Sunday Lowdown #211


Monday started off with a weird vibe because our ASL professor didn’t show up. First, I wondered if he got too involved in Super Bowl celebrations (I forgot this event happened until it was over). But then, because we had been studying how to sign stories involving car accidents, I started to worry that he was in an accident and said so. I left the class to grab the head of the interpreting side of the department, and she used the time to let us ask questions about future classes. My question pertained to professionalism and etiquette at d/Deaf events. We left after thirty minutes for what is normally a two-hour class, so I got home and did chores, sat with Kitty, etc. When the ASL professor saw us Wednesday, he apologized and explained what happened, and also said there was a rumor he was in a car accident. That’s totally my bad, LOL.

Tuesday was Valentine’s Day. Do the rest of you celebrate that? I never know what all holidays everyone has in their countries. Nick and I never do anything on Valentine’s, but this year we moved date night to that evening (it’s a pretty flexible thing anyway) and then went home and ate treats (Entenmann’s devil’s food cake donuts for me, mint Oreos for him) and watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding. That may surprise you. However, I had been telling my spooky movie club just last week that I don’t watch other movie genres anymore because they make me feel bad, especially romance. That’s right; despite having a lovely husband and being so in love, romance movies make me feel awful. We’ll never be that hot, have that much drama, have such fancy jobs (I think “businessman” and “something in magazines” are popular), chase each other to an airport, etc. My Big Fat Greek Wedding seems like really normal people getting used to and falling in love with each other. The only part I hate is the end when their daughter says she doesn’t want to go to Greek school, she wants to be in Brownies. And her mom replies, “I know. I know. But I promise you this: You can marry anybody you want.” Lady, how are those even related??? I should turn the movie off as soon as they are married, but whatever.

Something shifted on Friday, though. I struggled on the written portion of my ASL midterm, and then when it was my turn to record the signing portion, I accidentally hit the glasses on my face. I didn’t lose my cool, which is good, because we’ve been learning about intrapersonal control in Interpreting class. Basically, you may be screaming on the inside, but your face is neutral. And yet, I couldn’t get myself together that day. I went home and switched into sweat pants and a hoodie. And yet, when the Linguistics professor asked what the pronoun in a sentence was, I raised my hand and said “old woman.” He said, “No, it’s not,” and I’m pretty sure I died inside.

It did get better Saturday morning when I visited with Cupcakes & Machetes on video. She helped me with a homework project (I’ll share more next week and give you a chance to weigh in) and also about what’s been going on in life. We definitely need to get together more often on video so we can talk. Texting just doesn’t have the same effect!


Thanks again to Hachette Go for sending me an ARC of It’s Always Been Ours by Jessica Wilson. Based on your comments, it sounds like while Wilson’s book was written with Black women in mind as the audience, but appeals to a larger readership. In fact, I would argue that seeing how white supremacy works in the diet industry helps all readers who are allies challenge and dismantle such a system. I know some folks are starting with delegitimizing the Body Positivity movement, which caters to young, white, able-bodied, straight women with self-confidence issues.


I can almost hear Bill @ The Australian Legend saying, “Finally!” A while back I read Tracks: A Woman’s Solo Trek across 1700 Miles of Australian Outback by Robyn Davidson. Published in 1980, and written about events in the late 70’s, Davidson’s book frustrated me, but in ways that also challenged me to acknowledge that Davidson’s honesty at put her at risk of being reviled, and I think she knew that. Review Wednesday.


Books Bought Since January 2023: 0




  1. As always love your honesty about your ups and downs – and love how you have positive strategies for handling the downs, even if it’s sometimes just going with it as best you can.

    We don’t tend to “do” Valentine’s Day though we often acknowledge it. This year we went out with our son the night before because V-Day was the last night before we left to return home and we have a dining with him on our last night tradition. However, I don’t think his partner would have been too pleased – as generous as she is – if we’d taken him away that night (even though with two kids they were not doing anything very special.) So, on the actual last night, we just stayed in and ate up the leftovers in the fridge. I remember enjoying My Big Fat Greek Wedding – loud and joyful as I recollect – though I don’t remember much more than that. Your point about romances is well made, though I tend to just watch them – when I do – as fantasy rather than as aspirational.

    I look forward to your review of Tracks and will do my best to comment. I think you are right about Davidson. I don’t think she cares a lot about “being liked”. She’s driven to follow her own drum as they say.


    • Ha, as for downs, today I’m quite trembly. I had to present what is called an ABC story in class, and this afternoon I have a linguistics quiz. In between, I’ve just been rattling my bones all over. Trembling is new to me in the last year or so, and I’m rather discouraged trying to navigate it. Exposure therapy is supposed to help, but I just can’t seem to get my brain on board.

      The main things most folks remember about My Big Fat Greek Wedding is the dad puts Windex on every ailment, and the aunt yelling, “ONE BIG ONE! ONE BIG ONE!” as she plucks a chin hair out of her sister’s chin.


      • Oh, I’m sorry Melanie. I hope it settles down. I’ve only had one period in my life of such trembling- it was over 40 years ago, but I still remember the feeling vividly. I thought I was going to fall apart. Fortunately, with the help of a very kind counsellor, I got through that period but it was not pleasant. I’m glad you have a partner and others there to support and wrap their aims around you.

        Thanks ie My big fat Greek wedding – I remember none of that, but I did see it when it came out, which was a little while ago now!


  2. We buy flowers and sometimes chocolates for ourselves and the other one on Valentine’s Day because it helps us get through the long, cold slog of February.
    I got an offer for a copy of It’s Always Been Ours and accepted because I liked what I’d read about it here.


    • Oh, I’m so glad my review made a difference Jeanne! After I posted my review here, I made sure to share it to Goodreads, Amazon, and The StoryGraph. I only do that with ARCs, though, because I’m hoping to promote a good authors.


  3. We don’t do Valentine’s day either. Not much of a fan of romcoms myself because they tend to reinforce white patriarchal heteronormativity. However, I have seen a couple gay romcoms, most recently Bros, that were utterly delightful to watch and absolutely do not end in marriage.

    Sorry you had a such a tough week. Glad your professor was ok. I hope you are enjoying the weekend!


  4. We don’t do much for Valentines Day, just exchange cards. It’s a commercial holiday, for kids and those who are newly in love, IMO. Although I do like looking at all the pretty pink and purple hand towels and stuff at Target, LOL.

    I think you handled the week’s ups and downs very well! It’s hard to be out there learning and doing stuff. Good for you!

    I remember loving My Big Fat Greek Wedding when it came out. I had a BIG crush on John Corbett when he was in Northern Exposure.


  5. Rob and I don’t go crazy on Valentine’s Day either. For this one, he made steak quesadillas, and we played a video game together for a while and then went our separate ways for the night. No presents. I think if you’ve been together for a long time, the novelty of Valentine’s Day wears off. I like celebrating our anniversary instead. I’m glad that we took the time to chat! That was a great start to the day and we definitely should do it more often. ❤


  6. Your Valentine’s Night sounds lovely! Aaron and I always get a little treat for each other, and then we celebrate by having a nice dinner with our kids, where we give them some little treats too. They get super excited by it (any holiday really) so it’s definitely kept the fun alive for us that way.

    Both Aaron and I hate football, and we too didn’t realize the game was on until it was over – oh well!

    The fact that you started a rumor in your class is hilarious!


  7. Valentine’s Day is a thing here, but I don’t really know anyone who marks it (unless it happens to coincide with a birthday or an anniversary). A couple from my old church used to put on a games night around Valentine’s Day with an unwritten “this is in case anybody is feeling lonely and left out” rationale, which I always thought was very thoughtful – but those are the only Valentine’s things I’ve ever been to. I do often buy myself chocolate or flowers when they’re discounted the day after, though!

    Sorry you had such a rough week – I hope things are looking up now.


    • Yes, that day-after candy is so tempting! This is the first Valentine’s Day I can think of in our 17 years that we did anything. We’re just not really into, but I think it helped me to have a special night just to break up some of the school week. It’s very kind that people made a space for folks who don’t have a date on Valentine’s Day and do care, to a degree, that they are alone.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Valentines Day was a big deal in my house this year but solely for the kids. Cards and chocolate and parties at school, that kind of thing. This year their school has been emphasizing ways to be kind in February so Valentines was part of that. I don’t think they see it as a romantic thing at all. Peter and I used to make pizza together every Valentines but this year I had to work and the kids were all wound up so it was a pretty ordinary night in our home!


  9. We do Valentine’s Day in the UK but we don’t bother in our house. Well, my husband trekked up the high street to the pound shop and got me a load of cough sweets …

    I have had that shaking thing with my anxiety, only quite infrequently and at times of high anxiety. It’s horrible so I hope it goes away. I think mindfulness and breathing have helped me with it.


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