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I started writing poetry again back in March. I was walking through Northside library on Rio Rd. when I saw an announcement sitting atop a waist high shelf. It was a call for poems — a competition to be more precise — from WriterHouse, a Charlottesville-based writing community with a physical location on 508 Dale Avenue.
“Why not?” I thought.
A brief, soul crushing history of working in a bagel shop
Though I’ve never stepped in the front door, I’m familiar with WriterHouse. Years ago, after college, when I was searching high and low for a job, I briefly landed at Bodo’s Bagels on Preston Avenue. WriterHouse was literally next door. Working at Bodo’s paid the rent (mostly) and provided a free lunch. Granted, till this day, I won’t eat an everything bagel because I smelled enough garlic and onion flakes at 6 a.m. to last a lifetime.
Graduating college with dreams of being a full-time writer, only to find yourself working at a bagel shop, was soul crushing to say the least. Sure, it was temporary, I told myself. And so... More
To quote the punk band the Descendents, “I like food. Food tastes good.” And, I think food is an apt metaphor as it relates to cooking up a novel or memoir, or even a short story.
It’s like deciding you’re going to create a gourmet meal without really knowing what the meal consists of. Sure, you know the main ingredient is chicken. You know salt and pepper will be needed. But there’s a big difference between baked chicken and chicken makhani. And, if you’re making chicken makhani, you probably should have an inkling of an idea what the ingredients are and what you’re doing. So it’s best to grab the peanut oil, garam masala, cayenne pepper, and ginger garlic paste at the grocery store before you start the dish, as opposed to starting your chicken makhani, then realizing you need those ingredients while your chicken makhani is already in the oven. Oh, by the way, chicken makhani doesn’t go in the oven. You cook it in a skillet on your stovetop.