Why I do NOT like tribe mentalities (even within my so-called tribe)

What is your tribe? This question intruded into head when assigned the book, Tribe by Sebastian Junger for a local book club. As a child, I was unconsciously part of the WASP tribe, one that had an appropriate sting for anyone who dared to color outside the lines. Friends of my parents adopted as aunts/uncles slammed... Read more »

My Sex Assault; Why Christine Blasey Ford's Testimony Set Me Free

Watching Dr. Christine Blasey Ford give witness to her sex assault by Kavanaugh, I feel empowered to give witness to my sex assault. But I am afraid. In the era of soulless trolls, as more than one friend has counselled, it will open me up for derision and disbelief. But, as Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey... Read more »

Gone to the Stars; Death and Friends

“It’s terrible to lose a friend when you don’t have many.” From The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society film I lost my first friend in preschool. She and her sibling were playing with matches in their home when the unimaginable happened. The next friend I remember losing died of childhood leukemia in 1964, a time... Read more »
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Munchhausen Mothers like Virginia; sick women who make their children sick

“Did your mother like being the mother of a sick child?” asked the new psychiatrist as he ended our first 90 minute session. My sleep deprived brain tried to remember the name of the book I’d read 20 years earlier about a mother poisoning her child to get attention as the mother of a chronically... Read more »

Under the Ceiling Fans; Friendships Evolve

  Moving 18 times throughout 7 countries in 45 years, taught me one fact of life. You cannot pack up friendships in a box to take with you when you move. You will have to start from scratch to remake these very important relationships, spending time and energy to rebuild new ones. But somethings can... Read more »

What to do without television? Oy vey!

Under my parents emotional and financial pressure, I was extricated from my first college to transfer to the Henry W. Grady School of Journalism at University of Georgia in 1968. In revenge I majored in Radio-Television-Film, a field of study that offered theater as a minor, and the opportunity to not have to take a... Read more »
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Adventures in Rabies and Tetanus in the 3rd World

The Dog Bite In the spring of 1962, 11-year-old Gary was settled in with his family to their new home in Lima, Peru. As the boy made his way to the American Society’s library to pick up a book, he encountered a few dogs congregated at the doorway. Having never met a dog he didn’t love,... Read more »

The Demon Dentist of Daule (with nod to Sweeney Todd)

In the late 1980s, Sunday was the legally appointed day of rest for domestics in Ecuador. And though in the United States I’d been responsible 7-days a week for my family’s meals, while living in Guayaquil, Ecuador we went local and went out every Sunday for a full lunch. When in Rome. So returning late one... Read more »

The Idiot's Guide to Foreign Language

  Foreign language always seemed so, well, foreign. Who needs it? No one in my world spoke a foreign language, no one except Ricky Ricardo on I Love Lucy whose linguistic errors were a running joke. Living in Houston, my middle school French teacher spoke an unintelligibly drawled version of French. When she left teaching to go... Read more »
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Medieval Torture Device; Socialized Medicine

Having a baby under Canada’s socialized medicine, I had zero complaints about socialized medicine. I could get into my GP within 24 hours most of the time. We didn’t have to spend hours fighting with various insurers whose policies change as often as Facebook seems to change privacy settings. And given basic pregnancy was dealt... Read more »
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    Candace Drimmer

    I was an accidental expatriate; love and marriage led me to it. One day I was a bandy-legged kid sitting atop my dogwood tree looking out of my small backyard world in 1950s New Jersey, wanting to move somewhere--anywhere, different. Next thing I knew my father had accepted a job in Houston TX. I was ecstatic, it was a foreign land in 1961 America. After high school graduation, my parents’ gave me a matched set of fawn-colored hardsided American Tourister luggage. Taking the hint, I went to college; well four colleges in five years--it was the 60s after all. Meeting a young hirsute anti-war, soon-to-be-Peace Corps volunteer, I fell in love. After finishing up college coursework for my degree, but before I even walking a graduation stage, I grabbed the paper airline ticket my boyfriend had sent me, my brand-new passport, and was off to the airport and Lima, Peru.

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