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Publications
  • Still Points North: One Alaskan Childhood, One Grown-up World, One Long Journey Home
    Still Points North: One Alaskan Childhood, One Grown-up World, One Long Journey Home
    by Leigh Newman

    Can't wait! 

  • Einstein's God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit
    Einstein's God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit
    by Krista Tippett
  • The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone---Especially Ourselves
    The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone---Especially Ourselves
    by Dan Ariely
  • Marriage Rules: A Manual for the Married and the Coupled Up
    Marriage Rules: A Manual for the Married and the Coupled Up
    by Harriet Lerner
Publications
  • Rhythm And Repose
    Rhythm And Repose
    Anti/Epitaph

    Tender and beautiful. 

  • Boys & Girls
    Boys & Girls
    by Alabama Shakes

    Love this album! So happy when I saw BrainPicker post this on her site! 

  • City of Refuge
    City of Refuge
    by Abigail Washburn

    Pure magic!

  • Some Nights
    Some Nights
    by Fun.
  • She Ain't Me
    She Ain't Me
    by Carrie Rodriguez

    I'm such a fan. 

  • I'm Your Man
    I'm Your Man
    by Leonard Cohen

    Take this Waltz is on my top ten list of all songs!

  • Babel
    Babel
    by Mumford & Sons
Publications
  • Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (Original UK Unedited Edition)
    Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (Original UK Unedited Edition)
    PBS

    So totally addicted to this series! Absolutely amazing!

  • Zen: Vendetta / Cabal / Ratking [Blu-ray]
    Zen: Vendetta / Cabal / Ratking [Blu-ray]
    starring Rufus Sewell

    Based on your recommendations from a recent blog post! It's another wonderful BBC mystery series! 

  • The Good Wife: The First Season
    The Good Wife: The First Season
    starring Julianna Margulies, Chris Noth, Josh Charles, Matt Czuchry, Archie Panjabi

    One of the best shows on TV. Juiliana Marguiles is incredible. 

  • Doc Martin: Collection - Series 1-4
    Doc Martin: Collection - Series 1-4
    starring Martin Clunes, Caroline Catz, Lia Williams, Stephanie Cole, Ian McNeice
gifting
Tuesday
Jan292008

honest to blog!

OK. I promise not to overdo the Juno-isms. They're just so totally boss.

Back to the blog.  

I'm not sure why, but unleashing this blog was one of the scariest things I've ever done. When I hit the "go live" button yesterday, I felt physically sick.

I kept thinking, "Maybe this is a bad idea. Something is wrong. I shouldn't be this afraid."

Then I remembered one of the big lessons from last year. Part one of the lesson was something I heard Eve Ensler say. I was at Women, Power and Peace Conference at the Omega Institute. She was talking about her work on the Vagina Monologues, she paused for a second, then said, "Honestly, I am never afraid and I am always afraid." It was a huge moment for me. It was the right time and space for me to hear that it's OK to hold both of these at the same time. Uncomfortable, but OK.

Part two came a few months later, when I was in San Francisco and I met the fabulous Diane Conway. The back of her book reads, "She is a self-described 'do-over' queen and survivor, riddled with fears, who lives her dreams anyway." It's the "doing it anyway" part that really spoke to me. I think the subtitle of her book is as important as the title:

What Would You Do If You Had No Fear: Living Your Dreams While Quakin' in Your Boots 

flowerclog.jpg

Fear is often helpful (like when it comes to large, poisonous snakes or Chuck E. Cheese). But, it can also keep me from "going live." Today, I'm going to live this little blog dream of mine, while I'm quakin' in my brown, suede flower clogs. 

 

And, I really appreciate all of the supportive emails and comments. They mean a lot to me and they certainly calm the quake.  

Monday
Jan282008

speaking of hedgehogs . . .

calvinthehedgehod.jpg 

Stacy, my publicist at Gotham, emailed to ask me if I wanted to do a radio interview with Jean Chatzky on XM Oprah & Friends Radio. Of course, I said "hell yes." I totally love Jean Chatzky. I've watched her on the Today Show for years. She's one of the few people who makes me feel like I'm not too broke or dumb to talk about money.

Right after I agreed to do the interview, I checked out the show schedule to learn more about her work. Bad move. Her show line-up looked something like this:

Monday: Bank statement fees 

Tuesday: Retirement

Wednesday: Hedge Funds

Total suckage. I don't even open my bank statements. I panicked and called a friend. She said, "Who cares. It's Jean Chatzky on Oprah. You're good at redirecting. Just bring it back to something you can talk about."

I was lying in bed that night thinking up good money redirects when it hit me. I could always say something like, "Speaking of hedge funds, I think hedgehogs are really cute." The line was so bad, I actually said out loud, "Oh . . . smooth move Ex-Lax, that's real highbrow." I started laughing at myself and decided, "I'm going to do this thing. What do I have to lose?" Laughing at myself is always a good indicator that the self-doubt is letting up.

Truthfully, it was one of the best interviews I've ever experienced. She is funny, honest, irreverent and totally gets shame and perfectionism. I don't think I've ever talked to anyone that well known who has been completely upfront about their own stuff. Even her producer was into it.

If you have XM Radio, check it out tomorrow (1/29)! Air times are 10am CST and 11pm CST.

And, btw, I really do think Calvin, the cowboy hedgehog, is pretty cute. Of course, anyone who knows me will tell you that a live version of Calvin would cause me to seize with fear, then die.

The photo is courtesy of Bryan Smith at Hegdehog Central.

Monday
Jan282008

the glory is in the goof

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If you don’t think glorious and goofy can co-exist, you’ve never met a 3rd grader. I seriously don’t know how Ellen’s neurons are stringing this stuff together, but it is cracking me up. It’s insane and brilliant at the same time.

We were lying in bed snuggling a few nights ago and we started talking about school (snuggle time is when we do all of our serious talking). We were discussing the politics of recess when she mentioned that the boys cuss more when they’re outside. In my ever so subtle, probing way, I asked, “What do you mean? What do they say?” After I gave her permission to “use the words as examples,” she said:

crap
butt
fart
balls

Seriously. Could there be a grosser list?

I said, “You’re kidding?” She quickly offered up a pinky-swear and we started laughing.

It’s probably important to note that I still say “hiney” and “toot.” I’m not sure why –Steve and I are both big believers in correctly naming body parts and we both cuss too much. Somehow, in my upbringing, I was raised believing that the real f-word is fart. While we heard plenty o’ cussin’- we just didn’t use words like that. Of course, Steve thinks the list is funny and isn’t even convinced that balls is a bad word.

As we’re snuggling and laughing, it dawns on me that Ellen may not know what “balls” means. I was always the kid who didn’t know about these things and succumbed to playground misinformation and informal “Q and A” sessions with my friends’ older, pot-smoking siblings. It is very important for me that Ellen and Charlie know they can get good info from us.  I said, “Do you know about balls?” She put her head under the covers and said, “Stop! Yes! I know! And, I know you know, so let’s not talk about it out loud!”

There was dead silence for about 30 seconds, and then we got hysterical. I mean uncontrollable laughter. She screamed, “I have to stop laughing, my guts hurt. We need to think of something bad! Dead doggies. Dead doggies.”

It was the goofiest and most glorious conversation . . . ever in the whole world, no backs!