Secret Alphabet

Hello Friends,

So, a long time ago I lived in an air shaft of an old brewery in the Mission district in San Francisco. I listened to punk rock and had black hair. I gave myself a tattoo (still regretting that particularly lame decision…) and in general, had a completely irresponsible experience, but a glorious one too while I figured out who I was. At least at the time…

There was this song by my favorite band called X and they were amazing. Are you with me? Anyway, they played a cover of an old Doors song you may remember. Soul Kitchen. In the song Jim Morrison refers to speaking in secret alphabets. Well, we took this rather literally (Hell, that is how I got the tattoo. I made the mistake of watching The Decline of Western Civilization which  showcased how to give yourself a tattoo.) and started writing our own secret alphabets. We wrote secret alphabets of things we didn’t like, things we loved, things we wanted, boys we had crushes on… I think you get the idea.

Basically it goes like this.

Things that I love about my life

A – Apples, Adoration, Artichokes,

B – Bumble Bees, Balloons, Ballet

C – Chocolate of course, Cuckoo Clocks, Coffee with cream, Crème Caramel, Champagne

D – Desire, Devotion, Daisies

E – Elephant babies, Excellence

F – Feathers, Frolicking, Fierce Loyalty

G – Going fast, Goals

H – Holy Places, Happiness

I – Ice Cream

J – Jets, as in being a jet setter

K – Knitting,

L – Love, Love, Love

M – Mothers, Monster Cookies, Music

N – Nutella on Croissants

O – Opulence

P – Poetry, Pearls, Presents

Q – Quilts of all kinds

R – Roses, Rainbows, Ranunculus, Reading

S – Snuggling

T – Tea in a proper cup

U – Undulating wheat on a windy day

V – Vows, Veils, Venice

W – Watching Waves

X – The band of course…

Y – Yonder places

Z – Zyrtec (it cures what ails my family, particularly during these months)

So, that is how you create a Secret Alphabet. Let me know what you come up with when you write yours!



S is for Secret Alphabet

Hello Friends,

This A to Z challenge has been fun for many reasons, but one in particular. As a teenage girl I lived in San Francisco and hung out with punk rock bands. I actually lived in the air shaft of a beer vat in a large old brewery for a while, though that is a story for another day. Anyway, I had dreadlocks, gave myself a tattoo, wore vintage aprons over all my dresses, and, read poetry by Exene Cervenka and Lydia Lunch. Exene Cervenka is the lead vocalist of the punk rock band, X. They were freaking amazing. I loved them as did all my girlfriends at that time. We all wanted to be like her. People thought I was trying to emulate her in how I dressed, wore my hair, etc, but I wasn’t really interested in being like her. I just wanted to write like her. I wanted to be a poet. I was not, but lord bless my little heart, I did try.

There is this one song. A cover actually. It is an old Doors song, Soul Kitchen. In the song the lyrics refer to speaking in secret alphabets. We (all my girlfriends at the time. Note: We all had matching martini tattoos on our ankles which we gave each other. We thought we were so hardcore. Ha!) Anyway, we took this idea of the secret alphabet and wrote out our own secret alphabets. These secret alphabets were like little poems. Each line featured a letter of the alphabet and then a themed response. So, it could be a secret alphabet consisted of things I like, loved, wanted, hated, feared, or loathed. It was a way to feel like a poet, but without all the heavy lifting. This A to Z challenge feels a bit like a secret alphabet. When I first thought about participating in this challenge, I immediately thought back to those secret alphabets. We all can write secret alphabets if we want. Share yours if you feel inclined.
You can listen to the song here if you would like. Nothing to look at except the cover of that album, but I still love the song. Now, I clean house to their albums. . .



M is for Magic Mirrors

Hello Friends,

Okay, after yesterday’s post, I think we are ready for a little brevity and awe. Every time I visit this site I find something to love. They never disappoint. This particular spread was eye-opening in a way I had not anticipated. Go take a look and let me know what you think! I really want to know.

via This is Colossal

via This is Colossal


I love going to this site to see images, projects, and ideas that astonish and change me. Go now and then come back and tell me what you liked most.



F is for Flip Flops!

Hello Friends,

F is for Flip Flops.

I remember the day when we used to call them thongs. We wore them everywhere in summer. We even wore them while we rode our bikes, without helmets. But thongs mean something else now. I can accept change. I can. I just think that on this day, the day of the F, we should have fun too!
So, enjoy!

Making Of – Flip Flop Visuals from Radoxist studio on Vimeo.



Hello Friends,

So the word this week over at Lisa Jo Baker is WRITER. So here goes.

I think it is funny how much power the word writer had for me just a few short months ago. For years I have wanted to be a writer. I have stories floating around in my head that I need to write or they need to be written. I feel like a vehicle or a surrogate mother for these stories. But I struggle with labeling myself a writer. I fought these stories for years. Put them out of my head. Set them aside. Downplayed and dismissed them. For over thirty ears I have wanted to write and I have done everything I can to avoid it thinking that I am not a writer. How could I possibly write when I am not a writer.

Then a few months ago I came across a book I must have bought over two decades ago back when I was earning my bachelor’s degree. It was a book about being a writer. In this book the author explains the difference between a writer and an author. That was my aha! moment. I may not be an author yet, but I can certainly call myself a writer.

So, now I call myself a writer and in just the naming of the thing. Guess what? I write now. I write and write and write and I have never been so clear. The stories are there somehow and they are starting to take shape and form  paragraphs and moments and places and people and dialogue and action.

I am a writer.



Lisa Jo Baker has an interesting task every Friday. She calls it Five Minute Friday and it is a writing exercise posited around a particular prompt. You write to the prompt for a total of five minutes, uninterrupted, unedited, and then you link your writing to her site. As well, you go back and read two entries and comment on them.
She has, in effect, created a writer’s workshop. I love this and find it fun to participate in whether or not I had a blog. It is about the writing after all.