Tuesday, June 23, 2020


WWW.WEDNESDAY asks three questions to prompt us to speak bookishly. To participate, and to see how other book lovers responded, click here.

1. What are you currently reading? Being Elvis: A Lonely Life by Ray Connolly. I know that there's probably little new for me to learn about The King. Yet I'm enthusiastic about this book. So far, like his Being John Lennon: A Restless Life, Connolly is presenting a balanced, clear-eyed but still affectionate view of his life. As with the Lennon book, it's the context here as much as the content. 

And speaking of John, Being Elvis begins with a charming anecdote. In 1970, Connolly and John Lennon had an interview scheduled. At this time, the Beatles were in the news because of their break-up. All Lennon wanted to talk about was how Connolly had just seen Elvis' comeback in Vegas: Was Scotty with him? Did he do "Let's Play House?" Was he fat? (Cheeky, John!) At about this same time, Connolly was completely unprepared for a spur-of-the-moment phone interview with Bob Dylan. Grasping for something to say, he mentioned seeing Elvis' comeback in Vegas. Dylan became animated, peppering him with questions: Was Scotty with him? Did he sing "Mystery Train?" Dylan offered that Elvis' cover of "Tomorrow Is a Long Time" was his favorite version of any song he'd written, by any artist. Connolly found a cool way to remind us it's impossible to overestimate Elvis' impact on modern music.

2. What did you recently finish reading? The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. Shattering. I reread this book for the first time in 25 years and it delivered a gut punch. Anne is so alive in her diary. By turns buoyant and regretful, sad and silly. A teenage girl like any other -- except, of course, for her remarkable gift for storytelling. It is her universality that makes her story unbearable. You know her. You were her. Her fate is unbearable.

What I'm about to say may sound superficial, but it's how I felt upon finishing her last entry: I'm so sorry Anne died a virgin. This girl had such a healthy curiosity about her body, mens' bodies and sex. It makes me sad that she was deprived that basic physical satisfaction. And yes, motherhood and a career. Of course. She had much to offer the world. But I hurt for her that she didn't get to experience the joy of lovemaking.

I'm sorry, Anne, for the horror you faced. And I'm grateful for your diary and all you made me feel.

3.  What will you read next? Something light!

I miss the good old days

Had a client meeting today, befitting Covid19 Quarantine. Neither our agency, nor my client, have returned to the office yet. So eight of us met from our eight individual homes, sharing a screen to see the work so we were unable to see each other.

I had only 30 minutes to plow through the deck. Not even that, really, because a portion of the time was burned up with, "I can't see the screen" and "OOPS! I was on mute!"

When I got done, with only minutes to spare, my favorite client chimed in with a couple comments and then apologized for having to "drop off." Then, one by one, the clients thanked us and disappeared. Then my teammates hung up. And here I was, at home alone, feeling incomplete. Wondering how I'd done. 

If we were all at the office, we would have had a quick post-mortem about what had gone down. I miss that apr├Ęs-meeting conversation more than I thought I would.

Stupid Covid-19.

I am not helpless!

Yes, I'm still worried about my health. I notice that soreness above/next to my armpit more now when I move, but that could be because I poke and prod the site all the time. And yes, I am still perpetually ready for a nap, no matter how early I go to bed each night.

And yes, I do have to wait until late July for both the sleep study and the mammogram to get the answers that will either put my mind at ease or terrify me.

BUT my GP did give me an order for blood work. As my new doctor, she wants to establish her own baseline for my care, and included in the tests she requested is the "CBC with differential with platelet." A standard test, this will give her an idea of my  overall health and can detect infections, inflammations, anemia, cancer or leukemia. YEA!

I haven't scheduled the test yet for two stupid reasons:

•  When I can disappear from work long enough to get the blood drawn
•  Whether the street construction and Covid19 are still interfering with walk-in access to the local clinic

I have a big meeting this afternoon. When I see how that goes, I can carve out some time to go the clinic. And I have a call into the clinic right now about their hours/availability.

I feel so much better now that I'm taking a modicum of control over this.