"I would not like nights so bright you could not see the stars." -- Akira Kurosawa

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Atlanta
I grew up in a family of Southern storytellers. Back in 2004, I started Whole Bean to continue the tradition in a new medium. Over the years, I've written about families and friends, peculiar situations, extended road trips, recalcitrant home appliances, and many things for which I'm truly grateful. I hope you enjoy your time here.
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Ten Things I Don't Know How to Do


I recently read a post from my friend Tim on his blog The Middle Seat, and I just had to steal the idea, although Tim admitted that he got it from another source, a writing workshop called "Ten Things I Don't Know How to Do".  Here's my list:
  1. Fold fitted sheets properly.
    Truth be told, I'm very conscientious and methodical about doing laundry, but this one thing I have never figured out.  I'm great with flat sheets and pillowcases, but give me a fitted sheet, and I'm reduced to a babbling Brooks.
  2. Say the words "sugar cookie" together.
    I know that these are two distinct words, but for some reason, when I try to pronounce them together, the result runs together and sounds mushy.  It's embarrassing.  And I love sugar coo...oh, you know.
  3. Grow bonsai trees.
    I've been a fan of bonsai trees ever since I was introduced to them in my teens.  However, every single time I've tried to grow them, they've turned into ornamental sticks.
  4. Eat right-handed.
    I eat European, or continental, style.  I'm right-handed about most everything else (except for tennis, when I will sometimes switch hands), but I eat left-handed.  This confuses people when we are sitting in a booth at a restaurant, and they are sitting to my left.  A friend of mine whom I've known (and often lunched with) for the last eighteen years only realized this a few months ago and was astounded.
  5. Blow bubbles with bubble gum.
    This was on Tim's list, too.  I never figured out how to do this, although as I recall, I spent several years trying.  Oh, well.
  6. Swim.
    This is a big one.  I took swimming lessons when I was six, but I had a severe reaction to the chlorine in the instructor's pool at her house, so it was years before I tried again.  I took lessons when I was 35, but I don't feel comfortable going more than a few feet.
  7. Paddle a canoe or kayak.
    Given #6, this is probably understandable.
  8. Play a reed instrument.
    I played piano, guitar, and several brass instruments, but I've never played anything with a reed.  Huh.
  9. Play cards.
    Card games are not really my thing.  I will occasionally play a game, if someone first tells me (or reminds me) what to do, but I never seem to remember how to play a specific card game, even after being told repeatedly.  The only exceptions to this are Uno and Rook, so I think it's something about face cards that spooks me.
  10. Sleep well on the first night away from home.
    For some reason, I never sleep well the first night when traveling.  After that, it's not an issue, but that first night is always the worst.  Not sure why, but I've talked to other people who have the same problem.
Fun stuff.  :)