Dining Alone: How to Make Ethiopian Hash

I live alone. I eat out a lot – at least one meal a day, almost every day. I’m not much of a cook. But I do have my favorite “home-cooked” meals, and this is one of them. True, the actual cooking is done in the kitchen of Abol, my favorite Ethiopian restaurant down...

I Embark on an “Eating Plan”

I’m not calling it a diet. Diets sound bleak. They require a surfeit of will power that I possessed as a younger woman but no longer exercise much. Look, I know I’m overweight. I see that bulge around my middle – that famous apple shape that predestines me to a heart...

A Friend Debates Having Cosmetic Surgery

A friend of mine who shall remain nameless has been considering a face lift. I thought you’d enjoy this email I received about making the decision: I had a consult with Dr. Fleury this week and am contemplating which kidney to sell to finance the still hypothetical...

Yes, It’s True. I’ve Had Cosmetic Surgery.

I started worrying about my eyelids migrating south on my face when I was teaching a six-day workshop several years ago. I showed up on the last day, all dressed up and feeling good about the students’ final presentations. One of the young men walked up to me and...

Reading Mark Twain Again and Again

My first memory of desperately wanting an object happened when I was four. My mother and I were in the dime store of our back-bayou town of Houma, La. There, on a rack with other grown-up books, was a copy of Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer. I wanted it. No, way more than...

Why Is My Handbag So Much Bigger Than Yours?

I love big bags. A normally frugal person when it comes to buying clothes, I lose all sense of proportion when it comes to a nice cavernous bag that will hold everything I toss in and beg for more. I’ve never understood how my friends can meet me for a movie carrying...