Stories We Love

Category: From the Author

My Broken Face

“I need a dentist!” I screamed as my dad carried me up the stairs to the kitchen. I had been riding my bike around the neighborhood, trying out my new found freedom on two wheels. I was trying to imitate the older kids by popping wheelies when instead of a successful wheelie, I found myself landing teeth first on the concrete. I was six years old. My teeth had chipped and my gums split open. I lay there on the sidewalk facedown in a growing pool of my own blood, whimpering in pain.

I had no strength to get up, the wind knocked out of me on impact, and the shock of my situation affecting my cognitive ability. Thankfully a neighbor happened to out watering her flowers when I crashed in front of her house. I was only four houses down from my own, but it seemed like miles. She picked me up and carried me home. My dad took me from her and rushed me upstairs to get me cleaned up. I was finally coming to and screaming for help, for my mom, for a dentist. It was a scene.

We were able to get a dentist to see me and I had my first ever x-ray. The dentist, I don’t even remember his name, fixed me up. For four days I had two fat lips and looked like I had been in a fight with Mike Tyson.

And yet, the first thing I wanted to do was get back on my bike, to ride, and feel the wind in my face. At the time there was nothing I loved more than speeding down the hill at the end of the block. My parents made me take a break to heal, but it killed me. I begged every day to get back out there.

I haven’t rode a bike in over 15 years. This thing that meant so much to me that I was willing to risk life and limb and face, gone from my life completely. It’s funny to me, that we can change our interests so much. We throw away years of our life and turn on a dime for the next best thing. And the things we once loved fade away.


The Drive

I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t love books. Some of my greatest memories are of my mom and dad reading to me as a child–everything from Dr. Seuss and Mercer Meyer to the classics like Treasure Island or The Swiss Family Robinson. One of my favorite books growing up was The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, though admittedly I enjoyed the Disney version even more. I was obsessed with the idea of the Headless Horseman. It both such a scary and cool character in my eyes. My parents knew I loved it and while we lived in New York state they took me to North Terrytown, the town which much of Sleepy Hollow was based on, for Halloween and to see Sleepy Hollow for myself. There was even a guy dressed as the Headless Horseman riding around.

And so as long as I can remember, I’ve been driven by stories. When other kids were playing baseball during the summer, I spent the days in the backyard creating fantastic stories using GI Joes and Legos, my mom’s flowerbed often standing in as the jungle. I always looked forward to library time at school. I was obsessed with Choose-Your Own Adventure and Encyclopedia Brown books. My friend and I used to try to come up with our own movie ideas.

In high school I took a creative writing class. It was the first time since elementary school I had tried to actually write out a story. And while I enjoyed it immensely, my writing needed work. I loved it, but found myself distracted for years afterwords in pursuit of college and graduate degrees. Always looking ahead to write “when I have time.”. The time never came because I never made room for it.

But lately I have been. I’ve been making a lot of changes in my life, reorganizing my priorities, and have decided that writing is going back to the top of the list. I am 31 and still I can’t shake it. I’m sure what I have been writing so far is terrible, but you only get better through hard work and practice.

Stories come from all around. They shape how we see the world. They connect us. They drive us forward.

Movies We Love: The Godfather

This week marks the 40th anniversary of The Godfather, which is in this person’s opinion, one of the greatest films ever made. Much can and already has been said in praise of the film. From the timeless story to the beautiful cinematography, the movie changed the culture around it.

I can think of many reasons why I love it, but the number one reason I love it is how personal it is to me. I remember a few years back I made the comment to my dad that I hadn’t seen it. The next day he had it on DVD and we sat down and watched it together. It is a movie he loves and wanted to share. I try to share it with people as well.

I also love the ways you see the affects of sin and betrayal weave in and out of the Corleone family through out the series. Sin isn’t treated lightly in the film. Actions often have grave consequences. There is a real sense of urgency to the story.

And the more you watch it, the better it gets. So if you haven’t seen it yet, or have seen it a hundred times, you ought to take a day this next week and watch it again. Trust me, it’s worth it.


What do you love about The Godfather?


Welcome to Stories We Love.  We are working on getting the site up and running.  What we hope to provide here is a place to talk about the books, movies, TV shows, and stories in our lives that we love, and why we love them.  Stories, whether truth or fiction, have a unique ability to change the way we see and interact with the each other and the world around us.  Here’s to diving in head first into the stories that have meant the most to us.