20, Nov., 1990

Let me start by saying I am appreciative of all the attention Little Pam has received. It’s not just the emails, the letters and poems you’ve unearthed and started posting on your own websites, or even the Facebook fan page someone started for LP (seriously), it’s this shared feeling of mortification and anxiety I’m causing. One of my favorite sounds is hearing an audience go from slight horror to laughter. I might not get to hear your actual reactions, but I can tell by your comments and emails that I’m getting the desired effect.

So I might as well continue with the embarrassing confessions. Well, actually, let’s get the first letter out of the way. Yeah, just like last time, there’s more than one letter from November 20th. By the way, the entry titles are exactly how I dated these letters. All those commas aside, I don’t know why I thought it was so much cooler to date things like that back then. But you guys, I really thought it was awesome. Continue reading

Dear Oprah,

Please stop Skyping.

I don’t watch your show to meet Jennifer from Oahu on her webcam. Once I’m done judging her home (.000023 seconds), I’ve got nothing left to do but judge her clothes, haircut and webcam quality. And if her husband’s sitting next to her, then I have to think about their relationship, and how she talked him into Skyping with Oprah, and then sometimes Jennifer isn’t from Oahu, she’s from Norway or Australia, and then I start thinking about time zones, and I’m wondering when Jennifer had to start getting ready to be on your show and if she’s eaten anything since she heard she’s going to be seen by the entire world and then I wonder if there are other Jennifers who got up at two in the morning to be on Oprah but they ran out of time, so they have to email blast everyone to say, “Hey! Just letting you know I won’t be on Oprah after all. Soo… I’m also probably not coming in today. Have a great week!” And then she sits alone in her dark, silent kitchen and cries for days.

The point is, Oprah, this show is about you. If I wanted to find out what people on webcams think about things, I’d open up my iChat. I know you think you’ve discovered the Internet, but the pixels and the time delays — it’s like some kind of public access show. Please, Oprah. No more Skyping. And please don’t multi-Skype anymore. That time you had twelve people on at once? It was like you’d invited us to a Sims seminar. Nobody knew when anybody was talking or what they were talking about or why. Iraq interrupting Africa; terminal cancer woman taking all of pretending-to-be-happy lady’s time. It was like we were all on a very awkward group date.

Look, I get it. Everybody has something to say. But you’re the only one we all want to listen to.

But please listen to this: No more Skyping.

Thank you.

Dear XM radio:

I can’t tell if someone working there is an idiot, or a complete genius.

Do you know that you’re starting your “30 Days of Coldplay” promo with six seconds of Radiohead? Because you are. It’s a shiv to the tummies of Radiohead fans. You’re playing “Paranoid Android,” and then moving into “Viva la Vida.” If it turns out it’s an idiot making these promos, please make that person quit.

But if you’re some kind of subversive mastermind, quietly telling the Radiohead fans out there, “I know, I know, it’s just not right, but I have no choice, so all I can do is play Radiohead for weeks without anyone noticing the difference because they are a Radiohead rip-off band,” then… well, I guess you win.

I’d like to think there’s a genius at work, but I fear it’s the idiot. So let me tell you before you start your next promo: Coldplay didn’t make “Pyramid Song,” either.

Viva la Vida Loca,


An Open Letter to My Cat.

Dear Cal,

Are we currently starring in some kind of romantic comedy together? Or are you planning on auditioning for a Will Ferrell movie or something? Because our time together lately, if montaged with a kicky Katrina and the Waves song in the background, looks like something Touchtone Pictures would proudly present.

Maybe you’re mad about the other night, when I moved in my sleep and it scared you so much you fell off the bed. Obviously I didn’t mean to wake up with such a start, but I probably shouldn’t have pointed at you and laughed. I don’t even know if my finger was anywhere near you, since it was so dark I couldn’t see anything. But if you could have heard what I heard — me gasping out of a nightmare, you gasping in a kitty sound, and then thunk-BUNK! — you would be pointing and laughing, too. Continue reading

Dear Dad,

I can’t believe it’s been five years and three days since you died. Five years. So much has happened that you’ve missed, much of it things you told me you knew you were going to miss. You were like an oracle in that hospital bed, pointing at the television, telling me my name was going to be on that screen with “written by” in front of it, and that you wished you were going to be there to hold a book with my name on the cover. It makes me wish you’d told more about the future lives of all of us instead of that tangent about the girl you took to prom, the one with the bacne.

It’s always painful when the big moments happen and you aren’t here. But those, in some ways, are much easier to get through. Mom, Bosie and I will call each other, or the moment is big enough that there’s a friend around or many friends around, or it’s happy enough that the joy quickly fills up the ache. It’s the little moments that get to me. It’s hard to get through the moments when you are the only person who would have been able to understand. Continue reading


Yesterday I made a list of people I needed to call to schedule appointments. At the top of the list: allergist. Mom called yesterday morning and said, “Have you seen the wheat doctor yet? I really want you to be able to eat bread again.” I think the next time I come to town, she’d like to be able to serve “normal food” again. It’s very difficult to eat like a proper Polish girl without pierogies. Also, I don’t like life as much without pierogies. Continue reading


Goooood morning.

I’m early for a meeting, and there’s wireless here. Yesterday I had a 9:00 meeting on the other side of town, which meant I left at 7:30 and still was a few minutes late. This morning I have an 8:00 meeting, so I left the house at 6:30.

I’m here almost a full hour early. Continue reading

I’m such an asshole.

Here is my public apology.

Dear stee and Dan,

I resisted looking up the rules, because once stee was so adamant that I was wrong, I started to realize that my fifteen-year old recollection of the nuances of scoring pool might be a bit… off. But I couldn’t resist Wonder Killing myself. Continue reading