My mom is 75 and church-going, and she told me she learned a lot from reading Calling Out
including what a golden shower is. Always a proud moment for a parent. She is also incredibly supportive of me and met me in Cleveland ? we moved away in 1983 ? for a book club of her old friends and a reading this weekend.
Cleveland and its suburbs make an appearance in my next book so I was curious if my memories of it were close or complete myth. A combination, I think. The city is a little sad and crumbling. And parts of the suburbs are quite beautiful. My mom and I drove around our old town of Pepper Pike and it was heartening in a way to see how much has stayed the same. Miller's is still the drugstore! Lander Road is still brick! For someone who has chosen to move around a lot, I hold on to a fantasy of having a real hometown. I'm always surprised by the contentment of friends I grew up with. They didn't feel the need to live elsewhere and I wonder what that would feel like.
At yesterday's book club, the ladies rocked. They threw back the chardonnay and we had a rollicking good time. I got more fun questions about the book than any audience thus far. They wanted to know how I knew about taxidermy and I admitted I made most of it up. They also wanted to know how I knew about drug use and I pretended I made that up, too. One woman said she needed to know what happened to Jane after the book ended, just to know she was all right. (She is.)
On a side note, congratulations to my friend Jennifer Sey who just sold a memoir about her sad/crazy childhood as a national champion gymnast. It's no rah-rah sports metaphor or redemption story. It's gritty and disturbing and fascinating. It'll be out just in time for the 2008 Olympics.
That's it for me. Thanks for reading and thanks to Powell's for letting me dip my toe into the blogging pool. All you Portland folks, I'm reading at Powell's on Thursday, Jan. 11th. Hope to see you there.