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Ann Brown
In my head anywhere I go
I am the only person in the Pacific Northwest who doesn't garden or ride a bike. When I left LA my friends said to me, "you are going to hate the constant rain. You won't be able to get out and do anything." Well, HAH. When your hobbies are overeating and reading, the rain really doesn't affect your lifestyle much.
Interests: thinking about shit and making up other shit and talking shit about shit i think about. also, making soup.
Recent Activity
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Today is the 30th anniversary of the Northridge earthquake. Which means it is also the 30th anniversary of the day Robin found my parents in bed with the neighbor lady. I really want to end the story here, but you've come all this way to read this, it shouldn't be a wasted trip. I'm not sure why I decided to tell this story on the blog. As you may have noticed (hah. No one noticed), I've been absent from here. I mostly blame Trump because when he was elected, I lost my will to write, much less be funny, and... Continue reading
Here we are. The final two days leading up to Yom Kippur and the end of the High Holydays. I'm at about 54% atoned and 30% effaced (hahaha, I love that joke EVERY year), but I seem to be stalled here, despite the fact that I am in active atonement. That Lamaze atonement breathing ("oy oy oy!") just isn't cutting it this year. Maybe my transgressions are breach. I get stuck on the whole forgiveness thing. It's the word, I think, that bugs me. "Forgiveness" can mean something different to each of us, of course, but the pervasive goal of... Continue reading
Kisses On Kol Nidre Unraveling It’s September, 2002. The Brown girls are knitting. According to my mom, everyone in LA is knitting. It’s the new sourdough Pilates. Mom is knitting scarves, fancy ones, in hues of Pippin and Pumpkin and Paprika and Firestorm, which- you’d know this if you follow haute couture at all- are the new Granny Smith and Kale and Persimmon. Keep up. The Jewish High Holydays are here, and Sylvia and Murray have come to visit me in Portland. They’re going to come to High Holydays services to watch me be a Cantor. My parents do not... Continue reading
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Thursday, 5:21 am Act 1 Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark Me: (Ignoring them) Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark Me: No! Them: You don't even know what we want. Me: Doesn't matter. You kept me up until after midnight, worrying about fireworks. I need to sleep now. Louie: (under his breath) What a bitch. Me: HEY! You can't call me that word! We talked about that. Louie: I was talking about HER (nods at Phila). Phila: (snorts) Good save, Lou. (to me) He can call me that, you know. Because I am one. Lit'rally. And... Continue reading
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ACT 1 3:59 am Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark. (beat) Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark. (beat) Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark. Me: I'm ignoring you. Louie: Are you still mad? Me: Yes. Go away. 4:12 am Phila and Louie: Bark bark bark bark bark. Louie: Are you still mad now? Me: Yes. 4:13 am Phila and Louie: Whisper bark, stare, mumble, BARK Me: You are both Very Bad Dogs. VERY. BAD. DOGS. Louie: But are you still mad? Me: Yes. Go lie down. Leave me alone. 4:14 am Louie: We're really... Continue reading
My Inner Maccabee The best Chanukah gift I ever got was when I was twenty three years old: I was sprung from prison. I was on tour to promote my first record album. It was an album of Jewish folk music and that winter we were booked to do Chanukah concerts up and down the California coast. I was the girl singer, a last minute replacement for the original singer, who, as I see it now, got out just in the nick of time. Our band, Serenade, sang in synagogues and Jewish Community Centers, places where the audiences were thrilled... Continue reading
The Very Over It Caterpillar Once there was a caterpillar who just... couldn't. Well, she could, but she just didn't want to. On the first day, she had an extra cup of coffee, with hazelnut creamer. But she still just... couldn't. The next day she had two spoonfuls of organic manuka honey in her yogurt But she still just... couldn't. On the third day she took three elderberry tablets and crushed them into her organic manuka yogurt and honey, But she still just... couldn't. The next day was Chanukah, and she eschewed the heavy fried latkes that might bring her... Continue reading
The Difference Between Bummer and Tragedy The last time I wrote a parenting article here was, I think, at least two years ago. Or three. Or a million. Or a week ago. I really have no idea. There is pre-pandemic and there is now; I have no other grasp of time. We could talk about what it’s been like trying to raise kids in a world gone mad but pretty much everything has been said about that already. And you know what it’s like. You’re living it. I see the empty booze bottles in your recycling cans. It’s been rough.... Continue reading
(sequel to The Very Hungry Post Menopausal Caterpillar) Once there was a caterpillar who was very angry. She hadn't always been angry, but four years of Trump Republican fuckery had taken its toll. She was grateful to be awakened to action after too many years of complacency, of course, but being even a bit more woke now, she was so, so angry. So, the first year, she went to the Women's March, and she marched and sang and held her sign and she was buoyed and heartened by the sight of the protests around the world. She came home from... Continue reading
I don't know how I am supposed to do Yom Kippur this year. Oh, I'm evaluating my deeds, as we are instructed to do; I'm looking at where I've fallen down on the job, asking forgiveness from those I have wronged. Except this: I am not going to ask forgiveness for hating. And even worse: I don't even want to stop hating. Yeah, I know that hate only diminishes me and love is the answer and blah blah blah, but to everything (turn turn turn) there is a season. And this season of Republican fascism, religious fanaticism and cruel injustice... Continue reading
The air quality in Portland is 502 today. I have no idea what that means scientifically, but I can tell you that it feels apocalyptic. I am in a state of mind somewhere between heartland stoicism, urban investigative curiosity and coastal denial. I follow the air quality numbers like a day trader on coke, yet I do not look out the window. Not that I could see anything if I did look out the window. No visibility. All smoke. Fire. Covid. Racism. That night, a million years ago, when Trump won, my son Zach said to me on the phone,... Continue reading
Well. I've just been sprung from Facebook jail. Gimme a minute to take a shower, change outta the orange jumpsuit and pull the cigs I stashed in my vagina. It wasn't my first time in the joint. The first time it happened I was so sad, but that was many incarcerations ago. Facebook jail doesn't scare me anymore. I'm practically a Preferred Visitor. This time I demanded a Kosher meal. Just to fuck with them. I asked for a nice piece fresh fish. And then I sent it back because the smell was iffy. HAH. Zuckerberg can throw me in... Continue reading
In just a few more months, I will be getting Social Security money! Every month! For free! For doing nothing! America, amirite? God, I hate Republicans so fucking much. We'll get back to that in a moment. When I was young and I thought about social security, I envisioned an ancient, arthritic, gnarled, ill-tempered old lady with her bra around her waist and stockings rolled to her knees. Well, say hello to me. Two of my arthritic fingers cannot straighten up without assistance from the other fingers (I tell people it's because I've played guitar for fifty years but it's... Continue reading
Claire and I talk every day. Well, not talk, per se, because we both hate phone calls. We will avoid them at almost any cost. It's really the defining quality of our enduring professional and personal relationship. That, and our love of salt over sugar. Our conversation this morning was about anger. Not at each other, of course, we would NEVER be angry at each other; it was about how sick we both are of people calling for niceness. And understanding. And, God help us, compassion. Yeah. Fuck that shit. If you can read about children being separated from their... Continue reading
Well. Here we are. History has been written. Republicans have betrayed justice, betrayed truth and betrayed the Constitution. When the House voted to impeach, I posted an old joke on FB about a grandma who takes her grandson to the beach and he is swept away by a wave. The grandma pleads with God to return the child to safety. She says, "Please God, I will never ask for anything else. This is all I want - my baby grandson to be safe. Please, I'll never ask for anything more!" A big wave returns the child to shore, safe and... Continue reading
Everybody's talking about love. Well, fuck that shit. I'm gonna talk about hate. Specifically, my hate for Donald Trump. I am not new to hating presidents; I've protested against them, campaigned against them, boo'ed them in person, drew Hitler mustaches on photos of them, and allegedly threw my apple core at one of them as his motorcade passed by although it was never proven no matter what that reactionary Nixon-loving asshole standing next to me told the authorities. But Trump. But Trump. This is a level of vitriol, hate, disgust I have never reached before. When my sister and I... Continue reading
If I put half as much time and emotional truth-digging into my actual writing as I do into answering, "why do you want to unsubscribe to our emails? (optional)", I'd be a successful writer. HAHA. No, I wouldn't. But I'd get a lot more writing done. HAHA. No, I wouldn't. That question they ask when you unsubscribe - "WHY IN THE NAME OF HOLY GOD WOULD YOU WANT TO DO THIS TO US?" (maybe that's just how I read it) - cannot be answered briefly. I cannot ignore it. They want to know. They deserve to know. I'm not going... Continue reading
I probably should leave Facebook. I mean, I would never go to, say, Chik-Fil-A or Home Depot. Our family didn't eat a single grape or head of iceberg lettuce between 1965 and 1971. Not one. I've never crossed a picket line, never voted Republican, never ate Welch's grape jelly, never went to Knott's Berry Farm and I have never, ever, not looked for the union label. I've only had one La Croix soda since recently learning that they are right-wing reactionaries, and that was only because it was at a party and I was so thirsty from all the chips... Continue reading
Hi. So, you know how I'm dead inside, right? I had, however, a momentary breath of life this weekend while flipping through the latest O Magazine at the grocery store. You know how I hate Oprah, right? Well, not hate her as much as reject her notion that we should all live our best lives. Our BEST lives? That sounds exhausting. I live my life at two-thirds, tops. And that's with two cups of strong coffee every morning. Frankly, I don't even believe that Ms. O is living her own best life anymore, unless there is crack in those WW... Continue reading
~A New Song For Yom Kippur (or, what I am doing with my time instead of learning the new music for the High Holydays which start in, like, a minute) They tried to make me go atone But I said, "no, no, no" Yes, I've transgressed But I’ve confessed So now you know, know, know I’m cool with my past, and I get hungry when I fast They tried to make me go atone, but I won't go, go, go I'd rather be at home with a drink Cook you shellfish and a pork sausage link 'Cause there's nothing gonna... Continue reading
Okay, so I will give any of you up to a gajillion dollars if you will break the news to Robin that my new car is a little bit very much flooded on account of that I opened all the windows and the sun roof yesterday afternoon on account of The Very Funky Bad Smell that showed up in my brand new car on account of my driving home from the pool 3 mornings a week in a dripping wet bathing suit on account of the showers at the pool being, basically, marshlands of slime, hair and you-don’t-want-to-know-what, and yesterday... Continue reading
Working on the new book with Claire. 8am, Facebook Messenger. Claire: Are you available to work on the book this morning? 9am, Facebook messenger. Claire: Are you there? 10:20am, FB messenger. Ann: Yes, this is a good time to work. Are you still there? 1:45pm, FB messenger. Claire: Yeah, I'm back. I'm here now. Ann: Great. Meet me at the Google doc. Claire: ok 2pm, Google Doc titled, "the edits" Claire: Hello? Where are you? 2:21, FB messenger. Claire: Hello? Where are you? I'm at the Google doc. Ann: So am I. I don't see you here. Claire: I'm in... Continue reading
Everything is so fucked up everywhere. I am going to live in my head today; raising my teacup elephants in my backyard, rescuing every single dog and cat and elephants and horse in the world that needs rescuing, reuniting every single incarcerated child with their parents and inviting them to live in my house as long as they desire, waving my magic wand and eliminating plastic crap from the rivers and oceans, redistributing resources and wealth and power in this country according to each one's ability and need, and sending the homeless, tempest-tossed to me. And then, after lunch, I... Continue reading
Claire and I are working on a new book. This is how it happened: A few weeks ago, I mentioned to her on FB that since Trump became prez, I have not been able to write anything. This isn't technically true; I've written a few things, but not much. And, truth be told, I didn't write much when Obama was president, either, or Clinton or Carter. My dearth of work is not necessarily tied to Republican administrations. I am simply not a particularly ambitious writer. Or blogger. Or person. I made the statement to Claire because I was bored, just... Continue reading
My radishes are not doing well. Actually, that's not true. I have no idea how they are doing. I don't know What To Expect When You Are Expecting radishes. I really need to read up on them. But Facebook gets in the way. I gotta check it first, you know, to see if I have any new views on the blog. (Spoiler alert: I don't.) And then I read the headlines in the news about the most recent assaults against humanity perpetuated by the Republicans. I note that more humanitarians got arrested for bringing water to thirsty people. Water. Water.... Continue reading