Leila has gone back to 2017 for this one and the contents have generated some interesting comments on her part about her plans for the future. This is what she said:
Viewing one’s past in the rearview mirror is often the source of melancholy. Whoever first said that “At least I’ll have my memories to sustain me in my old age,” probably died early because he or she didn’t realize that the light up ahead was actually an oncoming train. Sustenance from memories? Are you kidding? Pour bourbon on the past if you want it to fill you. And forget the ice; the ghosts of times gone by will chill you to your osteoporotic core.
I’ve never liked or trusted cheerful old people. Something’s wrong there; not sure what it is, just something. But I do trust and adore old people who give the endless now the finger and refuse to give in; they, as the old saying goes, keep on keeping on.
Someone out there has just objected to my twice used “old people.” That’s a strange thing when you consider that “young people” would pass without comment. But that is indicative of the consumer world we live in. Even human beings are subject to planned obsolescence.
So what are you going to do when you are warehoused in a facility and can only get around with wheels instead of feet? Will you politely take your meds and wait to die, or will you snap and snarl, make crude jokes and tell the persons who speak to you as though you are seven to go to hell? The answer is obvious; but so damn few people choose it.
Kathryn Lord’s Addie knows better. And although her mind brims with memories, she steadfastly refuses to take her place in the human landfill without a fight. What makes Thelma and Addie works because Lord displayed integrity. If just one tiny ray of sentimental sunset had shone in the piece, the damage would have been catastrophic. Still, it is always up to the reader to decide for him- or herself.
Q: How does it work out with two writers in the same family? (Oh, yeah, I read the recap that says you are married to contributor Andrew Miller. I personally know only one other writer, and I’m not at all sure that she likes me very much. Says I’m married to my ego.) Do you critique each other’s stuff? If so, does that ever escalate into darker observations?
Q: How difficult was it to keep Addie’s subtly defiant nature up? Seems to me that this composition could have easily tempted you to wax purple, if only for the moment–yet you avoided the trap.