Remember Felicity? That TV melodrama starring Keri Russell? It was an early J. J. Abrams effort, before all the intrigue and smoke monsters and persons of interest and whatnot.

And I loved it. (I was 18, okay? Give me a break.)

I loved it because it was about a girl who was just beginning university, and it began airing, in a perfectly-timed sort of way, just as I myself was just beginning university.

And Felicity (the character) was just like me. Not that I was curly haired or elfin or anything, but I was massively insecure, prone to extreme and awkward gestures of love, and determined to overhaul my life and personality... just like Felicity. I wanted to be a new version of me. At the time, I thought this was possible. These days, I'm not so sure.

During the first two seasons, the show had a terrible theme -- black and white pictures of the main character in and around New York City, set to a unformed sort of horrible wailing. (Okay, singing... but I hated it.)

Then, in season three, the opening sequence was revamped, and set to a brand new theme song written by Abrams himself (and to be fair, some other dude whose name I don't remember and can't be bothered to Google).

The new theme was fittingly entitled "New Version of You."

I was a giant dork, so the it gave me shivers. Like My So-Called Life before it, Felicity was proving itself to be about me.

I guess if you can get a teenager to draw that sort of connection, you've got a good show on your hands. (Or, if not a good show, at least a show well-tailored to a teen audience.)


I recently wrote about how autumn tends to ignite in some of us the urge to reinvent. Then, just a couple of weeks ago, I posted about the dream/nightmare I had about mushrooms. The mushroom dream interested some of you, and bored others (mostly, it just creeped you out), but no one was more invested in it than my mom-in-law (a writer) who felt it was heavy with the symbolism of transformation and said that she felt I've been engaged in a period of reinvention over the past few years, which could be seen mirrored in the dream.

Maybe that's true. I don't know. Certainly, I've tried, many times over the course of my not-yet-very-long life to reinvent myself, or rather, to become someone that people saw differently. I don't think I've ever succeeded. And it's true that in the past few years, massive changes that have been largely out of my control have forced a corresponding change in terms of where I live and what I do, but at my core, I think I might be exactly what I was before and what I've always been.

My life changed. My circumstances changed. My outlook and politics and idea changed, sure. No one can help having experiences and having experiences change the way you think and behave. I mean, at the very least, I've tried to learn from my mistakes, but despite all my efforts (both historic and deliberate, as well as more recent and inadvertent), I think I'm beginning to think I'm largely the same as I've always been.

It even occurs to me that I've blogged about this before. Back in 2007 I posted something entitled "People you've been before" (the title being a reference to a very melancholy song by Elliott Smith). And in that piece, I wrote about reading my old elementary school report cards and finding that the descriptions of me written by my Jr. Kindergarten teacher still held true. (And still do today.) 

"It's official," I wrote. "Nothing ever changes."

And now I've written it again, in a slightly different way, because I'm still who I was. And who I was is who I will be.

At first, it seems annoying, doesn't it? But actually, it's kind of comforting.
Just got home from work to find five early-release copies of Nate's book in the mail.
He's modest as all-get-out, but I am quite possibly more excited than I've ever been in my entire life. Ever.


You can't see me, but I am doing a very vigorous dance around my living room at the moment. And it's very difficult to blog and dance at the same time, so I'm gonna have to cut this off so we can go out to celebrate.

Woo WOO! Nathan Kalman-Lamb... you are the best. XO.
Last night, I dreamed I was collecting morels. Heading through a forest, eyes to the ground, I looked for their honeycombed heads among the leaves.
As I picked each morel, I cut it in half  with a pocket knife, to expose the hollow core. (That's one way to tell if a morel is edible.) I tossed the halves into a canvas sack, hung over my shoulder.

Noticing that the sack was heavy, I looked inside and found that all the mushrooms I'd picked were whole again, the halves regenerated. Each piece, like the arm of a starfish, having formed a new, complete body.

And looking back at the ground, I saw that there were morels everywhere. They grew across the path in front of me, and up the trunks of the surrounding trees. There were more with every glance. Ten suddenly, where once were five, fifty where there had been only ten. I could hear them coming, crinkling along on the forest floor, shifting the fallen leaves and the needles and the twigs.

I knew what to do. I put a morel in my mouth and tasted it. It tasted like butter and earth, so I began eating the morels. I ate and ate and ate, but there never seemed to be fewer on the ground.

I realized that they were poisonous after all, and lay down on the path to sleep.

More morels came. They crept over me, pushing their monopod legs into my skin, covering my face and legs and stomach until, eventually, I disappeared.

It was warm in the morel cave. And all the morels were breathing. I knew no one would find me, so I woke up.

In the morning, I remembered this dream and thought of the Sylvia Plath poem, Mushrooms. When I was in university, I wrote an essay about it, but I can't remember what I said.

Anyway. That's really what I dreamed. Weird, right?
It seems like fall decided to arrive all of a sudden, doesn't it?* In with a bang, if you will. On Sunday, it was all heat and humidity and then, the very next day (Labour Day), it was suddenly cool and crisp. Perfect back-to-school weather.
Only, I don't remember the weather ever behaving quite so well for any of my own back to school adventures. I spent every August fussing over the details of my perfect first-day-of-school outfit, and inevitably, said outfit would be far too heavy to wear on the actual day. I'd lay out a striped sweater, cream cords and high tops, only to wake up (late) to 30 degree heat.

This happened EVERY YEAR. And I never learned. I never had a cooler (both literally and figuratively), back-up outfit planned. I'd end up in cut offs, dirty flips, and a day camp t-shirt. In other words, I'd ruin my debut. (Again.)

This is just one of the reasons being a kid is hard.

Nate and I spent most of the long weekend at the beach, which was nice, barring the fact that Selks were there and at their worst. We checked in on Bay Fest (see this old post to learn more about that), did a little thrifting (which I'll post about on the Chic blog later) and swam in a lake that is already beginning to feel too cold.

I know it's not really fall. Not yet. But it feels like it.

*Disclaimer: I live in Toronto. Obviously, you may have had contrary experiences with the Labour Day weather. Can't help that. As I said to my niece recently, "No one can control the weather." She answered, "Yes they can!" But when I asked her about who was able to control the weather, all would say was "SOMEbody. SOMEbody can."
She's four.