I look like the thinker. Except I am not thinking. I mean, we don’t know if the thinker was thinking or not, but he sure looked like I was. I can tell you I am not.

I have thoughts, but they are untethered, lacking any sort of connection to one another, and also lacking context…which is what thoughts need to go from descriptive to prescriptive. Or at least from passing to sticky. Or minimally viable as a blog topic.

I have my laptop open with optimism, but the act of holding up my own head, let alone mining anything from it is too much.

I went out Friday night. I worked (nurturing my nascent willpower) all week for the benefit of french fries at the truck stop, only to find that the truck that sold french fries was no longer selling them. This was not good.

I met a friend at Skinny pancake (fries+beer+art+skateboards) ate a quarter order of french fries so quickly that they might have been one mega fry, and never shook the disoriented feeling that comes from an unexpected remodel. This local restaurant (which now has outposts in Montpelier, the Burlington airport, and even, the pool) used to be my morning work spot when I was developing the original win win apps. I remember it as sunshine-y, wooden, and home-y. It is now a strange hybrid of all that, plus hip striving night spot. The show was handmade wooden skateboards. They were incredible. My appreciation was dimmed by the strange dichotomy in the space. Daylight/food on one side, Nightlife/drink on the other.

Walked up the hill to the new vegetarian restaurant for dinner. I’ll reserve comment until they have had some time to settle in. Which probably means you know what I think, but its not like I created a pull quote for the hater site. If there is a hater site for vegetarian restaurants. Maybe from the pork people?

Then drinks with a few friends outdoors at Bluebird Tavern.  We talked about BTV and how for a while it felt like we were imagining a positive trajectory for the food and tech scene and now it might, fingers crossed, possibly, knock wood, be happening. For real. Maybe.

Second drink spot the front room of Veritas where my excitement about the nutella pizza had me jumping like a second grader as we walked the short blocks to the new location. Joined by another friend which justified the ordering of two nutella pizzas I finally felt I had netted out the enjoyment of the sadly absent fries and I was ready to go home.

I drank not that much, which made my super responsible plan of leaving my car at home a huge inconvenience at the end of the night. Caught a ride with an absolutely lovely “non rascist” cab driver who decided to tell me about tipping patterns based on skin color, and age, and citizenship. After a bit he began probing me for stories, and since my empty head state seems to have had its origin story on Friday night I can’t recall them, and I’m pretty sure I couldn’t recall them then. Because I remember asking if he was the author of taxicab confessions (the often entertaining column in Seven Days where it makes Burlington seem even more city-like.) I appreciate the light irony of his comments making it online while my non stories are (probably) not going to be published. (Are there gradations to irony? Or is it binary- like being unique?)

Saturday morning was soccer. I won’t bore you all with a third soccer post because a. that would be boring and b. I didn’t go to witness whatever abject misery was present. I stayed home to clean for our guests. Which meant running the vacuum for 10 minutes, swiping the sinks for 3 minutes, and lying in bed for one and one half hours.

My mom aunt and uncle arrived at lunch time.

All understood the Shelburbia thing. The kids did a good job of demo-ing the assets of neighborhood life, taking off on spontaneous group bike rides with the boys from the circle, and other outdoor play that was made much more poignant in the golden light of the end of September.

As for “activities”…

We hiked to the bridge. Which I crossed. And then forced my family 2 miles out of our way so I didn’t need to cross it on the return. Leo splashed in the river. Which made me thirsty, so we left the nature area to emerge in the “even the light of a Vermont September can’t make it picturesque” business end of the Shelburne Supermarket. Despite having no money I knew we could get water, because there are only like 40 people in Shelburne and I know 39 of them.

The first person to spot us was a friend who walked us in and bought us big bottles of water. Thanks.

We made it back home to the neighborhood where we sat on the porch discussing book projects, Thanksgiving plans, and retirement packages. Reading it here it sounds like we were digging deep, but it felt sort of casual, in an easy good way.

I gave a rousing speech about the benefits of mine craft. It seemed as though I was putting myself up for mine craft ambassadorship. I surprised myself in fact with my exaggerated passion.

Then the apple orchard. Where Shelburbia was itself but even more so. Shelburbiest. We left in ten minutes after spending $100 (or so) on donuts, apples, honey, cider, pumpkins,the moral high ground.

After nap time, and a disturbing conversation with my aunt about how how how how how much pain her feet are in. Seriously a real neuropathy or some such that measures a 9/10 every minute of every day without intervention. Steve cooked dinner and I massaged kale.  Oliver was excited about our plan to play apples to apples after dinner, and when Oliver is excited everyone knows. There was much “conversation” about the game that at that time only 3 of us knew how to play. It was gripping.

Then the actual game which was more fun than anyone (except Oliver) expected. Oliver legitimately won. Where was Leo? You might be wondering if you know us some. Well I am pleased to tell you he was getting in hour 7,382 of mine craft. He is totally taking that home schooled boy on the curb down.

Woke up Sunday morning to Steve already up cooking breakfast. He tempted everyone out of bed with crepes and sausage and I cursed him the appropriate amount as I ate my egg white. My mom had egg white in solidarity, and when Hester asked her- does it have any flavor and my mom said “well I put hot sauce on it” and I replied that no she hadn’t and the three of us looked at each other in a mix of confusion and utter sinking into the miserable reality of the diet. Well she does sometimes, says my mom. And I imagine a magical world where egg whites have flavor and beans don’t make me want to gag. And perfectly reasonable things like turkey and avocado don’t seem like they are just mocking me from their bowl and drawer respectively. But we live in this real world, so I choke down some beans and watch people eat sausage, and then when my mom starts cleaning and scrapes crepe bits, sausage ends and baked apple skin onto a plate and calls it refuse and I think it looks incredible I cry a little bit inside.

Then a goodbye to my family both extended and immediate and I head back downtown for a massage, my first in months (wow, that is terrible for me, right?) and it is great. But the beat up kind of great that leaves me feeling bruised.

So then to Sue’s house and I took a short cut by bringing tacos from El Cortijo and I only eat the insides of ONE fish taco and aren’t I just so incredible except then I eat an entire bowl of melted cheese and handmade tortilla chips. The cheese and chips are almost perfect, except not quite salty enough and I imagine extra salt flakes and keep having a few more to try to get the ratio of cheese to chip perfect. If I am blowing the calories and dairy free-ness I might as well love it. Sue has chef-ed up a feast with sweat potatoes and pork belly, and homemade guac and all the bowls of things to add to your other things to make them even tastier and more calorific. And I have already blown it, so why not have flan.

Home for the Patriots game. Steve preps for hockey. The boys are thrilled with the re-built fire pit and the trashed table that has become a beyblade station, and their improved golf swings, and the pick up soccer game. It is the Sunday afternoon of Shelburban dreams. So since the flan was…flan. I celebrate with chocolate fudge brownie ice cream. I grab it from the freezer, asses the ice cream level (mid) and totally logically throw the lid into the trash, grab the pint and head to football.

Steve comes in to say goodbye and confiscates the pint (half pint really, and isn’t half pint have vernacular  for small and so isn’t this just a modest amount of ice cream after all?) Thank you Steve.

So instead of eating I fall asleep in front of the game and after he wakes me when he comes home from hockey I insist that I “am watching” and its like I’m channeling my father. When he asks me the score and I get it right he gives in and we “watch” together until he wakes me again and then we head to bed.

So now it is now. Monday morning, after that weekend. That I thought was full of family, and friends and fun but was really just about food. What I had and what I didn’t have. And that is the fucking truth of this diet. We can talk about friends who are unwell (gorgeous writing inspired by unfair topic), and North Korea, and retirement plans and really really it is all about food. This has got to be what addiction is like, right?

So here starts a new week.

I cancelled my walk after my walk partner changed the time and it was too close to my meeting with Angela. But it turned out that that meeting was just in my head so I almost rescheduled my canceled coffee which I cancelled because it didn’t work with the walk I canceled. Now I am probably canceling yoga because Angela did a bit of research and figured out it was hot yoga.

I practice (d) yoga because I don’t want to feel like I’m dying. So why would I go to a yoga class where I feel like I’m dying? Thats just illogical.

Steve is getting ready to leave for california for 2-4 days, so he is working out of my office so we can spend a bit of time together. He is like 6 inches from me having a meeting about IBM crap. It is filling my empty (except for food thoughts) with jargon bombs.



So that was my weekend. What did you do?



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Anna Palmer

Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble,, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at

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