Missed Miss Lamott? Dommage.

March 11, 2008 § Leave a comment

There was no time to go home first. I drove directly from work to the stage where Anne Lamott was going to speak last night.

I didn’t have time to go home and grab my copy of BIRD BY BIRD in case I had some sweaty amateur need to have her sign it. I didn’t have my camera to surreptitiously snap a picture (sans flash,  of course). I had nothing with me. I was unfettered.

And I was early. Good thing. The auditorium quickly filled up and the hum of our anticipation took up the rest of the space.

There were no tickets. Lamott’s appearance was open and free to the public. The room became so crowded that she invited people to sit on the stage around her rather than experience 90 minutes of SRO.

She was her books come to life. Nothing coy, cute, planned or hyper-polished about her.  We all laughed, uh-huhed, shook our heads and were pensive.  She read, she talked about Sam, she did a Q&A and told us the three brave things she did last year: taking ballroom dance lessons with her lanky surfer boyfriend, taking a trip to So Africa, and getting a tatoo. Which, she said, hurt like hell.

Of course I bought a book, her latest. Of course I stood in line with a writing friend, Chris, who’s email “anybody wanna go see AL with me?” was the only reason I knew AL was even in town. Of course I had nothing to say (thank God) other than “hello” as Lamott signed my book.

I realized how long it has been since I’ve spent time with writers and readers, and I miss hosting workshops and taking classes and hanging with my writing colleagues who care more about writing and wording than they do about corporate success.

 Left Bank Books was in on sponsoring Lamott’s presence. All hail an independent bookstore that’s got energy, rhythm and delivers more than books.

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