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Anne Lamott and I Could Be Best Friends. If She Knew I Were Alive.

Didn't you love it when making new friends as a kid was as simple as approaching your target and saying, Hi! Wanna play _____?(Fill in the blank with kickball, Barbies, traffic cops on bikes, your choice.)

And then we grew up, and things got complicated. Now there's a whole dance we go through, a sort of sizing up of the other person to see if we're a good fit. Frankly, I'm surprised some dating sites haven't branched out to include platonic friendships.

Sometimes a character pops up on TV someone like Carrie Heffernan or Elaine Benes and I think, Hey! We could meet at Starbucks! Wed have so much to talk about! Wed be great friends! Which either speaks volumes about the shows writers abilities or my social life.

Books, too, can have the same effect. Often it's more the turn of a phrase than the plot that hooks me, that makes me think the author is reading my mind. That we could be friends.

Anne Lamott is one such author. She writes with a braveness and a boldness that I envy. If we we're childhood friends, she would be the one to ask demand the playground meanie for our ball back while I cowered behind her.

Regarding writing, here is one of my favorite quotes: You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better. Said by, of course, Anne Lamott.

As I weigh the pros and cons of transparency versus honesty in my writing, I can picture Anne standing in front of me, telling him or her that if they don't like how they're portrayed, they should have behaved better. Annes shoulders would be back, her spine straight. I, on the other hand, would be trying my best to be invisible.

Posted in Newspaper Post Date 03/14/2018


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