...the Journal

Refrigerator Door

Paul bought me this card once. We were in a store together and I just loved the card, but didn't have any money with me. When we went to leave, Paul had the card with him. I told him he didn't have to buy it, but he said he wanted to. It was so totally out of character for Paul. I've had a special "thing" about this card ever since.

Household Hints


A Medieval Home Companion:
Housekeeping in the 14th Century

Being ladylike

Virtuous women shouldnít speak of anything vulgar, certainly not about cunt, ass, or other private parts, for it is unseemly for women to talk of these things. I once heard of a virtuous young lady who was seated in a crowd of male and female friends. And by chance she said teasingly to the others: "You are crowding me so much that at least half of my cunt is wrinkled." And although she said it in fun and among friends, thinking she was gallant, nevertheless, in private the other wise young ladies blamed her parents. Such ribald women sometimes say of a woman that she is a bawdy whore, and it seems that they know what "whore" or "bawdy" means. But honorable women donít know anything about it. Forbid your servants to use such language, for they donít know what they are saying.

I am a theatre critic

OK...so it's a new "career", but if you're interested in reading my reviews, go here

Updated 3/10/01


In a Sunburned Country
by Bill Bryson

I don't have a lot of time to read this book, but it's great reading.


nothing tonight

That's it for today!


23 March 2001

I watched Love Story tonight.

No--not the one with Ali McGraw and Ryan OíNeal. This one was a little closer to home.

The prologue for this version of Love Story began a couple of weeks ago when I was talking on the phone to my pal Sam at Breaking Barriers. She was fixing me up with some clients to drive and then at some point her voice got very low and she asked me if I was doing anything on March 22.

I checked my calendar and told her that I was free.

She told me that she was planning a surprise birthday party for her partner Coco at the Old Spaghetii Factory, which is near the Breaking Barriers office and wanted to know if I could come. I was honored to be considered a good enough friend to share in the surprise for Coco and said Iíd be thrilled to attend.

Peggy teased me about going to have dinner with my "fans" (Sam reads my journal; Coco wants me to help her write a book.)

Late this afternoon I got a dinner cooked for Walt and left it in the ovenís warming drawer and I headed off to Sacramento for Cocoís party.

I got there early and sat in the lobby reading my Bill Bryson book on Australia. I heard other people come in to say they were part of Samís party as well, and all were directed to either the bar or the lobby. Those of us who were early apparently didnít know each other, because we all eyed each other kind of furtively wondering how we each fit into Cocoís life.

Finally Sam arrived. Coco was due to come 15 minutes later. We were all escorted to the back room of The Old Spaghetti factory. The plan was that Coco was going to park by Breaking Barriers and walk the block to the restaurant. She would call Sam on her cel phone to let her know she was on her way and Sam would then let the wait staff know she was ready for her table.

Problem was that Coco was about 15 minutes late. Sam was already a nervous wreck trying to pull this surprise off and we all watched her nervousness mount, as she paced and watched her watch and called Coco a couple of times trying to find out where exactly she was.

I was seated at the table with a bunch of fascinating women. One very large African American woman was a delight, as we both gingerly perched on our chairs hoping we wouldnít smash them. She had been one of the first Black children bussed to a white school in Palo Alto. She had also been the first Black woman to get a contractorís license in the state of California. I never got exactly what sheís doing now, but she is doing a lot of outreach work and shared that she had at one time been homeless, on drugs, and in trouble with alcohol, but she had pulled herself up by her bootstraps and is just a fantastic lady.

Another single mother was there with her 9 year old son, one of the most pleasant young men Iíve spent time with. He was a delight. The woman, on learning that I was a theatre critic for the Davis paper asked "Did you have to review Kismet? " I told her I didnít. "Good," she said. "It stunk."

I wasnít sure if I should tell her Walt had been the technical director for that show!

Finally we had word that Coco had arrived and Sam went out to meet her and have the waitress escort the two of them back to the back room, where Coco was suitably surprised. After hugs and tears all around she talked about how she had never had a party like this in her life. She proudly showed off the new personalized Nike shoes that Sam had given her and talked about her horseback riding experience and her trip to San Francisco and her special massage, all treats from Sam.

As Coco made the rounds of her friends at the party, I watched the look on Samís face and I could see that Cocoís pleasure in the surprise was the best gift Sam herself could have received.

She pulled out a sheet of paper with the name of every guest on it, so that when Coco opened a gift Sam could write it down and make sure that Coco remembered to thank everyone.

She fussed and hovered and pampered and glowed. And after Coco gave a tearful thank you speech, Sam gave her own speech, choking up as she thanked everyone for helping her pull off the surprise. There wasnít a dry eye in the house.

As I watched the two of them, I realized that this was one of the best examples of love Iíd seen in a long time. I was honored to be a part of it, and honored to call them both my friends.

Happy Birthday, Coco....and thanks, Sam, for including me.

One Year Ago:
Lions and Tigers and Grants..oh my!

oops...there wasn't one on March 22, 2000, so you'll just have to put up with this entry for 2 days.

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

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Created 3/23/01 by Bev Sykes