What can YOU say in six sentences?
Unsure at first if memories can even be said to have size, then sifting through the sediment of 43-plus years and finding some obsidian chunks and gold flakes alike:
--As a kid, scheduling a magic show for the neighborhood, carefully cutting out construction paper tickets, only to have one of the cool kids tear his up in front of me at the bus stop, saying, "No one's coming to your stupid fucking magic show."
--The way she got up in the middle of the night and draped a sheet around her waist to go into the kitchen, bare feet on the hardwood floors, slim legs and blonde curls, her casually elegant obscenities, the feeling that I was way out of my league.
--The ER doctor who diagnosed my pancreatitis and, after I'd asked about my options, said, "You either stop drinking or you die"; I was 28.
--My first book contract: during the year between signing and the supposed publication date, my publisher was bought out by a larger media conglomerate and the editor who'd bought my book was replaced with an editor whose overt hostility made it plain she meant to do everything in her power to sink the deal; she succeeded.
--Nearly 10 years later, seeing my first published novel (a different one from the above) on the bookshelf at a bookstore among the new releases, and still unable to escape the sense of waiting for something to go wrong.
--The time when I was ten or eleven and my little sister got caught in a riptide and we both almost drowned; at the peak of my hysteria I promised God that if we were rescued I'd never say, "G.d." again; I still don't.