Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Help, Thanks, Wow, The Review

Right now I am reading Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers by Anne Lamott. I know Anne Lamott is not everyone's cup of tea, but I happen to love her writing. I appreciate her honesty, her ability to look at life in a fresh way, her sense of humour, and how what she says rings true to everyday experiences. Here's an example:

"This morning at six when I awoke, loneliness was sitting on my chest like a dental X-ray apron, even though I was buried in hairy dog love. I prayed: 'Help. I am sad and lonely, and already it looks from here like today is going to be too long.'"

I read this yesterday, which also happened to be the day that started out with a jar of honey falling out of the cupboard and landing on the edge of a bowl. Things would have been easier if the bowl had been empty. It wasn't. It held the two eggs I was planning to use to make an omelet. Those babies departed that bowl like they had been flung from a slingshot.

Later yesterday morning I stopped by the Hyundai dealership to order a replacement taillight for our Tucson. We have no idea how the light got bashed in. There are no signs of the vehicle having been hit, and the last time it was driven it was fine. It bothers me a lot to think it might have been vandalized, but I can't come up with any other explanation. Shock doesn't begin to describe my reaction when the parts guy told me what the replacement piece was going to cost.

Enter Anne Lamott. The sad and lonely part might not have been applicable, but I grabbed onto that part about how "it looks from here like today is going to be too long" the same way Fergus grabs a bone.

Even if the rest of the book wasn't filled with Anne's unique way of looking at things, which it is, and even if it didn't make me laugh out loud in parts, which it does, this book would have been worth the cost for just these three sentences:

"Another damn wind. I hate wind so much. It can make you feel hopeless, even in world-class beauty."

I live in a place where the wind rarely stops blowing. This is an especially bad feature if you hate the wind, which I do. There are times when the wind blows so hard here you can feel it hit the house. It screeches and roars and howls and just basically makes me all kinds of crazy. I want to frame that quote from Help, Thanks, Wow and put it on my wall. And from now on every time the wind blows I can look at it and know I'm not alone. Someone else hates the wind as much as I do.

There's a great comfort in knowing you're not alone, and that realization is the gift Anne Lamott gives with this book.


15 comments:

  1. I love Anne Lamott too, I didn't know she had a new book out though! This is going on my to read list. I think it would be hilarious to cross stitch the quote but that's probably just me...

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    1. A cross stitch would be perfect. You would have to come up with some pictures to go with the quote though. And I think you will like her book. :-)

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  2. Anne Lamott is wonderful. I didn't know she had a new book out, either! And hugs on the all-around rotten stuff. I had a weekend like that, too. :/

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    1. I'm sorry you had a bad weekend. My stuff was "small b" bad. (I have had enough of the "capital B" bad to know the difference.) Let me know what you think if you get a chance to read her new book!

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  3. So true, we're all individuals, all different, but never alone in what we feel. My wife needs sun and my daughter loves the wind. When she was a toddler she'd smile and practically flap her arms with excitement when a good wind caught her in the face. A cold, brisk wind was her favorite.

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    1. I think your daughter needs to move to Kamloops. It would be a very happy place for her to live! :-)

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    2. It would be interesting to see if she liked the extreme wind you have there. I like snow, but I'm pretty sure Kamloops gets more than I like. :)

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  4. Sounds like the perfect book for yesterday! I was also having one of those days - they really are long aren't they!

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    1. I'm sorry you had one of those days too. When I have one I usually acknowledge the fact it isn't going to get any better and I just need to hang in there until bedtime, and start fresh the next day. That's Anne Lamott's gift really. She took my thought and put it into memorable words. I hope today goes better for you!

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  5. It sounds like a good book. Sorry you had a bad day, hopefully a good one is around the corner. I am not a fan of the wind either, nothing more annoying than having to eat ones own hair.

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    1. If you have noticed in my pictures that appear on this blog I am always wearing a headband. That is precisely the reason!

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  6. Oh boy, do I understand your hatred of wind. I DO TOO! When we moved in our home after just getting married 25 years ago (in the spring time) we thought it was soooooo cool to be high up on one highest points in our county. Sooooooo high up , 60 huge windmills have moved into our "backyard" in the last 10 years.......

    The first year the winter winds started to howl I knew I was in BIG trouble. I hate wind. It sounds like a frieght train roaring down the track, RIGHT FOR THE SIDE OF MY HOUSE! Our house was built in the late 1800's (after the Civil War) and moaned and groaned as it rammed against it. It still does! Then comes the REAL fun part - add a snow squall to that 50mph wind and you have a total white out condition ....... hate that too.

    Your day sounded like a real bummer......sorry to hear that.

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    1. Your place sounds just like mine! We are high up on a bluff, overlooking Kamloops and the surrounding countryside. It seemed like a great location when we bought the house, and in many ways it is. But it must have been one of the rare calm days we get when I was house hunting. Had I known the wind was so bad I don't know if I would have bought the place! At least we don't have the windmills like you do. :-(

      Are you able to have any hanging plants out in the summer? I wouldn't dare put one up. The funny thing is, about the only time I don't mind the wind is when it is accompanied by a huge snowstorm. I love blizzards!

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  7. Oh Kristie, I'm catching up on my reading of blogs and I am still laughing at the idea of the honey hitting the bowl and shooting the eggs across the room. I thought that kind of thing only happened to me. I do like Anne Lamott, so thanks for the review.

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    1. The worst thing about the eggs was how hard they were to clean up. It was impossible to see where the white had gone, and it was so slimy! I hope you like Anne Lamott's new book. I think it will be one I read a second time.

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