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The Cheesecake Chronicles by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Recipes

/ Stories

Some kid named Steven Spielberg was a friend of my boss and, before he landed his first gig, basically squatted in the tiny empty office across from mine.
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Ladder’s ‘Bout to Fall by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Superstition

/ Stories

David, with his long dark hair, and Michael, with his shaggy blonde mane, have formed a band ­— The Lion and The Bear — and they’re booking regular gigs around town. David has also started dealing weed in earnest, so now the cash is flowing from two sources. He’s made some solid connections in both…
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Snippets by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

For the final touch she dabs perfume — Shalimar, always Shalimar — behind her ears, on the inside of her wrists — her pulse points, as she calls them — and giving me a wink, a dab between her breasts.
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panacea for the quiet by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

It’s almost as if I was prepared for this breathtaking pause.
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Extra Money by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Door-to-Door Sales

/ Stories

I also have a few leftover Valentine's cards. Now that I look at them, they seem a tad racy for a kid to be selling...maybe they somehow got mixed in with the others.
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Dream House by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Dreams

/ Stories

We often dream of houses, and of stairways…they’re classic symbols. We enter, exit, ascend and descend the various layers of our psychology, psyche, soul.
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May Day is Lei Day by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

Two weeks into our vacation, I don’t want to leave. I’ve fallen in love…with an island. Kauai. “So don’t leave,” Susie says. My best friend is like that. “Stay with us!” “But how would I make a living? What would I do? I wouldn’t want to be a court reporter here, wear stockings and high…
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Laurel Canyon by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Close Calls

/ Stories

We hit it off, our kids gurgle at each other, she could use some help, and the next thing I know I’m serving quiche Loraine, gazpacho, green salad, fruit salad, peach tarts, sparkling water and wine to about thirty members of the cast and crew on an old western set in Chatsworth.
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My Name is Barbara… by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Nicknames

/ Stories

Barbi Benton pretty much owned the spelling of her name, and in the 80s, despite the fact that we had the same hairdo, I was dismissive of her anyway, for being in Playboy, and for being Hugh Hefner’s main squeeze.
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We Are The World by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

We set off en masse to a restaurant nearby called The Carnivore where we have cocktails, then nibble from platters of, so help me, wildebeest, zebra, ostrich, and a few other exotic meats. After dining it’s back to the hotel bar for nightcaps.
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Outsider No More by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Finding Your Tribe

/ Stories

I always had a sense of something missing, of being on the outside of myself.
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Caregiving – It’s Complicated by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Caregiving

/ Stories

...so the three of us made up a rotating schedule of who would spend the night with her in her apartment, now retrofitted with a hospital bed in the living room.
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TO MY LEAPLING, MY LEAPIE, MY LEAPER by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Leap Day

/ Stories

Bette Midler loaned one of her legendary mermaid outfits to Susan for the festival parade.
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Genius by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Family Myths

/ Stories

I grew up to the sound of hushed whispering; entering a room and the conversation stopping; discussions behind closed doors . . .
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Can You Tell Me How To Get to Sesame Street? by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

. . . it even had a breathtaking westerly view of the city promising fiery sunsets. That was all the drama I wanted.
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Retirement? Who, Me? by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Retirement

/ Stories

(Sung to the tune of “I Won’t Grow Up” from Peter Pan) I won’t grow up, I don’t want to stay home. And just do whatever I want Like sleep or write a poem.   I won’t grow up, I don’t want to stop working And just do whatever I choose Like Facebook lurking Not…
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Stupor Bowl by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Super Bowl

/ Stories

To me, football looks like huge men pretending to play tag but actually trying to kill each other. Okay, so I’m not exactly a sports fan. When I dated, I’d get that out of the way early on to avoid disappointment down the line. My husband, Garth, does follow sports, but he’s not a true…
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Moving Days by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Moving Day

/ Stories

I’d been flying into closed windows, falling to the ground momentarily dazed, then picking myself up and taking flight again.
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GHOSTS by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Snail Mail

/ Stories

Or maybe that’s part of why I eventually “ghosted” him. I didn’t yet have the maturity, the empathy, the compassion that being involved with someone like him would have required in the long term.
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Who’s Your Daddy Now? by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

I guess I’m looking for signs that he’s my father, but he just looks like, seems like, acts like an ordinary man to me, any man.
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Time and Again by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

I decide to track him down through Dorrie, a mutual friend I’d almost but not quite lost track of...
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To Be or Not To Be by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Get Organized

/ Stories

Someone else will just have to do my dirty work, someone without a sense of attachment, someone who won’t feel like they’re severing a lifeline to a lifetime.
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Chafing at “Charity” by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Charity

/ Stories

I knew what they were doing, they were helping me out, but they were doing it in a way that allowed me to feel as if I were also helping them out.
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Blue on Blue by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Baby Books

/ Stories

Once an art teacher had given our class a homework assignment to collect photos for a collage, including a baby picture. When I’d asked my mom for one, she’d told me my baby pictures had been lost in a flood; yet, here they are.
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I’m Just Wild About…Owie by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By The Crush

/ Stories

I groan with muffled desire and slide down in my seat, but before I know it my mom pulls over and gestures for him to hop in.
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Who’s Your Daddy? by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Surprise!

/ Stories

I have the distinct impression of brightening light, as if the sun has just moved out from behind a cloud.
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Get Over It by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Ageism

/ Stories

As we’d let our fingers do the walking earlier in the day, Garth holds up his iPhone to show him the item we're looking for. There it is, supposedly in stock, in this store.
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 “Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah” (Bully Anthem) by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Bullying

/ Stories

A cootie is a body louse, but it’s also a children’s term for an imaginary germ or repellent quality transmitted by another child who is perceived as different.
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Scams and Shams by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Hacks and Scams

/ Stories

We pair up with strangers, hold hands and look into each other’s eyes for an extended period of time; we change partners and smile goofily at one another for another extended period of time; we fall backwards into yet another stranger’s arms and trust that we’ll be caught.
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Word Nerd by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Working

/ Stories

As a court reporter, I am an officer of the court, and as such, I get some respect. I cover my ‘shroom tattoo with a Band-Aid and wear stockings and high heels.
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Janet by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

A man would be waiting for us—not always the same man—then off they would go and I would sit with her infant daughter, already fast asleep in her crib. 
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Word Games by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Games People Play

/ Stories

This time I was prepared. I knew what they wanted: not only smarts, but big energy, personality plus.
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Road Rage At Any Age by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Road Rage

/ Stories

But road rage has a way of sneaking up on you, and you’re embroiled in it before you have time to actually think.
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Aunt-Blanche-Uncle-Ernie-and-Carla by
25
(35 Stories)

/ Stories

I know this house by heart. It’s actually more of a bungalow, with whitish exterior stucco walls and a brick-red tile roof. It sits at the front of a small courtyard, and I am often brought onto the little front porch where I sit in my wooden high chair and watch the world go by.
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Almost Famous by
25
(35 Stories)

Prompted By Fame

/ Stories

As a budding talent, at 13 I auditioned for Gidget (Sandra Dee got the part) and, at 14, Pollyanna (Hayley Mills got that one). Alas, I was shyer, scrawnier and frizzier than pretty much every girl I competed with, yet compete I did as I was sure the right role would release the extremely cute and bubbly teenager that lived inside me.
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