Road Journals
(Goes On All The Field Trips)

This is no mere cross-country trip (not that any of them are -- a road trip nearly always becomes a journey). But this one is the move of a lifetime, folding 15 years in one home (and 33 years of our marriage) into 250 boxes. Our 2,000 square foot San Francisco flat is strewn with the substance and impedimenta of two childhoods and one and a half careers, with the physical manifestations of four creative accumulators, chroniclers, and self-observing, nostalgic celebrators of iconic objects and images and moments. ...continue...

Today's Message
(A Familiar Voice On Your Answering Machine)

November 4, 2005 - I posted a poem here last week, Reviving The Art of Correspondence, relating the contemporary experience of digital letter writing between women. Today I opened Sunday's New York Times to a review of "Women's Letters", which sounds like a fascinating collection of private correspondence from the Revolution to the present. So much historical truth and cultural insight lies in the personal and social realms (a la Howard Zinn's People's History). The problem is, how will our progeny sift through billions of Instant Messages and blogs, much of it dashed off and trivial, to capture the intimacies and historical insights that biographers and historians have traditionally harvested from letters and personal papers? That is, if these communications are even salvageable—they are likely to be lost in cyberspace, or locked in code, stacked up in insurmountable virtual landfills full of old hard drives awaiting recycling...continue...

October 27, 2005 -If you are a political pundit you write a blog to change the world. Or rather, to get the credit you deserve for perceptively articulating how the world ought to be changed. (That's DailyKos, Josh, the pundit squads, even that "I'm just looking to amuse" chick on all the talk shows.) If you are a diarist, you write a blog to share your intimate thoughts and personal feelings. If you are a geek, you write a blog to wax techtastic and wow your programmer cohorts. But if you are a writer, you write a blog so as to force yourself to write every day...continue...

October 10, 2005 - Having just watched my first born graduate from Stanford University, I was fascinated by Malcolm Gladwell's piece in the New Yorker about the history of Ivy League college admissions. WOW. Check it out, the truth behind the bizarre, inscrutable system for anointing the academic elite is fascinating and oh so American ...continue...

Reading Material
(Slips Notes Into Your Lunchbox)

October 29, 2005 - If you enjoy making Boohbahs dance (and you will), you'll love all of these "interactive activities."

October 19, 2005 - Blogging it old School.

October 16, 2005 - Go here, do this.

Memoirs & Articles
(Home Movies)

East Hampton Star GUESTWORDS Column, October 27, 2005 - On the eighth straight day of torrential downpours on Long Island I keep waking during the night (three am, four am, five am), haunted by the relentless pounding of water on the asphalt shingles of our house's deeply sloped saltbox roof. (This roof lies three feet above my pillow; when I sit up in bed my head enters the crevice where roof meets wall.) It feels a tad biblical; I'm finding six months of rain delivered in one grand gesture physically disconcerting; it releases the kind of nameless, claustrophobic anxiety familiar to all who reluctantly frequent the hour of the wolf...continue...

San Francisco Memoir, February 2005: Even though there is a huge garbage dumpster right next to it, your head bangs against a bathroom window, and the view is of SUVs fighting for parking spaces, I still always claim the bench behind Peet's Coffee when the sun is out...continue...




your mom roasts turkeys
and sears duck breast
your mom bakes apple pies
and whips cream
your mom wraps presents
and lights candelabras

your mom fills file boxes with words
your mom was a rebel and a dropout
your mom yearns for youth
and immortality
your mom devoted years to you
because you were so much fun
and made her so happy

your mom is bitter, heartbroken
and disillusioned
your mom is idealistic and dreamy
and believes in you
your mom has been rapping lightly
on the window of the world
for 50 years


New York
The Hamptons
San Francisco

write your mom (she worries) at:

subscribe to your mom







Dearest Guest,

According to Technorati's October 05 State of The Blogosphere Report, a new blog is created somewhere in the world every second; 70,000 new blogs are born each and every day.

The moment Your Mom went live, it became blog number, say,
19.6 million and one.

Your Mom is roughly the 19,600,001st person to slowly raise her digital, bejeweled hand for a turn to speak. In five months there will be 40 million blogs, and five months after that, 80 million.

Your Mom is dancing as fast as she can, her converse all stars tapping out "listen to me, listen to me" in nanosecond time.

But, sitting in the woods at her lonely keyboard, any attempt to grasp the numerical truth only reveals to Your Mom that getting up each morning in wool socks and gray hoodie to blog against the dying of the light, is not a reality-based exercise, and what good can come of that?

So let's just keep this between her and you—one writer, one reader, perhaps the occasional voyeur. Mom wrote a poem about this in 1995.

all content 2005 Deborah Shaw Cohen
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