Author Archives: jeanshriver

Monday, Monday

HT1001I love Mondays. That’s kind of un-American, isn’t it?  Like saying I don’t much like fireworks–also true.  But back to Mondays.  We’re all supposed to prefer weekends to weekdays because weekends are the times dedicated to fun fun fun. You know–long hillside hikes, and parties, a trip to the art museum, and parties, a day at Disneyland, and parties. But in the midst of this sybaritic whirl, chances are you neglect to wash the dishes or pick up the kids’ toys, so that by Monday all the hampers are overflowing with damp towels and your kitchen looks more like a Continue reading

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Filed under Jean Shriver, Musings

Lost and Found in Santa Monica

Two dauntless dames from Vassar’s Class of ‘54 plan to meet for lunch in Santa Monica. This memorylaneshould be easy, except Alumna Number One lives several miles down the coast and rarely drives her grey Camry into the metropolis of which Santa Monica is a part.

She looks up the address on Google and memorizes the location.…well, sort of. She doesn’t remember how to find the GPS button on her phone. When she exits the freeway, she turns in the direction she thought the map had indicated, looking for 27th and Pearl. She can find 26th and 28th streets, but no 27th and no Pearl. Continue reading

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Filed under humor, Jean Shriver, Musings, short but true

The Day the Country Store Catalog Arrived…

The catalog from the Vermont Country Store arrived in the mail today. Immediately, I’m plunged into countrystore Continue reading

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Filed under Jean Shriver, Musings

Parking Lot Philosopher

ParkingOceanI put my groceries in my car trunk, (all except the bag of low sodium popcorn) and settled myself into the front seat of my car. Time to drive home, but I didn’t feel like it. Home meant cleaning chores, laundry, and some vigorous digging in the garden. I’d rather stay here. It didn’t hurt that my supermarket parking lot has one of the best views in town. It overlooks the ocean, which today was a steely gray with dramatic black clouds filling the sky above. Continue reading

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What’s in a Word?

urnWhat’s in a Word?

When my cousin Ruth phoned, I said, “You were nice to call. I bet you remembered this is the day my mother died. “
“Alice,” she said, and I could just see her primming her lips, “nobody says died any more. You really should say Continue reading

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The Bishop’s Wife —– A Book Review

_____Ever wondered what a Mormon’s “special underwear” actually looks like? Aw c’mon, I bet you have. The Bishop’s Wife, a new mystery by Mette Ivie Harrison, not only snoops into Mormon bureau drawers, it opens up Continue reading

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WHO SCARED THE PANTS OFF PARENTS?

children-500065_640I could have been arrested. Some might say I should have been. But thanks to the passage of time, I can continue leading my reckless life while the children I “endangered” have safely reached adulthood. Today parents like me are being arrested for letting children play in parks unsupervised. I picture my face on a TV screen over a scrolling subtitle: “Mother Arrested for Sending Children to the Los Angeles Science Museum ALONE.” Yep, that was me.

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Filed under Jean Shriver, True Stories

A Christmas Meander

The Christmas I was three
My mother held a woolly bundle
in her arms.
“It’s what you wanted”, she said smiling.
“A kitten!” I yelled, all delight.
But it was just my brother Pierce. Continue reading

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One Plus One = Ten

One Plus One = Ten!

Some books, you just gotta love….especially if you’re drawn to quirky characters, and mismatched people thrown together in hopeless situations. Jo Jo Moyes’ latest bestseller, One Plus One has the characters, the weird coincidences and lots of twists and turns that make it an irresistible page turner.

You’ll meet Ed who’s about to be arrested for insider trading. And Jess who cares as best she can for her math genius daughter, and her eyeliner wearing stepson constantly beaten up by neighborhood bullies. Because her husband has gone off to “find himself”, Jess is working two jobs and is short on time to spend with the kids and even shorter on money. Ed has money, but no friends and an uncertain future. The paths of Jess and Ed do, of course converge, but believe me, it’s not a cute meet.

Somehow Moyes made it plausible that a computer nerd and a desperate mother who have barely would squash themselves into a car with two children and a large farting dog and head off for Scotland and a math Olympiad. There are many rocks in their road. Ed has to drive way below the speed limit to keep Tanzie, the math genius, from getting carsick. Jess is prickly about accepting favors. The dog never stops drooling.

I cheered for these characters,I laughed out loud,and even shed a tear or two as I went on the journey with them. I stayed up past my bedtime because I couldn’t put the book down. And even when I finished, I had to go back and revisit some of my favorite sections. I pronounce this book lovable….let me know if you agree. Continue reading

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Saving Pennies

pennies-15727_640“A penny saved is a penny earned.” That’s what Grandma said every time she slipped me some coins. I had no idea what she was talking about. For me having pennies in my pocket meant a trip to the candy store to buy wax lips or Tootsie Rolls. But now that Grandma’s gone, her sayings keep coming back to me. Guess that’s why I started saving my pennies. You know, those pesky little coppers that clog up your change purse. I got out an old sock and every night I dropped in the pennies I’d collected that day. You’d be surprised how fast the sock got heavy. Grandma would approve, I thought….which shows you how much I know. Continue reading

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Filed under Jean Shriver, Short fiction