Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Review: BAGU

I love my blog. It’s a wonderful place to share my writing, and at the same time has that pull that reminds me to write every day: “if you don’t work, there won’t be anything on the blog!” I like to go back and look at it from a reader’s perspective sometimes, and see the way it looks on the website instead of just staring at the software. And it’s nice, but it’s not something I can hold in my hands.
Last month my husband stopped at the mailbox and brought in a package in one of those bubble wrap envelopes. “This came for you,” he said, and tossed it to me. It had a customs stamp in one corner, and I recognized the name of the sender.
I ripped the package open with my hands, not wanting to use a sharp pointy object that may have subjected its contents to harm (and not wanting to wait to procure said pointy object). “It’s HEEEERE!” I sang. “What?” said my husband, who was already in the other room. I held up the small gold and black paperback, dancing it around in front of his eyes.
Being a Grown Up... cover design
by Adam Murray
It was my copy of Being a Grown Up: A User’s Manual for the Real World.
I agreed wholeheartedly with Harriet Putney’s Use Your Hands: it does feel great to do physical work, to be tired after working and to know that you earned that feeling. Carl Palmer’s poems were wonderful, and I’m not a poetry person; I had to put the book down and find a kleenex after reading Dad’s Hands. Jurassic Park and Jewel-Toned Suits is exactly the piece I’ve been thinking of writing for months; Morgan Ashworth expressed the thoughts that have been rolling around in my head perfectly: “People don’t ‘grow up’; they stay the same, while things just happen chronologically around them.”
The Words of Wisdom were great, a sentence or two of common sense and advice which served as a buffer between essays. My favorite was one of Raisah Ali’s: “If someone deserves to be in your life, they will make the effort.”
Alya-Monic McKay presented an refreshing idea about baskets and apples in Categorically, Love; it was wonderful to read something so straightforward since you expect things written  about love to be all squishy feelings and romantic sighs. I loved the idea presented by Judith Marks-White that memories soften and change as we “rewind the tapes” to look back at them. And I have stood at the edge of Kathleen C. Healy’s well of creativity, and have been similarly washed away by its waters.
I may be a biased source, but I found many of the pieces in Being a Grown Up entertaining and thought provoking. They grabbed my heart and made me laugh. Ideas that were conveyed well made me agree out loud: “yes! I love this!!”
Don’t worry, you can procure your own copy by going to http://allgrownupbooks.bigcartel.com/ or by going to BAGU’s facebook page, facebook.com/BeingAGrownupBook.
I love my blog, but it’s not the same thing as having my work (The Life Cycle of Dish Washing, by Patricia Livermore, page 13) bound in a book, alongside such good company.

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