the high.” Am become familiar with language of peeple.

Anyway, after Edsel’s a.m. constitutional, and by “constitutional” I mean he peed, he stampeded back inside, as he does. “Edsel, wait,” I said, and he screeched to a halt. That’s one good thing about Edsel. He usually listens to you. “Let me wipe your feets,” I said, and yes, I said “feets.”

Incidentally, who’s delighted she mentioned his scratching trouble yesterday? Hello, 200 pieces of advice.

It’s okay. We’ve been to the vet. Thrice. We’re working on it. Also, I can Google with the best of them. Oooo, also? I finally figured out you can SHUT DOWN MESSENGER on Facebook! You can just shut it off! No more fruitlessly saying, “Can everyone just not message me?” Because I shut if off!

Oh, the freedom. Who even knew that was a thing? I live and breathe this Philadelphia freedom.

I’m free, to do what I want, any old time.

I’m free! Free falling!

If I could get off the Freedom Trail here, the point of my story is, I have a dog towel in this back room, a towel that is allegedly just for dog feets. I have no idea why, other than that meant they got to charge me more. They charged me an arm and a feets.

I also have a for-dogs absorbing mat right at the back door, then another “for dogs” smaller rug at the next threshold, accompanying this alleged dog towel. They’ve formed an oompah band. You’d think my house would be devoid of the muddy prints. The feets prints.

stop saying. that not meen what you think it meen.

Oh, look. There’s, like, feets prints between the two rugs. Yeah. Hello, luck.

OH MY GOD ANYWAY. So I said, “Hang on, Edsel, let me wipe your muddy feets.” And I turned to get the towel, and when I came back, Edsel was holding up his foot. His one feets.


That story took 350 words. If a man told it–

a man would never tell it.

img_0927.jpgIn other news, this above about sums up m’weekend. Am vaguely depressed, and by “vaguely” I mean I’m depressed. Maybe I’m not depressed so much as I am just sad. And a little panicky.

I realize the best part of life is the thinner slice, and it don’t count for much.

See. Why does my brain have to have Air Supply lyrics in it? No one needs that. Not even the fine members of Air Supply. Ask me about algebra, though. My brain tossed that right out, like a brown avocado.

I realize there is a good chance, maybe an 80% chance, that I will be alone for the rest of my life. I mean, (a), I’m old. And (2), any man who’s single at my age is likely damaged. A thing I have learned the hard way. I’m not saying I’m not damaged. Look at me. But I’m saying I may be doomed.

This makes me sad, although truth be told, usually when I’m in a long-term relationship, I get annoyed with the person, anyway. So maybe I’ll be happier, once I accept this lot in life. But I feel like I’ve failed in some way. Like I’m a spare button that you keep just in case, but really you’re all, Why do I have this button? It goes to nothing.

mom be edsel spare buddon
no, seeeruslee

So I spent most of the weekend here, other than yesterday’s venture downtown, driving all the old men–you know what? I’ll stop. I will spare you that much, at least.IMG_0967.JPGI mentioned this on Facebook last night, but yesterday when Edsel and I were taking our p.m. constitutional, and by “constitutional” I mean an actual walk, we saw a woman several blocks down, lounging on her hammock. She was reading a book, a cat strewn across her. “That looks lovely,” thought, and I noticed that cat was a handsome all-gray, my type, his tail whipping just the way Steely–


And that is how, once again, I’ve found my cat bonding with another family. Why? He doesn’t even like ME that much. Why suck up to other humans?

Anyway. I just hope this whole sad sad crush of doomed sadness won’t make me a boring blogger. People will start leaving in droves. I already learned the hard way–and why I gotta keep learning the hard way?–that everyone here isn’t reading me with love. I stupidly kind of thought you all were. Like, I kind of thought if you bothered to come here, you kind of liked me.

I mean, I thought that about a man who kept insisting he loved me, too, and look where that got me.

Why are people so goddamn complex?

Ima go get ready for work now, and carry on with my life, such as it is. I leave you with this YouTube veeeedeo, that Marvin hepped me to. He keeps putting up old veeedeos (keep saying that, June) from many years ago (this one is from 1998), and Dear Marvin: Does this piss off your wife? I mean, she seems very cool, but if it were me, I’d be all, “Okay, already, with the memory lane bullshit.”

I’m so glad Marvin married someone I like. Granted, it’d be a lot more fun for me to have a whole new enemy, but I’m glad he found a nice person who is sane. Marvin deserves that.

I’ll talk to you later. Tonight I gotta freelance and maybe lie around listlessly. I’m swamped.

Alone again. Naturally.


Published by


At one point, I was sort of hot, in a "she's 27 and probably a 7" kind of a way. Now I'm old and have to develop a charming personality. Guess how that's going.

88 thoughts on “Because we need more oompah bands.”

  1. I read your stories with nothing but love! For you and for all the Pie Peeps.

    Speaking of being a little blue, it must have been the weekend for it. I went to bed at 1:30 am on Sunday morning, and didn’t get out of bed again until 8 am this morning. Slept most of the time. Got up to hit the bathroom and eat something (in bed). That was it. Yeah.

    I frequently feel – like you – that I’m going to be alone for the rest of my life too. I mean, how many big loves do you get in a lifetime? I’ve had two. They both went horribly wrong. But what if two big loves is your allotment in life? I know I would be OK without a partner, because I have so many other things and so many loved ones. But every time I see couples in EVERY. SINGLE. COMMERCIAL., I want to throw a shoe at my TV. Why don’t you and I get to be in a couple? (Well, not together you and I… know what I mean, you lezzies.) I mean, people who are mean and hateful and unpleasant and icky (and look like The Crypt Keeper) are in a couple. Why can’t someone(s) as freaking fabulous as you (and me) deserve one, too?

    I think we just have to be patient, and believe that at the right time, the right man will come along. And if he’s not love avoidant, or we manage to not kill him or turn him gay, all will be well.


  2. I don’t hate read around here and agree with others that it seems strange someone would spend their time that way so I think that says more about them than you. My former family member found his second true love (widower) at 58 in a waitress at the local diner. They’re living blissfully and have instructed anyone who may visit to call first. Ahem.


  3. Hi June,

    First of all…that video. Oh, my stars! SO cute! Like the whole entire thing is SO, CUTE. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Secondly, your photography. Stunning. Thirdly, getting old sucks no matter what, however, it is better than the alternative. Fourth, I know that right now is hard. You seem to have had several stages of grief, but this seems to be the final stage. The loneliest one. Loneliness is hard and awful. I am standing right in your doorway, keeping you company. Let me know if I can do anything to help.

    Very nice, Coot.


  4. Hey, my mom found a new husband in a town of 1500 people when she was in her 50’s (at least, I don’t remember) and he is a very nice guy, thinks the world of her. And she was a librarian, not some wild & crazy man-attracter or something. Chin up, it could happen!


  5. Dear Vela,
    I do indeed find it offensive to go out of your way to tell someone you don’t like them. Unless of course they asked, which clearly June did not. So, troll away.

    I also find it quite reasonable to assume that people who make a daily habit of reading what you write do so because they like it and by extension “you” or at least the you that you write. People who read to hate have something weird going on. Maybe you’re the one who’s “messed up”.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Steely Dan is a gigolo. I can’t belieeeve how that cat gallivants around town just hopping in any old hammock.
    June, I’m sorry you have the blues. It’s fall’s fault. Hang in until THANKSgiving, and things will start to get better. I promise! Being bored can be, well…boring, BUT boredom leads to creativity. New ideas, plans, projects, revelations happen when you have been bored for a while. See! Great things are ahead, jusssst arounnnnd the riverbennnd! (a little Pocahontas earworm for ya’, or as Mr. Texas calls her, Porkahontas. Nice.)


  7. Re: The Lurker who said people should want mixed reviews & not just affirmations. I guess he has lived a charmed life, and not lost days with hopelessness, depression & anxiety. Criticism grips like cancer on the wrong day. Are we not supposed to say nice things to someone we like? Are you supposed to poke bears when you’re blue, just because it looks like too many people like you?? If he’s never been at a point in his life when you have had enough of being crapped on, well done him.
    The original version was swearier that this…
    This is just my opinion, which was not endorsed or coerced by June’s Not-Blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Well, we could always resort to our plan B and be old, spinster, spare buttons together and have 900 dogs and cats.

    I am similarly depressed and feeling that I will be alone for eternity.

    Sending hugs but not.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. OMG, who is Vela Korr??? I skipped over the comments and posted. Then I read that one above my first comment. This person claims you wrote an article about her, then she hints about “interesting comments” on the article. Wow “Ms.Korr”, you are a troll. And people who read June’s blog, really, really like her. As she is a fine writer with a good heart and lovely (Internet ) personality.

    My God….some people! If you can’t say something nice, keep it to yourself “Vela”.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Vela Korr is a boy, first of all, a boy I talked to online for awhile in late 2015/early 2016. And it’s true that I got a Purple Clover out of the ordeal. However, I’m somehow not angry at him, or even at today’s comment.

      And while I don’t require or even hope for pandering, Vela, if I may call you Vela, I do prefer it to any “you suck” comments. I mean, call me crazy, but I do.

      I don’t think it’s magical thinking I have so much as maybe I’m just optimistic about people and their motives. After what happened with you, you’d think I’d be less optimistic, but here I still am.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. LinCA,

      The definition of “troll” is “a person who intentionally antagonizes others online by posting irrelevant or offensive comments.” Are you maintaining that my comments were irrelevant or offensive? If so, how?

      Also, if you’re going to reply to my comments, please do me the favor of reading them more closely. It was June, not I, who wrote the article in question. And, as should be abundantly and explicitly clear from my original comments, I am a “he,” not a “she.”

      Finally, thank you for providing supporting evidence for the main point I was making in my comment. Reading your comment, I felt a little like Woody Allen in that scene in Annie Hall when he pulls Marshall McLuhan out of the movie line to win an argument, although my triumph was admittedly smaller than his by comparison.

      Your best pal,

      Vela K


      1. Dear Vela,

        Oh, honey. You should have read L. In CA’s comment more closely. She stated June was the one who wrote the Purple Rain article.

        You don’t seem like you have a vagina, Vela. But since you do, you should know as women, we prefer fun, kindly compliments to each other. After all, by checking in every afternoon, you too are one of June’s many fangirls.

        Love (but not in a lezzie kind of way),

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh. Just read June’s comment. Vela is a boy. Hunh. Could’ve knocked me over with a feather with that one. Oh well, my comment still stands minus the vagina.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I find it interesting that you would pick right now to express your insights. A time when June is not feeling particularly positive about things, you choose to give her a little kick. That article must have hurt you, and this, apparently is the time you’ve chosen to try to hurt her back. So, bully for you. Bully.

          Liked by 3 people

  10. You write, “I already learned the hard way… that everyone here isn’t reading me with love. I stupidly kind of thought you all were. Like, I kind of thought if you bothered to come here, you kind of liked me.”

    Well, there’s some magical thinking for you. Why would you assume that all the people who come here actually like you? I don’t like you all that much – not that I dislike you – but that doesn’t stop me from clicking on the “Book of June” shortcut in my bookmarks section every afternoon. I come here because your blog is entertaining, not because I “like” you. It’s entertaining because you’re smart, funny, usually honest, and sort of messed up. That combo makes for good reading. (And your prose is occasionally quite good.) I continue to come here despite the biting article you wrote about me on Purple Clover (or whatever it’s called) which, thanks to your archiving of old posts, I just found out about for the first time a few weeks ago. (The comments under the article were pretty interesting. Don’t you agree?)

    But, back to your quote: I’ve always wondered why someone as cynical as you are doesn’t get tired of all the woozy affirmation that gets thrown your way in this comments section. Is this a “girl thing”? Speaking as a guy, I know that if I were writing a blog I would want a variety of views regarding my relative awesomeness/suckiness in the comments section. I think this boils down to a difference between the sexes: Guys want data, girls want emotional support.

    Anyway, keep up the good work. I’m a fan, even though I don’t really like you all that much.


    1. I think it’s hilarious that you are saying that women are different than men in that they want emotional support and yet here you are two years after whatever date you had with June complaining about a “biting article” written about you. No, you’re not emotional at all!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Vela, we’d be glad to give you our view of your suckiness if you’d like us to. Was the purpose of your comment to try and hurt June by telling her you don’t like her? No wonder she wrote a “biting article” about you.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Lovely post, but I’m so sorry you’re feeling down. Just remember, we never know what, or who, life will throw at us tomorrow. I may not have commented all these years, but I always cared about you and felt your happiness and also your pain over the years. I still feel bad for lurking and not being a supportive reader! I wish there was more we could do to lift your spirits like you lift ours. Thanks for sharing that delightful video!


  12. I feel like I’ll be alone forever too. It doesn’t help that several people have basically told me that they don’t think any man will ever want someone with five kids. I’m trying hard to be okay with the thought of doing this by myself. I’m not really there yet though.


  13. Stop this melancholy talk this instant or I will march right up there and cut off your Air Supply lyrics. You want depressing?
    There is a 90% I will develop “old man” smell within the next 10 years. Feel better now?

    Be Happy.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I mean, (a), I’m old. And (2), any man who’s single at my age is likely damaged.

    Or both.

    I recently went out on my first date since getting divorced. I’m 59. We met at a restaurant that was packed. I asked him why it was so crowded. He looked at me like I was an idiot and replied “It’s senior day, you get 20% off.” And then I knew. I was dating a senior citizen.

    Just kill me now.


  15. Okay so I don’t comment very often but I DO read you with love! And thank you for my laugh of the day re: SD, lolol. My cats definitely know when I’ve been ‘cheating’ on them (ie. loving other cats/kittens) so I guess cats are allowed to do the same?


  16. What I don’t understand is that when people don’t like you, why do they bother to take the time to tell you? I mean, when I don’t like someone I will dish for days about it with my sister and do the whole “I can’t believe they did this!” stuff that people do. But to take the time to specifically tell someone why I don’t like their stories or them or their cat? Nope. Not gonna do it.

    As far as being alone forever, it feels like another one of those things where we want what we don’t have. Like curly hair. If I’m straight haired I want to be curly. If I’m poor I want to be rich, but when I’m rich that comes with it’s own bag of stuff. When my kids are little I want freedom but when they get older I want them little again where they need me. There is good and not so good about everything. People really ARE complex. And so is that ridiculous cat of yours. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  17. June, your post made me think of this quote. It’s when Jo is crying over dumb Teddy and Marmie (what a name) says, “You have so many extraordinary gifts, how can you expect to live an ordinary life?” Your life has been, is currently and will continue to be extraordinary. Thank you for sharing it with us. Tomorrow will be better. Pep talk over!


  18. I’m also starting to feel like there’s no hope for me to meet the right guy. I get really tired of trying and ending up disappointed.

    Hope you cheer up soon, Coot.


  19. Aww, Edsel’s teeth (although in my head it sounds like Edz teef). They slay me every time. His teeth, combined with those ears, just must make you smile sometimes.


  20. When you don’t have enough freelance to keep you busy, you could be a pet photography in your spare time with your mad photography skills and your excellent phone camera. Today’s photos are calendar-worthy. I can see the one of Steely Dan and the pumpkins featured as October.

    Steely Dan and his double life kills me. Is he a secret agent or a double agent?

    Love the video of you. I would have to dig through old photos to find one of me at age 33, but you have videos to capture the times of your life. And I agree with the others, there is no way you look 33 in that video. Can I say video one more time?


      1. I put that comment in the wrong place. It was meant for the comment by dancer. Sheesh.


  21. My dog itches too. It sucks. We have medicine, special shampoo, fish oil. I spend more on vet bills than I do at my own doctor.

    Also, re: depressed. Me too. Just stuff and the time of year and generally blah.


    1. My dog used to itch and chew, itch and chew. And she would stink. It finally occurred to me that it got worse when I gave her certain treats. So I switched to grain-free treats and the itching and chewing diminished somewhat. Then it occurred to me that I also needed to switch her kibble to grain-free as well because duh.

      Both of my dogs now get grain-free kibble and I also make a mixture of ground turkey, brown rice and vegetables and add a spoonful or two of that mixture to their kibble. They love it and the itching and chewing is completely gone. No medicine or special shampoo needed.


  22. I’m always here #readingwithlove – I’m kinda thinking that a hashtag would annoy you so much you might laugh at it!

    The timing of this single phase could be brilliant. It will allow you to write that book. Of course it will be a smash and you will have to go on a whirlwind book tour and being your lovely single self you can sample all the goods with abandon!

    What do you think about “June’s Life Musings as She Searches for Her Button”? (sounds a bit like an Amish porn novel, eh?!)


  23. Don’t give up, people find the one at all ages.
    That’s hilarious about Steely Dan. Did you just keep walking like he wasn’t yours?


  24. You are the Mary Tyler Moore of this generation, but much cooler. You’ve got the cool house, some annoying neighbors, some cool neighbors, cool job, cool car (and cool pets) — all you’re missing is the annoying hat toss. You should be proud of yourself — how many women have stayed with the wrong man (for whatever reason) just to be in a relationship. You are true to yourself which is admirable. Now, go off and play some Helen Reddy, I am woman hear me roar……………


  25. The hardest part of spare buttoning for me is each new spare button I meet finds a cuff in need. Curse their happiness. I’m trying a #boringselfcare challenge, which basically should force me to do something other than moping in my jammers every day. Maybe Edz was doing #boringJoonCare with his cootness. Your posts are wonderful, if you are up or down. You are so generous with your time, when you could be getting some jammers & Ben & Jerry. We do appreciate it x


  26. there are too many things to comment on this hilarious blog i have little energy since I too, am old. so i might just sit here and click this button instead


  27. I came to the comments hoping everyone would say what I was thinking -that of course you are wonderful and won’t be alone forever and don’t be sad but it is ok if you are sad, and yes everyone already did. So I won’t.


    1. I wonder how many other people, not just June and that lady, claim Steely Dan as their own cat. And what other names he goes by. Fluffy? Smokey? Bob?


  28. I read because I like you a lot. It’s probably for the best that we are not neighbors. The trouble we could get in to. You are so likable that I’m sure you will meet the right one when you least expect it.
    Lovely post Coot.


  29. I’m sorry you are a bit down in the dumps. Just remember that noone has a perfect life, no matter what how it appears to you. On a side note, I missed the “Coot” reference story and it’s killing me!


  30. I have to know what went down when you discovered Steely Dan on the cheatin’ side of town. Did you tell that lady, “That’s my goddamn cheater cheater pumpkin eater of a cat” while SD looked at you and claimed, “I’ve never seen that woman before in my life!”

    That darn cat.


  31. I fell 90% sure that I will be alone forever too and I am in a relationship right now.

    I am continually baffled that there are hateful readers, but then I don’t get off on spite, misery and acidic emotions.


  32. I’m giving you a 2fur (two for one) comment today. I really admire you being able to get your freelance work done at the bookstore. I would be soooo distracted by all the people I would never get anything done.

    Sorry you feel down. Be encouraged, we went to a wedding last weekend where the bride was 45 and the groom 54, and neither had ever been married. There is certainly hope for you. This is just a period of working through the horrible grief of loss. It stinks!

    I would have so called SD when I found him lounging across the neighbor and flounced off. Not only is he a bully, he is a cheater. On the other hand, that Iris is a sweetheart. I loved the photo of her lounging on you.

    The video was hilarious, especially you trying to rid yourself of all the cat hair.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. 33 in that veedeo? Inconceivable! Were you and Marvin married yet at that time? I can’t remember and I can’t find my June’s Big Book of Events. Is that the correct title? See, I’m fuzzy today on several things.

    The teefies on Eds are to die for. I love all the pictures you’ve been taking, Everything is so vivid about them and I swear each one tells it’s own story. The captions are the thick sweet (but not too sweet) delicious cream cheese frosting on the moist carrot cake cupcake. I said moist.

    Steely Dan, torn between two families. Some cats lead double lives and sometimes even triple lives. Smart cats.

    Smoochie boochies, Joob. I hope your sadness lifts soon. You won’t always be chasing amy. I keep forgetting this scene is from Chasing Amy and not Clerks. We should have a virtual Clerks viewing party sometime and have movie club discussion night here sometime.


  34. I love you, Edsel. You, too, June. You were adorable in that video. I especially liked the hair removal effort and your fatal attraction move.


  35. Lovely post, Juney Coot. I like you and that is why I bother to come here.

    Eds lifted his foot for you. Awww. Thanks, Marvin, for being the keeper of the memories and sharing them. Thanks, June, for sharing them with us. You were and still are beautiful.

    I remember the spare button feeling distinctly and it was painful. So much so that I remember where I was standing and what time of day it was and what precipitated the feeling. I didn’t have a good word for it until now.


    1. PJ,

      This is just lovely. I always admire how kind you are and how you are not afraid to just sit and be with someone who is in pain. Even if it is just in the comments of a non-blog. I try to be just like you. xo


  36. Oh oh Blue Monday. Fats and I could come sing to you. Of course I would be off key. Fall always makes me sad cause all the flowers will be gone here in Tennessee. Still, there is Halloween, Turkey Day, and Christmas to look forward to. Hope you have big plans for those exciting days with your family! At least your animal planet family. Love hearing all the antics of the four legged! Please keep them coming for all of us that are only allowed one pet.


    1. She is! Our dog used to get car sick…drool, pee and then vomit. It was all out of fear, but now she jumps in and enjoys the ride. She was worth every penny!


  37. Ah ha! I sent you a message about Marcia, the dog trainer. She is truly a miracle worker. I’m not sure our dog, Pixie, loved her, but we sure did!

    I know how you feel. I definitely had those moments when I was single, but don’t give up hope.

    I am one of your faithful readers, I will never leave you.


  38. I come over here every day because I think you are pretty much the best. Hilarious and also very real. No one’s life is perfect, and I feel crappy when other people present themselves as such.

    I’m a little offended on your behalf that SD was lounging with someone. I’m ok with him hanging out sore of stand-offishly in someone else’s yard, or on their porch, but to cuddle? No.

    OMG if I ever got to meet Edsel he would be SO tired of me hugging him and kissing that face.

    Chin up, Coot.


  39. Just think, you could have had a Carpenters song running through your mind on a rainy Monday. Now that would really get you down. Reading you with love, whether you’re up or down.


  40. WTF?? Marvin got MARRIED?!? When did that happen?? I remember an engagement that (possibly?) didn’t work out. It’s just like the time Paula MOVED and told NO ONE.

    I hope your mood brightens soon, Joooon. I’m sorry you’re feeling sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  41. You are funny and smart and pretty and witty and you will find a new way. It will be fabulous. It will be what you always needed but did not know you wanted. Because now you’ve seen. And once you’ve seen you can’t unsee. You just have to give yourself time to replace the old pattern with the new pattern.

    That kid who delighted her grandma is still in you. I have faith that you two will come up with something marvelous.

    (Though it is a-okay to ketch and angst for as long as you need. Something shitty happened to you.)

    (Apologies if I’ve overshot supportive and landed in the advice column.)

    Liked by 1 person

  42. By the way, I loved the video. You trying to get the cat hair off is hilarious. Also, I have a black globe like the one in the background.(I was going to say that makes us twins but I couldn’t decide if that was funny or just made me sound stupid!)


  43. I am so in love with that veedeeooooo. You look 18, not 33! You are so adorable, then and now.

    Hopefully by now you’ve figured out that the baby has no control over the contractions. Imma head
    over to Facebook and Message you. Oh, wait…

    I love that Steely Dan story – it’s like he doesn’t even care that you catch him in the act!

    Lovely post, lovely June! Even when you’re blue, you are a ray of sunshine.

    Liked by 1 person

  44. Lovely post Coot. I’m sorry you’re in the melancholy zone right now, and hope it lifts with the rain.


  45. “You feel unloved, Arthur, welcome to the world. Everyone is unloved. Now stop feeling sorry for yourself. And incidentally, I love you.”

    Liked by 3 people

  46. What makes you so sure that there is an 80% chance you will be alone forever? You have said yourself that you are not good at “the maths” so I don’t see how you could come up with such a complex number! Think about this – There are a lot of people who are not alone that are much sadder than you. Having a man in your life is not always what it is cracked up to be. Besides, who needs a man when you have all of us? I hope you feel better soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been thinking about this for a day or so and had to come back and share a couple of things about my mother. She always worried like it was her job. One of her biggest fears was dying alone. She always tempered her pride in my academic accomplishments by adding “what good is it to be smart if you can’t get a man.” I’m ashamed to admit that at some level I bought into the pressure to prove I could attract proposals the way she had.

      But long after I married and started my family, the worrying continued. I eventually learned that I could calm her down by saying “it’s too soon to panic” and promising to let her know when panic was warranted, (Those times never came.) The other thing I came to understand and then explain to my mother was that she was often worrying about the wrong things. She hated when my daughter went to Russia for school and fretted the whole time. Nothing went wrong there but she had only been back in the states for a few months when she rolled her car over on the highway outside of Reno while driving back from a visit for my 50th birthday. Nothing can prepare you for that it turns out, certainly not worrying. (She’s fine except for some PTSD maybe.)

      My parents were married 70 years. It wasn’t bliss, I can tell you. My dad was a pouter and a rager and while I don’t blame my mom for refusing to walk on eggshells, I wished she’d picked her battles more often. My dad died over 2 1/2 years ago. It turns out my mom is dying alone. At least that’s how she sees it, even though she has me, my husband, and my kids.


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