All the Things I Can’t Do With a Bad Shoulder

I woke up this morning and my shoulder is feeling better.  Unfortunately, that’s how yesterday started.  Wake up.  Feel better. Start doing things. Intense pain.

So yesterday I got a look into exactly how important a right shoulder is.  First off, I am really right hand dominant- I do everything with my right hand.  You don’t realize this until you wince in pain every time you try to do something because the right hand automatically goes out. Also, the whole short thing comes into play: do you know how often I reach for things? I also live in a small apartment where we make use of vertical space.  Did I mention that most of my shoes and all of my pocketbooks are stored in bins on high shelves?

Here’s a sample list of things that I was not able or had trouble doing yesterday.

  1. Getting anything from any upper cabinet
  2. Walking 9 pound dog who pulls at the leash
  3. Turning on light attached to ceiling fan because Husband shut light off using pull cord instead of wall switch (and you know I’ve never mentioned that turning light off like this is a problem because on a good day I need to stand on coffee table to do it)
  4. Hanging up clothes
  5. Putting shirts on over head
  6. Putting my arms into jackets
  7. making pizza dough (I had scheduled to make pizza for Monday night dinner- and you know that once I schedule a meal I must do it- and I realized grating cheese might be an issue as well so bought pre made crust and pre shredded mozzarella= and yes- I still made dinner)
  8. Making bed
  9. pulling zipperless boots on
  10. Tying shoes
  11. Finish book for book club…

the list goes on….and on……

But for now, I’m going to try and rest my shoulder, and finish Cold Comfort Farm….


A Shoulder Tale

Once upon a time, the royal household received a delivery of pet supplies, a three pound bag of dog food and a twenty seven pound canister of cat litter.  The King brought the big box up from the lobby and left it in the hallway of the royal apartment.

The royal household is run on a tight budget, so the hallway is more petit than it is grande, so the big box took up half the hallway, and  the royal family members had to walk around or over the box to get from one side of the palace to the other. After five hours of this, the queen finally opened the box and took out the dog food and put it away.  Then the Queen went to lift the heavy litter.  Well, to be frank, the Queen was a little ticked off that no other member of the royal household was willing to put anything away, so she wasn’t really paying attention to how she took the litter out.  And what happens when you don’t pay attention? The Queen ended up aggravating her right shoulder.


Alas, the pain was somewhat mild, so the Queen just went about her day and tried to make sure her shoulder didn’t aggravate her as much as her family aggravates her.

And though there was a twinge of pain, the Queen was able to get by.

Last evening, the Queen decided to end her week with a Queen-like bath: bath bomb, face mask, music, candle, hot tea, warm water. Perfection.  After her water relaxation, the Queen began her post bath ritual- which is a plethora of lotions and creams.  And as the Queen began applying her favorite lavender lotion, the Queen heard a pop of sorts.  But the pop of sorts did not come from the speaker.  No.  This sound came from the Queen’s shoulder.


The Queen was in so much pain her eyes crossed. She was having trouble putting her robe on.


And the Queen exited the bathroom and started barking orders- someone heat up the heat wrap.  Someone get me a pain reliever.

And the Queen went to lay in her bed.

The King and the Princess realized that they better move and move fast.  The longer the Queen was out of commission, the worse it was going to be for them.

When the Queen woke up this morning she was feeling a little better (talk about waking up on the wrong side of 50…) but she knows that she can not push it, or pull it, or lift it. She knows that her shoulder is a big accident waiting to happen.

The Queen surveyed the Palace this morning and noticed that no one put anything away- dirty dishes on the coffee table, clean dishes in the dishwasher, clothes on the floor, snacks left on the kitchen counter.

The Queen was not (and is not) amused.

But the Queen is going to put a blindfold on and ignore the state of the palace.

The Queen is going to rest her shoulder.

So that they can live happily ever after.



My Week in Review December 16

As we close in on Christmas… My Sister and Brother in Law and Niece come to town this week.  Yay. But this past week, I did a few things…

  1. To Watch: The Favourite (theaters) I know many are saying that this is the best movie of the year- and though well done and great acting and script- it’s not my favorite…
  2. To Listen: Greta Can Fleet.  I’m currently a little obsessed with this band- very Zeppelinesque.
  3. To Do: Museum of the City of New York- Through a Different Lens Stanley Kubrick Photos- really cool
  4. To Watch: Spider man: Into the Spider Verse (theaters- animated) Fun and light
  5. To Watch: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon Prime) Second season not as strong as first, but still good, still gorgeous clothes
  6. To Listen: These are a sample of my playlist this week: Kane Brown “Good as You”, Expose “When I Looked at Him”, The Piano Guys “Something Just Like This/Hungarian Rhapsody” (odd that this came up with shuffle because I was just talking to someone about them this week) Puccini “Il Trittico” “The Promise” Chris Cornell
  7. Birthday dinner for the Husband- (two actually) and our Building Holiday Party

Enjoy the upcoming week!!

Gratitude Saturday December 15

You all know that this week did not go exactly as I wanted it to… But we keep going…

  1. My Husband turned 50 this week!
  2. He finally got his AARP card so I am no longer the butt of the age jokes
  3. lotion for dry skin
  4. sneakers
  5. A Christmas tree that is not too big
  6. the subways running when I need them to
  7. My writing friend K who called me with a great writing idea
  8. My friend G who listened to me whine when I awaited my daughters college results
  9. Mt daughter winning a High School service award
  10. Beautiful holiday cards with pictures of children

The One With The College Letter

I won’t keep you in suspense: my daughter got deferred from her college of choice. Deferred meaning that she is still in the running but will not find out her fate till approximately March 29.

She’s taking the news better than I am though. I began to have a panic attack at about 6:45, fifteen minutes before the emails would be sent out.  At 6:45 my daughter was working the lights at her schools Winter Concert- she didn’t check her portal till 7:30. (which was harrowing on my nerves- just ask my friend who was texting me during those forty five minutes when I was laying on my couch in agony.)

Alas- the news for the rest of her classmates went something like this:

36 on ACT- Deferred

Spent summers doing research at elite science school-  Deferred

Valedictorian- Deferred

All 5’s on AP exams- Deferred

Student Council President- Denied

Legacy- Deferred

Won Nobel Prize- Deferred (OK- I’m kidding on that one, but you get the idea)

And my Daughter, the rest of her classmates: they understand the risk of applying to highly selective schools.  They realize that by applying ED or EA restrictive they are limiting their chances to get into other schools.  They are smart enough to know what 13% acceptance rate means. They are smart enough to know that they have chosen one school above all others.

Yet they go for it anyway.

And this weekend, instead of going to see Holiday decorations like we had planned, my Daughter will be dotting the I’s and crossing the T’s on the rest of her applications (which are 99% completed) and hitting the button on the computer that simply states “Submit Application”. But she also knows that the remaining schools on her list are now even more difficult to get into, because they already filled many of their spots.  And they now know that they are second choice. Or third choice.  Or…

Some of you are thinking; Boo hoo- they didn’t get into the college they wanted. And I get that thought: in the scheme of all the things that could go wrong, really, that’s a blip.

But it doesn’t mean that it hurts any less.

So this deferment is just another item to the list of things that didn’t go her way.  And there will be many more of these to follow. And hopefully she will always have the strength to be a little sad, but just pick herself up and dust herself off and get on with it.

And I get to proofread more ^&%$# essays…..

The Tale of the Bread and the Bagel

Once upon a time there was a Queen who ruled over her kitchen with a mighty hand.  On Sunday evenings, the Queen liked to clean out the fridge and utilize all the leftovers and veggies that were left. The Queen liked to start off the week with a clean slate. The Queen was a little weird this way…

So one Sunday Eve, the Queen took out a container of lentil/tomato  cassoulet, and a small bowl of rice and set to reheating them. After glancing at the freezer and the cabinets the Queen made a royal decree:

“I have tuna and cheddar, rye bread and bagels.  Who wants what?”

The Princess answered “Tuna, cheese and bread please.”

The King responded. “Bread.  Tuna.  No cheese.”

And the Queen took four slices of rye out of the freezer, and got the tuna down from the shelf. She then began assembling the hodgepodge that would be called “Dinner”. As she stirred and reheated, the King entered the kitchen.  He looked at the griddle where the bread was heating and stated:

“Where’s my bagel?”

And the Queen looked at him askance.

“You said bread.” The queen responded.

“Bagel is bread” The King retorted.

And the yes it is, no it’s not went on for a few rounds until the Queen said:

“If I send you to the royal market and ask you to pick up bread, are you coming home with a dozen bagels?”

The King got a little red in the face and sort of stomped his feet like a petulant toddler. Finally he said:

“Ok.  I see your point.  Maybe you are more correct in this incident.  But you have to understand my point of view.”

And the Queen just looked at him for a second, then put two slices of rye bread on each plate and said:

“Just make the tuna.”

And she walked out of the kitchen and lived happily, and correctly, ever after.





Last weekend my Daughter and I went to an Off Broadway show- “Christmas in Hell”. This musical was put on by the York Theater Company, and is currently in previews.  Here’s the thing about previews: everyone involved in the show looks critically at each performance and tried to figure out what tweaks will make the show better.

Before the Saturday evening performance, the artistic director stood on stage and welcomed us to the production. He made the easy joke about Christmas in Hell was being performed in the basement of a Lutheran Church and btw, Happy Hanukah.  And then he told us that the first act of the show had been changed since the last preview performance because they had done some reworking that morning to make the meaning and timeline more clear.

That morning.

That morning they moved scenes around, changed dialogue here and there, etc.

For a musical that had already had a few performances.

The Author changed his play.

As you can see, I’m still baffled by this because I get freaked out by editing.

I’m presently in the heavy editing phase of my book. And I’m presently in the land of not wanting to cut things that aren’t working. I’m firmly entrenched in letting scenes, no matter how inconsequential or wrong, stay on the page. I am having trouble divorcing myself from the words that I have written.

When I (substitute yourself if you fall into this category) put words on a page, these words and sentences and paragraphs and pages and chapters become my baby. I have given birth to these things, and Mama wants to protect her baby at all costs.  How can my baby not be the prettiest thing in all the world?  I wrote it…


We all need at least a semblance of an ego in order to survive. We have to have confidence in who we are and what we do. But…we can’t let that ego get the better of us.  We have to be able to distinguish the right path from the not so right path. And we have to know when and how to edit our work.

I’ve been having trouble with rewrites on my third chapter, which in my work is a necessary but odd chapter as I do a quasi flashback. The scenes in this chapter are pivotal to the plotline of the rest of the book. And I had one scene…. My writing group friend said as gently as possible that a certain scene just didn’t work.  And I know she is right. I know exactly what she is saying. But I still had trouble reworking it.

Until yesterday.

Yesterday, I just deleted the offending paragraphs and retooled it.  It’s still not perfect, but it’s better. It’s tighter. It’s a better use of words to describe the situation.

Part of me feels much better that I reworked and retooled.  And part of me thinks I let down my baby- that I didn’t think baby was good enough…

That’s the difference between writers who publish novels, and writers who have a manuscript in the draw- published authors know how to divorce themselves from the words on a page- to know that they are just words that can be replaced by other words.

I need to remember that editing doesn’t mean it’s not good.  Editing means you’re making something better.


I was at a tea society event the other day. It was held at the Jo Malone counter of the last great department store- Bergdorf Goodman. The store is the epitome of grace and class and reminders of what shopping used to be like. We stood in the newly renovated section of the cosmetics department, sipping Palais du Tea blends, eating little triangles of bread, sans crust, filled with light smatterings of cream cheese, chicken salad and smoked salmon. And there were macarons of course.

As we waited for our complimentary hand massages and consultation to find our signature scent blend (if you really want to know what fragrances make up my aromatic calling card I can probably be coerced into telling you…) one of the women came up to me and whispered in my ear…

“Have you seen….(voice goes lower) ‘Dirty John’?”

And I whispered back “OMG- I’m obsessed!”

And we continued to bring back our pre adolescent days by whispering in one anothers ears, and giggling. It reminded me of the days when “Fifty Shades” first came out. Which, for the record, I did not read.

But see- that’s the thing: why am I so adamant about telling you that I DID NOT read the 50 shades books?

I wrote a scathing diatribe against the book “Kissing Quotient.” I thought the book was tawdry and cheap.  Yet…it was Goodreads top romance book for 2018. Which means people voted on it.  Which means people read it.


I don’t know anyone other than myself who admits to reading it…

So apparently this book was voted “Best Romance” even though no one read it.

Why do we whisper the names of certain shows, books, movies?

Why do we consider watching Real Housewives a guilty pleasure

What’s wrong with enjoying things that are not “intellectual”?

Why are we so embarrassed to admit that we like things that might be considered “tawdry”?

Well….we do it to ourselves.

Have you ever looked down on someone who said they did something you think is ridiculous? I know I have. (which explains why no one will admit to reading Kissing Quotient when I’m in earshot) But I shouldn’t be doing that.  Ever.  I should never look oddly at someone for doing something that they enjoy.

So as of today, I’m going to stop referring to my watching “Catfish” as a guilty pleasure.  From now on it will just be a pleasure.  I will no longer refer to it as a documentary on life in an internet age.  I will proudly call it a reality show that peeks into peoples dating lives.

And I’m going to stop judging others for whatever pleasure they have.



My Week in Review: December 9

Still in shock that the year is almost over- though on the whole it’s been an outstanding year. Here’s what I looked at, listened to and thought about this week”

  1. To go to: Guggenheim Museum- Hilma af Klint exhibit. I really liked this exhibit- early abstracts, beautiful colors, just pleasant to look at.
  2. To Watch: “Frontrunners” in theaters.  Biopic about Gary Hart. This is another case of taking a tabloid story and making it into the most boring movie ever.  Decent Jackman, though he wasn’t given much to work with.
  3. To Listen to: I’m currently obsessed with the Mumford and Sons new album “Delta”.  Also bummed that I didn’t get tickets for the concert.
  4. To Listen to: Fiftieth Anniversary of Beatles “White Album”. Dust off Spotify and listen up.
  5. To Watch: “The Bodyguard” Netflix. I thought this was an incredibly well done police type drama.
  6. To Watch: I finally caught up with “This is Us” NBC.  OMG how this show keeps me hooked.
  7. To Attend: “Christmas in Hell” York Theater Company Off Broadway NYC (so off Broadway it’s in a church basement on the East Side- and Broadway is on the West side…)
  8. And of course- awaiting the holiday season.

Have a great week!