Memories of Ice Cream

images.jpgWhen I was in High School I suffered a debilitating lower back injury that forced me to withdraw from all strenuous physical activity. I sold my surfboard, tossed my athletic supporter in the laundry, deflated my volleyball, and transferred from Physical Education classes to become a library assistant.

Working in a High School library taught me a lot about the tasks and skills needed to maintain an apparently large collection of reading materials. I look back at it now and can only smile at how quaint and primitive it all was. Needless to say, it was a time before computers (our word processor had to be sharpened regularly).

In between lettering book spines, shelving returned books, checking out new acquisitions, and even sweeping the floor, I had plenty of time to roam around the library, discovering new and interesting materials. One book I recall pulling down from the reserved shelf more than once was a big thick one full of quotations (Bartlett’s?) that when I was seventeen seemed fresh and profound but would now be considered clichéd at best.

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13 Ways of Looking At a Fat Girl

images.jpgMona Awad is an Arab-Canadian and the product of creative writing schools. I don’t know if she had any first hand knowledge of her subject, but her 13 vignettes in the life of a woman with severe body issues certainly seems viable. Awad has a strong grasp on the essentials of good fiction. As someone once said, It’s all in the details.

Each individual story (vignette) shows a different view of a fat girl’s involvement in the everyday elements of life: food, clothes, exercise, friends, sex. The conflict comes, however, not with ripped seams in an expensive dress or an extra cannoli for dessert.

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